Electronics Bash – Arduino #7- Text Displays and Multicolor LEDs

In this stream, we’ll be looking at:

  • Driving Arduino text displays based around the popular H44780 display IC
  • Driving multicolor LEDs (bi-color, RGB) and strategies for managing and transitioning color.

This is the space where I’ll be posting code samples and circuit layouts sometime in advance of the stream, for those who want to follow along more directly. You can expect the code and formatting here to change up to a couple hours before the stream as the plan for the evening comes together.

LED Code


A basic bit of code to send Red, Green, and Blue values to an RGB LED.

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RGB_Color Wheel.ino

Contains a basic function to map an angle between 0 and 360 degrees on the color-wheel to an output value on an RGB LED.

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Demonstrates an algorithm to map Hue/Saturation/Value colors to RGB ones

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Steps back and forth between the two colors in a (multi-lead) bicolor LED.

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Fades back and forth between the two colors of a (multi-lead) bi-color LED.

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LCD Display Code


Initializes our LCD display and prints a simple message and timeclock on it. The HelloWorld example from the Arduino IDE.

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A fake display for the RPM of a motor – we generate the data randomly, but could easily be adapted to show the value from a sensor or potentiometer.

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Introduces the idea of adding custom characters to the LCD, and doing some fun things with them.

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Rolls through all the printable characters in a given LCD module, to help identify which kind of module/font you have.

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A simple progress bar graphic using 5 custom symbols to fill up a line from left to right.

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Creates a wave which rolls back and forth across the display using 8 characters.

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Combining our two topics for tonight, we’ll use the LCD to show us the values that are being output to our RGB LED.

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