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Where to begin - LCD Character control


New member

I'm looking to be using a Character or Graphical LCD to display information from a race cars ECU. I want to display, in number form, the RPM's, water temp and oil pressure. All of these values will be coming into the LCD display as a change in voltage (i.e. as the RPMs increase, voltage will increase).

I want to be able to have this voltage change be converted into values for the LCD to display. However, I've never used an LCD, nor know the basic functions. I'm looking for information on where to begin, and what I need to do to get my project working.

Thanks for any help!
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New member
For starters you would be better off with a character LCD to begin with due to it's simpler learning curve and the fact that the software to drive it would be much much simpler.

You then would be needing a Microcontroller of some description with ADC inputs to take the voltages from your ECU and convert them into digital form for processing.

Then comes writing the software, you need to be able to program in assembly language or if your microcontroller is popular and well supported then you may be able to program in C or BASIC. It will need to be able to drive the LCD, but this is trivial since most software libraries for the popular micros will have support for the character lcds that CFontz sells which makes that very simple. Also you will need to be able to take the data from the ADCs, convert it into your RPMs/Temps/Pressure values then write it to the LCD.

Here are a few links to Microcontroller manufacturers (also lots of good information on them)
http://www.microchip.com - 8bit & 16bit Micros with lots of functions including ADC & Character LCD support libs (Also free samples of the chips!)
http://www.atmel.com/products/avr/ - 8bit Micro with ADC & LCD Support (Also free samples!)