I2C 20×4 LCD character display on a #RaspberryPi

Take a look at this more up-to-date post which uses a Python library to do the necessary.

I bought this display from Hobby Components:

It is very similar to the Sainsmart 2004 LCD display and the pin mappings are the same (it’s a J204A LCD board).

I came across this thread on the Foundation forum on which member ‘natbett’ gave out some code to drive the display. Fortunately, this code works (after trying out 4 other examples found elsewhere). Here is the code for posterity:

The first file is called ‘i2c_lib.py’

import smbus
from time import *

class i2c_device:
   def __init__(self, addr, port=1):
      self.addr = addr
      self.bus = smbus.SMBus(port)

# Write a single command
   def write_cmd(self, cmd):
      self.bus.write_byte(self.addr, cmd)
      sleep(0.0001)

# Write a command and argument
   def write_cmd_arg(self, cmd, data):
      self.bus.write_byte_data(self.addr, cmd, data)
      sleep(0.0001)

# Write a block of data
   def write_block_data(self, cmd, data):
      self.bus.write_block_data(self.addr, cmd, data)
      sleep(0.0001)

# Read a single byte
   def read(self):
      return self.bus.read_byte(self.addr)

# Read
   def read_data(self, cmd):
      return self.bus.read_byte_data(self.addr, cmd)

# Read a block of data
   def read_block_data(self, cmd):
      return self.bus.read_block_data(self.addr, cmd)

The second file is called lcddriver.py

import i2c_lib
from time import *

# LCD Address
ADDRESS = 0x27

# commands
LCD_CLEARDISPLAY = 0x01
LCD_RETURNHOME = 0x02
LCD_ENTRYMODESET = 0x04
LCD_DISPLAYCONTROL = 0x08
LCD_CURSORSHIFT = 0x10
LCD_FUNCTIONSET = 0x20
LCD_SETCGRAMADDR = 0x40
LCD_SETDDRAMADDR = 0x80

# flags for display entry mode
LCD_ENTRYRIGHT = 0x00
LCD_ENTRYLEFT = 0x02
LCD_ENTRYSHIFTINCREMENT = 0x01
LCD_ENTRYSHIFTDECREMENT = 0x00

# flags for display on/off control
LCD_DISPLAYON = 0x04
LCD_DISPLAYOFF = 0x00
LCD_CURSORON = 0x02
LCD_CURSOROFF = 0x00
LCD_BLINKON = 0x01
LCD_BLINKOFF = 0x00

# flags for display/cursor shift
LCD_DISPLAYMOVE = 0x08
LCD_CURSORMOVE = 0x00
LCD_MOVERIGHT = 0x04
LCD_MOVELEFT = 0x00

# flags for function set
LCD_8BITMODE = 0x10
LCD_4BITMODE = 0x00
LCD_2LINE = 0x08
LCD_1LINE = 0x00
LCD_5x10DOTS = 0x04
LCD_5x8DOTS = 0x00

# flags for backlight control
LCD_BACKLIGHT = 0x08
LCD_NOBACKLIGHT = 0x00

En = 0b00000100 # Enable bit
Rw = 0b00000010 # Read/Write bit
Rs = 0b00000001 # Register select bit

class lcd:
   #initializes objects and lcd
   def __init__(self):
      self.lcd_device = i2c_lib.i2c_device(ADDRESS)

      self.lcd_write(0x03)
      self.lcd_write(0x03)
      self.lcd_write(0x03)
      self.lcd_write(0x02)

      self.lcd_write(LCD_FUNCTIONSET | LCD_2LINE | LCD_5x8DOTS | LCD_4BITMODE)
      self.lcd_write(LCD_DISPLAYCONTROL | LCD_DISPLAYON)
      self.lcd_write(LCD_CLEARDISPLAY)
      self.lcd_write(LCD_ENTRYMODESET | LCD_ENTRYLEFT)
      sleep(0.2)

   # clocks EN to latch command
   def lcd_strobe(self, data):
      self.lcd_device.write_cmd(data | En | LCD_BACKLIGHT)
      sleep(.0005)
      self.lcd_device.write_cmd(((data & ~En) | LCD_BACKLIGHT))
      sleep(.0001)

   def lcd_write_four_bits(self, data):
      self.lcd_device.write_cmd(data | LCD_BACKLIGHT)
      self.lcd_strobe(data)

   # write a command to lcd
   def lcd_write(self, cmd, mode=0):
      self.lcd_write_four_bits(mode | (cmd & 0xF0))
      self.lcd_write_four_bits(mode | ((cmd << 4) & 0xF0))

   # put string function
   def lcd_display_string(self, string, line):
      if line == 1:
         self.lcd_write(0x80)
      if line == 2:
         self.lcd_write(0xC0)
      if line == 3:
         self.lcd_write(0x94)
      if line == 4:
         self.lcd_write(0xD4)

      for char in string:
         self.lcd_write(ord(char), Rs)

   # clear lcd and set to home
   def lcd_clear(self):
      self.lcd_write(LCD_CLEARDISPLAY)
      self.lcd_write(LCD_RETURNHOME)

The last file, which is the example script, is called lcd.py

import lcddriver
from time import *

lcd = lcddriver.lcd()

lcd.lcd_display_string("Hello world", 1)
lcd.lcd_display_string("My name is", 2)
lcd.lcd_display_string("picorder", 3)
lcd.lcd_display_string("I am a Raspberry Pi", 4)

It displays 4 lines of text.

My next task is to connect this up to the Picorder version 3!

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