Interfacing 7 Segment LED Display with FT232

lt543 7 segment LED Display  interfaced with FT232 usb to serial converter using D2XX library

In this tutorial we will interface a 7 Segment LED display serially using FT232 USB to serial converter chip and D2XX library from FTDI.D2XX is a library released by FTDI international,makers of FT232 and other FT series chip to access the advanced functions of the FT232 chip.The control program is written in standard C using D2XX library and is compiled using opensource GCC compiler on a windows 7 machine.Please note that this tutorial is specific to FT232 chip and will not work with USB to serial converter chips manufactured by other companies( like TUSB3410 from TI).

This article was featured on  link to article in hackaday,You can read the article on hackaday here.

Interfacing 7 Segment LED Display with MSP430 Launchpad

MSP430-Launchpad interfaced with 7 segment LED display (LT543,Common cathode)

In this tutorial we will learn to interface a 7 segment LED display (LT543) with MSP430 Launchpad development board from Texas Instruments.A 7 Segment LED dispaly can be used to display a limited number of character sets like numbers(0-9),Hexadecimal characters (0-F) and a few english characters(H,L,E etc) but being a LED segment it can be easily read in the dark and is used widely on instrument panels and industrial displays.

A Brief Introduction to MSP430 using Launchpad (MSP430G2553)

In this tutorial we will be exploring the workings of a MSP430 based microcontroller from Texas Instruments.MSP430 is developed by Texas Instruments as an extremely low power 16 bit architecture for use in low power, low cost, energy constrained embedded applicationsThe Hardware used is the MSP430 Launchpad from TI which contains a programmer/Debugger + two microcontrollers making it an ideal platform to start learning about MSP430G2xxx controller.

msp430 tutorials for beginners

 

RS485 Communication using MAX485 and MSP430 Launchpad

In the previous tutorial we discussed how to implement a serial connection between MSP430 launchpad (MSP430G2553 ) and a PC .Serial(TTL) or RS232 protocol is fine if you are planning to communicate over short distances of a few meters,when you increase the range to a few 100 meters RS232 protocol will become inadequate.For long distance wired communication you have to use a different protocol called RS485 which can communicate over a kilometer.In this tutorial we will interface a MSP430 launchpad containing MSP430G2553 with a RS485 decoder chip from Maxim (MAX 485).

MSP430G2553 interfaced with MAX485 circuit diagram

Cross Platform RS485 Communication using USB2SERIAL (USB to RS485 Converter) in C

This is a short tutorial on how to use the USB2SERIAL (USB to RS232/RS485) converter to implement a PC controlled RS485 (TIA/EIA-485) network.In this article you will learn to communicate with a microcontroller unit from an x86 PC running either Windows or Linux  through a twisted pair RS 485 network.

The tutorial teaches you to develop Cross platform PC side software that can communicate with a RS485 network using USB2SERIAL in C (Win32 API/Linux API).

Image showing a microcontroller (MSP430 ) interfaced with PC running Window or Linux using RS485 network

Serial and RS485 Programming Tutorials

serial port programming tutorials in C,Csharp,Python on windows,Linux

Serial Port Programming

This is a collection of articles on programming the serial port of a x86 PC using C,CSharp (C#) and Python.The tutorials covers programming the serial port using native API's like Win32 API on Windows or termios/ioctl() API on Linux. The tutorial also explains how to program the serial port using C# on .NET framework (Windows) . For Cross platform applications you can use the open source Python module PySerial for writing code on Windows and Linux.Since PySerial is available for Mac OSX ,the code provided here can run on Macs too(I have not tested it ).A short description about building an RS485 network is also provided.

The code presented in the tutorials are written using opensource or freely downloadable softwares like GCC,Microsoft Visual Studio Express Edition,Active Python,SharpDevelop etc.The codes are tested on a Windows 7  and a Ubuntu/Linux Mint PC.In the case of Python,seperate code is provided for Python2.7 and Python 3.x to accomadate the differences.

USB to 8 bit Parallel port Or Asynchronous Bit Bang mode of FT232

And finally ,after all those lecturing (for those who had the patience to go through all those previous articles ) about the IDE's,setting up a connection and so on, we have reached where the real action is.In this section we are going to convert the pins of the FT232 (TXD,RXD,RTS,DTS...RI) to an 8 bit parallel port using the good old D2XX library.One use of Asynchronous Bit bang mode is the replacement of legacy parallel port based devices using FT232 chip.

FT232 USB to Serial Converter chip development using D2XX library

Photo showing FT232 chip development using D2XX library and USB2SERIAL board

In this article we will learn to use the D2XX library from FTDI to extend the functionalities of FT232 USB to Serial Converter chip.Most of the people in the embedded field are familiar about the easy to use USB to Serial converter chip FT232 which can easly add a USB Serial port to any microcontroller with an UART.With a  little bit of code and a library (D2XX) from FTDI (makers of FT232) you can easily convert the humble chip into a USB to Parallel converter (8 and 4 bit),USB to RS485 Converter and off course USB to Serial Converter.

Even though this article is written as a companion guide to the USB2SERIAL Converter sold at this website, you can use any FT232 based USB to serial converter board to test the examples present in this article. The only requirement for your hardware module is that you should be able to identify the required pins of FT232 from your board and use it.

Remotely Controlling DC motors through RS485 Protocol using MSP430 Launchpad Booster Pack

ors being controlled by MSP430 from PC through RS485 link

In this tutorial we are going to control two DC brushed motors remotely using RS485 protocol.The Motors are connected to the PC through a twisted pair RS485 cable and the software running on the PC controls the two motors.

The Software is written in both C sharp (C#) and Python so that they can be run on multiple systems like Windows,Linux etc.

The two DC motors are controlled using MSP430 Launchpad and Robot Shield (L293D + MAX485) and the RS485 twisted pair cable is connected to the PC USB port using USB2SERIAL (USB to RS485 converter).

PWM speed control of DC motor using MSP430 Launchpad and L293D

PWM speed control of DC motor using MSP430 Launchpad and Motor Control Booster Pack

In the previous article we learned how to control a dc brushed motor using MSP430G2553 and L293D motor driver chip,the main focus in that article was about starting and controlling the direction of motors.The motors were allowed to be rotated at their maximum speed.In this article we are going to implement a simple PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) based speed control for DC brushed motors using MSP430 Launchpad.

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