Uwe Altenburg
About the article

Six-digit Display with SPI Port

The Maxim MAX7219 is controlled over an SPI port, requiring just four I/O pins on the microcontroller. It can drive up to eight individual seven-segment displays. Contrary to popular belief, multiplexing the displays does not reduce overall power consumption: although each digit is only driven briefly the LED current must be correspondingly increased in order to achieve the same average brightness.
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Gerber file

CAM/CAD data for the PCB referred to in this article is available as a Gerber file. Elektor GREEN and GOLD members can exclusively download these files for free as part of their membership. Gerber files allow a PCB to be produced on an appropriate device available locally, or through an online PCB manufacturing service.

Elektor recommends its business partner Eurocircuits as the company of choice for its own prototypes and volume production in selected cases.

Extra info / Update


* six-digit seven-segment display
* just two components, plus display modules
* driven using software SPI emulation
* C driver routines easily adapted to any type of microcontroller

Component list
R1 = 10k
D1–D6 = SC52-11 (Kingbright)
IC1 = MAX7219CNG
JP1 = 6-way pinheader
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