Here is where the differences in the tri-color/monochrome and chipset/dimensions start mattering. Check carefully to make sure you are running the right example and creating the matching library type for your display or you won't see anything happen on the EPD (or the image may be really weird looking).

CircuitPython eInk displayio Library Installation

To use displayio, you will need to install the appropriate library for your display. 

First make sure you are running the latest version of Adafruit CircuitPython for your board. You will need the latest version of CircuitPython.

Next you'll need to install the necessary libraries to use the hardware--carefully follow the steps to find and install these libraries from Adafruit's CircuitPython library bundle.  The introduction guide has a great page on how to install the library bundle for both Express and non-Express boards.

You will need to copy the appropriate displayio driver from the bundle lib folder to a lib folder on your CIRCUITPY drive. The displayio driver contains the initialization codes specific to your display that are needed to for it to work. Since there is more than one driver, you will need to copy the correct file over. Here is a list of each of the displays and the correct driver for that display.

To use the eInk displays with displayio, you will need to use the latest version of CircuitPython and a board that can fit `displayio`. See the Support Matrix to determine if `displayio` is available on a given board: https://circuitpython.readthedocs.io/en/latest/shared-bindings/support_matrix.html

Adafruit_CircuitPython_UC8151D

The newer 2.9" flexible displays use the Adafruit_CircuitPython_UC8151D library. To easily get all the required files and libraries, you can click the Download Project Bundle link at the top of the monochrome example code below. Just unzip, open the folder that corresponds to the version of CircuitPython you have installed, and copy the contents to the CIRCUITPY drive.

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Adafruit_CircuitPython_IL0373

The 2.9" Tri-Color and GrayScale displays in addition to the older flexible displays use the Adafruit_CircuitPython_IL0373 library. To easily get all the required files and libraries, you can click the Download Project Bundle link at the top of the appropriate example code below. Just unzip, open the folder that corresponds to the version of CircuitPython you have installed, and copy the contents to the CIRCUITPY drive.

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Image File

To show you how to use the eInk with displayio, below shows you how to draw a bitmap onto it. First start by downloading display-ruler.bmp

Copy display-ruler.bmp into the root directory of your CIRCUITPY drive.

Monochrome Display Usage

2.9" 296x128 Monochrome Flexible Display

In the examples folder for your UC8151C displayio driver, there should be a test for your display which we have listed here:

# SPDX-FileCopyrightText: 2017 Scott Shawcroft, written for Adafruit Industries
# SPDX-FileCopyrightText: Copyright (c) 2021 Melissa LeBlanc-Williams for Adafruit Industries
#
# SPDX-License-Identifier: Unlicense

"""Simple test script for 2.9" 296x128 monochrome display.

Supported products:
  * Adafruit Flexible 2.9" Monochrome
    * https://www.adafruit.com/product/4262
  """
# pylint: disable=no-member

import time
import board
import displayio
import adafruit_uc8151d

displayio.release_displays()

# This pinout works on a Feather M4 and may need to be altered for other boards.
spi = board.SPI()  # Uses SCK and MOSI
epd_cs = board.D9
epd_dc = board.D10
epd_reset = board.D5
epd_busy = None

display_bus = displayio.FourWire(
    spi, command=epd_dc, chip_select=epd_cs, reset=epd_reset, baudrate=1000000
)
time.sleep(1)

display = adafruit_uc8151d.UC8151D(
    display_bus, width=296, height=128, rotation=90, busy_pin=epd_busy
)

g = displayio.Group()

with open("/display-ruler.bmp", "rb") as f:
    pic = displayio.OnDiskBitmap(f)
    t = displayio.TileGrid(pic, pixel_shader=pic.pixel_shader)
    g.append(t)

    display.show(g)

    display.refresh()

    time.sleep(120)

Configure and Upload

You will want to change the epd_reset and epd_busy to the correct values. If you are using the eInk Breakout Friend and wired it up as shown on the Wiring page, you will want to change it to these values:

epd_reset = board.D8
epd_busy = board.D7

If you are using the eInk FeatherWing Friend, you will want to change both of these values to None:

epd_reset = None
epd_busy = None

Save it to your CIRCUITPY drive as code.py and it should automatically run. Your display will look something like this:

Tri-Color Display Usage

2.9" 296x128 HD Tri-Color Breakout and FeatherWing

In the examples folder for your IL0373 displayio driver, there should be a test for your display which we have listed here:

# SPDX-FileCopyrightText: 2017 Scott Shawcroft, written for Adafruit Industries
# SPDX-FileCopyrightText: Copyright (c) 2021 Melissa LeBlanc-Williams for Adafruit Industries
#
# SPDX-License-Identifier: Unlicense

"""Simple test script for 2.13" 250x122 tri-color display.
Supported products:
  * Adafruit 2.13" Tri-Color eInk Display Breakout
    * https://www.adafruit.com/product/4947
  * Adafruit 2.13" Tri-Color eInk Display FeatherWing
    * https://www.adafruit.com/product/4814
"""

import time
import board
import displayio
import adafruit_ssd1680

displayio.release_displays()

# This pinout works on a Metro M4 and may need to be altered for other boards.
spi = board.SPI()  # Uses SCK and MOSI
epd_cs = board.D9
epd_dc = board.D10
epd_reset = board.D8  # Set to None for FeatherWing
epd_busy = board.D7  # Set to None for FeatherWing

display_bus = displayio.FourWire(
    spi, command=epd_dc, chip_select=epd_cs, reset=epd_reset, baudrate=1000000
)
time.sleep(1)

display = adafruit_ssd1680.SSD1680(
    display_bus,
    width=250,
    height=122,
    busy_pin=epd_busy,
    highlight_color=0xFF0000,
    rotation=270,
)

g = displayio.Group()

with open("/display-ruler.bmp", "rb") as f:
    pic = displayio.OnDiskBitmap(f)
    # CircuitPython 6 & 7 compatible
    t = displayio.TileGrid(
        pic, pixel_shader=getattr(pic, "pixel_shader", displayio.ColorConverter())
    )
    # CircuitPython 7 compatible only
    # t = displayio.TileGrid(pic, pixel_shader=pic.pixel_shader)
    g.append(t)

    display.show(g)

    display.refresh()

    print("refreshed")

    time.sleep(120)

You will want to change the epd_reset and epd_busy to the correct values. If you wired it up as shown on the Wiring page, you will want to change it to these values:

epd_reset = board.D8
epd_busy = board.D7

For the FeatherWing, you will want to change both of these values to None:

epd_reset = None
epd_busy = None

Save it to your CIRCUITPY drive as code.py and it should automatically run. Your display will look something like this:

Grayscale Display Usage

2.9" 296x128 Grayscale Display

In the examples folder for your IL0373 displayio driver, there should be a test for your display which we have listed here:

# SPDX-FileCopyrightText: 2021 ladyada for Adafruit Industries
# SPDX-License-Identifier: MIT

"""Simple test script for 2.9" 296x128 grayscale display.

Supported products:
  * Adafruit 2.9" Grayscale
    * https://www.adafruit.com/product/4777
  """

import time
import busio
import board
import displayio
import adafruit_il0373

displayio.release_displays()

# This pinout works on a Feather M4 and may need to be altered for other boards.
spi = busio.SPI(board.SCK, board.MOSI)  # Uses SCK and MOSI
epd_cs = board.D9
epd_dc = board.D10

display_bus = displayio.FourWire(
    spi, command=epd_dc, chip_select=epd_cs, baudrate=1000000
)
time.sleep(1)

display = adafruit_il0373.IL0373(
    display_bus,
    width=296,
    height=128,
    rotation=270,
    black_bits_inverted=False,
    color_bits_inverted=False,
    grayscale=True,
    refresh_time=1,
)

g = displayio.Group()

with open("/display-ruler.bmp", "rb") as f:
    pic = displayio.OnDiskBitmap(f)
    # CircuitPython 6 & 7 compatible
    t = displayio.TileGrid(
        pic, pixel_shader=getattr(pic, "pixel_shader", displayio.ColorConverter())
    )
    # CircuitPython 7 compatible only
    # t = displayio.TileGrid(pic, pixel_shader=pic.pixel_shader)
    g.append(t)

    display.show(g)

    display.refresh()

    print("refreshed")

    time.sleep(120)

You will want to change the epd_reset and epd_busy to the correct values. If you wired it up as shown on the Wiring page, you will want to change it to these values:

epd_reset = board.D8
epd_busy = board.D7

Save it to your CIRCUITPY drive as code.py and it should automatically run. Your display will look something like this:

This guide was first published on Sep 22, 2021. It was last updated on 2021-09-22 11:49:54 -0400.

This page (CircuitPython Usage) was last updated on Oct 22, 2021.

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