The LCD runs at 3.3V so you'll need to use a level shifting chip to use with a 5V microcontroller. The following will assume that is the case. If you're running a 3.3V microcontroller system, you can skip the level shifter.

We'll assume you want to use this in a breadboard, take a piece of 0.1" header 8 pins long and insert it into a breadboard.
Slide either side of the LCD onto the header, the 'thicker' end is the top.
Solder all the pins.
Place the level shifter chip off to the side. Pin 1 is on the left here.
We'll start with the power lines. the system must be powered by 3.3V so red here is connected to the 3V pin from the Arduino. Ground is black.
  • Connect pin 1 of the 4050, the LCD VCC pin and the LCD backlight pin to 3.3V.
  • Connect pin 8 of the 4050 and the GND pin of the LCD to ground.
Verify you see the backlight LEDs light up

Dimmable Backlight Option:

Newer versions of these boards have a sightly different backlight circuit that is brighter than the older boards.  You can add a pot to the backlight so that you can control the brightness.  (This works with the older boards too, but the range of brightness will be lower).

The optional pot can be wired as in the photo below:

Next we'll start wiring up the data lines.

  • Connect the RST (reset) pin of the LCD (orange wire) to pin 2 of the 4050
  • Connect the CS (chip select) pin (yellow wire) to pin 4 of the 4050.
  • Connect the D/C (data/command) pin (green wire) to pin 6 of the 4050.
Next, connect:
  • DIN (data in) pin (blue wire) to pin 15 of the 4050
  • CLK(clock) pin (purple wire) to pin 12 of the 4050.
Then we can connect the data lines from the arduino to the LCD. We can use any 5 pins but you may want to start with our example first.
  • Arduino pin 3 (orange) goes to pin 3 of the 4050.
  • Arduino pin 4 (yellow) goes to pin 5 of the 4050.
  • Arduino pin 5 (green) goes to pin 7 of the 4050.
  • Arduino pin 6 (blue) goes to pin 14 of the 4050.
  • Arduino pin 7 (violet) goes to pin 11 of the 4050.
Now you are ready to test!
Last updated on 2015-05-04 at 04.27.56 PM Published on 2012-12-17 at 06.39.04 PM