HD44780 LCD with pre-defined segments

I have a 16*2 LCD that I have managed to get sample code working with. There is something different about this display though. Instead of a 2nd row of characters there are 16 pre-defined segments. For example “kwh”, what looks like “kvah”, some triangles, and some various others.

Has anyone had experience using these types of displays.

I was trying to get the 2nd line working last night but thought I must have a faulty display, as I assumed that it was 2 rows of 16 chars. Then as I was leaving for work this morning I noticed that they were pictograms. It was bugging me so much I had to post here as I haven’t found any references to them online. Would it be a case of writing 0xFF to the position that I wanted illuminated.

I have attached a photo of the screen you can just about make out the shape outlines if you look carefully.

Any ideas, suggestions, or links would be greatly appreciated.

It looks interesting. How did you deal with the extra pins?

Can you supply a clear (in focus) picture of each side of the display? If not then how about the complete part number for the LCD controller and auxiliary controller (if they are not epoxy blobs).


When I bought it the display came in a zip-loc bag from Maplins for about £4 with a few other things like a bunch of 7-seg displays and a couple of 96*16 OLED (one of which I somehow fried).

In the bag it came with this http://www.kemo-electronic.de/datasheets/s043.pdf datasheet. I say datasheet, its more of a pinout list.

Unfortunately the 2 ICs on the board are epoxy blobs so I cant even google the datasheets for them.

I had originally made a small piece of stripbord and soldered to the connector as the 2 rows of 9 pins were too close to use a breadboard. What I’ve done now is made a new stipboard with wider headers that you can see in one of the images.

Ive taken a closer look at the 2nd row and can see the pictograms clearly from what i can make out they are as follows: L1, L2, L3, kWh, kvarh, Hollow downward triangle, !, Solid Circle, Solid Square, Solid 1/4 Circle Top Right, Top Left, Bottom Left, Bottom Right, and what looks like a house.

I know that probably wont help but in the unlikely event that someone has used one of these exact LCDs before they might know.

Im guessing the company that puts these component packs together includes parts from recycled electrical goods or something like that anyway.

I suspect the LCD is from a power monitoring appliance, smart meter, etc.

I was going to ask if there is an LCD test command that illuminates all parts of the display, but as it powers up the top row goes all black so I assume the HD44780 controller illuminates all the text sections as a test. Im just guessing here but as they are not all the same shape maybe it dosen’t test it, or the bottom half of the display is not working. Anyway im just rambling here.

Any ideas would be great.




i picked one of those bags of displays from maplins yesterday, and have the exact same lcd,

it is apparantly out of a multimeter type thing, to be used on 3 phase equipment i believe,

if you put the part number into google, it'll throw up a few sites, a lot of them are italian, but they all seem to say the same thing, ignore the bottom half row of symbols, and just use it as a 1 line display,

It sounds like a display from a 3 phase electricity meter or metering/protection relay display panel. L1, L2 & L3 are the three phases. kWh and KvArh are Kilowatt Hours and KiloVoltAmpsReactive Hours/ The upside down circle sounds like a Delta winding symbol. UK low voltage system is from a Star wound secondary, so it could be from another country OR relating to a primary side metering/protection at 11kV or 33kV.