Simpler way to control LCD or 4-digit 7 segment LEDs?


I'm discovering ways to display stuff from my Arduino and the cabling for both the 2 line LCD or - even worse - the 4 digit 7 segment LED seem absolutely crazy, with the latter requiring 10 digital pins or more, plus a bunch of resistors along the way.

Is there no simple 3-cable way to do this (+5v / ground / data) with maybe a chip. If I'm using 10 pins just to display stuff I don't have much left to do anything else :)



Oh: I might have found exactly what I was looking for:

or if you want to go with the 7 segment display you can try the max7219/7221 both do the same thing only the 7221 suport a standard SPI interface and its better for reducing electromagnetic interference and its a bit more expensive

anyway this is well documented on the arduino play ground also the max7219 is very inexpensive if you buy them from ebay, if you do a lil searching youll find 5 max7219 for 1$ + 1$ shipping (dip or smd)

Nothing simpler than Sparkfun's 4x7 segment display:

you can make your own for half the price :P

Chagrin: Nothing simpler than Sparkfun's 4x7 segment display:

Wow - is that not using the same processor as the Arduino? Talk about a lot of effort to display 4 digits!

But yes - it's simple enough :)

thanks - going to purchase a few Max

I2C and this article/library is a great choice for controlling a 16x2 LCD. Just two analog pins for the LCD! (I don't know if you can control more than one, though.)