Electro-Labs informed us about his latest project:
One of the most enjoyable part of being an electronics person is creating your own gadgets and using them in daily life. In this article, we are building one of those with the help of SoloPCB design tools, a digital desk clock with temperature display feature.
The brain of the circuit is a Microchip PIC18F252 microcontroller. It acquires precise time information from DS1307 real time clock via I2C interface and displays it on four digit 38 mm seven-segment display with the help of MAX7219CNG display driver. The temperature data is read by the on-chip ADC module of the microcontroller from LM335 temperature sensor which outputs 10mV per kelvin degree linearly. The temperature data is also displayed periodically.
DIY Digital Desk Clock with Temperature Display – Part 1 – [Link]
The MAX7219 does all the control and refresh work for you in driving either an 8×8 matrix display or 8 x 7-segment displays (usually these also have a dot so its really an 8-segment display) – 64 LEDs total. All you have to do is send it serial commands via the 4-pin SPI interface and it will auto-magically take care of the rest. Wiring is simplified as well, you only need to set the current level for all LEDs with a single resistor instead of 8 and you can also dim the entire display digitally. It’s a thru-hole chip so you can use it in any breadboard, perfboard or other project, although if you’re soldering it in, we suggest using a socket.
MAX7219CNG LED Matrix/Digit Display Driver – MAX7219 – [Link]