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LCD Text Display with Digi XBee Radios

4) Wire up the Circuit

  • Place the XBee adapter into the breadboard and wire up the power buses to each other. Next, connect the VCC terminal of the XBee adapter to the positive rail and the ground terminal to the negative rail.

  • We made it easier to attach the battery holder to the breadboard by soldering some male headers onto its positive and negative wiring leads.

  • Connect the battery pack directly to the ground and power rails.

  • Because the LCD is using a serial backpack, it will need to be connected by just three wires for power, ground and receive. We inserted them into the terminal block and used the screws on top to tighten the connection. (This particular backpack was marked “5V” on the terminal block but the documentation assured us that it was really 3.3V.)

  • Connect the LCD’s power wire and ground wire to the respective rails on the breadboard as shown. Two AA batteries will provide 3V, which is close enough to the 3.3V rating of the LCD to power it effectively.  The receive or RX connection will be routed to the TX or DOUT pin of the XBee.

  • The receive or RX for the LCD should be connected to the TX or DOUT pin of the XBee, physical pin 2 as shown. That way whatever the XBee transmits will be received by the serial backpack on the LCD.

  • And finally, insert the Digi XBee into the breakout board and connect the battery pack. If there’s a switch on the battery pack be sure to switch it to the on position. You should see the LCD’s backlight come on. Now any text sent to the Digi XBee should show up on the LCD! See the Basic Chat example for more information on sending text.

  • Above is a breadboard layout and a diagram of the circuit for your reference.
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