How to Use OLED Displays with ESP32 Boards

How to Use OLED Displays with ESP32 Boards

Hello and welcome back! In this tutorial, we will learn how to use the OLED display with an ESP32 board. With this knowledge, you can create OLED-based projects and explore the potential of this technology. For this tutorial, I used the 128*64 OLED display. OLED displays have several advantages over other display technologies, including fast response time, high contrast, high brightness, wide viewing angles, and being thin and flexible. These advantages make OLED displays ideal for a wide range of applications that require high image quality and energy efficiency. Therefore, I believe this tutorial is most important for you. If you want to learn more about OLED displays, please use this link.

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Ok, let’s do it step by step. The required components are given below.

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Step 1

Firstly, identify these components.

Step 2

Secondly, place the ESP32 board on the breadboard.

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Step 3

Thirdly, connect the OLED display to the ESP32 board. For that, use the circuit diagram below.

How to Use OLED Displays with ESP32 Boards

Step 4

Now, connect the ESP32 board to the computer using a USB cable.

How to Use OLED Displays with ESP32 Boards

Step 5

OK, now let’s upload a simple program to the ESP32 board. For that, follow the instructions below.

  • First, include the library files to the Arduino IDE.
  • For that, open the Arduino IDE and go to Sketch > Include Library > Manage Libraries. Search for “Adafruit GFX” and “Adafruit SSD1306” and install them.
  • Now copy and paste the below program into the Arduino IDE.
  • Code and circuit diagram — Download
#include <Wire.h>
#include <Adafruit_GFX.h>
#include <Adafruit_SSD1306.h>

#define OLED_ADDR   0x3C
Adafruit_SSD1306 display(128, 64, &Wire, -1);

void setup() {
  display.begin(SSD1306_SWITCHCAPVCC, OLED_ADDR);
  display.clearDisplay();
  display.setTextColor(WHITE);
  display.setTextSize(2);
  display.setCursor(20, 20);
  display.println("SriTu Hobby");
  display.display();
}

void loop() {}
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  • Next, select the board and port. And then click the upload button.
  • Now, press and hold the boot button for two seconds while the following message is displayed.

Step 6

After the code is uploaded, remove the USB cable and power the ESP32 board using an external power source. But, you can use USB power. Now, you can show text on the display.

Step 7

And then, you can try the code below. It included advanced code patterns.

#include <Wire.h>
#include <Adafruit_GFX.h>
#include <Adafruit_SSD1306.h>

#define SCREEN_WIDTH 128 // OLED display width, in pixels
#define SCREEN_HEIGHT 64 // OLED display height, in pixels

#define OLED_RESET 4
Adafruit_SSD1306 display(SCREEN_WIDTH, SCREEN_HEIGHT, &Wire, OLED_RESET);

#define NUMFLAKES     10 // Number of snowflakes in the animation example

#define LOGO_HEIGHT   16
#define LOGO_WIDTH    16
static const unsigned char PROGMEM logo_bmp[] =
{0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF,
  0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF, 0xFF,
};


void setup() {
  display.begin(SSD1306_SWITCHCAPVCC, 0x3C);
  display.display();
  delay(2000);

}

void loop() {
  // intro();
  testdrawline();      // Draw many lines
  testdrawrect();      // Draw rectangles (outlines)
  testfillrect();      // Draw rectangles (filled)
  testdrawcircle();    // Draw circles (outlines)
  testfillcircle();    // Draw circles (filled)
  testdrawroundrect(); // Draw rounded rectangles (outlines)
  testfillroundrect(); // Draw rounded rectangles (filled)
  testdrawtriangle();  // Draw triangles (outlines)
  testfilltriangle();  // Draw triangles (filled)
  testdrawbitmap();    // Draw a small bitmap image
  testanimate(logo_bmp, LOGO_WIDTH, LOGO_HEIGHT); // Animate bitmaps
}

void intro() {
  display.clearDisplay();
  display.setTextSize(2);
  display.setTextColor(SSD1306_WHITE);
  display.setCursor(40, 0);
  display.println(F("OLED"));
  display.setCursor(20, 20);
  display.println(F("Display"));
  display.setCursor(15, 40);
  display.println(F("Tutorial"));
  display.display();// Show initial text
  delay(100);

  // Scroll in various directions, pausing in-between:
  display.startscrollright(0x00, 0x0F);
  delay(2000);
  display.stopscroll();
  delay(1000);
  display.startscrollleft(0x00, 0x0F);
  delay(2000);
  display.stopscroll();
  delay(1000);
  display.startscrolldiagright(0x00, 0x07);
  delay(2000);
  display.startscrolldiagleft(0x00, 0x07);
  delay(2000);
  display.stopscroll();
  delay(1000);
}

void testdrawline() {
  int16_t i;

  display.clearDisplay(); // Clear display buffer

  for (i = 0; i < display.width(); i += 4) {
    display.drawLine(0, 0, i, display.height() - 1, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display(); // Update screen with each newly-drawn line
    delay(1);
  }
  for (i = 0; i < display.height(); i += 4) {
    display.drawLine(0, 0, display.width() - 1, i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }
  delay(250);

  display.clearDisplay();

  for (i = 0; i < display.width(); i += 4) {
    display.drawLine(0, display.height() - 1, i, 0, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }
  for (i = display.height() - 1; i >= 0; i -= 4) {
    display.drawLine(0, display.height() - 1, display.width() - 1, i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }
  delay(250);

  display.clearDisplay();

  for (i = display.width() - 1; i >= 0; i -= 4) {
    display.drawLine(display.width() - 1, display.height() - 1, i, 0, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }
  for (i = display.height() - 1; i >= 0; i -= 4) {
    display.drawLine(display.width() - 1, display.height() - 1, 0, i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }
  delay(250);

  display.clearDisplay();

  for (i = 0; i < display.height(); i += 4) {
    display.drawLine(display.width() - 1, 0, 0, i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }
  for (i = 0; i < display.width(); i += 4) {
    display.drawLine(display.width() - 1, 0, i, display.height() - 1, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000); // Pause for 2 seconds
}

void testdrawrect(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = 0; i < display.height() / 2; i += 2) {
    display.drawRect(i, i, display.width() - 2 * i, display.height() - 2 * i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display(); // Update screen with each newly-drawn rectangle
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testfillrect(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = 0; i < display.height() / 2; i += 3) {
    // The INVERSE color is used so rectangles alternate white/black
    display.fillRect(i, i, display.width() - i * 2, display.height() - i * 2, SSD1306_INVERSE);
    display.display(); // Update screen with each newly-drawn rectangle
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testdrawcircle(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = 0; i < max(display.width(), display.height()) / 2; i += 2) {
    display.drawCircle(display.width() / 2, display.height() / 2, i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testfillcircle(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = max(display.width(), display.height()) / 2; i > 0; i -= 3) {
    // The INVERSE color is used so circles alternate white/black
    display.fillCircle(display.width() / 2, display.height() / 2, i, SSD1306_INVERSE);
    display.display(); // Update screen with each newly-drawn circle
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testdrawroundrect(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = 0; i < display.height() / 2 - 2; i += 2) {
    display.drawRoundRect(i, i, display.width() - 2 * i, display.height() - 2 * i,
                          display.height() / 4, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testfillroundrect(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = 0; i < display.height() / 2 - 2; i += 2) {
    // The INVERSE color is used so round-rects alternate white/black
    display.fillRoundRect(i, i, display.width() - 2 * i, display.height() - 2 * i,
                          display.height() / 4, SSD1306_INVERSE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testdrawtriangle(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = 0; i < max(display.width(), display.height()) / 2; i += 5) {
    display.drawTriangle(
      display.width() / 2  , display.height() / 2 - i,
      display.width() / 2 - i, display.height() / 2 + i,
      display.width() / 2 + i, display.height() / 2 + i, SSD1306_WHITE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}

void testfilltriangle(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  for (int16_t i = max(display.width(), display.height()) / 2; i > 0; i -= 5) {
    // The INVERSE color is used so triangles alternate white/black
    display.fillTriangle(
      display.width() / 2  , display.height() / 2 - i,
      display.width() / 2 - i, display.height() / 2 + i,
      display.width() / 2 + i, display.height() / 2 + i, SSD1306_INVERSE);
    display.display();
    delay(1);
  }

  delay(2000);
}
void testdrawbitmap(void) {
  display.clearDisplay();

  display.drawBitmap(
    (display.width()  - LOGO_WIDTH ) / 2,
    (display.height() - LOGO_HEIGHT) / 2,
    logo_bmp, LOGO_WIDTH, LOGO_HEIGHT, 1);
  display.display();
  delay(1000);
}

#define XPOS   0 // Indexes into the 'icons' array in function below
#define YPOS   1
#define DELTAY 2

void testanimate(const uint8_t *bitmap, uint8_t w, uint8_t h) {
  int8_t f, icons[NUMFLAKES][3];

  // Initialize 'snowflake' positions
  for (f = 0; f < NUMFLAKES; f++) {
    icons[f][XPOS]   = random(1 - LOGO_WIDTH, display.width());
    icons[f][YPOS]   = -LOGO_HEIGHT;
    icons[f][DELTAY] = random(1, 6);
    Serial.print(F("x: "));
    Serial.print(icons[f][XPOS], DEC);
    Serial.print(F(" y: "));
    Serial.print(icons[f][YPOS], DEC);
    Serial.print(F(" dy: "));
    Serial.println(icons[f][DELTAY], DEC);
  }

  for (;;) { // Loop forever...
    display.clearDisplay(); // Clear the display buffer

    // Draw each snowflake:
    for (f = 0; f < NUMFLAKES; f++) {
      display.drawBitmap(icons[f][XPOS], icons[f][YPOS], bitmap, w, h, SSD1306_WHITE);
    }

    display.display(); // Show the display buffer on the screen
    delay(200);        // Pause for 1/10 second

    // Then update coordinates of each flake...
    for (f = 0; f < NUMFLAKES; f++) {
      icons[f][YPOS] += icons[f][DELTAY];
      // If snowflake is off the bottom of the screen...
      if (icons[f][YPOS] >= display.height()) {
        // Reinitialize to a random position, just off the top
        icons[f][XPOS]   = random(1 - LOGO_WIDTH, display.width());
        icons[f][YPOS]   = -LOGO_HEIGHT;
        icons[f][DELTAY] = random(1, 6);
      }
    }
  }
}
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  • Now, select board and port. After, click the upload button.
  • Now, press and hold the boot button for two seconds while the following message is displayed.

OK, now you can see the output on the OLED display. The full video guide is below. We hope to see you in our upcoming projects and tutorials.

How to Use OLED Displays with ESP32 Boards

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