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'[PIC] SPI to VGA?'
2005\10\07@171935 by Harold Hallikainen

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Is anyone aware of a VGA video generator chip with an SPI interface? It
SEEMS like it'd be a pretty common application...

Thanks!

Harold


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2005\10\07@174505 by James Humes

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For graphics or text? I have a VHDL module that will do alphanumerics.
James

On 10/7/05, Harold Hallikainen <spam_OUTharoldTakeThisOuTspamhallikainen.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

>

2005\10\07@181809 by Harold Hallikainen

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Text is certainly a good start! Since you have a VHDL module... I'm
guessing you have not found a standard chip with a few pins for SPI in and
a few more for VGA out?

Thanks!

Harold

{Quote hidden}

>> --

2005\10\07@194232 by Dwayne Reid

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At 03:19 PM 10/7/2005, Harold Hallikainen wrote:
>Is anyone aware of a VGA video generator chip with an SPI interface? It
>SEEMS like it'd be a pretty common application...

I haven't seen one recently but was wondering if the SX Video module
from Terry Hitt might be a starting point for a VGA version.  Check
it out at <http://www.sxvm.com/>

dwayne

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2005\10\07@204917 by James Humes

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Hehe, I never looked for a chip to do that. But I seem to recall something
in the classifieds of Nuts and Volts serial in and (I can't recall) either
NTSC or VGA out.
James

On 10/7/05, Harold Hallikainen <.....haroldKILLspamspam.....hallikainen.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2005\10\07@205927 by Maarten Hofman

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There are several options with RS232 in and NTSC out. I made one myself
using a 16F628. Commercially available are the ezVID and the earlier
mentioned parallax SX solution. I am unaware of solutions using SPI and VGA,
though.

Greetings,
Maarten Hofman.

2005\10\07@210943 by marcel

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"Harold Hallikainen" <haroldspamspam_OUThallikainen.com> wrote:

> Is anyone aware of a VGA video generator chip with an SPI interface? It
> SEEMS like it'd be a pretty common application...
>
> Thanks!
>
> Harold
>

http://www.kentdisplays.com might have something of interest.
- Marcel


2005\10\07@231305 by Harold Hallikainen

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> At 03:19 PM 10/7/2005, Harold Hallikainen wrote:
>>Is anyone aware of a VGA video generator chip with an SPI interface? It
>>SEEMS like it'd be a pretty common application...
>
> I haven't seen one recently but was wondering if the SX Video module
> from Terry Hitt might be a starting point for a VGA version.  Check
> it out at <http://www.sxvm.com/>
>
> dwayne


Looks interesting. I see the video out is NTSC/PAL instead of VGA, and the
input is 4800bps async instead of SPI. Maybe I should go to parallel
interface and look at the chips on video cards?

Harold


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2005\10\08@002051 by Robert Rolf

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Harold Hallikainen wrote:

>>At 03:19 PM 10/7/2005, Harold Hallikainen wrote:
>>
>>>Is anyone aware of a VGA video generator chip with an SPI interface? It
>>>SEEMS like it'd be a pretty common application...
>>
>>I haven't seen one recently but was wondering if the SX Video module
>>from Terry Hitt might be a starting point for a VGA version.  Check
>>it out at <http://www.sxvm.com/>
>>
>>dwayne

> Looks interesting. I see the video out is NTSC/PAL instead of VGA, and the
> input is 4800bps async instead of SPI. Maybe I should go to parallel
> interface and look at the chips on video cards?

Depends on what you are trying to do.
VGA cards are NOT easy to talk to. Even less so with modern DSP based cards.
Most of their tech doc's are NDA or not released PERIOD.
The on board BIOS does a LOT of setup (like loading the character generator
for various text modes).

You really do NOT want to try to go there even if you do fully understand
the PCI/AGP plug and pray protocols. It is MOST ugly...

So what -exactly- is it that you want to 'generate'?
And what makes you think it's a 'common' application?

Generating NTSC/PAL video is common.
VGA is just the noninterlaced component video version but not common.
i.e.  NTSC ~60 fields/sec =30 Frames/sec.
Horizonal rate is 15.750 kHz. (for the picky 59.94 & 15734.2654)
VGA is 30 frames/sec progressive, Horz =31.5kHz so you'd just
have to change the Sx video timing by a factor of two for the horizontal
(half as many pixels per line), and provide separate H & V drives with
common RGB out. There are numerous things wrong with the Sx Video schematic,
but its a nice quick & dirty way to do things.

If your PIC is fast enough you can generate video directly with the SPI
port since SPI is basically a synchronously clocked shift register.

There were also a couple of Circuit Cellar articles on generating video
directly from a micro (ARM??).

Robert

2005\10\08@085318 by William Couture

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On 10/8/05, Robert Rolf <@spam@Robert.RolfKILLspamspamualberta.ca> wrote:

> If your PIC is fast enough you can generate video directly with
> the SPI port since SPI is basically a synchronously clocked
> shift register.
>
> There were also a couple of Circuit Cellar articles on generating
> video directly from a micro (ARM??).

How about this as a starting point:  generating a VGA signal
with a 16F84:

http://yusoft.kulichki.com/english/pic/my_proj.htm

Bill

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2005\10\08@092538 by William Chops Westfield

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On Oct 7, 2005, at 9:20 PM, Robert Rolf wrote:

> Generating NTSC/PAL video is common.
> VGA is ... not common.
>
Hmm.  Are you sure?  I would think VGA would be taking over for
any sort of product with embedded video screens; it seems that
VGA monitors are more common, available in a larger range of sizes
and types (LCD, CRT, etc), higher resolution, and cheaper than NTSC
monitors.  Of course, that may be just a consumer-side view and things
could change at the OEM level; "NTSC monitors" are practically
non-existent in the consumer marketplace (they tend to come with
built-in tuners and such.)

At some point, used PCs might become a viable alternative for
microcontroller to VGA interfacing (cheaper than special purpose
hardware as a side-effect of weird moore's law ecconomics.)  But
then why have the microcontroller... :-)

BillW

2005\10\08@192058 by Harold Hallikainen

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> So what -exactly- is it that you want to 'generate'?
> And what makes you think it's a 'common' application?
>


With the price of VGA displays so low, it SEEMS like they'd be a good user
interface for PIC based projects where a character based LCD module is
just not big enough (or gets very expensive). I'm suggesting SPI instead
of UART since it's so much easier to address multiple devices with SPI
(and a chip select line) than using a PIC UART. As to what the chip should
do... Perhaps a start would be to emulate a terminal that could do ASCII
text and character block graphics.

Thanks for the comments!

Harold


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