Touching the Pi

This is my insight into setting up a Pi Zero with a little 3.5″ touch TFT screen that I got from eBay.

The screen I got at the time of purchase was £8.35 (http://ebay.eu/2cpeW8s). There are various listings on eBay for them and they all boil down to pretty much the same screen.

TFT screen

The back of the screen has some helpful information, My screen was the advertised Kedei, however, I had version 6.2. Obviously I can only speak from my  own experience of setting the screen up so for Kedei.

For Kedei device use the following link to get the correct version driver for your screen.

http://en.kedei.net/raspberry/raspberry.html

You can either download the driver for your system or you can get a new image for a full system with the drivers baked in. I did not try the image route but from what I have read online it does work out of the box. The download process is a little slow as it does not offer the best download rate.

The first step is to attach the screen to the device. To connect it to the Pi Zero you need to solder on the 2 x 20 GPIO header pins (not covered in here, but you can find it on the net elsewhere). The screen plugs onto the GPIO pins so that the screen covers the Pi (the cluster of 4 connector sockets go onto the pins that are next to the SD card socket).

After you have connected the screen boot up the Pi and download the needed driver from the location stated above. Once you have the driver downloaded on the Pi you need to unzip it, so navigate to the download location. This is typically done by

cd /home/pi/Downloads

Once there use the following command to unzip the file (replace LCD_Show.tar.gz with the filename of what you downloaded)

tar -xzvf LCD_Show.tar.gz

once it is unzipped navigate to the extracted contents.

cd LCD_Show

Then update your system

sudo apt-get update

After updating the system you can install the driver (the install run name – LCD35_v – may differ in your download but it will look similar, possibly with a number after the v)

sudo ./LCD35_v

Once the install has run the system will reboot.

After the device reboots you should now see that your screen is working and you can use a stylus to touch and navigate. NOTE – the hdmi will no longer work when connected so you will need the TFT screen connected to view an image – at time of writing I have not looked at how to get both working at the same time so you can switch between them, once I have worked it out I will update the post.

To finalise the TFT install, you need to perform the following command

sudo apt-mark hold raspberrypi-bootloader

The above command stops the kernal from updating when performing apt-get update and upgrade commands.

After you have done the above you then need to run

sudo apt-get update

Then finally

sudo apt-get upgrade

To make the device a bit more friendly to use you can install a virtual keyboard so you can have a fairly disconnected device (no keyboard or mouse needed)

open a terminal and run the following command

sudo apt-get install matchbox-keyboard

It is then recommended to reboot the Pi

sudo reboot

To access the keyboard navigate to

MENU -> ACCESSORIES -> KEYBOARD

(these are not my images but give you an idea of whats what)

 

That’s it, hopefully it is all working for you. If you have any issues leave a comment and I will try to help you out.

3 thoughts on “Touching the Pi”

    1. No, I did not manage to get them both working as the config setting dictates how the output is put out. I would assume it is a limitation of processing power.
      Cheers
      Mark

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