TME: Riverdi TFT LCD displays with FT8xx controllers

The development of image display technology resulted in a wide range of displays on the market to choose from, based on different parameters and capabilities. Riverdi is one of the noteworthy manufacturers, who specializes in Thin Film Transistor LCD displays. Riverdi offers displays in various sizes from 2.8 to 7 inch, with the resolution of 240x320/320x240 to 840x480 pixels. Different models have different parameters – brightness, contrast, or colour depth.

Riverdi products include displays equipped with touch panels – either resistive, or capacitive ones. Different types and colours of the frames facilitate matching a product with project requirements. Modules come with a mounting frame or an external masking frame. Furthermore, the product families also have different types of display controllers used. Riverdi uses the SSD1963 and the FT8xx series, including the FT800, FT801, FT812, and FT813 models.

Displays with FT8xx series controllers seem to be a particularly interesting proposition from Riverdi. The FT8xx series of controllers has been created by FTDI, a company well known for products for utilizing the USB interface, such as the USB-RS232 converters. FT8xx is a series of modern modules that facilitate the work with a display. They are becoming increasingly popular among manufacturers and constructors. They provide the possibility of using touch panels – both resistive, and capacitive. They feature an advanced UI called EVE (Embedded Video Engine) created by FTDI, which combines the capabilities in the areas of processing images, sound, and information from the touch panel. It’s worth mentioning that the modules turned out to be so interesting and with such a high potential, that FTDI decided to establish a subsidiary called Bridgetek that will focus on developing these solutions.

The main differences between specific controllers from this series are: the type of supported touch panel, the type of communication interface, maximum display resolution, and colour depth. The FT801 and FT802 modules support 18-bit colour depth (up to 256 000 colours) and feature SPI and I2C interfaces, whereas for the FT812 and FT813 models (being the next generation of FT8xx modules) it’s 24-bit colour depth (16.7 million colours) with SPI and QSPI interfaces. Furthermore, the FT812 and FT813 modules support displays with higher resolution (from 512x512 to 800x600 pixels). The FT801 and FT812 modules are designed to be used with resistive panels. The FT802 and FT813 models enable control of capacitive touch panels. Another advantage of these controllers is the full software compliance in terms of supporting different types of touch panels — this way you don’t need to implement changes in your software after replacing a module used in your project.

The modules with FT8xx series controllers can be found e.g. in uxTouch series, which is one of the most interesting propositions from Riverdi. Most of all, this series provides huge possibilities in terms of product customization. You can customize several properties (e.g. the colour of the display frame, the type of protection glass, the shape and size of the touch panel) to match the needs of the customer.

There are dozens of uxTouch series displays offered by Riverdi, with the diagonal of 2.8 to 7 inches. The 4.3 inch displays (480x272) are controlled by FT801 or FT802, whereas larger displays (5 to 7 inch, with resolution of up to 840x480) – by the FT812 or FT813 modules, depending on the type of the touch panel. Capacitive touch panels enable multi-touch support, which detects five different points of touch at the same time, as well as gesture recognition.

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