Description: If you’ve ever tried to connect a 3.3V device to a 5V system, you know what a challenge it can be. The SparkFun bi-directional logic level converter is a small device that safely steps down 5V signals to 3.3V AND steps up 3.3V to 5V at the same time. This level converter also works with 2.8V and 1.8V devices. What really separates this Logic level converter from our previous versions is that you can successfully set your high and low voltages and step up and down between them safely on the same channel. Each level converter has the capability of converting 4 pins on the high side to 4 pins on the low side with two inputs and two outputs provided for each side.
The level converter is very easy to use. The board needs to be powered from the two voltages sources (high voltage and low voltage) that your system is using. High voltage (5V for example) to the ‘HV’ pin, low voltage (3.3V for example) to ‘LV’, and ground from the system to the ‘GND’ pin.
Dimensions: 0.63 x 0.52" (16.05 x 13.33mm)
Based on 28 ratings:
1 of 1 found this helpful:
I needed something to translate the 3.3V GPIO control signals coming out of my Raspberry Pi to 5V in order to control a WS2812 LED controller (specifically https://www.sparkfun.com/products/12877). The control signals for the WS2812 run at 800kHz, with an allowable delay time of +/-150ns.
The data sheet for this converter says that the turn-on time, rise time, and delay time are all in the sub 40ns range–so it should work fine, right?
Wrong. The WS2812 glitches like crazy when I try to control it through this logic level converter, so for my purposes, this part is useless. On the plus side, it was only $3, so it’s not like I wasted much money.
1 of 1 found this helpful:
Used to talk between my 5V arduino and a 12V IC. Needed to slow down the arduino SPI bus otherwise the converter would not be able to send an adequate signal. Once the bus was slowed down however, converter worked well.
1 of 1 found this helpful:
I am using a 3.3v micro-controller on my model railroad to interface DIY sensors and signals to Digitrax LocoNet runing at 12v. So far so good on a breadboard. Have yet to see what happens on a longer bus.
2 of 2 found this helpful:
Used this with an Arduino UNO to talk to a 3.3v ESP8266. Been working for a few hours and no magic smoke has left so I think that’s a good sign.
There is only one real limitation with these. namely that they rely on both devices to be “Open collector”. which means the devices need to be able to actively pull the signal down to ground to work. not all devices do that so it is best to make sure they do this. if your device works by actively pulling the signal up and not down this won’t work.
However when used appropriately these are pretty fantastic. great for communication busses like I2C,1-wire and such.
Long delivery time but perfect.
I use it to convert logic levels from my Arduino and ESP8266. Haven’t had any issues so far.
When it’s critical for your component to have those back and forth signals pulled down to 3.3v from the standard UNO/MEGA board 5v signal, this is perfect. Thanks, Sparkfun Team! (NOTE: I should have ordered two though, one for the breadboard prototype, and one for the final project assembly.)
I needed to get my Arduino (5V) talking to a Gumstix (1.8V) module via Serial/UART. This level converter does the trick.
Best size, 4lines. Good price. Would be usefull single an bi/lines modules too
Very simplistic and easy to use. I’ve used it on the Nokia Display and it works like a champ. For $3 you can’t beat it and should buy a couple for your project prototypes.
I am very pleased with the product and price. Just as described
small footprint, easy to use, reliable. I use it to interface 3.3 volt MCUs to 5 volt devices
I used this converter with a BeagleBone Black to flash a SPI EEPROM which needed 1.8v.
Details and pictures on http://ao2.it/111
ST Micro SWIM (Single Wire Interface Module) is not meant to go very far … SparkFun Logic Level Converter - Bi-Directional did the trick. I did have to decrease the pull up resistors on the HV side to about 1K to get enough “voom” to shape up the edges but it worked which is saving me from some serious headaches.
….because it was designed properly. Thanx.
Easy to use board. Just set high and low reference voltage and instant bidirectional communications between board with different source voltages.
I managed to get this working with a Teensy 3.1 and the OctoWS2811 library using 3.3v as the input voltage and 12v as the output to control a string of LEDs. This was straightforward once I realized that the Teensy’s TTL output was at 3.3v and not the 5v I was using as the Teensy VIN.
I’ve only tested a single strand of lights with this, however, so YMMV with different variations.
Quick soldering and easy to use. Straightforward and intuitive.
I use these all the time in designs that require tight packaging. This works well for my needs.
Came fast, worked as expected. Data sheet easily found on the website.
0 of 1 found this helpful:
I got this to connect my Edison (1.8V I/O) to a Sparkfun LSM9DS0 breakout (3.3V I/O) using i2c. It’s working perfectly, so far.
My only complaint is that I wouldn’t have needed this at all if the LSM9DS0 breakout had brought out the Vdd_IO pin rather than tying it to Vdd.
this was a simple board but suited perfectly for level shifting in breadboard prototypes!