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Description: The LIS3DH Breakout is a smart, low-power, three-axis, capacitive micro-machined accelerometer with 12 bits of resolution that you can use to add translation detection to your project. It would be classified as a 3DoF, or 3 Degrees of Freedom. Inertial Measurement Units (or IMUs) can provide additional space location data, such as gyroscopic or magnetometric. The LIS3DH provided on this breakout operates under the same principles but gives a few analog inputs to play with, and it has some built-in movement detection abilities.

The LIS3DH is easy to set up; just wire up your choice of interface (SPI or I2C), supply 3.3V, and ground. This sensor works nicely with a breadboard for easy connection, and, because it gives some mass to the accelerometer, it more closely matches what might be expected from a project or cellphone.

The LIS3DH Breakout is a 3.3V device! Supplying voltages greater than ~3.6V can permanently damage the IC. As long as your Arduino has a 3.3V supply output, and you’re fine with using I2C, you shouldn’t need any extra level shifting. But if you want to use SPI, you may need a level shifter.

Get Started with the LIS3DH Breakout Guide


  • 1.7V–3.6V
  • Three Modes:
    • Power-Down
    • Normal
    • Low-Power
  • ±2g/±4g/±8g/±16g Dynamically Selectable Fullscale
  • 10bit, 32-Level FIFO
  • 6D/4D Orientation
  • Free-fall Detection
  • Motion Detection
  • Embedded Temperature Sensor


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Customer Comments

  • My “pet peeve” about I2C parts applies here: Why do the manufacturers “bury” the I2C address (or range of addresses, on a part such as this) down in the bowels of the datasheet? (I’ve seen one who puts it up in the first page “features” so it’s easy to find.)

    BTW, a few months before SparkFun introduced this, I built a project with two 3-DOF sensors (the important measurement was the angle between the two, rather than the orientation relative to the ground). Fortunately I found a 3-DOF sensor that had I2C interface, AND a pin selecting between two I2C addresses. Thus I was able to connect both on the same I2C bus. (Nested BTW: I arranged the two sensors so that one axis was always parallel - thus the relative angle could be calculated using the atan() function, which is fast and does not require the vectors to be normalized.)

    • Sorry, especially when there are more than one and/or ways to change it, it can be a bit much for the product description. Our current standard does have it listed on the schematic so it shouldn’t be buried too far.

      • That’s OK. I usually look at the datasheet anyway.

        BTW, the Adafruit 3-DOF I was using brought the address selection out to the edge connector. Had I “productized” this project (it got dropped because of FDA obstacles – your tax dollars hard at work protecting you from improved health [though I heartily agree with some of the things the FDA does, sometimes they are “helicopter” nannies]) I was contemplating a PCB with two connectors that would “pass through” PWR, GND, SCL, and SDA, and “switch” the address, so that the second one in the chain would respond to the other address. Thus the sensors would be interchangeable, only needing one PCB design. Oh well, nice idea while it lasted! ;-) FWIW, the project ran on a MicroView.

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Related Tutorials

LIS3DH Hookup Guide

December 29, 2016

A guide to connecting the LIS3DH to a microcontroller and using the Arduino library.