Retired Product

This product has been retired from our catalog and is no longer for sale. This page is made available for those looking for datasheets and the simply curious.

Creative Commons images are CC BY 2.0

Description: Replacement: None. There is not currently a replacement for this product. We are waiting on a new revision from 4D Systems. This page is for reference only.

The uVGA-PICASO-MD1 is a compact & cost effective drop in embedded graphics engine that will deliver stand-alone functionality to your project. The simple to use embedded commands not only control background color but can produce text in a variety of sizes as well as draw shapes in 256 colors while freeing up the host processor from processor hungry screen control functions. This means a simple micro-controller with a standard serial interface can drive the module with ease.


  • Intelligent and fully integrated VGA/SVGA Display Graphics Controller
  • Tiny 28 pin module, powered by the 4D LABS PICASO chip - a powerful DSP/Controller based multi purpose graphics engine
  • Low Power design: 3.0-3.6V supply @90mA
  • 256 colors with standard resolution modes for QVGA (320x240), VGA (640x480) and SVGA
  • The uVGA-PICASO-MD1 supports multiple resolutions within the same module. Resolutions are selectable during run time under host control. Resizeable viewing window allows partial/full screen control.
  • The digital video signals facilitate using a simple Resistor-DAC to drive any standard VGA monitor
  • 512K bytes of onboard SRAM for video memory allows 8 pages for QVGA, 2 pages for VGA and 1 page for SVGA resolutions
  • RX and TX signals (TTL levels) provide a simple serial host interface. The serial interface allow the μVGA-PICASO-MD1 graphics module to be connected to any host controller such as a PIC, AVR, STAMP, ARM, Propeller as well as a PC. The host controls the module by sending simple serial commands.
  • Auto baud rate detection from 2400 baud to 1Mbit/sec.
  • Powerful, easy to use and understand built in graphics functions allow drawing of lines, rectangles, circles, ellipses, text, images, icons, user defined bitmaps and much more
  • SPI signals (SDI, SDO, SCK) allow the module to be connected to a number of SD and MMC memory cards (from 64Mb up to 2Gb) that can store images, icons, and other graphics objects.
  • Future upgrades and enhancements are easily achieved by uploading PmmC (Personality module micro Code) files. PmmC files allow the PICASO chip to be uploaded with the latest micro-Code firmware.
  • System designers can incorporate the uVGA-PICASO-MD1 module directly into their application, saving space and cost. Reference designs enable the user to create a platform to incorporate the uVGA-PICASO easily.

Documents and Software: * uVGA-PICASO-MD1

Recommended Products

Customer Comments

  • I bought one a few months ago, and it works fine at 115200 baud.
    I made all my own commands to control it. As long as you wait for status responses it works great.
    I tried briefly to get a higher resolution than 320x240, but gave up and didnt try later after I had all the other commeads working.
    I recently bought another for another project, and will buy a few more soon.

  • Is there anywhere, anywhere at all where you can get a $20 or less graphics controller. I need 10 of them for my project and this price is outrageous! No offence to SFE.

  • I wish I’d looked at these comments before purchasing.
    I’ve tried and failed to get this to work.
    I’ll go and look for something else.

  • Don’t waste your money on this product. It does not work reliably and tech support is non-existent. You are better off to buy a propeller ( and program it to a serial RS232 to VGA converter.

  • I have one of these and have not managed to make it work properly. Flaky response to commands. Has anybody got it to work properly ? Would be curious to hear other experiences. Are there any alternatives ? I need to display text on a VGA monitor from a PLC controller (RS232 9600baud 8N1).

Customer Reviews

No reviews yet.