March 21, 2014

Adding an MCP23017 Port Expander to Raspberry Pi

After experimenting with the Raspberry Pi for some time, you might find that the GPIO options are limited and thus you need some more input or output pins. A solution is to use a port-expander IC, and a popular model is the Microchip MCP23017, which offers sixteen GPIO pins and interfaces with the I2C bus.

Using the I2C bus with a Raspberry Pi may seem daunting to the beginner, however Matt Hawkins has done a great job with a neat tutorial, which explains the hardware connections required and also testing the setup - followed by tutorials for using the inputs and outputs with python.

It's a great read for any RPi enthusiast, so visit Matt's useful website to learn how. And for more, we're on facebookGoogle+, and twitter - so follow us for news and product updates as well.

If you're looking for a more permanent way to mount circuitry to your Raspberry Pi, check out our new PiBreak - the prototyping board for the Raspberry Pi. It provides labelled breakout pins for all GPIOs, a large prototyping area with solder pads, and power rails for easy power connection:

Furthermore the PiBreak also includes mounting hardware to firmly attach it to your Raspberry Pi using a nut, bolt, and spacer - and is compatible with all revisions of both model A and B Raspberry Pi computers. For more information about our new PiBreak board, our Getting Started guide, and to order - visit the product page

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