Tindie Blog | Create Huge Displays with Raspberry Pi!

Over the last few years, we’ve seen online marketplaces carrying large video panels that all use a similar protocol, commonly called HUB12. These panels are reminiscent of the style used to build giant outdoor displays, and they come in a variety of colours and LED pitch (from very fine to quite large). These panels are capable of displaying content at 60 frames a second, making them very useful for video displays, but they can also be used to display static images or used in other unconventional ways. However, driving these panels can be somewhat challenging — something the Raspberry Pi HUB12 Hat aims to improve!

This hat contains three separate connectors using the de facto standard pinout of these modules. Because this Hat supports HUB12, it’s specifically designed for monochrome panels (the HUB75 protocol is used on the RGB panels). With large screw terminals to supply current to the panels, the power supply circuitry is totally separate from the Pi itself. It also includes a built-in fan to help cool both the Hat and the Pi, helping stabilize the system when driving panels for long periods of time.

It can easily drive 3 panels, and likely with some tweaks to the Hat, they could potentially be stackable, allowing more panels to be controlled. Hopefully, we will see some more documentation and example code, though to get started Adafruit has a library for driving the RGB displays from a Pi that could be used to get started.