The InkPlate 2 isn’t the only new electronic paper display to hit Kickstarter this week. The EnkPi family of devices are a line of a ePaper boards that come in 2.9 inch, 4.2 inch, 5.83 inch and 7.5 inch sizes.
Each is mounted to a custom printed circuit board with 6 programmable buttons, and powered by a Rapbery Pi Pico W with an RP2040 microcontroller and support for 802.11b/g/n (WiFi 4). Prices start at $49 for an EinkPi board with a 2.9 inch display during crowdfunding. Shipping will set you back another $22.
The ePaper displays are low-power, high-contrast screens that can show black, white, and red content. They don’t require any illumination and which can be viewed in direct sunlight or other environments using ambient light. Like the screens on Kindle and Kobo eReaders, they only use power when the contents of the screen change, which means they can display a static image indefinitely and should get long battery life if you don’t refresh the screen very often.
While a full screen refresh takes a little while, these displays also support partial screen refreshes, which allows you to change what’s on the display more quickly if you’re willing to put up with some artifacts of the previous image remaining on the screen.
Some specs vary depending on the screen size. But all models have a printed circuit board with 6 programmable buttons, a real-time clock, USB Type-C and micro USB ports, a microSD card reader, and an onboard Raspberry Pi Pico W and a connector for a 3.7 W battery as well as a slot for a coin-cell battery.
Here are the prices, screen sizes, and display resolutions available during crowdfunding:
2.9 inch, 4.2 inch, 5.83 inch and 7.5 inch sizes.
- 2.9 inches, 296 x 128 pixels for $49
- 4.2 inches, 400 x 300 pixels for $74
- 5.83 inches, 648 x 480 pixels for $92
- 7.5 inches, 800 x 480 pixels for $98
Note that these prices include a Raspberry Pi Pico W, but you’ll need to buy a battery separately if you plan to use one.
You can program the display or change the contents of the screen using UART/I2C or WiFi connections, and you can set up multiple EnkPi boards to communicate with one another.
Potential applications include digital signage, name tags, or price tags. or perhaps you could make your own playing cards that can be physically changed.
Don’t want to buy a whole EnkPi system, but like the idea of connecting an ePaper display to a Raspberry Pi Pico? The makers of the EnkPi are also offering a Universal ePaper HAT for around $10.
If everything goes according to plan, the EnkPi boards and Universale ePaper HAT should begin shipping to Kickstarter backers in March, 2023.
via SB Components