1.51-inch transparent OLED display works over GDI or SPI interface

We’ve seen transparent, see-through displays at least since 2010 for retail applications, and over the years, these types of transparent displays or variants have made it to consumer devices like smartwatches and notch-free smartphones.

But I don’t think I had ever seen transparent displays for the maker market, and DFRobot Fermion is 1.51-inch transparent OLED display with 128×64 resolution that is connected to the host MCU via SPI or GDI (General Display Interface) interface.

transparent oled display

Fermion specifications:

  • 1.51-inch transparent OLED display with blue pixels based on SSD1309 driver
  • Resolution – 128×64 (transparent part: 128×56)
  • Display interface – 8-bit 68xx/80xx Parallel, 3-/4-wire SPI, I2C
  • Adapter Interface – SPI, GDI
  • Operating Voltage –  3.3V
  • Dimensions
    • Screen Size – 41.92 x 27.08mm
    • Display Area – 35.05 x 15.32 mm
    • Pixel Pitch – 0.274 x 0.274mm
    • Pixel Size – 0.254 x 0.254mm
    • Adapter Size – 18 x 28mm/0.71 x 1.10inch
  • Temperature Range – -40~70°C
fermion transparent display GDI and SPI connection
Two methods of connection: GDI (left) and SPI (right)

There are two ways to connect the display to a development board with the provided adapter using headers and jumper cables for SPI which should be compatible with most platforms, a flat cable with a GDI connection to a board such as DFRobot Firebeetle ESP32-E board with a specific connector to connect external displays.

OLED display, english, chinese, japanese

Programming can be done with the Arduino IDE and U8g2 Arduino library, as explained in the Wiki where you’ll also find Arduino sketches to handle fonts, graphics, and multiple languages, as well as hardware documentation. The best way to see what it looks like in action is a short demo.

YouTube video player

Fermion 1.51-inch transparent OLED display can be purchased on DFRobot for $34.90 plus shipping.

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7 Replies to “1.51-inch transparent OLED display works over GDI or SPI interface”

    1. DFRobot charges $34.90 USD each!

      They’re $10.09 USD each on Aliexpress:

      1.51 inch OLED Screen 1.51″ 12864 LCD LED Display Module 128×64 SSD1309 SPI/IIC I2C Parallel Interface Transparent Blue


      Shipping: US $3.48

        1. @CNXSoft Said: “That’s without the adapter board that should add a few dollars”

          Really? The description says there’s a LCD driver chip with the display: “SSD1309 SPI/IIC I2C Parallel Interface…”

          1. Yes, the DFRobot display is the same as that display, but adds one adapter board to connect it to host MCU using jumper wires or the GDI interface.

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