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Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly
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Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Sun Dec 30, 2018 8:35 pm

I recently purchased the Pi GRRL zero kit from Adafruit because I wanted a way to use my raspberry pi wherever I go and not have to worry about needing an HDMI monitor and power supply. I followed the guide very carefully and got everything soldered together. However, when I turned on the pi the TFT screen was just white. I waited for a few minutes before turning it off to give raspbian time to boot but it never changed. I'm not sure what went wrong and I don't know where to start looking for problems. I'm currently an electrical engineering/computer engineering student so I know some basic things to look for. I checked my soldering and even resoldered many of the pins that connected the PI to the TFT screen. I checked the components themselves and nothing appeared to be damaged. I had just used the pi a few hours before connecting it to the TFT so I'm pretty sure it was working. The only thing I can think of is that I might have something configured wrong. I bought the kit directly from Adafruit and I followed the software installation instructions exactly. I even tried a different adafruit library that was not included in the PiGRRL instructions. I remember a few years ago, when I bought a 3.5'' TFT screen, that I had this same problem and it was fixed by commenting out a line in the config file that was not mentioned in the Adafruit guide. I can't remember what it was though. Is this a common problem? is there any sort of documentation on issues like this? The screen itself seems to be fine, I think that it is probably just a software problem.

P.S. I did set up the TFT software on a different pi because I had already soldered in the pi I'm using for the PiGRRL and I can't connect it to an HDMI monitor because my cord cant fit between the pi and the screen. Is the conig file stored in the SD card or somewhere in the pi itself? I'm using a raspberry pi zero W, I don't see why that would make a difference but I thought I might just mention it.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:04 pm

Are you installing from the PiGRRL instructions here?
https://learn.adafruit.com/pigrrl-zero/software
(there's a disclaimer about Pi Zero W on that page)

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:28 pm

No, I did not use the premade IMG. I did try installing the drivers on this page (https://learn.adafruit.com/pigrrl-zero/ ... e-manual-1). Does that only work for the premade IMG? After I followed that guide and I still couldnt get the screen to work, I decided to try this (https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-2-2 ... sy-install) and I still couldn't get it to work. I just want the screen to display what the HDMI usually displays. Are there additional things I need to configure that aren't mentioned in the guide?

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Fri Jan 04, 2019 3:43 pm

For troubleshooting at least, let's stick with that second link. It should work. Can you run the script again and capture the session and post the output here.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:49 am

I ran the script and I selected the 2.2 TFT option, then I selected the 270-degree rotation and I said no to the console only and said yes to the HDMI mirroring. the install was never interrupted and no error messages were presented. After the install, I was prompted to restart and I did. I still get a white screen though.

I am currently using a second Pi zero W to configure the software since I can't plug an HDMI cord into the Pi that is soldered to the screen. I have tried to SSH into the soldered Pi but it does not work. so I ran the install script on the free pi and transferred the SD card to the TFT Pi when it was ready. however, I discovered using nmap that my Pi is not connecting to my wifi at all. It seems that something is preventing my pi from booting all the way. I'm fairly certain that I have all of the software set up correctly at this point and my Pi zero worked for weeks before I soldered it to the TFT. I looked around on the adafruit forms and found several other threads by people with my exact same problem. Is it possible that I was shipped a bad TFT display? I'm not sure where to go from here. I'm not sure how to remove the TFT from my Pi since the pin holes are very small. It is nearly impossible to get all of the solder out of the holes with the tools that I have so I can't check the TFT ribbon connection.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:40 pm

Let's see if we can get the Pi to boot and get access to it via SSH again. Try using this process:
https://learn.adafruit.com/raspberry-pi ... n/overview

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:55 pm

I already successfully setup and used SSH on another Pi zero with the exact same SD card but when I take the card out and put it in the Soldered Pi, nothing happens. I’m pretty sure that the pi is trying to boot but since neither the screen nor the SSH are working, I’m guessing that it’s encountering an error but I don’t know why. The Pi was working fine before I soldered it to the screen. Could a malfunctioning screen cause problems with the Pi booting process?

Troubleshooting this issue would be much easier if the Pi was not already soldered to the TFT. Would I be able to use one of the console cables from the guide in your last post? Does the screen use the Rx and Tx pins?

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:18 pm

It does sound like something hardware is going on with the Pi. Using a console cable is a good idea. The trick is going to be getting the wires attached. TX and RX are pretty easy - you can use the pads on the row of breakouts as shown below. You'll then need to pick of a GND somewhere. You could leave the console cable's power disconnected and then power the setup through the Pi's USB.
txrx.jpg
txrx.jpg (67.4 KiB) Viewed 116 times

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:23 pm

Ok then. I guess I will be purchasing a console cable. I may also purchase a second screen to troubleshoot with.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:17 pm

Those console cables are great to have. I use mine all the time when troubleshooting RPi things. Report back here when you've gotten it and given it a try.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Mon Jan 07, 2019 6:24 pm

will do.

additionally, I did decide to buy an another 2.2'' TFT to troubleshoot the software. However, I don't intend to solder it directly. I will use the pin header so I can disconnect it easily. If I can make the new screen work then at least I know my software is set up correctly. I'm sure I will need another screen for some future project anyway.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by bobmoore_maple on Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:26 pm

Pi 3+, 3.5" TFT does not rotate in HDMI setup -- I want to see the HDMI screen at 180 degrees on the TFT so my FreqShow is not sitting on the cables, but on a solid surface. But changing the orientation in the provided setup script doesn't change the orientation at all. Is there a missing command, a bug or a non-existent feature? Otherwise FreqShow is marvelous and useful.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:45 pm

@bobmoore_maplenet_net Please start a new thread for your question.

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by creatorbyte on Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:23 am

Ok, I got the cable and the additional screen for testing. After I soldered the pin header onto the new screen (screen 2), I connected it to the pi zero W that is not soldered to screen 1 (pi 2). The new screen worked perfectly as expected.

Since screen two worked with pi 2, and I’m using the exact same SD card from pi 1, It seems clear that we’re dealing with a hardware issue.

I’m confident in my soldering skills and the software worked fine for the new screen, so I guess I will just have to connect the terminal cables and see what’s going on with pi 1 and screen 1. Im very busy with university classes right now (because Fourier analysis and Assembly language can both get nasty) so it may take a few days for me to find the time.

Ps:
I tried again, and I was able to SSH into pi 2( the one that always worked) but not into pi 1( the one that worked perfectly before I soldered the screen to it).

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Re: Raspberry Pi TFT (2.2'') not working correctly

by adafruit_support_carter on Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:38 pm

so I guess I will just have to connect the terminal cables and see what’s going on with pi 1 and screen 1

Yep. Do that. And I'd suggest just starting with a fresh copy of Raspbian Lite. At this point, you're just trying to see if you can get the Pi to boot and not worry about the TFT. Remember, you'll need to enable the serial output:
https://learn.adafruit.com/raspberry-pi ... -uart-4-10

And might be worth checking out this:
https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruits-ra ... sole-cable

Good luck with the Fourier and assy! Fun stuff.

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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.