ESP-01, MQTT and an OLED (SSD1306)

OLED ScreenIt took me about a week to get this going. There are still a few kinks that need to be ironed out, or worked around. But I wanted to get this out there before I forgot about it. I could not find a sketch for using an Arduino or ESP with an OLED and MQTT. Not one that didn’t just display data from a connected sensor., that is not what I wanted. I wanted to be able to send messages to the OLED screen via MQTT. I spent quite a while looking for it and I couldn’t find anything. About a week or two ago I finally broke the wall that was keeping me from sending and receiving MQTT message on an ESP. So I took that code and the working code from the Adafruit OLED sketch and made a baby.

I was able to produce a sketch that will simply display any text received via MQTT. Perfect. I plan on using this cobbled together with Node-Red. That way I can have one screen and send multiple sensor readings to it with minimal coding and parts. There are a few things I still need to figure out. For example I can’t get the screen to clear. Perhaps thats what the OLED reset pin was for? But my OLED only has four pins; SDA, SCL, Vcc and Ground. No reset. What to do? I think that is actually the only thing I need to work out. The Adafruit code will wrap your text to new lines, so make a note of that. I have gotten around clearing the screen by injecting spaces via MQTT. Its a little more effort in Node-Red for now until I get that down. But it works. It doesn’t matter how you get there as long as you get there right?

I Program the ESP via the Arduino IDE, if you don’t know how to set that up take a stroll down Google lane. Tons of help there on that topic. As it stands in the code below, once powered up the OLED should flash the Adafruit logo until a message is received then it will display the message until a new one is received. Simple. The default topic is “inTopic”, and the default OLED font size is 1. I have tried a font size of 2 but no higher. I also stumbled upon this library here. Much smaller and designed just for text. May try that in the future, but if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

Items Required:
(1) ESP-01 (mine is a standard ESP-01 from eBay)
(1) OLED I2C Screen (I used a 0.96″ 4pin OLED also off eBay)

IDE Library Requirements:
Adafruit GFX
Adafruit SSD1306

Some places that helped

This was the tutorial that helped me get what I have going. I couldn’t get the OLED to work quite right until I came across this post. I used it as the base for what I have.

This page helped but not until I specified the SDA, SCL pins for the ESP. I couldn’t get the display to work properly and do what I wanted.

And the code (below): [See the comments for updated code]
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