Picture of ESM - ExternalSerialMonitor
Sometimes I needed an external serial monitor like the Serial Monitor in the Arduino Editor, to see what is going on. So I made one.
The first picture shows an example how could be it designed.

For the ESM I used an Atmel Atmega328 (based on the Arduino-Board) because it have an internal SRAM with 2KBytes. It's necessary for the big data processing.
So you need more than 1KByte SRAM.

With the menu in the ESM you can do...
... setting the baud rate
... start and pause the reading
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Step 1: Circuit

Picture of Circuit

Step 2: Parts list

Picture of Parts list

C1,C8,C10           100nF/50V
C2,C3                  22pF/50V
C4,C5,C6             1µF
C7,C9                  47µF/16V
D1,D2,D3,D4        LED-SMD OSRAM TOPLED, 9 mcd, green
Display1               EA_DOG-S102-6
IC1                       ATMEGA328(DIL28S)
IC3                       L7805 5V VOLTAGE CONVERTER
K1                        FEMALE CONNECTOR
Q1                        16MHz
R1,R2,R3,R4         100KOhm
R5,R6,R7,R8         100 Ohm
R9                        3,3KOhm
R10                      1KOhm
S2,S3,S4,S5         JTP-1230 BUTTON
S6                        SLIDE SWITCH
9V                        Battery

Step 3: Arduino sketch

Picture of Arduino sketch

The main sketch.

Global variables are defined here.

The menu-functions.

The buttons are here defined.

The functions behind the menu.

Functions for the DOGS-102 display.
static void setChipSelectPin(PIN No. as const int)
static void writeByte(unsigned int)
static void Init()
static void begin()
static void drawPic(byte[8][102])
static void displayClear()
static void print(Text as char*)
static void print(Text as char*, Row as int)**
static void print(Text as char*, Col as int, Row as int)**
static void print(Number long, Col as int, Row as int)**

** Col = 0 to 102 pix, Row 0 - 7

Font definitions and functions.

The start image.

The SPI function.

Hey there, great i'ble! Is it possible to connect a keyboard in some way to the monitor? That would totally eliminate the need for a computer!
Machine11 months ago

I love the high quality images of the printed circuit board (PCB) with components. Did you use the Eagle Schematic editor to do those or, if not which software is it?

Voted because of the sheer quality of this instructable.

ARPix (author)  Machine11 months ago

Thank you.

I used Target3001 and Cinema4D.

agis6811 months ago


ARPix (author)  agis6811 months ago

*thumb up* thank you

fabitencourt11 months ago

What about using a SD card to save the data you poke out ? Do you think it could be ease task ?

ARPix (author)  fabitencourt11 months ago

Thank you for your vote.

Yes, that's easy to integrate a datalogger. I think a atmega328 should be big enough for this. The Sketch for the ESM needs 7.832 Bytes and my datalogger Sketch needs 16.482 Bytes. I will try to cut down the size for the datalogger and i will create an another instructable with a compatible datalogger for the ESM.

fabitencourt11 months ago

You have my vote and I intend to make it. Good job.

wliu311 months ago
Oh yes so can this be modified to read from a computer serial port? I know there is a way to make a serial console for Linux.
ARPix (author)  wliu311 months ago

Yes, that's possible if you use as example a FTDI ft232rl Chip. Like on the Arduino Board.

wliu311 months ago
It would be more easier to make it you can use arduino (which is also based off atmel atmega328) so it is much easier for us AVR noobs to make one (though at the price of doubling the cost, I think it with that).
wliu3 wliu311 months ago
Oh sorry I haven't read it through. Next time if you want to say arduino based then just say that. Using "atmel ATMega328 based" will only confuse people.
ARPix (author)  wliu311 months ago

Oh yes, that's right. Thank you for your information. I will change this.

Build_it_Bob11 months ago

Very nice project and well done !


sdcharle11 months ago

This is fantastic. Got my vote.

thegrendel11 months ago

Interesting project. I would be nice to use a cheap and readily available Nokia 5110 display, rather than the MMS-e DOG one.

billbillt11 months ago


nataku11 months ago
I've been thinking about this but never really get there. Thanks for sharing.
Raphango11 months ago

Whoa! Great man!

zx lee11 months ago

Nice, love your great idea! Would try to make one for myself one day~

tronixstuff12 months ago

Awesome, well done :)

ARPix (author)  tronixstuff11 months ago

thank you

yair12 months ago

great project!
in what software did you use to render the PCB and parts?

ARPix (author)  yair12 months ago

The PCB and the schematic I created in target3001.
Then I imported this in Cinema4D.

unigamer12 months ago

Very nice, I like this idea! I couldn't find the LCD on ebay, does anyone have a link to buy it for a good price in the UK?

ARPix (author)  unigamer12 months ago

Thank you for your comment.

MMS Electronics Ltd. in Guiseley

You have to send an email to the company to request a price.

unigamer ARPix12 months ago
Thanks for the link. That's an interesting website. I've added your project to the long list of things I want to make but I can definitely think of times when something like this would have been useful. I'll probably have it as a self contained unit with a power source so it can mimic an FTDI cable.