Arduino interface for Adafruit-GFX to control a set of 8x8 LEDs with a MAX7219 or MAX7221
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An Arduino library for controlling a canvas of sets of 8x8 LEDs driven by MAX7219 or MAX7221 controllers. Kits sold for below 10 USD.

This is a plugin for Adafruit's core graphics library GFX, providing basic graphics primitives (points, lines, circles, characters, etc.). So besides this library, you need to download and install Adafruit_GFX, dated Jul 5th, 2013 or more recent.

Written by Mark Ruys,, 2013.


Place the Max72xxPanel and Adafruit_GFX library folders in your <arduinosketchfolder>/libraries/ folder. You may need to create the libraries subfolder if its your first library. Restart the Arduino IDE.


  • Double buffering to prevent screen flicker. Check out our example for usage.
  • Support for multiple matrix displays, positioned in an arbitrary rectangular layout. You can define both the order as the rotation of each display.
  • Uses the SPI library to address the display(s) connected in cascade.
  • Low memory footprint.
  • Fast, no use of NOOP's.


Read overview for instructions how to use Adafruit_GFX. Check out our examples to get some inspiration. Note that to update your displays, you need to explicitely call write().

At YouTube, you'll find a ticker tape and snake demo.