Qwiic MUX Hookup Guide

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Contributors: santaimpersonator, Englandsaurus
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Introduction

PCA9548A and TCA9548A? The SparkX version of the Qwiic Mux breakout used the PCA9548A. The SparkFun red version uses the TCA9548A. Overall, both should be functionally the same with a few minor differences.

The Qwiic Mux - TCA9548A (v1) and (v1.1) enable communication with multiple I2C devices that have the same address. The IC is simple to interface with and also has 8 configurable addresses of its own, this allows you to put 64 I2C buses on a single bus!

SparkFun Qwiic Mux Breakout - 8 Channel (TCA9548A)

BOB-14685
2 Retired
SparkFun Qwiic Mux Breakout - 8 Channel (TCA9548A)

SparkFun Qwiic Mux Breakout - 8 Channel (TCA9548A)

BOB-16784
$12.95
7

Revision Update: In the latest revision of the Qwiic MUX, we have made a few changes to improve the board, listed below. If users are unsure about which version they purchased, please refer to the pictures of the most prominent changes, shown below.

  • We have added a pass-through Qwiic connector.
    • The power LED was moved to accommodate the additional Qwiic connector.
  • We have updated the I2C pull-up resistor jumper to a cuttable trace.
  • We have widened the trace for the 3.3V power.
  • There is a v11 label on the back of the board.
  • The silk screen labels have been updated.

added connector
Added Qwiic connector to make board daisy-chainable.
v11 marking
The v11 label on the back.

In this tutorial we'll go over how to talk to sensors on different channels of your MUX breakout board. The application of this is pretty straightforward so things won't get too fancy.

Required Materials

You'll need a few additional items to get started with the Qwiic Mux. The RedBoard Qwiic is for the Arduino examples and the Qwiic pHAT is for the Raspberry Pi example (see note below). You may already have a few of these items, so feel free to modify your cart based on your needs. Additionally, there are also options that are available as well (click button below to toggle options).

SparkFun Qwiic Cable Kit

SparkFun Qwiic Cable Kit

KIT-15081
$8.95
16
SparkFun RedBoard Qwiic

SparkFun RedBoard Qwiic

DEV-15123
$21.50
14

SparkFun Qwiic pHAT for Raspberry Pi

DEV-15351
Retired
Qwiic compatible microcontrollers:
SparkFun RedBoard Qwiic

SparkFun RedBoard Qwiic

DEV-15123
$21.50
14
SparkFun RedBoard Turbo - SAMD21 Development Board

SparkFun RedBoard Turbo - SAMD21 Development Board

DEV-14812
$26.95
7
SparkFun Thing Plus - SAMD51

SparkFun Thing Plus - SAMD51

DEV-14713
$21.50
2

SparkFun Thing Plus - ESP32 WROOM

WRL-14689
7 Retired
In addition we also offer, Qwiic compatible stackable shields for microcontrollers and pHATs for single board computers (like the Raspberry Pi boards) that don't include a Qwiic connector.
SparkFun Qwiic Adapter

SparkFun Qwiic Adapter

DEV-14495
$1.60
1
SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Arduino

SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Arduino

DEV-14352
$7.50
8
SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Photon

SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Photon

DEV-14477
$6.50
SparkFun Qwiic HAT for Raspberry Pi

SparkFun Qwiic HAT for Raspberry Pi

DEV-14459
$6.50
5
SparkFun Qwiic SHIM for Raspberry Pi

SparkFun Qwiic SHIM for Raspberry Pi

DEV-15794
$1.05
12
SparkFun Servo pHAT for Raspberry Pi

SparkFun Servo pHAT for Raspberry Pi

DEV-15316
$11.95
4

SparkFun Qwiic pHAT for Raspberry Pi

DEV-15351
Retired
You will also need a Qwiic cable to connect to your Qwiic Mux, choose a length that suits your needs.
Qwiic Cable - 100mm

Qwiic Cable - 100mm

PRT-14427
$1.50
Qwiic Cable - 50mm

Qwiic Cable - 50mm

PRT-14426
$0.95
Qwiic Cable - 500mm

Qwiic Cable - 500mm

PRT-14429
$1.95
1

Qwiic Cable - 200mm

PRT-14428

Raspberry Pi Example: If you don't already have them, you will need a Raspberry Pi and standard peripherals. An example setup is listed below. (The Qwiic Mux and Python library have not been tested on the newly released Raspberry Pi 4 because we don't carry it in out catalog yet.)

Update: This board and the Python package have been verified to work with the Raspberry Pi 4.

Tools

Depending on your setup, you may need a hobby knife, soldering iron, solder, and/or general soldering accessories.

Weller WLC100 Soldering Station

Weller WLC100 Soldering Station

TOL-14228
$67.95
2
Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

TOL-09325
$9.95
7
Hobby Knife

Hobby Knife

TOL-09200
$3.50
2

Slice Craft Knife

TOL-14508
Retired

Suggested Reading

If you're unfamiliar with jumper pads, I2C, Qwiic, or Python be sure to checkout some of these foundational tutorials.

Serial Communication

Asynchronous serial communication concepts: packets, signal levels, baud rates, UARTs and more!

Logic Levels

Learn the difference between 3.3V and 5V devices and logic levels.

I2C

An introduction to I2C, one of the main embedded communications protocols in use today.

Serial Terminal Basics

This tutorial will show you how to communicate with your serial devices using a variety of terminal emulator applications.

Raspberry Pi SPI and I2C Tutorial

Learn how to use serial I2C and SPI buses on your Raspberry Pi using the wiringPi I/O library for C/C++ and spidev/smbus for Python.

Raspberry Pi 3 Starter Kit Hookup Guide

Guide for getting going with the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B and Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ starter kit.

Python Programming Tutorial: Getting Started with the Raspberry Pi

This guide will show you how to write programs on your Raspberry Pi using Python to control hardware.

Qwiic pHAT for Raspberry Pi Hookup Guide

Get started interfacing your Qwiic enabled boards with your Raspberry Pi. The Qwiic pHAT connects the I2C bus (GND, 3.3V, SDA, and SCL) on your Raspberry Pi to an array of Qwiic connectors.

How to Work with Jumper Pads and PCB Traces

Handling PCB jumper pads and traces is an essential skill. Learn how to cut a PCB trace, add a solder jumper between pads to reroute connections, and repair a trace with the green wire method if a trace is damaged.

Qwiic Shield for Arduino & Photon Hookup Guide

Get started with our Qwiic ecosystem with the Qwiic shield for Arduino or Photon.

RedBoard Qwiic Hookup Guide

This tutorial covers the basic functionality of the RedBoard Qwiic. This tutorial also covers how to get started blinking an LED and using the Qwiic system.

Qwiic Connect System

The Qwiic Mux is intended for the Qwiic connect system. We recommend familiarizing yourself with the Logic Levels and I2C tutorials before using it. Click on the banner above to learn more about our Qwiic products.