First, a disclaimer that I am an electronics newbie. I got my hands on a laser rangefinder which looks very similar to this: enter image description here

On the top left corner, there are two sets of pins. The first set has these four:

  1. GND
  2. CLK
  3. DIO
  4. 3V3

The second one has three:

  1. RX
  2. TX
  3. GND

What I want to do is control the rangefinder from my raspberry pi 4. Basically, I'd like to programmatically trigger a measurement and then read the result. I am okay with Python but I am not sure how to wire this to my pi.

Based on some googling I think the first set of pins is for I²C and the second is for serial/TTL communication. I also found this blog where a weaker rangefinder was connected to an Arduino using the TX, RX and GND pins so I hope it's possible to do something similar on the raspberry pi.

How would I proceed with this? I'd like to use the same pins but I don't know where to connect them to, nor which commands to give (though I assume I would use a library such as this).

  • 2
    You NEED to find the specifications of the device you want to use. Then, if you need help implementing a solution ask specific questions. As this Question stands the best you could hope for is lots of idle speculation.
    – Milliways
    Commented Apr 30, 2020 at 0:33
  • 1
    Are you a poor hobbyist like me, playing only cheap stuff? If yes, I would recommend the I2C or UART interface toys such as this: fr.aliexpress.com/item/…. If you are an electronics newbie, I would recommend Serial, rather than I2C, which is bit tricky to handle.
    – tlfong01
    Commented Apr 30, 2020 at 4:40
  • 1
    You might also like to read my answer to the following question to know more about LIDARs: raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/102375/…
    – tlfong01
    Commented Apr 30, 2020 at 6:28
  • 1
    @Milliways I found a specification which might apply on my device as well. It works by TTL. I guess I could get a TTL to USB adapter and try it out on my desktop?
    – Theo
    Commented May 1, 2020 at 9:18
  • 1
    @tlfong01 Thanks a lot for the links and info. However, I need a long range rangefinder (at least 600m) and I have not found anything which can easily be connected to a raspberry pi.
    – Theo
    Commented May 1, 2020 at 9:21


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