Rotary encoders can be used similarly to potentiometers. The difference being that an encoder has full rotation without limits (It just goes round and round). They output gray code so that you can tell how much and in which direction the encoder has been turned. They’re great for navigating menu screens and things like that.
This encoder is especially cool because it has a common anode RGB LED built in, as well as a push-button. Look below for the clear knob that goes with this potentiometer.
Posted by Unknown on 14th Apr 2014
Good quality encoder, RGB LED is a great bonus.
These fit perfectly with the Rotary Encoder Breakout, which is recommended as the pin spacing for the 3 & 5 pins sides are different.
This encoder also come with a select switch built in.
I prefer these vertical mount over the right angle ones, as these fit nicely into the breakout.
Posted by Mike on 15th Oct 2013
I bought a pile of these, mainly for use with a Raspberry Pi project. The build quality is a teeny bit suspect, and the detents don't seem to align correctly but this can be overcome by popping the metal lugs of the base, slipping the jacket off and flipping the copper detent ring. The motion of the shaft will be smooth rather than clicky bit it'll work better. If you're using with a i2c GPIO expander you may want to pop an NPN on the pushbutton output since it'll give you 5v (or whatever you're feeding the LEDs through the common anode). I used a 2n2222 with a 1k current limiting resistor on base, ground on collector and the GPIO pin on emitter. Once I'd etched a few daughterboards and dealt with the detents they're actually pretty good, with very solid tracking and hardly any bounce at all. The RGB LEDs are a perfect match for the Adafruit 16 channel PWM controller, and if you use the right resistors on the cathodes then colour mixing very quickly becomes a trivial matter. Worth the cash if you're happy to hack about for a bit to get best results.
All prices are in GBP.