The 74HC595 is an 8-bit, serial-in, parallel-out shift register. Use this IC through serial interface (like an SPI, clock + data) and you can add up to 8 extra outputs to your design. By chaining multiple shift registers you can add several outputs and still use just a couple of pins of your microcontroller to drive them. The DIP package allows this IC to be plugged directly into a breadboard.
If you need more output current or just looking for a neat solution, check out the AK-SN74LV595 breakout.
Need some insights? check out this fantastic tutorial hosted on arduino.cc
- 8-Bit serial-in, parallel-out
- Operating voltage range: 2V to 6V
- Easy to use