Analog to Digital Converter (ADC) Oneshot Mode Driver


The Analog to Digital Converter is an on-chip sensor which is able to measure analog signals from dedicated analog IO pads.

The ADC on ESP32-S2 can be used in scenario(s) like:

  • Generate one-shot ADC conversion result

  • Generate continuous ADC conversion results

This guide will introduce ADC oneshot mode conversion.

Functional Overview

The following sections of this document cover the typical steps to install and operate an ADC:

  • Resource Allocation - covers which parameters should be set up to get an ADC handle and how to recycle the resources when ADC finishes working.

  • Unit Configuration - covers the parameters that should be set up to configure the ADC unit, so as to get ADC conversion raw result.

  • Read Conversion Result - covers how to get ADC conversion raw result.

  • Hardware Limitations - describes the ADC related hardware limitations.

  • Power Management - covers power management related.

  • IRAM Safe - describes tips on how to read ADC conversion raw result when cache is disabled.

  • Thread Safety - lists which APIs are guaranteed to be thread safe by the driver.

  • Kconfig Options - lists the supported Kconfig options that can be used to make a different effect on driver behavior.

Resource Allocation

The ADC oneshot mode driver is implemented based on ESP32-S2 SAR ADC module. Different ESP chips might have different number of independent ADCs. From oneshot mode driver’s point of view, an ADC instance is represented by adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t.

To install an ADC instance, set up the required initial configuration structure adc_oneshot_unit_init_cfg_t:

After setting up the initial configurations for the ADC, call adc_oneshot_new_unit() with the prepared adc_oneshot_unit_init_cfg_t. This function will return an ADC unit handle, if the allocation is successful.

This function may fail due to various errors such as invalid argumemts, insufficient memory, etc. Specifically, when the to-be-allocated ADC instance is registered already, this function will return ESP_ERR_NOT_FOUND error. Number of available ADC(s) is recorded by SOC_ADC_PERIPH_NUM.

If a previously created ADC instance is no loger required, you should recycle the ADC instance by calling adc_oneshot_del_unit(), related hardware and software resources will be recycled as well.

Create an ADC Unit Handle under Normal Oneshot Mode

adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t adc1_handle;
adc_oneshot_unit_init_cfg_t init_config1 = {
    .unit_id = ADC_UNIT_1,
    .ulp_mode = ADC_ULP_MODE_DISABLE,
ESP_ERROR_CHECK(adc_oneshot_new_unit(&init_config1, &adc1_handle));

Recycle the ADC Unit


Unit Configuration

After an ADC instance is created, set up the adc_oneshot_chan_cfg_t to configure ADC IOs to measure analog signal:


For the IO corresponding ADC channel number. Check datasheet to know the ADC IOs. On the other hand, adc_continuous_io_to_channel() and adc_continuous_channel_to_io() can be used to know the ADC channels and ADC IOs.

To make these settings take effect, call adc_oneshot_config_channel() with above configuration structure. You should specify an ADC channel to be configured as well. Especially, this adc_oneshot_config_channel() can be called multiple times to configure different ADC channels. Drvier will save these per channel configurations internally.

Configure Two ADC Channels

adc_oneshot_chan_cfg_t config = {
    .bitwidth = ADC_BITWIDTH_DEFAULT,
    .atten = ADC_ATTEN_DB_11,
ESP_ERROR_CHECK(adc_oneshot_config_channel(adc1_handle, EXAMPLE_ADC1_CHAN0, &config));
ESP_ERROR_CHECK(adc_oneshot_config_channel(adc1_handle, EXAMPLE_ADC1_CHAN1, &config));

Read Conversion Result

After above configurations, the ADC is ready to measure the analog siganl(s) from the configured ADC channel(s). Call adc_oneshot_read() to get the conversion raw result of an ADC channel.

  • adc_oneshot_read() is safer. ADC(s) are shared by some other drivers / peripherals, see Hardware Limitations. This function takes some mutexes, to avoid concurrent hardware usage. Therefore, this function should not be used in an ISR context. This function may fail when the ADC is in use by other drivers / peripherals, and return ESP_ERR_TIMEOUT. Under this condition, the ADC raw result is invalid.

These two functions will both fail due to invalid arguments.

The ADC conversion results read from these two functions are raw data. To calculate the voltage based on the ADC raw results, this formula can be used:

Vout = Dout * Vmax / Dmax       (1)



Digital output result, standing for the voltage.


ADC raw digital reading result.


Maximum measurable input analog voltage, this is related to the ADC attenuation, please refer to the On-Chip Sensor chapter in TRM.


Maximum of the output ADC raw digital reading result, which is 2^bitwidth, where bitwidth is the :cpp:member::adc_oneshot_chan_cfg_t:bitwidth configured before.

To do further calbration to convert the ADC raw result to voltage in mV, please refer to calibration doc Analog to Digital Converter (ADC) Calibration Driver.

Read Raw Result

ESP_ERROR_CHECK(adc_oneshot_read(adc1_handle, EXAMPLE_ADC1_CHAN0, &adc_raw[0][0]));
ESP_LOGI(TAG, "ADC%d Channel[%d] Raw Data: %d", ADC_UNIT_1 + 1, EXAMPLE_ADC1_CHAN0, adc_raw[0][0]);

ESP_ERROR_CHECK(adc_oneshot_read(adc1_handle, EXAMPLE_ADC1_CHAN1, &adc_raw[0][1]));
ESP_LOGI(TAG, "ADC%d Channel[%d] Raw Data: %d", ADC_UNIT_1 + 1, EXAMPLE_ADC1_CHAN1, adc_raw[0][1]);

Hardware Limitations

  • Random Number Generator uses ADC as a input source. When ADC adc_oneshot_read() works, the random number generated from RNG will be less random.

  • A specific ADC unit can only work under one operating mode at any one time, either Continuous Mode or Oneshot Mode. adc_oneshot_read() has provided the protection.

  • ADC2 is also used by the Wi-Fi. adc_oneshot_read() has provided the protection between Wi-Fi driver and ADC continuous mode driver.

Power Management

When power management is enabled (i.e. CONFIG_PM_ENABLE is on), the system clock frequency may be adjusted when the system is in an idle state. However, the ADC oneshot mode driver works in a polling routine, the adc_oneshot_read() will poll the CPU until the function returns. During this period of time, the task in which ADC oneshot mode driver resides won’t be blocked. Therefore the clock frequency is stable when reading.


By default, all the ADC oneshot mode driver APIs are not supposed to be run when the Cache is disabled (Cache may be disabled due to many reasons, such as Flash writing/erasing, OTA, etc.). If these APIs executes when the Cache is disabled, you will probably see errors like Illegal Instruction or Load/Store Prohibited.

Thread Safety

Above functions are guaranteed to be thread safe. Therefore, you can call them from different RTOS tasks without protection by extra locks.

  • adc_oneshot_del_unit() is not thread safe. Besides, concurrently calling this function may result in failures of above thread-safe APIs.

Kconfig Options

Application Examples

API Reference

Header File


struct adc_digi_pattern_config_t

ADC digital controller pattern configuration.

Public Members

uint8_t atten

Attenuation of this ADC channel.

uint8_t channel

ADC channel.

uint8_t unit

ADC unit.

uint8_t bit_width

ADC output bit width.

struct adc_digi_output_data_t

ADC digital controller (DMA mode) output data format. Used to analyze the acquired ADC (DMA) data.


ESP32: Only type1 is valid. ADC2 does not support DMA mode.


ESP32-S2: Member channel can be used to judge the validity of the ADC data, because the role of the arbiter may get invalid ADC data.

Public Members

uint16_t data

ADC real output data info. Resolution: 12 bit.

ADC real output data info. Resolution: 11 bit.

uint16_t channel

ADC channel index info.

ADC channel index info. For ESP32-S2: If (channel < ADC_CHANNEL_MAX), The data is valid. If (channel > ADC_CHANNEL_MAX), The data is invalid.

struct adc_digi_output_data_t::[anonymous]::[anonymous] type1

ADC type1

uint16_t unit

ADC unit index info. 0: ADC1; 1: ADC2.

struct adc_digi_output_data_t::[anonymous]::[anonymous] type2

When the configured output format is 11bit.

uint16_t val

Raw data value

struct adc_digi_clk_t

ADC digital controller (DMA mode) clock system setting. Calculation formula: controller_clk = (APLL or APB) / (div_num + div_a / div_b + 1).


: The clocks of the DAC digital controller use the ADC digital controller clock divider.

Public Members

bool use_apll

true: use APLL clock; false: use APB clock.

uint32_t div_num

Division factor. Range: 0 ~ 255. Note: When a higher frequency clock is used (the division factor is less than 9), the ADC reading value will be slightly offset.

uint32_t div_b

Division factor. Range: 1 ~ 63.

uint32_t div_a

Division factor. Range: 0 ~ 63.


enum adc_unit_t

ADC unit.


enumerator ADC_UNIT_1


enumerator ADC_UNIT_2


enum adc_channel_t

ADC channels.


enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_0

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_1

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_2

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_3

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_4

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_5

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_6

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_7

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_8

ADC channel.

enumerator ADC_CHANNEL_9

ADC channel.

enum adc_atten_t

ADC attenuation parameter. Different parameters determine the range of the ADC.


enumerator ADC_ATTEN_DB_0

No input attenuation, ADC can measure up to approx.

enumerator ADC_ATTEN_DB_2_5

The input voltage of ADC will be attenuated extending the range of measurement by about 2.5 dB (1.33 x)

enumerator ADC_ATTEN_DB_6

The input voltage of ADC will be attenuated extending the range of measurement by about 6 dB (2 x)

enumerator ADC_ATTEN_DB_11

The input voltage of ADC will be attenuated extending the range of measurement by about 11 dB (3.55 x)

enum adc_bitwidth_t



Default ADC output bits, max supported width will be selected.

enumerator ADC_BITWIDTH_9

ADC output width is 9Bit.

enumerator ADC_BITWIDTH_10

ADC output width is 10Bit.

enumerator ADC_BITWIDTH_11

ADC output width is 11Bit.

enumerator ADC_BITWIDTH_12

ADC output width is 12Bit.

enumerator ADC_BITWIDTH_13

ADC output width is 13Bit.

enum adc_ulp_mode_t



ADC ULP mode is disabled.

enumerator ADC_ULP_MODE_FSM

ADC is controlled by ULP FSM.


ADC is controlled by ULP RISCV.

enum adc_digi_convert_mode_t

ADC digital controller (DMA mode) work mode.



Only use ADC1 for conversion.


Only use ADC2 for conversion.


Use Both ADC1 and ADC2 for conversion simultaneously.


Use both ADC1 and ADC2 for conversion by turn. e.g. ADC1 -> ADC2 -> ADC1 -> ADC2 …..

enum adc_digi_output_format_t

ADC digital controller (DMA mode) output data format option.



See adc_digi_output_data_t.type1


See adc_digi_output_data_t.type2

Header File


esp_err_t adc_oneshot_new_unit(const adc_oneshot_unit_init_cfg_t *init_config, adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t *ret_unit)

Create a handle to a specific ADC unit.


This API is thread-safe. For more details, see ADC programming guide

  • init_config[in] Driver initial configurations

  • ret_unit[out] ADC unit handle


  • ESP_OK: On success

  • ESP_ERR_INVALID_ARG: Invalid arguments

  • ESP_ERR_NO_MEM: No memory

  • ESP_ERR_NOT_FOUND: The ADC peripheral to be claimed is already in use

esp_err_t adc_oneshot_config_channel(adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t handle, adc_channel_t channel, const adc_oneshot_chan_cfg_t *config)

Set ADC oneshot mode required configurations.


This API is thread-safe. For more details, see ADC programming guide

  • handle[in] ADC handle

  • channel[in] ADC channel to be configured

  • config[in] ADC configurations


  • ESP_OK: On success

  • ESP_ERR_INVALID_ARG: Invalid arguments

esp_err_t adc_oneshot_read(adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t handle, adc_channel_t chan, int *out_raw)

Get one ADC conversion raw result.


This API is thread-safe. For more details, see ADC programming guide


This API should NOT be called in an ISR context

  • handle[in] ADC handle

  • chan[in] ADC channel

  • out_raw[out] ADC conversion raw result


  • ESP_OK: On success

  • ESP_ERR_INVALID_ARG: Invalid arguments

  • ESP_ERR_TIMEOUT: Timeout, the ADC result is invalid

esp_err_t adc_oneshot_del_unit(adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t handle)

Delete the ADC unit handle.


This API is thread-safe. For more details, see ADC programming guide


handle[in] ADC handle


  • ESP_OK: On success

  • ESP_ERR_INVALID_ARG: Invalid arguments

  • ESP_ERR_NOT_FOUND: The ADC peripheral to be disclaimed isn’t in use

esp_err_t adc_oneshot_io_to_channel(int io_num, adc_unit_t *unit_id, adc_channel_t *channel)

Get ADC channel from the given GPIO number.

  • io_num[in] GPIO number

  • unit_id[out] ADC unit

  • channel[out] ADC channel


  • ESP_OK: On success

  • ESP_ERR_INVALID_ARG: Invalid argument

  • ESP_ERR_NOT_FOUND: The IO is not a valid ADC pad

esp_err_t adc_oneshot_channel_to_io(adc_unit_t unit_id, adc_channel_t channel, int *io_num)

Get GPIO number from the given ADC channel.

  • unit_id[in] ADC unit

  • channel[in] ADC channel

  • io_num[out] GPIO number

  • - – ESP_OK: On success

    • ESP_ERR_INVALID_ARG: Invalid argument


struct adc_oneshot_unit_init_cfg_t

ADC oneshot driver initial configurations.

Public Members

adc_unit_t unit_id

ADC unit.

adc_ulp_mode_t ulp_mode

ADC controlled by ULP, see adc_ulp_mode_t

struct adc_oneshot_chan_cfg_t

ADC channel configurations.

Public Members

adc_atten_t atten

ADC attenuation.

adc_bitwidth_t bitwidth

ADC conversion result bits.

Type Definitions

typedef struct adc_oneshot_unit_ctx_t *adc_oneshot_unit_handle_t

Type of ADC unit handle for oneshot mode.