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Topic: Easy Peasy RGB LEDs - the holy grail! (Read 11102 times) previous topic - next topic


For all those who love their blinking lights, you'll appreciate these:


There's 5 types of LED modules, including some huge domes that are 50mm in diameter.

- You can run hundreds or thousands from only two Arduino pins (clock and data) - but you'll need some power for the LEDs of course.
- Each LED can be individually addressed and assigned a 15 bit color.
- The refresh rate is fast enough to do some amazing animations even a small video screen is possible.
- The modules are pre-wired - no soldering required!

For those wanting to do a nice big LED Audio spectrum analyzer...stay tuned.


I make it all up as I go along.

Steve S

Does anywhere outside Australia carry these?


As far as  I know nobody else carries these.

You have problems ordering from Australia guvna?  :D

Seriously though, post to UK takes about 1 week.


any plans on selling the enclosure with the grid like the one in the video?
those LEDs look great


Jun 02, 2010, 02:28 pm Last Edit: Jun 02, 2010, 02:30 pm by blip Reason: 1
The front panel is Perspex with a grid of black viny adhesive applied to the front.
Behind that is a grid which I made from coroplast covered with silver vinyl adhesive. It works really well as the light from the LED gets diffused nice and evenly.  On a bigger scale it would look awesome...I'm working on that  ;)

If I can find somewhere to cut up the coroplast or some similar material I'll sell them as a kit. Maybe 10x10 grid.

Steve S

My problem isn't buying from Australia, per se, any more than buying from the USA, Canada or China.
It's HMRC (Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs), who used to be HM Customs and Excise. The last couple of times I've bought stuff from outside the EU, I've had to pay what I consider excessive duty on it, even though the declared (trade) value was well within their defined limits.
"Not for personal use" or some such guff is the excuse they use. Of course, given the size of our national deficit, the money has to come from somewhere; I just object to it being from me....


Those are great. thanks for the heads up!


SteveS: Yes, you'll get bitten 17.5% VAT for any orders over 18 UK pounds.
Mind you, you can get quite a few LEDs for under that price :D



blip - you need to release a version housed in a ping-pong ball, perhaps with really thin wires. Then, with enough of them, you could build your own arduino-based "cube-a-tron"!

I will not respond to Arduino help PM's from random forum users; if you have such a question, start a new topic thread.

Ran Talbott

What about color (or, I guess "colour", since you're in Oz  ;)) correction?

One of the biggest hassles many of us have encountered with RGB LEDs is that the intensity of the 3 emitters doesn't match the spectral sensitivity of the eye.  Which means that the RGB values that work well on a computer screen look like bleep (or, at least, "wrong") when used with LEDs.  You have to scale them in software,  or twiddle the limiting resistor values,  to get acceptable results.

Do your LEDs include that fix?

The other big question is whether the clock and data lines are "repeated" from one module to the next,  or all in parallel.  I.e.,  if I wanted a string of dozens of them,  would I find the Arduino overloaded by trying to drive many feet of wire,  with lots of receivers?  Or does it just drive the first module,  which echos the signals to the next one?



could this be done with bit banging? i dont want to use a ISR like your example sketch because i have one running which is doing audio, and other ISRs cause clicks and whatnot. it would not have to update very fast. and there would only be 4 of the LEDs

The clock and data could be quite irregular if other things are going on.


these look great....im in for a try!


Ran: The color matching is up to you - these aren't really designed to match PC screen color gamut.  The secret would be to adjust any RGB value before using it for the LEDs.

The clock and data lines are repeated from each module to the next, so there is no load on your Arduino.

DeFex: Good question.
The smallest LEDs do not require the clock line to be continually run after data is clocked in, so you can bitbang those. The other types of modules will require a clock coming from your arduino, along the lines of my example code.

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