Hello dear world! xD
let me start by saying this is my first mod and i am clueless about this kind of work.
i am an IT student so the programming part of this is the only thing my expertise dominates and it is why i'm resorting to your help reader! yes YOU, even if you don't know "anything" odds are you know more than me about this. So your input is more than welcomed!
now onto the good stuff. ok, this is really simple actually. i have a Belkin n52te speedpad (a small keyboard if you will) and i am in the process of modding it!
there are 2 mods i know how to do, one of them is to remove the original keys and get Red Cherry Switches in their place. (those are the best switches you can get for gaming)
i will also cover them in transparent keycaps.(which i will also custom paint/dye/decal)
said switches have a proper place, a hole, for LED illumination. but the n52te has board illumination and not LEDs on each key.
what i want is to have each of the 6 keys to light up on a unique color in order to differentiate them. creating a color scheme!
the purpose is that each key will represent a PS3 controller button. as in Blue key will be "X" button and Red key will be the "O" button in, say, scheme1 the Blue key will be "W" and the Red key will be "E" for game1.
but for game 2 a different scheme, scheme2, will switch the illumination on the LEDs so that the Blue key (representing "x" button) is now "A" and the Red key (representing "O" button) is now "S".
this will allow for anyone who is using the belkin n52te to choose the correct scheme for a game and be able to immediately tell which key is representing which controller button without confusion or resorting to memory or detailsheets.
so. this is the switches that will hold the LEDs details:http://www.cherrycorp.com/english/switches/key/mx.htm
note the one's i have don't come with LEDs or Diodes since i need a RGB solution for this to work.
which arduino should i buy ? i need the smallest one possible in order to build it into the belkin n52te if possible.
i want the arduino to power through usb and not the n52te's board. will USB be enough to power 6 RGB LEDs+arduino ?
which LEDs should i buy ? i think the hole for the LEDs is 3mm in diameter.
what other parts do i need ? and how to use them.
the arduino and LEDs will be completely independent from the Belking n52te.
the only interaction from the 2 is the button to cycle color schemes. i will use one of the belkin n52te's buttons for that input on the arduino. (i'll scrape the PCB and add a clone wire to the button connected to the arduino. so when i press that button i'll get a command input on both the n52te and the arduino). this is because the n52te will be controlling another device that changes the values of the n52te's keybinds, so using the same button for both will keep them in sync.
like i say in the OP, i only want 6 RGB LEDs used for only 6 of the total 16 n52te's keys. the rest of the keys will be illuminated by belkin n52te's board lights. (or normal 1 color LEDs i may add later, drawing power from arduino, if this goes well only ^^) only those set 6 keys are important. i don't really know if the n52te can power the 6 RGB LEDs, but if it can't, then can the arduino unit power them somehow? it's what will be controlling them anyway and i would benefit from that since i could draw more power to keep everything stable....
this device is meant to be used on PS3 (through a marvelous device called XIM Edge) and PC so the arduino should run the light schemes as a stand alone, using the USB only as a power source and a way to configure schemes.
i would love to get the arduino small enough to build into the n52te but if that is not possible it is no problem, i'll just get a box to cover the arduino and couple both devices together (Frankenduino anyone?)
i will take care of the programming side of things, the only problem for me is the hardware part ahahahah
i know this may seem like asking to much but i'm still getting started and gathering all the parts.i am a hardcore gamer and this will make my life and of those who also use this equipment a LOT easier and enable us to enjoy our gaming a lot more. any help will save me hours of research and learning whci i will take to get the knowledge you already have.