(reposted from SparkFun.com:)
Hello everybody. My name is Brandon. I'm a new Arduino fan and a club DJ. I have an idea for a project, but after reading several tutorials and buyers guides, I'm not sure how to go about building and programming it.
My idea: I want to build a jumpsuit that is based on a cross between Leah Buechley's lilypad driven e-textile matrix from her website (http://web.media.mit.edu/~leah/grad_work/projects/LED_clothing/tank.html
) and the one created by Marc DeVidtz (posted on Make at: http://blog.makezine.com/archive/2010/09/iphone-controlled-led-suit.html
) ...mostly leaning toward the latter. Meaning I plan to create coveralls that will light up from head to foot in multiple patterns and colors. I prefer the inexpensive nature of Leah's tanktop using loose LEDs sewn in with conductive thread and almost all waterproof components, but I need the brightness and control options Marc used. Below I listed a few questions about what I want to accomplish...
1. I will be using this suit to DJ in which means I need it to be at least hand washable (because I sweat heavily on stage), somewhat durable, and hopefully wireless to allow me to perform without getting the suit wiring tangled to my other gear. I like how the Lilypad Arduino is waterproof, but I don't know if it would be robust enough to incorporate the complex RGB LED color patterns Marc created on his suit (which I REALLY want to do). What Arduino board or board / shield combo would be more appropriate for this project? (Keep in mind I may want to expand later to allow the suit some possible DMX lighting control integration to sync with the color patterns from the club's lighting as a version 2 upgrade. I may create a 2nd identical suit for my DJ partner and resequence both suits to display an 8bit video game as one led marquee as part of another version upgrade.) I like Marc's use of the MiniPro and the WiFly that synchronized to his iPhone to control it. Anyone who could offer tutorials / ideas for what the best methods would be to create a SuperFlux RGB LED matrix e-textile that is durable, washable, wireless, and/or has the capacity for the Arduino to expand to alternating control modes both now and more pattern modes later would be very helpful.
2. I would like to make this reactive to sound, but the Mic sensors I have seen on T-Qualizer shirts are usually easily overloaded in loud nightclub environments which causes all the lights to be lit constantly. How would I avoid the sound sensor causing this known glitch? Could I regulate the gain on the mic somehow?
3. I want to program a few modes into the suit including strobe, color fading from one color to the next, and also the wave and equalizer patterns Marc used. What code should I use for these? Are there scripts readily available for these patterns?
4. Marc's version used smaller pixel LEDs with their own individual break out boards for each cluster of 3 lights. Are these light clusters needed or can the same thing be accomplished using SuperFlux RGB LEDs instead? I want to sew in the SuperFlux style because it would in theory create a brighter end result. Besides, I want to use Marc's suit as a starting point, not copy it.
5. Marc had an ad-hock WiFi Arduino to iPhone connection and an iPhone app was used to manually control the lights and switch colors with different sequencing modes. Problem: I have an Android phone instead. Is there a solution to mimic the same ad-hock WiFi link to control the suit from my HTC Hero? I have not found a Droid app for this yet. If possible, I also prefer to automate the sequencing modes to change on their own. That way I could focus more on my DJing and not worry if my audience is seeing the same lights over and over.
6. I want to sew in over 1000 lights on the suit. How much power and resistors are needed to create the brightness I want (read: almost fracking blinding) using that quality of LEDs? I like Leah's tutorial that shows her example LED matrix sewn to a tanktop. The difference in her tutorial and my proposed project is she only used a fraction of the number of lights I want to use. Would I need to boost the power or use some sort of amplification to continue an even power current throughout the suit?
I understand that this is a complex ambitious project for an Arduino and e-textile newbie like myself. But I hope that with a bit of guidance the end result will be worth the time and effort. If I can accomplish all of the above on a modest budget around hopefully $500, that is an added bonus both my fiance and I could get behind. =)
Thanks in advance to anyone reading this who is willing to help.
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