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Topic: Stage Design Difficulties (Read 1 time) previous topic - next topic


I am currently working on a stage for a friend and I have been considering using an Arduino to control the lighting. Here is a conceptual rendering.
There are 33 cubes that must be lit and all must be RGB capable. I've been told this is a reasonable amount.

I'll be the first to admit that I am a complete beginner when it comes to electronics and I have several friends helping in this department but I'd like to ask around first.
1) Is an arduino a sound choice / a feasible option for this project?
2) Are there LEDs bright enough that they will be able to light up these cubes through a thin plastic film (they let roughly the same amount of light through as paper)?

Thank you in advance,


Will all of the cubes have the same color or must each be individually settable?
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Is an arduino a sound choice / a feasible option for this project?

Yes but with 33 RGB LEDs you will need extra hardware to do this.

Are there LEDs bright enough that they will be able to light up these cubes

Yes but the bright high power ones need extra hardware as well called a constant current drive.


Controlling 33 RGB-leds with an arduino is certainly possible, several methods exist.
You will need some extra electronics to drive 33x3 lights though.

Don't worry about the brightness of LEDs. There's a complete range from barely visible to Led-Lamps used to illuminate complete stadiums by now.

Electronically it's all possible, one thing that strikes me as rather important, how would you like to integrate it in an existing installation and do you have protocols in mind to run the installation ?

It probably will not be to difficult for someone with a little experience to write a program mimicking the video shown, but... a lot more may be possible. A project that big having DMX512- capabilities might be a lot more interesting and may be possible as well.


Thank you for your replies. After talking to a few people about this, I think I've decided against using an Arduino. Spending money seems to be the safest way to go here.
We will probably end up using a DMX interface (through ARTNET and interacting with Quartz), which will go to several DMX Dimmers and from there to the LEDs. I realize this is an Arduino forum but does anybody have any tips or warnings to give me?


You might want to check out the BlinkM/MaxM or Shiftbrite/MegaBrite before you make your final decision.

There's also the ArDMX code example (or lots of other ones if you google around) if you want to be able to link an Arduino into a DMX network.

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