Can a ClockPin be used in Adafruit_NeoPixel?

I'm working on a Bluetooth Scoreboard Project based on Bob Clagett from Iliketomakestuff (Link of project: How to make a large Bluetooth scoreboard | I Like To Make Stuff - YouTube)

I'm running into an issue a result of a small difference in LED's that I purchased compared to the ones displayed video. The LED's shown in the video use 3 wires (Power, Ground, Data) whereas my LED's have 4 wires (Power, Ground, Data, Clock). I had thought I bought the correct LED's but it unexpectedly came with 4 wires but fortunately there is a useful link for the LED's (Arduino Wiring | 12mm LED Pixels | Adafruit Learning System) Arduino Code | 12mm LED Pixels | Adafruit Learning System

At first I didn't think this would be an issue, but when I try to use the pre-written code from Bob's github link, my LED's don't light up with his code. I have a feeling this is because the CLOCK Pin isn't called out. I've tried a variety of attempts but still no luck. Here are the things I've tried and my thought process:

  1. I added a simple line to define a pin for CLOCK to his original code. However, I quickly realized an issue because the function for opening the LED library (Adafruit_NeoPixel) does not have an input for Clock. So even though I define a pin for CLOCK, there's really no where to use it.

  2. This made me think that I have to use a different library for my specific 4-input LED set. I used the provided example code "strand_test" from the Adafruit link to test the continuity of LED's. In these example codes, the library uses "Adafruit_WS2801" where there is an input for clockPin.

So I have a feeling I need to find a way to incorporate the Adafruit_WS2801 library to replace the Adafruit_NeoPixel library in the original code in order to call out the CLOCK Input. However, I notice there are various pre-set functions that WS2801 does not recognize in the original code [i.e pixels.Color(), pixels.setPixelColor(), etc.]. I've been trying various combinations of troubleshooting but still no luck.

Bob's Original Code:

//This code is for the project listed at

#include <CurieBLE.h>
#include <Adafruit_NeoPixel.h>
#ifdef __AVR__
  #include <avr/power.h>

#define PIN            3
#define NUMPIXELS      60

Adafruit_NeoPixel pixels = Adafruit_NeoPixel(NUMPIXELS, PIN, NEO_RGB + NEO_KHZ800);
int delayVal = 5000;
uint32_t colorList[] = { pixels.Color(0,0,255), pixels.Color(255,255,255)  };// blue , white

BLEPeripheral blePeripheral;       // BLE Peripheral Device (the board you're programming)
BLEService arduinoService("6fbee06f-b902-4ac1-bf99-8d4a9b76db8f"); // create service

// create switch characteristic and allow remote device to read and write

BLECharCharacteristic pinD6Char("DD06", BLERead | BLEWrite );
BLECharCharacteristic pinD7Char("DD07", BLERead | BLEWrite );
BLECharCharacteristic pinD8Char("DD08", BLERead | BLEWrite );
BLECharCharacteristic pinD9Char("DD09", BLERead | BLEWrite );
BLECharCharacteristic pinD10Char("DD10", BLERead | BLEWrite );
BLECharCharacteristic pinD11Char("DD11", BLERead | BLEWrite );

BLECharCharacteristic myDchars[6] = {pinD6Char,pinD7Char,pinD8Char,pinD9Char,pinD10Char,pinD11Char};
int score[2] = {0,0};

long previousMillis = 0;  // last time the battery level was checked, in ms

int oldDValues[4] = {0,0,0,0};  // previous values for each digital pin

const int pinD6 = 6; 
const int pinD7 = 7; 
const int pinD8 = 8; 
const int pinD9 = 9; 
const int pinD10 = 10; 
const int pinD11 = 11;

int myDPins[6] = {pinD6, pinD7, pinD8, pinD9, pinD10, pinD11};

const int characterOffset = 15;
charLayout[0] = [1,1,1,

  int charLayout[10][15] = {
      {1,1,1,1,0,1,1,0,1,1,0,1,1,1,1}, //0
      {1,1,0,0,1,0,0,1,0,0,1,0,1,1,1}, //1
      {1,1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1,1}, //2
      {1,1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1}, //3
      {1,0,1,1,0,1,1,1,1,1,0,0,0,0,1}, //4
      {1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1}, //5
      {1,1,1,0,0,1,1,1,1,1,0,1,1,1,1}, //6
      {1,1,1,1,0,0,0,0,1,1,0,0,0,0,1}, //7
      {1,1,1,1,0,1,1,1,1,1,0,1,1,1,1}, //8
      {1,1,1,1,0,1,1,1,1,1,0,0,0,0,1}  //9
  } ; 

void setup() {
  Serial.begin(9600);    // initialize serial communication
  pixels.begin(); // This initializes the NeoPixel library.
  for (int i=0; i < 6; i++){
    pinMode(myDPins[i], OUTPUT);
    digitalWrite(myDPins[i], LOW);
  /* Set a local name for the BLE device
     This name will appear in advertising packets
     and can be used by remote devices to identify this BLE device
     The name can be changed but maybe be truncated based on space left in advertisement packet */
  blePeripheral.setLocalName("BLE101");  // must use this name for the BLE101 app to find it.
  blePeripheral.setAdvertisedServiceUuid(arduinoService.uuid());  // add the service UUID
  blePeripheral.addAttribute(arduinoService);   // Add the BLE Battery service

  // Configure digital ports
  for (int i=0; i < 6; i++) {

  myDchars[0].setEventHandler(BLEWritten, listener0);
  myDchars[1].setEventHandler(BLEWritten, listener1);
  myDchars[2].setEventHandler(BLEWritten, listener2);
  myDchars[3].setEventHandler(BLEWritten, listener3);
  myDchars[4].setEventHandler(BLEWritten, listener4);
  myDchars[5].setEventHandler(BLEWritten, listener5);  
  /* Now activate the BLE device.  It will start continuously transmitting BLE
     advertising packets and will be visible to remote BLE central devices
     until it receives a new connection */
  Serial.println("Bluetooth device active, waiting for connections...");

void loop() {
  // put your main code here, to run repeatedly:

BLECentral central = blePeripheral.central();

  // if a central is connected to peripheral:
  if (central) {
    Serial.print("Connected to central: ");
    // print the central's MAC address:
    // turn on the LED to indicate the connection:
    digitalWrite(13, HIGH);
    // check the battery level every 200ms
    // as long as the central is still connected:
    while (central.connected()) {
      long currentMillis = millis();
      // if 200ms have passed, check the battery level:
      if (currentMillis - previousMillis >= 200) {
        previousMillis = currentMillis;
    // when the central disconnects, turn off the LED:
    digitalWrite(13, LOW);
    Serial.print("Disconnected from central: ");

void setNumber(int side, int displayNum) {
  int sideOffset = side*characterOffset*2;
  int ones = (displayNum%10);
  int tens = ((displayNum/10)%10);
  for(int k=0;k<15;k++){
      toggleLocation(side, k+sideOffset, charLayout[tens][k]);     
      toggleLocation(side, k+characterOffset+sideOffset, charLayout[ones][k]); 
void toggleLocation(int side, int loc, int ledState){
    pixels.setPixelColor(loc, pixels.Color(0,0,0)); //off
  } else{
    pixels.setPixelColor(loc, colorList[side]); // team color

void sendDigitalValue(int pinNum) {
  if (digitalRead(myDPins[pinNum]) == LOW) {
    char lowValue = LOW;
  } else {
    char highValue = HIGH;

bool haschangedDigital(int pinNum) {
    char currentValue = digitalRead(myDPins[pinNum]);
    char previousValue = oldDValues[pinNum];

    if (currentValue != previousValue) {      
      oldDValues[pinNum] = currentValue;
      return true;
    } else {
      return false;


void listener0(BLECentral& central, BLECharacteristic& characteristic) {

void listener1(BLECentral& central, BLECharacteristic& characteristic) {

void listener2(BLECentral& central, BLECharacteristic& characteristic) {

void listener3(BLECentral& central, BLECharacteristic& characteristic) {

void listener4(BLECentral& central, BLECharacteristic& characteristic) {

void listener5(BLECentral& central, BLECharacteristic& characteristic) {

void setScore(int team, int val){
  int teamScore = score[team];
  } else {
    teamScore += val;
    if (teamScore<0){
  Serial.print("Team 1: ");
  Serial.print(" - Team 2: ");

So I have a feeling I need to find a way to incorporate the Adafruit_WS2801 library to replace the Adafruit_NeoPixel library in the original code in order to call out the CLOCK Input.

So the Adafruit page explains that when you use the Library manager to install the Adafruit_WS2801 library, you will have a new directory under "Examples" to give you the correct code to use. :grinning: