I posted this in the software interfacing forum on accident. Sorry for the repost.
Basically I want to create a modularized LED visualizer. What I mean by this is that I want my visualizer to be composed of many boxes that contain some circuitry and several bright LEDs, but I want to minimize the mess of wires between these boxes.
However, I need a little help with this. My plan is to have a shift register/LED driver on each module. I have been looking at this chip (TPIC6C596).
Basically it's a cascadable LED driver that is able to provide 100mA of current per output. I plan on having a 20mA LED on each leg, so this will probably work. I also plan on cascading up to thirty of these chips.
Do you guys think this will work? Is it overkill? I would like to spend as little money as possible. I have found shift registers for around $0.20/unit (versus $0.80/unit for my current chip), but am I correct in believing they won't source/sink enough current? Does anybody know of a cheaper shift register/cascadable LED driver that would provide enough current?
Oh and one last thing, will I run into an issue of not being able to update all of these fast enough? I may want to be able to pwm the leds. I'm assuming I'll be fine based on the Arduino's clock cycle speed, but this might not be the case.