First real project, need advice! Sound and Remote Controlled LED strip

So I decided to finally start working on a big project (getting out of the "hey look a blinking LED!" Phase). I want to line the ceiling corner of my room with an LED strip and be able to control if with a remote as well as audio. I have a lot of burning questions though (italics).

I first did some research into RGB LED strips. I soon realized that i will not be able to make cool patterns because that requires individually addressable LED strips and those are still exorbitantly expensive (especially for the amount i need - just over 15 meters), are there any individually addressable strips that are cheap (like a 2-3 bucks per meter?)?! Even buying in bulk the best deal i could find for individually addressable LEDs was $200 for 20M. My budget for the LEDs is around 40 bucks, so i don't think I will be able to find any good amount of them for that price... So it looks like i'm going with the SMD 5050s.

I looked on ebay and around reddit and other forums and keep seeing the same two LED strips being recommend - the 3528 and the 5050 SMD Like These. The 5050's are larger but more importantly they can do true color blending within each led (as opposed to the 3528 strips which are really just a series of 3 LEDs, one red, one green, one blue. Are there any other commonly used LED strips that i should know about before purchasing?

Also I am very much a beginner to electronics and arduino in general, I know there are many guides out there (such as the popular adafruit one) for LED strips, but is there anything I should know about making this project? I read that i will need to supply power input every so often since the length of the strips i am wiring together is very long, how exactly do i go about doing that? will i need a separate power supply each time? or do i just run a single wire from the supply directly into an LED Input? Also how do i know what power supply to but for ~15 meters of LEDS?

Are these strips able to connect together or can i only power them in 5 meter increments? If they don't connect would this mean i need separate remotes for each one? (I believe they must have some way to connect them together to form very long chains but i am not sure how).

Also what is this shiftPWM tool i have been reading about that i supposedly need to use to make these things work? What about the msgeq7 chip? Is it the best/most common chip used for sound detection? How exactly does it use sound to control the brightness and colors?

IS this too much to take on for a first project?

Thanks for all the advice!

EDIT: Also is there anything i can cover the entire length of the strip to diffuse the LED light so its doesn't just look like a bunch of dots? Something like a flexible frosted plastic cover that isn't so thick as to block the light?

Check the WS2812 strips out. Each individually controllable, with controller built into the LED. Some examples: http://www.adafruit.com/products/1376 Also look for WS2812 on e-bay, I think you can get lots of 100 for about 23 cents each.

I did see those and thought they were pretty cool! But they are way too expensive for how many i want. I am looking to spend at most 60 dollars on the entire 15 meters worth of LED strip.

These seemed too cheap to be true, if i am not mistaken those are individually addressable (it says WS2811 on them, what is the difference between ws2811 and ws2812?), but 5 meters is only around 16 dollars, how can this be so? Are they not actually addressable? What specifically makes them addressable or not?

There are several WS28xx chips, I’d include WS2812B but I don’t have a copy.
Each can control 1 or more RGB LEDs (or 3 or more single LEDS) except the WS2812B which has the LED built in.
As for pricing - it’s a competitive world, can’t say more than that.
There are other strips also that use different controllers, 1 per RGB LED. It’s the controller/RGB LED that makes them addressable. Data is blasted out in a long stream, each chip passes it along to the next chip, when there is a pause each chip updates its output with the last data it received.

WS2801.pdf (423 KB)

WS2803-preliminary-En.pdf (437 KB)

WS2811-preliminary.pdf (320 KB)

hi, check out dx.com for cheap leds and controllers and pretty much anything u want (some of the prices look way too good to be true on the site but they are legit) 8)