How much stuff is too much?

I currently have an arduino uno and mega. Simple question really, say
i want to have 1000 normal 2-3v LEDs 8 servos(6v), 15(12v) motors and other stuff
could all of this realistically run on an arduino uno or mega.

Of course i know that power would be a prime concern.

Also my question is about the physical abilities of the board not
about the memory or coding side of things.

Thanks

could all of this realistically run on an arduino uno or mega.

Yes. The code could be quite complex, and memory might become an issue, but nothing a little thought and creativity can't handle.

Also my question is about the physical abilities of the board not
about the memory or coding side of things.

Oh, well, then, yes it is possible.

Thanks that is great as you can tell I'm new to arduino and i'm having all these ideas and spending a lot of money on parts, bench power supplies, touch screens, general electrical pcs etc lol. Currently at a total of £400, so it's a good job that arduino can handle it all :slight_smile:

Thanks again :slight_smile:

An Arduino Mega with shift registers (some shift registers can directly drive a led) for the leds, the servo with the Arduino Servo library, and the motors with seperate motor drivers that work on their own (if you need pwm). That is possible.
What about memory and other sensors ? What about serviceability ?

Sometimes it is easier to make seperate modules, and have a few modules extra to exchange them with broken modules. Sometimes it is easier to have everything done with a single Arduino.

1000 leds ? is that a matrix of 10x10x10 ?
What are the 15 motors for ? How big are they ? Do they need to run in reverse ? and do you need to control the speed ?
The servo motors is least problem. The Arduino Mega 2560 can drive many servo motors. If that causes a problem, then there are good modules that can drive servo motors.

Seriously. Start small. Otherwise you’ll waste a lot of money.

Especially if you’re new to electronics / arduino and can’t estimate the time and effort needed to realize your ideas.

I’m not saying that you should’t do it. I’m saying that you should start doing a 5x5 matrix and work your way up.

Spending 400 Bucks for arduino stuff when starting is just insane overkill and contraproductive.

if you do a 10x10x10 you will have a LARGE program.

if you do (8) units of 5x5x5, you need to make one, then just copy and paste for the other 7
and then probably have a master that controls them all.

in the end it could be a LOT easier to go modular.

considder that a NANO cost $2 and would be the only real added expense.
peanuts in the overall project.

Hi,
Welcome to the forum.

What is your electronics, programming, arduino, hardware experience?

As has been said you need to spend time using and getting used to the arduino environment before spending more money on bits and pieces.

If you google arduino tutorial you will find many sites offering YouTube and text type instructions.

Thanks… Tom… :slight_smile:

anything beyond $25-$50 for a board and starter kit to familiarize with arduino and learn its language, environment and capabilities, is too much.

blimpyway:
anything beyond $25-$50 for a board and starter kit to familiarize with arduino and learn its language, environment and capabilities, is too much.

And donate the price difference to arduino.cc :wink:

hunterzzpro:
I currently have an arduino uno and mega. Simple question really, say
i want to have 1000 normal 2-3v LEDs 8 servos(6v), 15(12v) motors and other stuff
could all of this realistically run on an arduino uno or mega.

Of course i know that power would be a prime concern.

Also my question is about the physical abilities of the board

I feel like people answering here have missed these two statements. He explicitly asked about power - the Arduino board is not able to supply the power for all that stuff - you need external power supplies sized appropriately for the load (one at 6v for the servos, one at 12v for the motors). The Arduino boards can supply maybe half an amp tops at 5v. Less if using external power, due to power dissipation limits of the regulator. If you're using motors, you need external power anyway - you always want to put motors on a separate supply from the digital electronics, because the inductive load of the motors puts tons of noise onto the power supply rail which can cause the electronics to reset.

As for the LEDs, don't use piles of normal LEDs - you need some way to drive them, which would mean oodles of shift registers. They make individually addressable LEDs which require far fewer external components to drive, and can be daisychained - search WS2812B on ebay. They come in strings and individual LEDs on breakout boards.

That all said, what everyone else has said is true - you seem to be jumping into a really freaking huge project without the necessary familiarity with the aspects involved.

Honestly, looking at the sheer number of parts, and the complexity that implies, I feel like that project will likely call for multiple microcontrollers (regardless of whether they're Arduino or some other platform) working together.

1000 LEDs can be driven by (1000/64) = 16 MAX7219s, Parola.h library can do that.

and if not it’s just 125 bytes of data to keep track of the status of them, and when something changes send out the 125 bytes via SPI.transfer(). May want to buffer SCK and CS to the 15 parts, not a big deal. 3 IO pins.

1000 WS2812B would be different, that would tie up 3000 bytes to maintain status, but you get RGB and brightness control per each R, G, B on each chip. I don’t know how fast the Neopixel library is for that much data, datasheet says the parts support 800 KHz data rate. MAX7219 works just fine a 4 MHz rate, I don’t know if I’ve tried it at 8 MHz, I might have for this 256 LED display with 4 MAX7219 (with 4 CS, and not daisychained data)
(and powered from USB only, brightness not cranked up to max tho)

8 Servos, use the Servo.h library. 8 IO pins. Need 8A power supply nominally if all 8 move at once.

15 motors - need motor driver cards here. One direction, simple. Bidirectional, need H-bridges. Plenty of IO left still, with 70 IO on the Mega, even if need 3 IO per motor. Power supply dependent on the motors.

I don’t think it’s as bad as some think, just need some power supplies and motor drivers.
www.mpja.com and www.pololu.com