Nano+RGB Led?

Hey guys! You'll have to bare with me for a bit, I'm still extremely new to electronics. :-/

First off I've been in love with Poi for ages now and would love to have a killer set of glow poi... something like this.

Since the development on the "hyperlights" is taking ages; I'd like to see if I could make my own.(more fun anyways!)

I was thinking of using a Nano to control a Luxeon Star Rebel RGB Led

Since they would have to be battery powered... I was wondering how I could power them together off of one battery and what size battery I would need to use.

The led has a fv of 9.2 and the nano can use up to 12v? So basically say a 11.2v LiPo rc heli battery(I have some laying around) -> Nano -> resistor -> Led?

Sorry if that was difficult to read. I'm still terribly new at this. Thanks for all of your help! :)


The nano will not give you 1A for each of the colors.

You'll need at least one transistor and 1 resistor per color. If the forward voltage of 9.2V given on their website is correct for all colors, you'll be looking at at least 2.8W turned into heat in each of the resistors. About 10W total is quite a lot. The most efficient way to power it would be getting 3 of the buckpuck drivers. Expensive, but long battery life. If you like building a dimmable boost driver yourself try the LM3410 (SMD). You could use 2 or 3 AAA instead of an expensive lipo.

Whatever you decide, the minimalistic resistor/transistor approach is probably the most inefficient and error prone way to go.

How would I wire the led into the nano using the buckpucks? Doesn't each RGB Led use three of the six PWM channels on the nano?

Actually, if you look more closely at the specs, you'll find that the assembly is made of 3 completely separate LEDs: red, green, and blue. Each of which runs off approximately 3V at 350-700mA.

So, you're probably going to want to run off a battery in the 4-5V range, and limit the current on the LEDs to 400-500mA to trade off the slightly reduced light output for longer battery life. You'll want to do some experimenting to find the right setup.

I'd suggest looking for some "logic" FETs (ones that are designed to operate efficiently at lower voltage levels) to drive the LEDs with minimal power waste.


Switching high powered LEDs with an Arduino is a topic that comes up frequently. It is not an easy thing to do for a beginner and the simple LED and series resistor will not work.

Search for other threads like:-

and And others for "constant current"

You said:-

and the nano can use up to 12v?

That is only the supply voltage that goes through a regulator first. If you try and switch anything at 12V you will kill your chip, you need some sort of driver like a transistor or FET or better still a constant current driver.