Need help with a simple circuit of LEDs

So I have a fairly simple circuit that is supposed to be reacting to music.

Here is what I have so far: 5 5mm LED lights with a forward voltage of 3.2 volts. They are hooked up to a AC converter (simple wall plug for electronics) that is converting it into 16.3 volts of DC power. I have an auxiliary cable that I cut in half and am using the wires out of the bottom to connect it to a transistor. I am wiring all of this to a TiP31 transistor. Here is a diagram of it: http://www.instructables.com/image/FMZXXB8G5W7R47J/Building-the-circuit.jpg (Disregard the 12v battery and only 4 leds in the picture. ) PROBLEM: The LEDs are nice and bright when hooking up the power directly to them. BUT when I hook up this to the transistor and play music through the aux cable the LEDs barley light up. They are reacting to the music which is good but they are no where near half their brightness and this is when I am blasting the music! So I need help... What am I doing wrong or not doing at all? Does it make a difference if I use an aux cable vs an old headphone cable? I need to help on how to get the LEDs to light up more without blowing my speakers... or eardrums for that matter.

Also if this is the wrong place for this post, I am sorry. I'm kind of new to this forum.

Any advice or suggestions would be helpful.

Thank you

http://pubpages.unh.edu/~aperkins/pdf/TIP-devices/TIP31.pdf

Looking at the datasheet, I'd say you needed more current into the base to make the transistor turn on more.

Also, 5*3.2 = 16V, and the transistor has a Collector-Emitter saturation voltage of >0, so you're right on the edge of being able to drive that many LEDs.

What is the AUX cable connected to? Line level voltage is typically only 1V or so, this transistor needs more voltage/current than that.

Don't you just love instructables another totally crappy circuit designed to blow up or not work. 1) Remove one of the LEDs 2) Add a 100 ohm resistor in line with the base of the transistor (left hand connector), to protect the transistor.

The circuit will not work until the speaker voltage is at least 0.7V, if this is too loud then but a resistor in line with the speakers but not this circuit.

Yeah, he should use a 24V battery. Then at least the failure mode would be completely clear ;)

Don't you just love instructables another totally crappy circuit designed to blow up or not work.

Mike - you really should check out the rest of this particular instructable. It begins here (http://www.instructables.com/id/Music-LED-Light-Box/) but the really good stuff is on this page (http://www.instructables.com/id/Music-LED-Light-Box/step5/Preparing-the-circuit/). This page starts out with the phrase "Since I have no experience in electronics whatsoever..." which you find is totally redundant when you read on.

Don

you really should check out the rest of this particular instructable

Yes I did, you might notice I put a comment on it.

I didn't read through many of the comments but I see that there are hundreds of them. Typically the only thing worse (technically) than an 'Instructable' are the comments associated with it.

Recently there was a thread on this forum looking for tips on how to get an Instructable project to work properly. It was started by the author of the Instructable. This could even be the case here as well.

Don

Typically the only thing worse (technically) than an 'Instructable' are the comments associated with it.

Don I would totally agree with that. :)

I read through the first page, my favorite was, "it doesn't work should I use thicker wire?"

I checked back and my comment was second from the top, I only put it on yesterday in response to this thread.