Powering long SK6821 strip with 24 volts


this is probably a much discussed topic, I just couldn't find it here...

I'm working on a project where I use 10 meters of SK6812 RGBW strip (60 leds p/m) controlled by a NodeMCU (might become a Wemos D1 mini later on). Since each led is able to pull 80 mA and I have 600 of them, the total current could rise up to 48 Amps (240 W)!!! This would result in a HUGE 5 volt power supply and really heavy duty cables.

I thought of following solution:

  • Use a 24 volt/250 W power supply like this. This way I can drop the current to only 10 Amps
  • Add a step down converter like this each meter to power 1 meter of strip.

Am I correct that the cables used to supply the power can be way thinner then? (10 A at 24 V compared to 48 A at 5 V). Another advantage is that the powerbrick is way smaller :slight_smile:

Could this work? (I know I have to tie all negatives together)

Yes, that's the standard way to distribute power to reduce the amount of copper needed. Double the voltage means half the current and cables can be 1/4 the cross sectional area for same losses. Here you go from
5V to 24V, so about 1/20th the amount of copper is then needed.