RGB LED & Multiplexing Question

Hey All,

Glad to finally be part of the community! I have been doing alot of playing around with a Seeeduino v2.2 and trying to get my hands on an Arduino Mega as well for a project I'm working on. I have built a 3x3x3 and 4x4x4 LED cube as well as fiddled around with the Getting started guide. My next project involves something similar to an 8x8x8 cube where I need to be able to control 512 LEDs individually or at least fake it really well with multiplexing. I know this can be done using shift registers although I'm not too sure how it works yet.

My question is how would the best way to go about learning about this rather than just following an instructables and also how difficult would it be to then take those LEDs and make them common Cathode RGB LEDs. Or would it be better to create 512R 512G 512B and sync them to fake RGB. I'm really into electronics although a noob still, but if someone could help me out and explain itof give me a push in the right direction it would be greatly appreciated :)

Cheers, Nick

So, you will have 24 planes of 8 LEDs x 8 LEDs, with 3 colors per plane co-located. Start simple - in plane 1, you will have an 8-bit shift register in the X direction (left-right), and another in Y (back to front). To turn an LED on, you will drive its anode high from one shift register, and its cathode low from another. To go up (Z direction), you will have another shift register, its output will enable the X-Y shift registers on a plane by plane basis. Be careful building it, the fun part will be the software :)