What Arduino Hardware do I need for this project?

I could use some opinions on how best to accomplish the following in terms of Arduino hardware (or any other option).

5 momentary buttons
1 varying control voltage (such as a pressure sensor)
1 sonar-based distance sensor

8 separate groups of RGB LEDs to control (Pulse Width)
1 group of red LEDs (controlling on-off and dimming)
1 output to a sound playback card to trigger any of several recordings

I am assuming it’s best to get a daughter board capable of handling 8 PW outputs. it’s important to understand that each of the 8 groups of RGB LED’s might be displaying different colors at the same time, and there could be as many as 5 LEDs in a group.

I’ve done a basic graphic to give you a visual of what it looks like in my head, I will put it in my next post.

If there’s a way to do this with one card, or if someone can suggest what daughter board to use, etc, that would be great.


Here’s the graphic i did:

Give us some estimated voltages and currents for everything, the type of hardware required varies drastically.

Ok, here’s what i’ve come up with regarding the volts and current.

3 channels of RGB LEDs, total of 11 lights x 20ma each = 220ma
3.2 volts per RGB LED

Regular LEDs:
7 channels with a total of 16 standard LEDs x 20ma = 320ma
2v per regular LED

Controller (input) Device – 5v – up to 500ma

Arduino – 7-12v 200 MA(?)

Arduino VoiceShield – 3v Not sure of amps - http://www.spikenzielabs.com/SpikenzieLabs/VoiceShield.html

Daughter Board (74HC595? http://www.arduino.cc/en/Tutorial/ShiftOut?) = 5v Not sure of amps

Amp circuit – 6v - http://www.circuitstoday.com/mini-2w-amplifier-circuit (.001 amp? tried using Ohms law but may not have it down yet!)

Sonar Distance Sensor – (5v from Arduino) - http://arduino.cc/en/Tutorial/Ping?from=Tutorial.UltrasoundSensor

Hope that helps clarify…

even the slightest bit of guidance would help, anyone out there who can let me know if i’m on the right path?

trying not to make a bunch of costly mistakes!

From that current requirements I would say you need to also include some driver transistors, MOSFETs or Darlington drivers as the Arduino can not supply that current by itself. Also you need an external PSU. The Arduino is rated at a maximum of 200mA, that means it can’t supply more current than this, by itself it runs closer to 30 - 40mA.
The amplifier circuit is going to take more than 1mA. You can’t use ohms law on this as you haven’t got the resistance, in fact it doesn’t strictly have one as it is an active device. But if it is a 2W amplifier then it must consume at least 2W of power and at 6V that means at least 333mA, given it probably only has 50% efficiency that would put it at 666mA. However I suspect it would be happy working on what ever voltage you put into the Vin on the Arduino.

Other than that I am not sure what you are asking.


Thanks a lot for taking a minute to respond.

I am just trying to get my head around using Arduino for this and you’ve helped me out.

I will look into the stuff you mentioned and will keep this post posted…