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Thread: Led controller?

  1. #1
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    Led controller?

    hey all I need some help I need a way to control some LEDs I need to control about 75 with the carPC and in my other truck about 30 without a PC however I need to beable to create pattersn and have some of them be solid based on the brake lights ad such

    any advice would be great

  2. #2
    Raw Wave shotgunefx's Avatar
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    Well, without learning a lot of stuff, maybe the best and cheapest bet is just buying two of these LED controllers

    Otherwise, you need to build your own, now you're talking about learning all about microcontrollers (MCUs) which may or may not be something you want to do.

    And if you want to control the intensity and not just on/off, then you have to use PWM signals which is flicking them on and off X times a second to make them appear dimmer than full bright.

    So it doesn't flicker, you have to do it fast, even faster on a moving vehicle, probably a 100hz at least, which isn't a big deal with most MCUs but if you're driving 75, and handling a lot of other logic, you probably won't have enough clock cycles, (never mind you won't have enough outputs), so know you're talking about multiple MCUs that need to coordinate, or having a bunch of led drivers or some other method of multiplexing outputs controlled by the MCU, either way, it gets complicated fast

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    Raw Wave shotgunefx's Avatar
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    Another thought, I've never used those LED boards, you need to figure out how long it takes them to update to see if they can do the patterns you desire fast enough. And of course you'll have to write or find software that can output the appropriate commands to make the patterns you want

    One other thought, if you don't need to control all 75 individually, you can run X leds in series and reduce the number of outputs you need. So you could have 15 groups of 5 that would be individually addressable, 10 groups of 7 etc.

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    ok I will look into these and no i am not worried about making them appear dim and most of the patterns will simply be like chasing and blinking is for a simple lighting pattern mainly chasing patterns

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    ok that explains the leds for the pc any ideas on how to do it without a PC?

  6. #6
    Raw Wave shotgunefx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yonu View Post
    ok that explains the leds for the pc any ideas on how to do it without a PC?
    Well, just on and off will simplify things design wise, but if you aren't using the pc, and you want patterns, you need something tg control it, which means microcontrollers.

    There's a bit to it, but not neccasserily expensive. You could probably get away with 30 or 40 for the mcu and the programmer and stuff, then it's just the effort of doing it. Try looking up knight rider scanner circuits, a lot on the web, that would be a good start.

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