BMS Doug
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Neo-Pixel controller boad

Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:49 am

6 days left on this kickstarter.

Paul Brown has another kickstarter up, this one is for a controller board for neo-pixel LED's.

The basic cost is £6 per board, which covers a controller chip, extended GPIO header and header pins for connecting the LEDs.
A power supply for the LEDs is not included.
Paul Brown wrote:What will you need to go away and buy to make it work? Apart from the obvious of a Pi, soldering iron and solder, you will need to source your own power supply and own neopixels as its something i wont be able to get cheap as I will get hit with huge import and custom charges for ordering in huge amounts which would mean passing it on to yourselves thus why I am pointing you to where to find them.

Please read all about the project on my blog including links for demo code.
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

BMS Doug
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Fri Jan 30, 2015 8:40 am

4 days to go, 19 boards short of funding (£109 still needed).
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

BMS Doug
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:04 pm

Now fully funded with 3 days still remaining.
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

simplesi
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sat Jan 31, 2015 11:16 am

I'm struggling with this one to see why a controller is needed

I've driven NEoPixel rings without anything else other than 3 wires

I can see need to feed in beefier power supply if I want to drive more of them but not a "controller"

What am I not seeing here?

Simon
Seeking help with Scratch and I/O stuff for Primary age children
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BMS Doug
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sat Jan 31, 2015 11:50 pm

As I understand it there are a couple of potential issues (these are the reasons i backed it anyway, i don't know how accurate they are):

Adafruit advise that 3v3 is not recommended to be used as the signal to the neo-pixel rings, although it has worked for many people the long term stability has yet to be confirmed.

Long strings of LEDs would require a long command string which the pi might struggle to produce.
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

fruit-uk
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sun Feb 01, 2015 8:04 am

I've been playing with a few Neopixel sticks on an Arduino, a Pro Mini clone or similar can be found very cheaply

I'm using the light_ws2812 libs, only require (LED_num, r, g, b) per pixel so I am lost as to where 'long command strings' comes into it.

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mikronauts
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sun Feb 01, 2015 4:43 pm

I use a 3v3 control signal from a propeller, works fine for me.
BMS Doug wrote:As I understand it there are a couple of potential issues (these are the reasons i backed it anyway, i don't know how accurate they are):

Adafruit advise that 3v3 is not recommended to be used as the signal to the neo-pixel rings, although it has worked for many people the long term stability has yet to be confirmed.

Long strings of LEDs would require a long command string which the pi might struggle to produce.
http://Mikronauts.com - home of EZasPi, RoboPi, Pi Rtc Dio and Pi Jumper @Mikronauts on Twitter
Advanced Robotics, I/O expansion and prototyping boards for the Raspberry Pi

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mikronauts
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sun Feb 01, 2015 4:44 pm

The library hides it from you. The WS2812's require a precisely timed 800kbps unusual bit stream to drive. Look at the data sheet.
fruit-uk wrote:I've been playing with a few Neopixel sticks on an Arduino, a Pro Mini clone or similar can be found very cheaply

I'm using the light_ws2812 libs, only require (LED_num, r, g, b) per pixel so I am lost as to where 'long command strings' comes into it.
http://Mikronauts.com - home of EZasPi, RoboPi, Pi Rtc Dio and Pi Jumper @Mikronauts on Twitter
Advanced Robotics, I/O expansion and prototyping boards for the Raspberry Pi

BMS Doug
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sun Feb 01, 2015 9:56 pm

BMS Doug wrote:As I understand it there are a couple of potential issues (these are the reasons i backed it anyway, i don't know how accurate they are):

Adafruit advise that 3v3 is not recommended to be used as the signal to the neo-pixel rings, although it has worked for many people the long term stability has yet to be confirmed.

Long strings of LEDs would require a long command string which the pi might struggle to produce.
Well I've just read Paul's blog post on the subject and now I know that the chip on this board is just a logic level converter (solving the first potential issue) and that the sample code (which is available without purchasing anything) deals with the precise timing requirements for the LED strings.

So all this board offers you is a convenient way of connecting the components together to the pi.

46 hours remaining.

I'm not going to cancel my backing.
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

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B.Goode
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Sun Feb 01, 2015 10:32 pm

BMS Doug wrote:
So all this board offers you is a convenient way of connecting the components together to the pi.
That's enough for me.

I think the quiet genius of Paul's little boards is that you don't NEED them. I don't think any of them magically makes possible anything that couldn't be done with a few cheap components, some breadboard, and some jumpers.

But as @BMS Doug says, they are convenient. If you don't value that convenience, you are free not to back or use them.

fruit-uk
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Mon Feb 02, 2015 5:05 am

mikronauts wrote:The library hides it from you. The WS2812's require a precisely timed 800kbps unusual bit stream to drive. Look at the data sheet.
Surely that is one of the benefits of using libraries.

I have looked at the data sheet, and the various Neopixel libraries. I am perfectly aware of the timing requirements,

I'm not really sure what point you are trying to make

mypifi
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Tue Feb 17, 2015 1:53 am

B.Goode wrote:
BMS Doug wrote:
So all this board offers you is a convenient way of connecting the components together to the pi.
That's enough for me.

I think the quiet genius of Paul's little boards is that you don't NEED them. I don't think any of them magically makes possible anything that couldn't be done with a few cheap components, some breadboard, and some jumpers.

But as @BMS Doug says, they are convenient. If you don't value that convenience, you are free not to back or use them.

Hi I'm Paul the creator, I have never claimed to magically make things possible. All my boards were ever designed to make things simpiler and a more permenent solution. Like I have mentioned before on kickstarter, breadboards are great till say a wire gets knocked off the breadboard whilst you were at work and you find the project isnt working because one small piece had come loose etc, these boards just makes it easier.

I also recommend especially to children that they build it on a breadboard to understand how it works. They also make great learning tools for code clubs as once you have learnt to build with a breadboard it will save time I future lessons where the time building it again on a breadboard could be used for coding.

Hope that answers your comments

BMS Doug
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Re: Neo-Pixel controller boad

Tue Feb 17, 2015 8:33 am

I'm looking forwards to my (5) boards, when all the parts come in Paul.
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

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