LED Tile Wall

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by acefire, Aug 21, 2010.

  1. acefire

    Thread Starter New Member

    Aug 21, 2010
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    Hi there, i am a beginner when it comes to electrical circuits but i am a motor vehicle engineer so i do understand how to diagnose problems and understand V=IR to some extent.

    What i am pondering to make is a wall of Acrylic frosted glass with a Tri-Colour LED behind each tile and also a white LED behind every tile also. I am thinking it will be around 42 of Each type of LED as it should be around 42 tiles (Around 20 CM2 each) I am looking to get the tiles connected to a pc so they can be controlled by a program hopefuly Visual Basic as i understand VB but if not i will have to learn the other languages. I want it so any individual LED can be turned on and off so the wall can be whatever design is chosen through the program. I have looked into Arduino boards but i do not know if these wold have enough pins for me to make this possible. I am also looking for this to be using a wall power England (240v) socket as i beleive it would take too much power from the PC.

    I am looking into High power white LED's and 5mm or 10 mm Tri Colour LED's also that would be bright enough to light up the 20cm square.

    I would appreciate if someone could give me an idea of what i would need to make this possible and any educated guess at a price range for it all (ignoring tiles ect, only electrics) Also things like if i would need a resistor seperate for every LED or a way to do it so they can all run from a smaller amount.

    Thank you.
    Chris.
     
  2. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
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    Any microprocessor can be made to control any number of outputs, it's all in the programming plus the decoding circuitry.

    You'll have a million choices for LEDs, you're not lighting a large area. I'd start looking through http://www.goldmine-elec.com as they're reasonable for the tri-colors but don't overlook other sources.

    Don't try and power anything directly off the mains, it's not only dangerous but also impractical to regulate down to useable voltages. A simple PC power supply "tricked" into staying on will give you plenty to operate your uController off of as well as all the LEDs which would ideally use the 3.3V souce since any required dropping reistors will only need to be small 1/4W ones.
     
  3. acefire

    Thread Starter New Member

    Aug 21, 2010
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    Any idea of a board like Arduino or something of the like that has the usb or pc connection already built in and basic connectivity software because that is the bit that is the most daunting to me.
    And as i was saying about the power suply the reason i dont want to use the controlling pc's supply is that it is very high end wit h2 graphic cards ect and i would not like to take too muc haway from it would it be possible to use a seperate PSU for the supply to the board instead of the one that is controlling it?

    Well lets just say for instance i will use these
    http://www.goldmine-elec-products.com/prodinfo.asp?number=G16402 as white LEDs
    and these
    http://www.goldmine-elec-products.com/prodinfo.asp?number=GP55 as the tri- colour.

    Thank you.
     
  4. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
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    Didn't mean hacking into your own PC, just a cheap PC power supply by itself. The older ones were actually better for this as they directed most of the wattage to the 3.3V & 5V outputs.

    To trick in turning one on and staying that way is a simple matter of shorting two pins together.
     
  5. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
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  6. acefire

    Thread Starter New Member

    Aug 21, 2010
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    Ok thank you, i think i understand most of it now apart from the connecting the PC to the board and what board should be used. It there as ready made one or do i have to make one myself with enough capability?
     
  7. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
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    This is an area of my knowledge that is filled with holes but there are plenty on here who will have answers when they log back on and read the post. It's 101* F again here today, I'm not going outside for anything and besides I'm plodding through my work projecct. At my age soldering 100 multi-pin components on a PC board ends up as eyestrain after a while.
     
  8. acefire

    Thread Starter New Member

    Aug 21, 2010
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    Lol yeah im thinking about the amount of joins im going to have to do for this as well, its going to be painful lol.
     
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