Prototype for 8x8 RGB LED display

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by GrafZeppelin, Aug 19, 2014.

  1. GrafZeppelin

    Thread Starter New Member

    May 3, 2013
    Hello all fellow electronics enthusiasts! I have a burning question which I can not answer by myself, even after looking through some older posts with a similar titles here on AAC forums. I really need Your help, and will apreciate any tips, advices and ideas!

    I am planning to build a small, very low-resolution, 8x8 RGB LED display, which would be able to display a video (some kind of colorful visualization, lo-res) from PC via DVI or HDMI cable and USB. I chose this size because I want it to be more like a prototype, which, if successful, would become a much much bigger display, but that's for the future..

    I have around 100 common cathode RGB LEDs lying around, so I would like to use them instead of buying an already made RGB LED matrix.

    End goal will be to build a much bigger screen (RGB LED wall), composed of many smaller RGB LED modules, which will be able to display high resolution videos and images from PC.

    Now, I am looking for information concerning :

    1. Full overview of similar systems and schematics.

    2. What separate components are needed to make such system work? Meaning, do I need to use RGB LED drivers and if so, what kind? What about DVI/HDMI video decoders? I do know that I will need a microprocessor to run and control all the other parts, but then again, I am not sure which to choose? PIC, ATmega, Raspberry Pi or even an Arduino board?

    3. Similar projects and documentation. If You did or do know that someone else did such project successfully, please post links with helpful info so I could research them!

    Any help will be appreciated!
  2. shteii01

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2010
  3. Sensacell

    Senior Member

    Jun 19, 2012
    Note that DVI / HDMI video protocols are very fast, this part of the project is the most difficult by far- about 100 X more difficult than building the display.
    You will not be able to 'read' data from these data fire hoses with a garden variety micro controller.

    Start with building a simple RGB display controlled by a microcontroller, study the various video formats and the methods to decode them.