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RGB Strings in Parallel?


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Is it possible to hook, like 4 strings of RGB in parallel (is that even the right term)? So one controller controls all 4 strings and pixel 1 acts the same in all 4 strings, pixel 2 acts the same in all 4 and so on and so on?

 

I am not looking to put them end to end (in series?).

 

Would you need to inject different power to all 4, or could they all have the same power source.

 

Thinking of making new mini trees but would like 300 - 400 nodes per tree instead of 1 string of 100.

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Is it possible to hook, like 4 strings of RGB in parallel (is that even the right term)? So one controller controls all 4 strings and pixel 1 acts the same in all 4 strings, pixel 2 acts the same in all 4 and so on and so on?

 

I am not looking to put them end to end (in series?).

 

Would you need to inject different power to all 4, or could they all have the same power source.

 

Thinking of making new mini trees but would like 300 - 400 nodes per tree instead of 1 string of 100.

 

With the LOR CCR's one option would be to give all 4 ribbons the same UnitID. (Using 4 controllers.)

Edited by Don
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Off hand it likely would work.  I would run the first pixel close to the controller.  There would undoubtedly be a limit to how many you parallel, but even if only two, you could send the same output of the controller to 2 pixels which in turn each send to 2 more so that would get the 4 strings.  Then in the controller set what it thinks as one string so that the first two pixels are null pixels.

 

I don't know if you can make those settings in a CCR, but it's easy if doing E1.31 (at least on the E682).  I will try that today.  For my pixel star, I have a bunch of 7 pixel strips of WS2811s so it would be very easy to test.

 

As far as power, it would depend on what your power source is and how much current you are drawing.  Obviously for my 7 pixel strips, a single outlet on one of my E682s could drive many of them in parallel.

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Albeit it's been a while since I've worked the electronics/electrical field, I do not see why this would not work.  Series would bring the voltage down as each circuit is added in, but when using parallel circuits, each circuit would {or should} get the same voltage from the same power supply.   So I really do not see why this could not work with just one controller and one power supply as long as everything is definitely wired in parallel,   Although one other option may be to wire in series parallel, where 2 strips are wired in series and then wire the two sets of 2 series strips in parallel.  May or may not require additional power supply voltage{s} to the lighting circuits.

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I'm not very well familiar with the pixels, powering them would be the easy part. I think the question is, can 4 pixels use the same address?

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Are you speaking of smart pixels or dumb RGB nodes? Smart pixels of course you can run a ton of them on one E682 or P12. The 682 will run 7 universes at 170 pixels per universe. If I remember correctly, the P12 will handle 12 universes. Its actually probably less expensive to go the smart pixel route.

I haven't thought of doing what you're asking so my knowledge for that particular way is limited. Just thought I'd give you another option

Edited by Ron Boyd
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Best way to do this would be a controller that allows you to duplicate univereses.  In terms or wiring you cant do it as there would be too much interference along the line.   I don't know if the E68x can do it with the newest firmware, maybe Andy can help if the P12 can allow you to do this.  If not you would need to create the 4 strings in sequencer and copy and paste to all 4 of the universes or channels you setup to duplicate.

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Are you speaking of smart pixels or dumb RGB nodes?

 

Smart pixels...but still only want to use one controller...

 

so if these were wired in parallel, would it not really effect the pixel count for a "universe" and see it as 100 pixels as opposed to 400 pixels?

Edited by jimswinder
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Although not having tried it, it should work in theory; you're just sharing data and power lines in one direction.

 

Try one string, then keep adding in parallel until you get to the four you want.

 

Keep us posted and watch for trees blowing over.

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It works!   Last night I gave it a try and and drove four WS2811 strips with a single output from a SanDevices E682. 

 

Here are the details.  For a pixel star I am building, I have bunch of 6 pixel WS2811 strips with wires attached to the Data In end of the strip.  After testing all 20 strips that I had wired up yesterday one at a time, I tried multiple strips in parallel.  I first took 2 strips and simply twisted the +5, Ground, and Data wired together for the 2 strips and the output pigtail from the E682.  As expected, both WS2811 strips lit up exactly the same.  I then added a third strip, and again it worked perfectly.  I then added a fourth strip and again it worked perfectly.  I did not go any further than four because it was getting too hard to keep everything apart as the wire lengths were quite short.  In this test, I had a pigtail about 1 foot long from the E682.  Each strip had about 2 inches of wire from the Data In end of the strip.  There was no connection on the Data Out end of each strip.

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It works!   Last night I gave it a try and and drove four WS2811 strips with a single output from a SanDevices E682. 

 

Thanks Jim!!!  :D

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  • 5 weeks later...

Is it possible to hook, like 4 strings of RGB in parallel (is that even the right term)? So one controller controls all 4 strings and pixel 1 acts the same in all 4 strings, pixel 2 acts the same in all 4 and so on and so on?

 

I am not looking to put them end to end (in series?).

 

Would you need to inject different power to all 4, or could they all have the same power source.

 

Thinking of making new mini trees but would like 300 - 400 nodes per tree instead of 1 string of 100.

There is some information in this old post that may be of assistance. http://forums.lightorama.com/index.php?/topic/10274-joining-ccrs-end-to-end/

I was also thinking of paralleling CCRs, but in the end opted to run controllers with the same address settings.

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You still have the option to wire them in series and wire the power in parallel.  The controller may not have enough drive current to drive four data lines.

This was on my mind too. It would all depend on this. The first pixel is the one that puts a load on the communication drive signal. This first pixel boost the signal and sends it on to the next pixel. So as Ernie points out, will there be enough signal current to over come the load that 4 pixels would put on that signal. If you have to much load, the signal will fall below the level that the pixel can decode and thus no blinky colored light.

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