Jump to content

Help Getting Started


robin1373
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hello All,
 This will be my third year doing a display. I have 2 Lor 16 channel controllers run by a mp3 show director. I use the LOR s3 software. I am wanting to get into RGB this year and have been doing some research. I am ready to start buying some stuff and had a few more questions. After asking some questions I have decided not to use the mp3 show director to make is easier to run the RGB lights. What I am wanting to do is outline my house with rgb strips and add a few spot lights. I was thinking of buying the E682 for my pixel strips and a CMB24 from LOR for the spot lights. I think I can do the whole front of the house with 10 16ft strips.
 
Question 1
Does it sound like I am going in the correct direction?
 
Question 2
Will the e682  be a good choice?
 
Question 3 
Is it better to get a 12v strip or a 5v strip, What do most people buy?
 
Thank you,
Robin

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello All, This will be my third year doing a display. I have 2 Lor 16 channel controllers run by a mp3 show director. I use the LOR s3 software. I am wanting to get into RGB this year and have been doing some research. I am ready to start buying some stuff and had a few more questions. After asking some questions I have decided not to use the mp3 show director to make is easier to run the RGB lights. What I am wanting to do is outline my house with rgb strips and add a few spot lights. I was thinking of buying the E682 for my pixel strips and a CMB24 from LOR for the spot lights. I think I can do the whole front of the house with 10 16ft strips. Question 1Does it sound like I am going in the correct direction? Question 2Will the e682  be a good choice? Question 3 Is it better to get a 12v strip or a 5v strip, What do most people buy? Thank you,Robin

1. Yes, your plan makes sense. There's not really a single correct way to do things, so most important is applying a solution that makes sense for your plans.

2. The 682 is a great choice. Keep in mind that it is a centralized design, so distance to first pixel and power injection are likely to be very important considerations. If the strips will be in multiple locations, the 6804 may be a more effective choice.

3. I'm a fan of 12v, but use both depending on application. 12v gives you more leeway with power injection, but 12v strips are often controlled in groups of 3 rather than individual control (if that's important). 5v allows for single pixel control, but you will likely have to inject power at both ends to get consistent color.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Q1 the right direction is what ever you want it to be.

Q2. I have a E682 and a 6804. Each has their place.

Q3. Well again each has its place in the scheme of things. I am currently planing a RGB mega tree and I can bring all of the strips to a central point keeping the runs to the controller short. While if I was to put several strips end to end. I would need to run the voltage out a ways and voltage tends to drop down over distance. So if I was going to put strips along my roof line. Think rectangle for a moment. I would put a 6804 in the upper left corner and run about one strip down to the front along the short edge. Then say about two, end to end to the right along the ridge line. Injecting power between the two strips. Now with another 6804 controller in the upper right corner. Run one to two strips to the left to meet the ones from the other corner. Again injecting power between strips. And again one down the right side to the front. Same basic install for outline on the front of the house. Now there might be a location with lots of detail in one area. Then a 682 with its 16 ports might be useful. Now if you need fine resolution like one RGB LED per pixel or node. Then you are almost going to need to go with something that is rated at 5VDC. Sure you can find a few offerings at 12VDC, but few and far in between.

There are many more that have much more time working with these than me. Hopefully they will weigh in shortly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for you replies. How far can I have the strips away from the 682? If I do use the 6804 do each of them need to have there own power supply?

It depends on what size wire you are using and what voltage you are using. I have found I can get a pretty good distance (let's say 25 feet) when running data, so, I never go over that distance. However, power is a different animal. You MIGHT be ok with a distance like that, if you are using a thick gauge wire. Look online for a voltage drop calculator. You can input your voltage and distance and wire size to see what your range would be. In addition, J1sys sells a pixel extender, which you could use in conjunction with a higher DC voltage to get a longer length. You could also run smaller power supplies at the pixel locations. The distance issue is not a small one, and definitely needs to be a big part of your planning.

The 6804's could be run from the same power supply, but you would run into the same problem: distance. It wouldn't make much sense to use multiple 6804's unless you are doing so to decrease distance from controller to pixels.

Edit: All of the voltage drop issues are why I prefer 12v as a general rule. Most of the 12v voltage is dissipated as heat at the pixels, so the pixels are much more tolerant of drop.

Edited by jlowe
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sure, I think that is possible, of course, as you know, depending on the individual needs and real-world limitations.

6804 can control 12 universes just like the 682, so, the pixel amount isn't restricted.

However, depending on pixel length, the refresh rate may become an issue if running massive amounts of pixels from one output. Although I have no idea what that amount would have to be before it becomes a problem...

Different pixel types can be assigned to each output, so, again, that's equivalent to the 682 (meaning max of 4 pixel types). The only drawback is the outputs available.

So...depends on needs, as always. ;)

Edited by jlowe
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry dont mean to hi-jack this thread, but this might be of interest to you also OP.

jlowe, refresh my memory if you would. Can you have more than one universe per socket? Cause within one universe you can only have 170 pixels or three 5 meter strips that have 50 chips on it. So, at this minute I am going to have to assume that your suggesting that one can have more than one universe per connector on that 6804. But as you noted there will come some delay after a certain length of strips. Would start to look like a color chase even though you wanted all of the strip to change colors as the same time.

 

Am I barking up the right tree here jlowe?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If using version 4 of the firmware (which all 6804's would have), then yes, a single output can span multiple universes.

When you setup the output in the software, the controller will automatically calculate end universe/address based on start universe and address. It will also automatically calculate refresh rate based on pixel type and length. It is not limited to 170.

I believe I also read a thread on DIYC where someone ran a pixel mega tree on one 6804, just using the zig zag setting and power injection at each ground-level "zag".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If using version 4 of the firmware (which all 6804's would have), then yes, a single output can span multiple universes. When you setup the output in the software, the controller will automatically calculate end universe/address based on start universe and address. It will also automatically calculate refresh rate based on pixel type and length. It is not limited to 170. I believe I also read a thread on DIYC where someone ran a pixel mega tree on one 6804, just using the zig zag setting and power injection at each ground-level "zag".

I was going to do just this last year. I spoke with Jim at Sandevices about the refresh rate, since it was in the 20s or 30s somewhere if I remember correctly. His reply was that I would be fine. I did ultimately go with the 682 and used the 6804 for 4 different elements.

 

That being said, according to Jim, a zig-zag, 150 pixel string connected together, with power injection will work just fine.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry dont mean to hi-jack this thread, but this might be of interest to you also OP.

jlowe, refresh my memory if you would. Can you have more than one universe per socket? Cause within one universe you can only have 170 pixels or three 5 meter strips that have 50 chips on it. So, at this minute I am going to have to assume that your suggesting that one can have more than one universe per connector on that 6804. But as you noted there will come some delay after a certain length of strips. Would start to look like a color chase even though you wanted all of the strip to change colors as the same time.

 

Am I barking up the right tree here jlowe?

No problem Max-Paul this is good information. So if i understand correctly I can do the whole fron of my house using 1 6804 So there is 4 ouputs on the 6804 how many strips could I hook up to one output or should i devide them up over the 4? Also would one power sup[ply run this all or would I need to purchase a second one?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jim says that technically, you can run all 2040 pixels from a single output. Refresh rate would be unusually low and to be honest I would not do that. In Unicast , you should be able to run 510 pixels per output. That would be a lot of power injection. The power supply would depend on how many pixels and how much power the strips or strings will pull. I ran an 800 pixel tree last year with a single 5v, 300 watt, 60 amp ps. I had no problems with pinkish pixels. I was using 5v WS2811 pixel strings and not strips though.

Edited by Ron Boyd
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Robin if you dont mind me asking again another question that might help us both.

First thanks Ron and jlowe for your time and knowledge.

 

Ok, I am a person that has been around electrical and electronics. This RGB stuff is still new enough that I am not real clear on some technical names. Now we have RGB LEDs such as the SMD-5050. And we have control chips such as the WS2811. And then we have the names such as pixel, nodes, RGB channels and just channels. And then we have dumb strips, smart strips, Strips that have 3 of them 5050 LEDs to each WS2811 chip or a 5050 LED per WS2811 chip.

 

So, what are we saying when we mention "Pixel", "node", or "RGB channel"?  Right now I use Pixel and node as one and the same. This might be part of my confussion. I think I am not the only one that might be loosely throwing about names.

 

Thanks gents

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Max, if you ask 5 different people and you'll probably get 5 different answers. The way i use them is:

 

Pixels = Smart, WS2811, WS2801, etc.

Nodes = Basic, RGB LEDs without a chip.

RGB Channel = 3 channels Red, Green, and Blue

Channels = a single Channel for using a LED or Incan string.

 

Dumb strips I put in the "Basic" category. Anything without a chip where the entire string, strip or string of modules change the same color throughout

 

My understanding is a 12v Smart strip is set-up as 3 SMD-5050s per pixel whereas a 5v strip is setup as a single controllable SMD 5050. I ran into a problem last year where I got a pretty good deal on 2 5v strips. It was sold as a WS2811 strip, 30 LED per meter, 150 pixels total for a 5m strip. Now when I set up 50 pixels on a controller only 1/3 of the strip lit. Once I set it up as 150 pixels, the entire strip then lit up. Come to find out, they were actually a WS2812b strip. That simply is a SMD 5050 and a WS2811 chip in one tiny, neat little package. I set it up in groups of 3 since my element sequencing was 50 pixels. I could actually have 150 RGB channels or 450 total channels for each strip, which as you know is almost a full Universe on a single strip. These are actually best for a matrix since you can get a much denser pixel count, but the downside is, a 20 x 25 matrix using these is 1500 total channels or 500 RGB channels. Looks really good though.

 

I keep it straight this way. Again, you'll probably get a different answer from the next post. This is just what I call each of them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

I hope someone is still looking at this thread. I  am still a little confused. I am looking at a Ray Wu 5M LED digital strip WS2811 Product ID568458133 (http://www.aliexpress.com/item/5m-led-digital-strip-DC12V-input-WS2811IC-256-scale-10pcs-IC-and-30pcs-5050-SMD-RGB/568458133.html) and IF I am understanding that would be 150 pixels each strip? So a 12 strip mega tree (16 Ft) would be 2400 channels? I was planning on using one 682 and not having to inject power, but after looking at this thread I may be wrong. Please advice. Thanks

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok I think I answered my own question it appear that there is 30 pcs per meter = 10 chips per meter = 50 chips per 16ft strip = 150 channels per strip = 1800 channels for whole mega tree? Correct me if I am wrong. Thanks again :);)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...