The Big Pixels Page

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Another blinky RGB LED project that I've wanted to build for a while. This is an array of 8x8 RGB pixels each of which is individually controlled by the embedded Arduino UNO processor. The big pixel display runs a series of patterns which can be seen here. A video of the enclosure I built for the big pixel display can be seen here.

The 8x8 pixel array is built into 64 individual cells to prevent light from the LEDs from mixing. The cell array was made from 1/4" foam core board like that used in picture frames.

Detail of the enclosure under construction. Mahogany was used for the enclosure sides.


The completed 64 cell array of foam core.

The cell array being fitted into the enclosure for the first time.

Prototyping the connections and the software for the Arduino processor (the blue board) and the individually addressable RGB LEDs.

The 64 RGB LEDs taped down to the back of the big pixel enclosure. The back was made from MDF which I painted black. Duct tape is great stuff !

Top view of same.

The back of the enclosure has all of the electronics mounted to it. Here you can see the dual power supplies and the Arduino processor. Two power supplies were need to supply the current for the LEDs.

Another view of same.

A test to be sure things still worked after mounting the back with all of the electronics into the enclosure.

Top view of same.

A close up.

After testing, the 8x8 foam core array of cells is placed over the LEDs. This was  difficult getting all of the LEDs to stand up straight so they could be pulled through the array. I needed Heathers help for this.

Finally a piece of drafting mylar was cut to size and glued over the 8x8 cell array to diffuse the light from the LEDs.

Another view

A close up view

Front view of finished project.

The back of the big pixels display. The coiled code is a USB cable connected to the Arduino processor inside. I leave it permanently connected to make it easy to reprogram the processor. I put pads on the bottom and back so the enclosure can be set on a shelf or hung on a wall.

Nice view of the pretty wood. I used danish oil to darken the wood and then wax to make it shine.

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