Project tutorial
Arduino controlled RGB LED strip

Arduino controlled RGB LED strip © TAPR-OHL

Control an RGB LED strip with an Arduino Nano.

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Components and supplies

12V RGB LED Strip
USD 10.99
×1
IRF520N
CHF 0.85
×3
Ard nano
Arduino Nano R3
USD 7.43
×1
12V Power Adapter
USD 12.71
×1
10K Linear Rotary Potentiometer
CHF 0.50
×3
Switch
CHF 0.85
×1
Fuse Holder + 3A Fuse
Optional. If you don't want a fuse, simply connect the two pins with a wire.
×1

Necessary tools and machines

09507 01
Soldering iron (generic)

About this project

History

This is the successor of the RGB LED Board v1 project. The goal is to control the LEDs with an Arduino Nano board. The potentiometers are still there, but only used as analog inputs to the board :)

After finishing the original RGB LED Board v1, we tried to attach an entire 5m LED strip to it. This looked very cool, but we quickly discovered that the potentiometers got really hot. After a few quick calculations it became clear that dissipating almost 3A of current through three 1/4W potentiometers was not a good idea :)

After some brainstorming we decided that PWM based controlling of the LED strip through MOSFETs with a microcontroller would be the best and most flexible option. I recently did a project with an Arduino Nano and liked the simplicity, so we settled for that option.

Result

The PCB works perfectly! Right now the firmware is quite simplistic, but new capabilities will be added over time.

Small demo with a ~4m strip:

And this is the PCB:

If you're interested in getting one of these PCBs or even a kit including all parts, order the kit in our shop or contact me at danilo@coredump.ch.

Project Repository

You can find all project sources (PCB designs and microcontroller code) on Github (in the v2 directory). The project was designed using KiCad.

PCBs

We ordered the PCB from Fusion PCB by Seeed Studio. The cost was $18.90 for 10 pieces excluding shipping. 

Code

Schematics

Schematic
Schema
PCB Layout
Pcb

Comments

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