It's been a long time coming, but my Universal RGB cube is finally ready!
Now we can run the animations and use the code by both Kevin Darrah and Nick Schulze (slightly modified, but basically identical - minor timing and layer control tweaks were all that was needed). Plus Doug Domke made a whole new set of code from scratch that makes creating your own animations easy!
Although the majority of the code written is for the ChipKit UNO32, Kevin's code for the Arduino UNO, and the version I ported to the Arduino MEGA2560 work on the same cube just by adding a couple jumper caps.
If when you are done, you love this project as much as I do, please vote for any contests I might be in.
Trust me, I have some cool ideas in mind for all the prizes being offered !!!
TO THOSE THAT CAME HERE BECAUSE YOU FOUND THE PARTS KIT FOR THIS PROJECT ON eBay - NO the parts kit does NOT include the circuit board - it's the parts kit FOR the circuit board. Inbox me for direct board pricing and availability or go to TheLEDCube dot com. I do ship worldwide.
DO NOT PURCHASE THE PARTS KITS FROM CHINA!!!
ONLY use the parts kit from HONG KONG.
A parts supplier in China copied the ad from my parts supplier in Hong Kong, but they miss parts, get values wrong, use wrong parts types etc. I have been trying to get their ad removed because of exploding capacitors and overheating or wrong size/shape/value of parts. If you bought a kit from China, I apologize, but I was not aware they had done it until quite some time had passed. If you did get one of their kits, file an "Item Not as described" case with ebay, and get your money back. You can refuse to return the parts and still get a refund in almost all cases like this. Use your refund to purchase any missing or incorrect parts. Giving negative feedback on ebay to these "counterfeit" kits would go a long way towards solving this problem.
PLEASE NOTE: DUE TO A fabrication error - if you have a V4.0 Rev 3.11 purchased on or before December 1st, a small trace repair is needed - PLEASE contact me IMMEDIATELY for info. I'll post more info here as well. Any boards purchased AFTER this date will have this repair already done. ALL V4 Boards purchased before December 8th require another fix where the fabricator made one of the VIA pads too large and it shorts to one of the traces that run past it. A simple cut fixes this.
To those that are just now (FEB 2015) getting the first Mini Music Modules - due to a change in the parts kit, the USB port MUST BE MOUNTED TO THE BOTTOM OF THE BOARD!!! The V4.X music modules fix this, as well as an input sensitivity issue.
Earlier on there was a problem with the parts kit from Hong Kong with the 1000uF capacitor. It's not a necessary part when using a switching supply (power brick) but the issue is the supplier switched to a 10V cap from the original 50V cap specified in my BOM to them. You can either leave the cap out completely, or put one in that is rated at at least 35V.
ATTENTION: If your layers 5, 6, and 7 are not working on your Arduino UNO, there is a code fix. Please download the new RGB Arduino parallel code!
We currently have code for the Arduino UNO, the ChipKit UNO32 (PIC32MX processor), The Arduino MEGA2560, and my UNO Eliminator boards [discontinued except by special order in favour of the bridge boards] (which get rid of the last of the wires)
Jerry Lesnefsky and Karl Moeller made a great little music module that fits onto the base / driver board, and allows the PIC ChipKit Eliminator to plug right onto it - and in the process, noticed the the I/O Aux header has A2 and A8 labelled backwards on the eliminator board !!!! If you are hand wiring a music module to your ChipKit Eliminator, please make note of this!
SPECIAL THANKS to Doug Domke who is making firmware templates for the PIC32 (ChipKit UNO32) which work much more like standard Arduino code so that we can more easily create animations on the PIC.
See his page at http://d2-webdesign.com/cube for information and downloads. I will add code here as I create more animations using his template.
This was originally inspired by the project by Nick Schulze, and then added to using the project by Kevin Darrah.
You can use the cube assembly method Nick Schulze at HowNotToEngineer.com uses, however I did develop my own assembly method. Nick's method is great if you enjoy woodworking, or you can use mine if not.
When I first started looking for my Next Big Project (after the original 8X8X8 LED mono colour cube) my searches came overwhelmingly to two.
Nick Schulze and Kevin Darrah.
My problem is that I don't get along well with wood. It's just a medium I haven't mastered.
That's why my previous cube assembly method used a cardboard motherboard box for the LED layer template.
It did work extremely well though, and I was quite happy with the results!
So, with that in mind, I WILL show you how I built mine (steps 9 to 15 currently) but initially we will go on the assumption that you will build Nick's assembly rig modified to a 26.5mm spacing to fit my board.
If you'd rather just build it the way I built mine, go directly to step 9. It seems others are finding my assembly method to be favourable to the big wooden rigs. Once you have your notched rulers made, you never need make another measurement with my method.
Please also see the original projects if you want schematics or theory of operation etc. I am not here to re-invent the wheel. I am here to bring these projects to those that:
otherwise couldn't have made them;
tried to make them and failed;
cannot read a schematic;
are overwhelmed with the magnitude of wiring involved;
are (like myself) not good carpenters ;
want a portable or "neat" looking project;
require the cube to be portable;
or a plethora of other reasons.
If you are looking for schematics and the technical info on how it all works, please go to these links:
All the theory and design and schematics that I used to base this circuit on are there. For the most part, my circuit very closely conforms to Nick's except that I use through hole chips rather than SMT.
My chips are just a touch slower, so I had to modify Nick's code to widen a couple pulses, but other than that, his code is stock.
Feel free to ask questions about my design other than "do you have schematics" or "can I have the Eagle files".
I don't design with Eagle, and I also don't make schematics. I design the PCBs in my head, and go right to design on the fly. I don't know why I work this way, I just always have, and it works for me...at least eventually...
I almost always have flaws in the initial designs that do not present themselves until I start building the project.
That's when a new version is made. Minor tweaks or additions are the revisions within those versions.
It took me until Version 3 Revision 4 of the PC Board before I was ready to make an instructable for it.
I am happy to clarify anything you don't quite get about the way it all works etc. (assuming I fully understand it myself enough to explain it better than the original explanations. The hardware I can easily explain - the software is better explained by the authors).