How to build your own LED Color Organ || Arduino || MSGEQ7

Picture of How to build your own LED Color Organ || Arduino || MSGEQ7

I am showing you how to build a color organ while only using an Arduino Uno, one MSGEQ7 and five external electronic components. I am using three high power led and three MOSFET to visualize the three different frequency bands of the music. Join me for this awesome and educational build.

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Step 1: Watch the video!

The video already gives you a lot of details about the build, but I will cover the most important steps again.

Step 2: What do we need?

Here is a small and easier overview of the components we gonna need:

1x Arduino Uno


2x 100nF capacitor

1x 10nF capacitor

1x 33pF capacitor

1x 200kΩ(1/4W) resistor or 2x 100kΩ(1/4W) resistor

3x 5Ω(5W) resistor

3x 1kΩ(1/4W) resistor

3x BUZ11 N Channel MOSFET

1x Breadboard

1x Jumper Wires

1x Power supply (5V, 2A)

3x 1W High Power LED (red,green,blue)

If you already have the parts laying around than you can skip to step 4. Otherwise follow step 3 and order your parts

Step 3: Order your parts!

Here is a little part list with example sellers from Ebay and Amazon. I hope it helps you to get your components fast and easy:


Audio Jack:

Resistor kit:

5Ω(5W) resistor:

Power Supply (5V, 2A):


Arduino Uno:

Capacitor Kit:

BUZ11 N Channel MOSFET:

1W High Power LED (green):

1W High Power LED (red):

1W High Power LED (blue):

Jumper Wires:


Audio Jack:

Resistor Kit:

Power Supply (5V, 2A):

Arduino Uno:

Capacitor Kit:

1W High Power LED (green):

1W High Power LED (red):

1W High Power LED (blue):

Jumper Wires:


Audio Jack:

Resistor Kit:

Power Supply (5V, 2A):

Arduino Uno:

Capacitor Kit:

1W High Power LED (green):

1W High Power LED (red):

1W High Power LED (blue):

Jumper Wires:



BUZ11 N Channel MOSFET:

Step 4: Create the circuit!

Picture of Create the circuit!

Now it's time to get serious. Wire up components on a breadboard is pretty simple and I bet you will get it right after trying a few times. Just follow the schematic

And don't forget to connect the ground wire of your 5V power supply with the ground (GND) of your arduino for potential equalisation. Otherwise the LEDs might do what they want but not what you want.

I finally got it to work but the LEDs arent bright enough. When i make the volume full, the brightness of the LED goes upto 50% but they dont blink. Could you tell me how to make my LEDs brighter. I am using LUXEON REBELS which are super bright.

vibro153 months ago

I ordered the part listed here:

Could anyone give me some insight as to how I would modify this project so it works with this audio analyzer?

GreatScottLab (author)  vibro153 months ago

It is the same IC which makes things pretty easy. Just connect the Pins of the Breakout Board to the Arduino pins like I described it in the schematic.


hsharma291 month ago

Any Alternatives for MSGEQ7 and BUZ11

Really Hard to Find.

i find some but don't know if they are same




I want to do something like this in my car, with a few solid-color analog LED strips that adjust brightness based on the music. I will use the MSGEQ7 shield from Sparkfun on an Arduino Uno. I have two questions:

1) How would I go about powering it? The car battery outputs 12V, which is what the LED strips need, but the Arduino only needs 5v, if I understand correctly.

2) Do you have code for using the MSGEQ7 with an LED strip (like shown at the end of the video under your couch, except for a solid-color LED strip)? That's exactly what I'm going for.

Thanks in advance!

_Jarmom2 months ago
(removed by author or community request)
cjfortin _Jarmom2 months ago

Yes, you could use (2) 10 ohm resistors in parallel to get the 5 ohm value.

TravisH22 months ago
I was trying to build this and when I went to try it, it didn't work, this is my first project like this and I'm a little confused and I'm not sure if I set it all up right. These are pictures of what I did. Thank for any help I get!
AndyR3 TravisH22 months ago

try to connect the ground of your breadboard to the ground off your arduino, this should help ;)

And it looks like your LEDs are not connectet to +, because there is probably no connection on the breadboard between both sides.

If you have issues like this try to explain what goes wrong so we can better help you.

Sry for bad english ;D

TravisH22 months ago
Can some one tell me what I did wrong here? I'm so lost.
hangovercat made it!3 months ago

I used this project to create a colour organ christmas tree light setup. I tested with the high power LEDs as per the instructions and then swapped them out for LED strings – one each for RG and B. I also used the Spectrum Shield which obviated everything on the left half of the circuit diagram (it includes the MSGEQ7, caps and 200k resistor). The shield is also set up as strobe=4 and reset=5 so adjust the code accordingly. It seems to be running ok with a single 900ma power supply connected to the Arduino but I am not an expert and cannot guarantee this will not create issues in any specific configuration. Thanks so much for posting this. I run it off the headphone output of my entertainment system and everyone thinks I am some kind of wizard.


I've made the project, but the LEDs still glow even when the music is off. I checked my serial monitor and it shows some small values in the PWM pins when there is no input. This happens for about 1-2 minutes until the values go to zero. Could you tell me what the problem may be and how to fix it?

GreatScottLab (author)  KarunTheWarrior3 months ago

Try to add some smoothing capacitors to your power supply. Start with
470µF and 100nF between +5V and GND. If the problem still occurs then try to use a
bigger one. And if that does not help then you might want to use a bit
more expensive power supply.

RudiFebrian135 months ago

can i use 12v for power source ?

GreatScottLab (author)  RudiFebrian135 months ago

If you want to use 12V for your LEDs then it is okay. But the MSGEQ7 and the Arduino needs 5V. Use for example a LM7805 to get 5V from 12V.

does this tutorial apply to the led strips as well

GreatScottLab (author)  brandon_gears3 months ago

If you want to use a 12V led strip then read the comment above you. You only replace the 1W LED with resistors with your LED strip.

thanks man, still a noob

Hey man, you can use a 12V power source. Your UNO will convert that to 5V for normal use and you can use the Vin pin to get the actual 12 V out. I assume this is for an LED strip ? I had that issue and had to use the method described and a relay to get it working well. I hope this helped !

phippsy274 months ago

How would you go about this same style setup with led strips

juys15 months ago
Am I interpreting this correctly, is all the processing done on the arduino itself? Would this operate without a conection to the computer?
GreatScottLab (author)  juys15 months ago

You are correct. It does not need a connection to a PC.

GreatScottLab (author)  thapakisankisan5 months ago

That is an audio amp. That has nothing to do with this project and is not necessary.

Keule made it!11 months ago


thanks for the circuit and code. It works fine.

Maybe I will try to modify the code with a kind of colour fading. So the colour changes are hopefully a bit smoother.

Arduino Nano RGB clolour organ with MSGEQ7.jpg