Step 13: Choose your LEDs

There are many things to consider when choosing LEDs.

You want the LED cube to be equally visible from all sides. Therefore we strongly recommend using diffused LEDs. A clear LED will shoot the majority of it's light out the top of the LED. A diffused LED will be more or less equally bright from all sides. Clear LEDs also create another problem. If your cube is made up of clear LEDs. The LEDs will also partially illuminate the LEDs above them, since most of the light is directed upwards. This creates some unwanted ghosting effects.

We actually ordered diffused LEDs from eBay, but got 1000 clear LEDs instead. Shipping them back to China to receive a replacement would have taken too much time, so we decided to used the clear LEDs instead. It works fine, but the cube is a lot brighter when viewed from the top as opposed to the sides.

The LEDs we ordered from eBay were actually described as "Defused LEDs". Maybe we should have taken the hint ;) Defusing is something you do to a bomb when you want to prevent it from blowing up, hehe.

Larger LEDs gives you a bigger and brighter pixel, but since since the cube is 8 layers deep, you want enough room to see all the way through to the furthest level. We went with 3mm LEDs because we wanted the cube to be as "transparent" as possible. Our recommendation is to use 3mm diffused LEDs.

You can buy very cheap lots of 1000 LEDs on eBay. But keep in mind that the quality of the product may be reflected in it's price. We think that there is less chance of LED malfunction if you buy better quality/more expensive LEDs.

Square LEDs would probably look cool to, but then you need to make a soldering template that can accommodate square LEDs. With 3mm round LEDs, all you need is a 3mm drill bit.

Since the cube relies on multiplexing and persistence of vision to create images, each layer is only turned on for 1/8 of the time. This is called a 1/8 duty cycle. To compensate for this, the LEDs have to be bright enough to produce the wanted brightness level at 1/8 duty cycle.

Leg length. The cube design in this instructable uses the legs of the LEDs themselves as the skeleton for the cube. The leg length of the LEDs must be equal to or greater than the distance you want between each LED.
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<p>hai guys I want to know how much power and amp give for cube and I am using arduino so arduino hold 1.5 amp 5v and connect to driver board or I give power to driver board separately and arduino separately and how much I want give can u give me detail</p>
<p>Hello i have built this cube but i am having problems. i upload the test code and everything works but after i uploar the second code as well as the firmware nothing happens</p>
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<p>I will make it</p>
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<p>I am using arduino mega as isp to program or usb pic or if u any software for led programming that is also good </p>
I'm good to go now found good files on pyroelectro.com by thepyroelectro www.pyroelectro.com/projects/8x8x8_led_cube/arduino_8x8x8_cube.pde
can you tell me how to copy and paste animations into the my main sketch from other sketches? So I can add more animations. what section sketch to copy and where to place it. thanks
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<p>hi , i have made CRR's led cube but something very strange is happening</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="281" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/YZucW88VQr0" width="500"></iframe></p><p>there are led lighting that must not light. I have change emmitter with collector , i have use only one 2n222 as <a href="http://www.instructables.com/member/SuperTech-IT/" rel="nofollow">uperTech-IT</a> says but nonthing good.</p>
<p>I noticed you got yours up and running. Congrats. I see you went the 2 transistor rout in the end, but that's OK, it's just more parts than needed.<br>My boards are a lot more compact than yours, and allow Arduino's ATmega328p or the ATmega32/32A/32L processors, but the end result is pretty much the same. LOL. Here you can also see one of my completed single colour cubes beside one of my RGB cubes.<br></p>
2N2222 transistor have 600ma current max on colector and one led need 0.015ma mutil by 64 led each layer equal ~1A. Therefore you need at leat 2 2N2222 transistor
<p>More precisely, my design uses single 2N2222 for the layers - the whole cube with all LEDs lit draws under 700mA. Anyways, if you still have not worked this out, go to www.TheLEDCube.com and download my source code for your processor which contains a POWER ON SELF TEST. Video the POST and put the video up here and I will analyze it and point you to pretty much exactly what's wrong right off the bat unless there are multiple shorts / bad connections.</p>
<p>Hey, can u uploade a bit more detailed description of the power supply.</p><p>I cannot figure out how to solder the pieces</p>
<p>Your best bet is to simply get a 5V 2A plug-in power supply.</p><p>These are cheap and plentiful on ebay.</p>
<p>What have you used, atmega or arduino? </p>
<p>i use atmega</p>
<p>It worked flawlessly buddy. it is such a great feeling achieving that task</p>
<p>The Arduino is also ATmega in that the processor is an ATmega328P.</p><p>Most people prefer the ATmega32/32A/32L for this project though.</p>
<p>Finally, It worked flawlessly. Now I want to go to the next level and use atmega32. Problem is to get the crystal, I'll have to import it</p>
<p>and of course i have place 8 pull up resistors on collectors ,6.2k</p>
<p>finally it works! there were many short circuits and tow transistor had electrik leak</p>
<p>Glad you got it all up and running! Hope to see a video of your cube in action!</p>
<p>Is there any program to control led cube and make coding easy ,just clicking on leds we want to gets on with the order we want?</p>
wow I'm blown away. I built the jameco 8x8 cube pcb version. their sample code works great but I sure would like more code that will work with this kit. I'm glad I made the cube large with 25mm spacing thanks for the advice.
I built the Jameco 8x8x8 cube PCB version. I need better code than the sample file. Please help.
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<p>I am not using rs232 ic just using atmega32 and 74hc574and 74hc138ic just using basic module I don want confuse I want program the atmega working alone </p>
<p>give me link </p>
<p>Hai guys I need help with complete code and this is my first project I am done everything I need only code I am using 74hc574 ic I want code based on that and another thing I am chef I not familiar with c programming I am doing project in hobbies because I love electronics pls help me with that ,that's greatfull for me</p>
<p>Help needed!</p><p>I managed to put everything together and now I am having problems with programming. I have little experience in this, so I don't what's wrong:</p><p>I have (a copy of) Arduino Uno, i programmed it as an ISP so that i would able to program the cube's Atmega32. </p><p>I wrote: </p><p>avrdude -c avrisp -P COM3 -p m32 -U lfuse:w:0b11101111:m -F</p><p>(I used -F to get any result, because otherwise all i got was: </p><p>avrdude: Device signature = 0x000000</p><p>avrdude: Yikes! Invalid device signature.)</p><p>And i get a verification error (see screenshot). If I do anything afterwards, all i get is this: avrdude: stk500_cmd(): programmer is out of sync</p><p>After reconnecting Arduino usb, i get the same result (verification error and then out of sync error). </p><p>Also, it is unclear to me whether the programming header's jumper should be used. If I disconnect it, the avrdude displays out of sync error immediately. If i do use the jumper, the cube lights up seemingly randomly and after some time pretty much all of the LEDs are lit up. Is it a soldering problem or is it supposed to happen?</p>
<p>I suggest getting an USBASP or USBTiny off ebay. They are typically $2 to $5.</p><p>The other option is to program your arduino to control the cube itself.</p>
Thanks, i figured that would be necessary. Would i have to make any changes to the board to use Arduino with it? Or should i just wait for the programmer to arrive?

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Bio: I like microcontrollers and LEDs :D
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