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How can I matrix RGB LEDs to the Arduino Duemilanove? Answered

I just picked up the Arduino Duemilanove and want to make an LED matrix of RGB LEDs, however I don't know which LED s I should buy, or how to control each LEDs color. I understand charliplexing and turning an LED on or off, but not RGB. Does anyone have any instructable like this or any other resources?

2 Replies

steveastrouk (author)2010-01-04

Use the Allegro A6282 chip to do all the hardwork for you. Make a single colour driver, and then either multiplex it to the other colours, or make three driver sections.

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frollard (author)2010-01-04

RGB is easy like single leds - it just has 3 leds in one.

Trouble with running rgb on the arduino is it only has ~15 io pins, and non-matrixed rgb leds take 3 pins each.  Matrix them and you can fit 15/(w+h)/3...

To increase the IO pins you can use simple 595 shift registers, which use a data pin and a clock pin to output to 8, 16, or any other multiple of 8 pins...at a cost of speed.  

Other options include led driver shift registers (maxim makes a chip that does this) but they get more expensive as you get more technical.

I would highly recommend making a matrix of 1 colour of led first to figure out how it works - then add more and more.

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