Introduction: Sound Reactive RGB 8x8 LEDs

I thought it would be exciting to make an Arduino project with sound reactive RGB LEDs. My end goal will eventually be to use 2 individually addressable 8x8 LED matrices to make sound reactive eyes but for now, I am just getting familiar with how these components will work together.


I am using the Arduino Uno R3 Starter Kit and most of the supplies will come from that. The only additional supply are the LM393 sound sensor and the WS2812B 8x8 LED matrices. I purchased all three from here:

Arduino Uno R3 Starter Kit on = $36.99

Arduino Uno R3

Jumper Cables (m/m and m/f)


LM393 Sound Sensor x 5 = $7.99

WS2812B RGB individually addressable 8x8 LED matrix = $10.99 x 2

Tiny Screw Driver for the LM393's potentiometer

You will also need to add Adafruit Neopixel library to your Arduino software

Step 1: Obtain Materials

The area you live in may not provide you with access to electronics components, such as the ones in this project.

You could check for these components at hobby stores or online. Remember that if you plan to order your parts online, you must do it in advance because some of them may take a while to arrive.

Step 2: Check Voltage

Make sure that you are using the proper voltage, resistors, or other components to make your project work safely.

In this project, the LM393 sound sensor can use the 3.3v or 5v pin and the LED matrices use the 5v pin. I connected both to 5v. However, if you were using a single LED or a different array, you would need to add the right resistor to the circuit.

As you can see in the photo and the following circuit diagram, I did not need to use all of the wires coming out of each LED matrix.

Step 3: Wiring

This step will require both kinds of jumper cables.

Remember to connect the project safely. I like to wire the circuits and connect the components while power is completely disconnected.

Step 4: The Arduino Sketch

This is my Arduino file to run my Sound Reactive LED(s), but you can modify it to your liking. I will continue to update this project in the future.

If you open the serial monitor in Arduino IDE, you can check the sensor's detection values and adjust the potentiometer on the LM393 with the tiny screw driver.

Step 5: Upload the Sketch to Arduino

This part requires the USB-A to USB cable, so have it ready to go.

The device should begin working right away.

If the lights do not seem to be activating:

  • Adjust the potentiometer to change sensitivity to sound on the LM393 sound sensor
  • Turn up the music or hold it closer to the microphone on the sensor, because it has a short range

Step 6: ENJOY!

Look for updates to the project!