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New to LEDs, need to wire lots of them Answered

I've never worked with LED lights before.  I'm putting on a show and I want to have lots of little points of light in space in a dark theater.  I'm talking hundreds of them.  I considered fiber optics, but that started looking way too expensive.  Is it possible with LEDs?  Is it expensive?  How to I learn how to do it?

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adriansebastiani
adriansebastiani

3 years ago

i have researched a little on the matter and think the fibre optic route is more appropriate- look at the alibaba/ aliexpress websites and you can save a lot... look for ratings etc.... sometimes quality can vary on these sites

http://www.alibaba.com/trade/search?fsb=y&IndexArea=product_en&CatId=&SearchText=PMMA+fibre+optic

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Downunder35m
Downunder35m

3 years ago

All I can say is that hundreds also means headache in terms of wiring them.
Keep in mind that you loose voltage over distance and that you don't really want to use thick speaker wires to connect a LED.
LED's as a component can be dirt cheap if bought in large numbers but that does not mean they are a cheap alternative!
Especiall with distance invloved the wiring does go into the bill, same for actuall powering the LED's.
Wether or not you want to use a dedicated controller you still face the wiring.
A common stage voltage for LED's that I know of is 42 volts.
This comes from other things and is basically a limit set to prevent serious hram in case of accidents as 42V is considered to low to cause electrocution.
24V and 12V systems are also common and some applications use 32V instead.
Having said that it means in the most simple form you need one LED and one resistor each on a duble wire.
So unless all LED's are really close to each other you will pay far more for the wiring than for the light.
Fibre optics are expensive on a small scale and if no proper sources are available.
For those willing to put in some manual labour there is the way of misusing fibre optic cables.
Some only have a few strands inside others a few hundret.
The bigger ones can be polished as whole on one end of the cable and then split into individual strands going to where the light is needed.
Only problem here is size.
Usually these cables have hair thin fibre optics inside and unless a lens is used the will only produce a tiny spot of light.

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Antzy Carmasaic
Antzy Carmasaic

3 years ago

You should start with a few tutorials on LEDs. Plenty of them if you google it. Basically, you want to pass the required current(most commonly 20mA) to each by putting an appropriate resistor(calculated using ohm's law V=IR) to each LED and connecting to power source.
Or else go with xmas lights as Toga_Dan suggested. That's a painless and foolproof method.

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Toga_Dan
Toga_Dan

3 years ago

xmas lights r somtimes LED. Bang. Done.

Unfortunately, I, and others can see the 60 hz flicker with these. Converting to DC with a capacitor to smooth out the sine wave would take care of that.

Projection is also an option. If u hav an elipsoidal and a gobo, it could b done wit just the 1 light.