IR Controlled Christmas Tree




It all started with this Instructables : Intructables Christmas Tree . So I decided to make it in the FabLab in my town (Strasbourg, France) ( The frame is cool, but I wanted more. So I decided to add an Arduino UNO, Neopixels LED strips, an IR receiver (so I can change colors and animation with an IR Remote), and a buzzer (to play some christmas song).

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Step 1: The Frame

What you need :

  • a small piece of 3mm plywood (30x20cm is plenty)
  • A laser cutter

Go to your favourite FabLab and cut the frame

Then assemble the frame. You don't need glue or tape, everything fits right.

Step 2: Electronics Parts

What you need :

  • 1x Arduino UNO
  • 22x Neopixel LED (I used 2 strips of 11 LEDs)
  • 1x IR Module receiver (I used this one -> IR receiver )
  • 1x piezo buzzer
  • 1x 330 Ohms resistor
  • 1x IR Remote control (from an old DVD player of whatever)
  • 1x 5v 1A USB Power Supply. I used a Samung one from my old Galaxy S3
  • 1x USB Type B cable

Step 3: LEDs and Soldering

Cut your LED strip and glue each LED on the frame as shown on the picture. Then solder all the LED together.

Be carefull to solder the Out pin of the first LED to the In of the second LED.

In -> Out -> In -> Out -> etc....

Step 4: The Code

I used several libraries for the code.

The Neoxipels Library can be found here :

The Neopixel documentation here :

The IR Remote librairie can be found here :

The ToneAC librairie can be found here :

/!\ I didn't use an external power supply /!\

Which means I used the +5v from the arduino that can only deliver up to 500mA. Each LED in full white consumes 60mA. With 22 LEDs it's a total of 60x22 = 1320mA (1,32A). This is too much for the Arduino ! That's why is set the brightness to 64 (with strip.setBrightness(64) ), so I got only 1/4 of consumption.

=> 1320/4 = 330mA ; this is OK for the Arduino and still bright enough to look good.

Step 5: Enjoy Animations and Song !

Make it Glow Contest 2016

Participated in the
Make it Glow Contest 2016

Arduino Contest 2016

Participated in the
Arduino Contest 2016

First Time Authors Contest 2016

Participated in the
First Time Authors Contest 2016

Remix Contest 2016

Participated in the
Remix Contest 2016

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    5 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Well done Max, next time you should make a bigger one for the city's christmas market :)


    Reply 2 years ago

    Thank you ! I'll upload more pictures and videos as soon as I can. And the Arduino sketch is missing, i'll fix that soon.


    That is very cool. You need to enter this in the Make It Glow contest. It would probably do well.

    1 reply