Make Your Own LED Stroboscope

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About: Awesome Electronics Tutorials, Projects and How To´s

In this project I will show you how the stroboscopic effect works and how we can use it to determine the RPM of a motor. Also I will be showing you how to create a simple LED stroboscope at home by utilizing an Arduino or a 555 Timer circuit. Let's get started!

Step 1: Watch the Video!

The videos gives you all the information you need to create your own LED Stroboscope. During the next steps though I will present you some additional information.

Step 2: Get Your Components!

Here you can find a parts list with example seller for the 555 Timer circuit:

Amazon.com:

1x TLC555: https://amzn.to/2CfibN7

1x TC4420: https://amzn.to/2CGUf69

1x IRLZ44N MOSFET: https://amzn.to/2yfLGLS

1x 100W High Power LED: https://amzn.to/2CajcWF

1x 7815 Voltage Regulator: https://amzn.to/2ISY9cx

1x 50k Potentiometer: https://amzn.to/2pQSCdC

1x 25k Potentiometer: https://amzn.to/2PxGIAy

2x 1N4148 Diodes: https://amzn.to/2ybVKp9

2x 4.7uF, 1x 100uF Capacitor: https://amzn.to/2pSwjUS

1x 0.1uF, 1x 470nF Capacitor: https://amzn.to/2PwRaZe

Ebay:

1x TLC555: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x TC4420: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x IRLZ44N MOSFET: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 100W High Power LED: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 7815 Voltage Regulator: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 50k Potentiometer: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 25k Potentiometer: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

2x 1N4148 Diodes: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

2x 4.7uF, 1x 100uF Capacitor: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 0.1uF, 1x 470nF Capacitor: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

Amazon.de:

1x TLC555: https://amzn.to/2Ce14Lt

1x TC4420: https://amzn.to/2Cbcv6F

1x IRLZ44N MOSFET: https://amzn.to/2OUsz3q

1x 100W High Power LED: -

1x 7815 Voltage Regulator: https://amzn.to/2CfsdxK

1x 50k Potentiometer: https://amzn.to/2IXIVD6

1x 25k Potentiometer: https://amzn.to/2IXIVD6

2x 1N4148 Diodes: https://amzn.to/2RLG6ZC

2x 4.7uF, 1x 100uF Capacitor: https://amzn.to/2OSYIsc

1x 0.1uF, 1x 470nF Capacitor: https://amzn.to/2Ce1Fgb

Step 3: Build the 555 Timer Circuit!

Here you can find the schematic and reference pictures of my 555 timer circuit. Feel free to use them.

Step 4: Do the Wiring!

Here you can find the final wiring schematic for my stroboscope light as well as pictures of my distribution box.

Step 5: Bonus: the Arduino Circuit!

If anyone is interested in creating the Arduino circuit that was featured in the video, then you can find the schematic and the code for it here.

Step 6: Success!

You did it! You just created your own LED Stroboscope!

Feel free to check out my YouTube channel for more awesome projects: http://www.youtube.com/user/greatscottlab

You can also follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for news about upcoming projects and behind the scenes information:

https://twitter.com/GreatScottLab

https://www.facebook.com/greatscottlab

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    14 Discussions

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    mihaelj

    21 days ago

    what is part list for arduino build i cant find it

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    hubi

    4 weeks ago

    Hello Scott, i have experimented with High Power LEDs as Stroboscope, but the results were not really satifying. The light output was too low, the light pulses not sharp, since the phosphor reacts too slow, so i switched to old school gas discharge a 20Ws xenon flash tube give much better results than a 100W white led. The pulses are really sharp and brighter.

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    AndyS19

    4 weeks ago

    Nice project, and I'm going to definitely try this. One question though, I usually connect IRLZ44N directly to arduino, with 10K pullup resistor. Why do we need the TC4420 MOSFET driver in this setup? what's the design consideration for using it?

    thanks,

    2 replies
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    GreatScottLabAndyS19

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    Properly driving the MOSFET was the design consideration.

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    jperchAndyS19

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    My guess would be to have the IRLZ44N turn on and off as fast as possible. I am further guessing that the stroboscopic effects depend on how fast you can turn on and off the LED's. According to the datasheet, this FET has a total gate charge of 48nC. I believe that driver is capable of providing up to 6A of drive current. This is significantly more than a typical Arduino output can provide.

    I believe driving the FET directly with an Arduino output would work as far as turning the LED's on and off. But you might notice a degradation in the stroboscopic effects.

    In addition to that, only driving the gate to 5V will result in an Rdson that is a bit higher than it could be resulting in wasted power and excess heat on the FET. You can see from his schematic that he is using 15V to power the driver. This means the gate of the FET will be driven to near 15V when turned on. This will mean a lower Rdson and less heat in the FET. Remember that LED is pulling 3.5A.

    I hope that is helpful,

    Joe

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    kkb3

    4 weeks ago on Step 5

    The arduino code appears to be unfinished?! There is no "digitalWrite(9,HIGH);" or a delay(); or millis(); . . . . ?

    1 reply
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    GreatScottLabkkb3

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    No, the code is done. You don't need digitalWrite when you set up the timer correctly. That is the TCCR1A and TCCR1B part. Feel free to watch my basics video about timers.

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    ResoCole2015

    4 weeks ago

    Nice project. It is a great security idea.

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    LouwC1

    Question 5 weeks ago on Step 3

    How should the circuit be modified to run with a single blue led and 5V to 12V supply?

    1 more answer
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    jperchLouwC1

    Answer 4 weeks ago

    You could probably drive a single, 5mm LED directly from the 555 timer. Looking at a datasheet for the 555, it looks like it can pull down better than pull up. So, you would probably want to wire the LED so that the anode is connected to VDD through a resistor and the cathode to the 555 output. You could then leave out U1, U1 and Q1 and power the whole thing off of 12V.

    Of course, it won't be any where near as bright as what he is showing in his video.

    I hope this is helpful,

    Joe

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    gm280

    5 weeks ago

    Nice project. I actually have an old original tube version of the StrobeScope. And while you have to turn it on and wait for the tube filaments to heat up first, it does work perfectly yet.

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    colt3003

    Question 5 weeks ago on Step 6

    Nice project !

    what is missing is the type of the voltage converter you used (where-to-buy suggestion would also be great)

    Thanks in advance

    1 more answer
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    GreatScottLabcolt3003

    Answer 5 weeks ago

    I talked about the converter. It was a boost converter which can output 90V max and 1500W. Should be pretty easy to find with those specs on Ebay/Amazon.