Make Your Own 15x10 RGB LED Matrix

Introduction: Make Your Own 15x10 RGB LED Matrix

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

In this video series I will present you how to build a 15x10 RGB LED Matrix. This Matrix has a width of 1.5m and a height of 1m. It consists of PL9823 RGB LEDs which are a cheap alternative to common WS2812 LEDs. I will talk about the challenges that such a project offers and how I solved mostly every problem during the build. At the end of this instructables you should be able to build such a monstrosity and also be able to control it with the Glediator software through a Raspberry Pi 2. And trust me, it looks amazing! Let's get started!

And if you are curious how I built the wood construction around the Matrix itself, then check out my previous Instructables about my LED Bar:

Step 1: Watch Part 1 of the Video Series!

Part 1 is all about how I started the project,.......with many problems. It is only an introduction and does not show my final design. You can skip it if you really don't have the time.

Step 2: Watch Part 2 of the Video Series!

This video gives you all the information you need to build your own Matrix. And you can already control the PL9823 LEDs with an Arduino Nano to produce a great light show.

Step 3: Order Your Parts!

Here is a small parts list with example sellers:

150x PL9823 RGB LED 8mm:

150x 100nF Capacitor:

1x 5V 12A Power Supply:

1x Arduino Nano :

1x150Ω Resistor:

150x PL9823 RGB LED 8mm : -

150x 100nF Capacitor:

1x 5V 12A Power Supply:

1x Arduino Nano :

1x150Ω Resistor:

150x PL9823 RGB LED 8mm :

150x 100nF Capacitor:

1x 5V 12A Power Supply:

1x Arduino Nano :

1x150Ω Resistor:

You also need:
15m 3x1.5 qmm NYM

15m 0.75 qmm solid wire

2m 5x2.5 qmm flexible wire


Step 4: Animations for the Arduino Nano!

Here are the codes that I used during this video part. This way you don't need a Raspberry Pi 2 to control your LED Matrix, just an Arduino Nano. And it already looks awesome!

Mediafire Link:

Step 5: Watch Part 3 of the Video Series!

In this final part I show you how to use the Glediator Matrix animation software with a Raspberry Pi 2/ Banana Pro/ Banana Pi/ Orange Pi.

Step 6: Order Your Favorite Single Board Computer!

Here is a list of boards that should work without a problem:


Raspberry Pi 2:

Banana Pi:

Banana Pro:

Orange Pi:

Raspberry Pi 2:

Banana Pi:

Banana Pro:

Orange Pi: -

Raspberry Pi 2:

Banana Pi:

Banana Pro:

Orange Pi: -

Step 7: GLEDIATOR PL9823 Arduino Sketch!

Here you can download the code which you need to upload to the Arduino Nano before using the Glediator software.

Step 8: Useful Links to Sites!

Here are some of the sites that I mentioned during video part 3:

Raspberry Pi 2 Raspian Download: Glediator Download:

LeMaker Raspian Download:

WinSCP Download:

Step 9: Commands That I Used!

Here is a list of commands that I used during the final part of the video series:

sudo passwd root (Change the password for the root user)

cd glediator/dist/ (Change directory)

java -jar Glediator.jar (Execute Glediator.jar)

sudo apt-get install librxtx-java (Install the RXTX library for Java)

export CLASSPATH=/usr/share/java/RXTXcomm.jar (Change CLASSPATH)

export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/lib/jni (Change LD_LIBRARY_PATH)

Step 10: Success

You did it! Now sit back and enjoy the light show.
Feel free to check out my Youtube channel for more awesome projects:

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

2 People Made This Project!


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55 Discussions


Question 2 months ago

Will it work with Asus Tinkerboard?

hi, i made a 16*8 panel and got it to work on the arduino sketches provided with your instructions but cant seem to work with the glediator software. I connected arduino to my pc and tried sending data signals from pc to arduino with glediator, the RX shows activity but nothing happens on the board!! does anyone have any suggestions!!!!!!!!!

Does it also work with only the PC and the Arduino (without of the Rasberry PI 2)


Do you think this will work with a Pine64 board instead of a raspberry PI?

Hi!I like the project so much!!!

I have Arduino Uno,Can i uset for the project

Hi everybody!

I would love to do this project as well and I
would like to ask you something. I didn't find the PL9823 RGB LED but I
found RGB PTH LED. Will they work like the PL9823? Another question is
if there is a way to replace each led with another matrix but control it
as one led. I want to replace each led in each box with another led
matrix but control that entire matrix as one led. Is it possible? Thank
you very much!


Hi Mr Scott!! I have reproduced your awesome project! But when I powered up It lights and down in a seconds... I have added 3 wiring in ground and vdd. But it still doing it. Could you please tell me why?

I built this LED Matrix with 204 LEDs (17x12). Everything works fine but the Data signal doesn't seems to be correct.

I started with the LED on the bottom right and connected them like a snake to the top.

The upper lines sometimes do what they want.

If i test LED for LED and let a white dot run through the matrix, sometimes the LED before or after the current one lights up blue or yellow. The first LED blinks always white in this case. I tested different LEDs to be the first one, always the same.

What could be the reason?

5 replies

It is a common problem that I was facing as well. Make sure your power wiring is thick and connects every LED with all the one around them (extreme case). You can also try adding a small value resistor at the beginning of each new line ( around 10ohm). And the new FastLED library also supports the pl9823 protocol. Make sure to use this one.

hola amigo, nos podría regalar una imagen de la conecxion de los led, muchas gracias

Ich sag's mal auf deutsch.

Ich habe 3 reihen mit Stromkabeln miteinander verbunden und speise den Strom ebenfalls an 3 Stellen in die Matrix ein. Also mache ich am besten noch mehr Verbindungen und schaue dann mal weiter?

Werde das auf jeden Fall mal so probieren, danke!

Mit der Abschirmung vom Datenkabel sollte/kann das also eher nicht zusammenhängen?

what code are you using for it Arduino wise? Im having a similar problems to yours but mine are acting like there is no data at all coming in .

I'm using the fastled example codes from the arduino software.

do you use the right configuration?

Can you make the Raspberry Pi open Gladiator, start the serial port and start the animation playlist automatically when you boot it? Or do you have to do all that manually?

Hello i have one question is it possible with this to program pic like a smile or a house or is it only for the animations like you demonstrate ?

Scott, your project is awesome. I´ll keep following your articles!!


2 years ago

10x15 led matrix live mix spectrum analyzer

Hi Scott...!!?

First...Great job!! Your Projects are awsome:)

My name is Caspar, from Ratingen in Germany....and i'm going to build your 10x15 Led Matrix for our electro-party this summer.

The question is: what's the best way to visualize the live audio signal on the matrix??

will play the music at 2 turntables, 1 cd/mp3 media player and 1
laptop. All these sounds will be mixed with an usb/analog mixer and send
to a denon stereo amplifer.

thx for your trouble

best regards...


p.s.: will send you photos/videos if everything works fine;)

Hey Scott,

I built the matrix with dimensions of 16 by 12, the issue im running into is that the arduino nano isn't showing up under the com window in glediator for some reason. I already downloaded the code you posted onto it and redefined the number of leds, i just cant figure what's going wrong.

I was going to purchase the LEDs but I ran into a problem. I noticed there were pl9823 f8 or f5 kinds of LEDs. I was wondering if I should get those or did I do something wrong?

1 reply

that's 5mm or 8mm LED's just the size.. I believe he went with the 8mm