Put on your sunglasses before wiring up this LED matrix - 64 eye-blistering RGB LEDs adorn the Adafruit DotStar Matrix for a blast of configurable color. Arranged in an 8x8 matrix, each pixel is individually addressable. Only one microcontroller pin is required to control all the LEDs, and you get 24 bit color for each LED.
With 64 LEDs, you can have up to 4A of current draw if all the LEDs are on bright white. You can use our 5V 4A, 5V 2A or even a 5V 10A power supply. For portable use, if you are drawing less than 3A, try out this 5V@3A UBEC.
These are the same integrated LEDs that are used in our new fancy DotStar strips. This tiny 5050 (5mm x 5mm) SMD LED is the most compact way possible to integrate multiple bright LEDs to a design. Rather than NeoPixels, DotStar LEDs use a 2-wire protocol that is less timing-specific and has high-frequency PWM for smoother color blending.
Like NeoPixels, DotStar LEDs have an embedded microcontroller inside the LED. You can set the color/brightness of each LED to 24-bit color (8 bits each red green and blue). Each LED acts like a shift register, reading incoming color data on the input pins, and then shifting the previous color data out on the output pin. By sending a long string of data, you can control an infinite number of LEDs. The PWM is built into each LED-chip so once you set the color you can stop talking to the disk and it will continue to PWM all the LEDs for you.
Check out our tutorial showing wiring, power usage calculations, example code for usage, etc!
Please note: Flexible PCBs are not designed for repeated flexing! While we think this product may work in wearables or other situations where the matrix is bent around, we do not offer any guarantees or refunds if you end up cracking the LEDs or traces! This is for advanced users only, who already know how to use DotStar LEDs and are comfortable with the high current requirements and protecting the matrix from damage. There are no returns, refunds or replacements for damaged product. You cannot cut these panels into custom shapes as data/power lines run through the entire body of the PCB.