My local gallery (Topanga canyon gallery) has a studio tour every summer. This is a nice fund raiser for them and a chance to see meet a lot of artists. They have a preview event that features works no bigger than 8 x 8 inches by each of the artists. I used the forge to make a frame for a P3 led matrix. The assembly comes in at 7.9 x 7.9 ( if one ignores the power cord).
I started with a flat box.py design and migrated one of the flat sides inboard. This involved removing the tabs from the edge and adding similar slots lower down on all of the sides. I then modified one of the large faces to have some holes to line up with the panel mounts, and removed most of the rest to give access to the panel connections. Then, I opened up a hole on the back to allow access to the “brain” that controls the LED and added an 8 mm hole on one side for the power jack to mount.
Yep. I spend a lot of time making patterns for LED matrix pieces. These panel types are great and come with a variety of led sizes. Tiny ones with 2 mm per led are P2 and big ones with 10 mm per led are P10. A naming convention that makes sense for once. The limiting factor is terms of size is the micro controller one uses. The PJRC teensy 4.0 and 4.1 are the current upper limit unless I jump to a rasberry pi but that is a bridge too far for me right now.
It is based on adruino. The major library involved is fastLED which opens the door to general LED control and then one of several other libraries that will drive the matrix of choice. There is a fastLED group on reddit that can help get you pointed in the right direction.
Of late, I have been buying from ali express. Shipping form china is not super fast but I plan ahead.
the vendor: Shenzhen Better LED display Store has yet to let me down. Power supplies, panels, wiring harnesses… I have used their p5 and p3 panels and have some p4 and p10s waiting for the next project. YOU can also buy panels from adafruit or amazon.
Adafruit has boards to drive such panels but I prefer the boards from pixelmatix . They also offer the library needed to get started. These work great with the teensy (3.2 to 4.1 depending on your size and speed targets) from pjrc. It will take a bit to get it all working as the configuration files are tricky and documentation is thin.
IT can be but I believe it changes vendor to vendor. I ordered some bearings and shipping was free. ( or included in the price). On one panel order of about $100, shipping was about 30 which seems steep but still cheaper in total than the same panels from amazon and less than half of the same from some sources. It definitely pays to consider the shipping before pressing order.