13th March 2013: Controlling RGB LEDs with Arduinos So RGB LEDs can light up in multiple colours; red green and blue in various amounts - you can do in between colours as per the light spectrum (pink, violet, aqua, purple, lighter blue/green/red, and white are the main ones I think are recognisable). Of course you can't do black, or darker colours - those are best done with tinted lenses. For me these are fine colours to work with though!
So to do this it needs a program to be run on essentially a dead cheap tiny mini-computer. This program run on the computer sends a signal to a more complicated board which then sends the signal around the RGB LED's.
The reason I am not doing this with a more complex setup (eg; every single RGB LED being controllable) is because I've not done much in the way of electronics, and don't have time to tailor a plan. I will be building all the boards myself (the ones in the picture I soldered myself) and is a respectable way towards doing it all myself anyway!
My plan is to do 3 RGB controllers on a single Arduino. These would then control different colours. For instance my main one will aim to be a base of blue (set out everywhere) then the two others being alternative shining to white to "sparkle" or at least alternate what is going on with different shades.
(I also plan something fancier and sillier along with some basics like blue, green...and pink. Disco Taric anyone? There is also a need to do something more complicated for any demonstrations).
There will be 3 of these (Shield, Hammer, Armor) and have batteries and buttons in them. I am going to see if I can get RF connectors so I only need to click one button to change the pattern.
This is a rather expensive endevour; the RGB LED strips were £20 each (hopefully enough!), the Arduino clones were around £8 each, the batteries will be around £12 each, the wire and connectors will be another tenner-ish I hope, and the RGB controller boards of which I'll get 10 are £10 each (worth it from a friend, designing them myself would have been impossible). I don't know about the addons to do buttons/RF things yet though. £150+ for it all is a lot but it should look good in the end!
(Posted because finally I have a working board, powered, running the RGB LED's with a program I can edit! whew, took a while to get it all sorted!)