Thursday, October 12, 2023

64 x 72 LED wall with ESP32 and WS2812B

I have been making LED signs for many years.  This blog testifies to that.  However I thought I would take my latest design to the next level and run four of the 16 x 72 LED pannels.  When I first started I was using an Arduino UNO in parallel mode using my own code.  Then I reconfigured to zigzag format and use used customized code.  Now I am using WLED on an ESP32.  What I want to do is set up four outputs so I can run four panels and update them from my cell phone.  

I have WLED working using a single output pin but its limited to 2048 LED's.  That is the picture on the right.  On the left is my four output adapter with a level shifter as well.  

When I first tried the level shifter I could not even communicate with the ESP32!  I thought I had fried it but when I went back to the one pin version it still worked!  I am adding a filter capacitor to see if the fixes the issue.  The filter capacitor did not help, so I am running the LED strips off the ESP32 pins via a 220 ohm resistor.  So far no problems! The issue was that IO12 must be tied low during boot so do not use it for LED strips!

This is a sample of scrolling text using WLED.  I want two lines of stationary text so I may have to do some custom code to get it to work.

I have a total of six of the 16 x 72 panels so I might eventually add two more panels to the processor.

Here is the first video:

Here is a picture of six panels all working off one ESP32 processor.

Here is the schematic of what I am making to drive the panels.

This is an 8 channel version I am working on:

I have been working on making the panels into a "cityscape" After getting WLED to work on my PC then getting WLED pixel art converter to work. Then getting the two to work together on a PC I have createed a "Cityscape" panel. It took a lot of work to get this far. The biggest trick was finding the IP of the panel on the phone under config, wifi, client IP:, then going to that IP on the desktop and putting it into pixel art converter. I think if I zoom in the buildings would become clearer.

Is AliExpress a scam?

 Aliexpress kept saying my package arrived but was not deliverable, there was a "Delivery Issue".  This went on for three or four days.  So I went to the post office and asked.  They asked for my address and said there was no package for me.  The clerk also advised me that several others have also asked for packages from AliExpress.  I was told that it was a scam.

I went back again the next day and asked if they ahd a package that was not deliverable because the adress was missing.  Sure enough, there was my package.  What AliExpress does is send the package from China to Kentucky where it is then sent to the purchaser.  However, there is something wrong with their addressing that the address is not complete! 

This is what the second shipping label looks like.  As you cna see the adedress is not complete.  I do not know how to fix this but someone needs to cntact them and fix the problem.  Otherwise everyone is going to think they are a scam!  Also there is no way to get the second tracking number to see it is stuck at the post office.