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power drop ?

mannymiller · 902

mannymiller

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on: February 01, 2019, 11:07:43 AM
Hey everyone..., 

I finally completed my setup which seems to be working quite well. my issue is power drop out. if i select full white, full brightness i get a power drop around panel 6 ( 3 leds per corner) so 59 leds onwards. if i add another 5v power source at panel 10 its not perfect, but 95% fixed. anyone else having this issue ?or could you try and see if you also get the problem.  i am using a 4amp power supply, which i have used on many of my other projects without issue. and just to dis-prove a power supply issue i used an 8amp powersupply which powers a 64x64 led matrix and the issue is still apparent.


maybe a fix ? : https://learn.adafruit.com/neopixel-levelshifter/shifting-levels
« Last Edit: February 01, 2019, 11:32:52 AM by mannymiller »



shiryou

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Reply #1 on: February 01, 2019, 12:38:38 PM
I have exactly the same problem. But it is dropping around tile 3. In my case im powering directly from PC usb so i thought it was my problem. I think spigot has the same problem to, so... one more problem to solve...  :'( :'( :'(



spigot

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Reply #2 on: February 01, 2019, 02:00:51 PM
I think this is "normal" behavior. Look at (Section: Distributing power): https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-neopixel-uberguide/powering-neopixels
Maybe adding level converter could help a little bit (It's worth a try).

This is my moodlite:
White:
PS: 600mA, brightness == 10

PS: 600mA, brightness == 120

PS: 1200mA, brightness == 120


Blue:
PS: 600mA, brightness == 10

PS: 600mA, brightness == 120


You can clearly see that it's a power source problem (in my case). If you have power source powerful enough I think it's problem of power distributing (as you stated).
When you use white, all 3 LEDs (in one RGB LED) are turned on at maximum so it consumes a lot of energy. The longer a wire is, the more resistance it has.

I personally don't use white (because of these problems), so I don't care that much.



mannymiller

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Reply #3 on: February 01, 2019, 02:53:56 PM
In most of my projects i have always used the Arduino,  some of my projects include a 14x14, and 16x16 matrix, so 249 leds on the later. i usually add a second 5v power to led 249 ( end of strip ) and never have any issues with power drop outs.  my stereo vu meters use 72 leds per channel - so 144 leds total and do not bother with the second 5v source, and again do not have any issues. ( my setup at the moment is 90 leds)

Adding the second 5v to this setup certainly helps, but doesnt fix the issue 100% thats why i leaning towards increasing the signal wire from 3.3v to 5v using a level shifter.  I dont think its just down to how many leds you are using, but the distance between each led is a factor to.   i found one on ebay for quite cheap. this would also help with some of the issues people are having with flickering.

As you have mentioned on normal rainbow effects its fine, but when using some of the faster patterns i seem to get a random flicker too..

i will report back once i have fitted it which will be a while as its coming from china...



spigot

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Reply #4 on: February 01, 2019, 03:30:51 PM
The wiring length matters for sure. I'm going to order level converter too.



spigot

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Reply #5 on: February 01, 2019, 04:53:19 PM
And what about capacitor? Do you use one? It should help (For fast switching effects it's useful).



shiryou

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Reply #6 on: February 01, 2019, 06:37:10 PM
I tried with a 5A and a 10A PS and the result is the same, so im going to buy one of these level shifting boards too



spigot

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Reply #7 on: February 01, 2019, 06:50:38 PM
I found out that I have a I2C level conversion mode.



I'm going to try it this weekend.



mannymiller

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Reply #8 on: February 01, 2019, 07:40:51 PM
Hey spigot, i have never used a capacitor in any of my projects and never had a problem,  but then it doesnt mean something can go wrong.

personally i have ordered the :    Adafruit 74AHCT125 - Quad Level-Shifter (3V to 5V) [ADA1787]  from amazon.., about 3
and also : 8-channel Bi-directional Logic Level Shifter Converter Module  from ebay, about 2.50

amazon arriving sooner., but is the bare chip, which is pretty easy to connect up., my other option is.. as all the panels will be connected in a set position ( mine will be stuck to a panel ) i will run a second 5v feed to the end of the chain.

but before i jump in, i will connect up an arduino and run a few tests to  make sure it isnt any other issue. it will be using the same 5v supply etc, so the only difference will be the data feed.



mannymiller

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Reply #9 on: February 01, 2019, 09:18:50 PM
UPDATE : ..

I removed the esp8266 and installed an arduino uno in its place and ran a few tests.

The power drop out is still apparent from 36 leds onwards. leds 36 to 45 drop by about 10% and  each panel after drops about 5%. brightness on each panel after.. adding a second 5v on the last panel (81 -90) fixes most of the issue. but there is still a visable drop of about 5%.. reducing to white from full brightness (255) to 200 its even across each panel without any noticeable drop.

running the fasted led examples, sinelone, juggle, bpm etc on full brightness (255), there zero problems, no glitching or flickering - runs very smooth.

so im sure the level shifter will help with any flickering glitching issues. some may see less depending on brand of leds.  As for obtaining a near full bright white then the only way this can be obtained is running a second 5v feed to your last panel. this was tested using a 4 amp, 5amp, and 8 amp supply with the same results

if like me you have made each panel the same, you should have a spare socket on your last panel. adding a second 5v wire from the power supply and plugging into the last socket works quite well.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2019, 09:32:16 PM by mannymiller »



mannymiller

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Reply #10 on: February 07, 2019, 04:03:16 PM
Just a quick update.. ,

I have tried the Adafruit 74AHCT125 - Quad Level-Shifter (3V to 5V) [ADA1787] and this made no difference whats so ever with the glitching when running sinelon and some of the other animations. 
I also tried the diode hack as suggested and this made very little, if any difference.  The voltage drop im using a 10amp power supply, running an extra 5v lead to the last panel, with this i can run 255 bright white without issues. 10 amps for 90 leds is just plain crazy... I have recently built a 30x8 ws2812b led matrix ( 240 leds ) for one of my projects, using the same esp8266 board and it has no problems with using a 8 amp power supply... no glitching or voltage drop., so guessing its down to the distance between the leds.. The total distance over 10 panels is 5.1 metres, if your getting voltage drop out even with a 10 amp power supply, im guessing your going to get voltage drop out on the signal wire too....

Im tempted as this time to lose the esp8266 and throw in an arduino nano with a few patterns i would use, and add bluetooth support.

« Last Edit: February 07, 2019, 04:39:20 PM by mannymiller »



CdRsKuLL

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Reply #11 on: February 07, 2019, 05:30:34 PM
Just wondering.. bit of a long shot but you have added the correct number of LED's, just thinking if it's slightly over then you might get a pause effect.

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mannymiller

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Reply #12 on: February 07, 2019, 06:41:47 PM
UPDATE 2 :

After running out of options, i decided to order a few more esp8266 boards just incase.. in the mean time i fitted an esp32 board... and who would have guessed, glitching fixed.  im guessing not all boards are  created equal.  seems a little buggy when updating leds count etc.  but works 100%. i still need the extra 5v supply and looks better at 200, instead of 255 ( full brightness )...



mannymiller

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Reply #13 on: February 07, 2019, 06:48:15 PM
Just wondering.. bit of a long shot but you have added the correct number of LED's, just thinking if it's slightly over then you might get a pause effect.

it wasn`t a pause effect.., sinelon effect during its trail would leave glitches.., just random flashes.  i have used the sinelon and juggle effect in many of my projects ( cine-lights youtube channel ).. so i knew it wasnt a problem with led configuration.. more power or timings...



shiryou

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Reply #14 on: February 07, 2019, 06:57:55 PM
I have been using sinelong this afternoon and i can see any glitches... its so strange....



 


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