The NeoPixel FeatherWing requires only one pin, and works with any Feather - although you may need to change the pin used by soldering the bottom jumper. You can use as many as you like, by assigning a different pin to each FeatherWing - just watch out for your power usage!
- Blindingly bright RGB pixels! So much color!
- Familiar NeoPixels are well known, lots of example code available for all chips
- Uses only one pin for all of the LEDs
- Somewhat low resolution display, 4x8 pixels
- Can be power hungry, up go 35mA per pixel at full white - so proper programming is essential
- LEDs are powered off of USB/LiPo, so disabling the Feather via the EN pin will not disable the NeoPixels.
Dotstar LEDs need two data pins, but they can be clocked faster than NeoPixels.
This is the DotStar FeatherWing, a 6x12 RGB LED Add-on For All Feather Boards! Using our Feather Stacking Headers or Feather Female Headers you can connect a FeatherWing on top or bottom of your Feather board and make your Feather board strut like a peacock at a rave.
Put on your sunglasses before staring into these 72 configurable RGB LEDs, they are super bright! Arranged in a 6x12 matrix, each 2mm by 2mm sized RGB pixel is individually addressable. Only two pins are required to control all the LEDs. On the bottom we have jumpers for the Data and Clock lines so you can change them from the defaults. Works with any/all of our Feathers! You can cut the default jumper traces and use any pins you like
Create a dazzling light up project with our new RGB Matrix FeatherWing. Now you can quickly and easily create projects featuring your favorite 16 or 32-pixel tall matrix boards. Using our RGB Matrix library is easy and works wonderfully with any of our M0, M4, or RP2040 based Feathers.
Please note: This wing is only tested/designed to work with the SAMD21 M0, SAMD51 M4, and RP2040 Feathers. It's not for use with any other Feathers at this time. (That said, if you'd like to add support, we'd be happy to take a pull request on the library repo)
This version of the RGB Matrix FeatherWing is only for nRF52840-based Feathers due to the way that the pins need to be lined up to work with the HUB75 displays.
These wings can be assembled in one of two ways. You can either solder in a 2x8 IDC shrouded header on the top, then plug in the IDC cable that came with your matrix. This makes it easy to stack on top of your Feather. Or, you can solder in the 2x10 socket header on the bottom of the Wing, and then stack your Feather on top. That way you can plug it directly into the back of the matrix *mind blown*
Since we first started carrying NeoPixels back in 2012, the chainable RGB LEDs have taken over the world. And a big part of that success is due to the simplicity of their wiring - just one data wire, no matter how many pixels you've got. So no surprise they're everywhere, blinking away in art exhibits, maker faire demos, DJ booths, decorations, and costumes.
But, at some point, every NeoPixel'er bumps into the constraints of that single-data-wire: the timing is very picky and often time your code has to stop completely so that it can burst out the data without any interruptions. This requirement makes it tough to create fast-update lighting effects, and limits the number of pixels you can drive before other hardware peripherals get attention.
Resident pixel-pro Paint Your Dragon (who coined the name NeoPixel dont-cha-know!) took on this challenge and has succeeded gloriously. By carefully examining the ATSAMD21 and ATSAMD51 datasheets, he noticed you could use the Timer 0 in 'waveform' mode, and create 8 unique waveforms over DMA that would handle all the pixel-pushing for you.
Thus were born the NeoPXL8 Arduino library and NeoPXL8 FeatherWing! The library runs on our Feather M0 or Feather M4 and handles all the NeoPixeling for you, up to 8 strands of concurrent DMA output. For the Feather M4, each one can be 1750 RGB pixels long for a total of 8 x 1750 = 14000 pixels. For the Feather M0, each one can be 250 RGB pixels long for a total of 8 x 250 = 2000 pixels. That leaves you some RAM for your code to run in as well.
This Wing plugs into any/all Feather main boards and can fit two Cherry MX or compatible switches to turn your Feather into the lil'est macro keypad.
Each Wing has two Kailh sockets, which means you can plug in any MX-compatible switches instead of soldering them in. You may need a little glue to keep the switches in place: hot glue or a dot of epoxy worked fine for us.
Beneath each switch is a reverse-mount NeoPixel pointing up through the spot where many switches would have an LED to shine though. The two pixels are chained together so you can control them as one 2-pixel NeoPixel strand.