The video above shows the NeoPixel ring in a pocket with the pulse sensor between two fingers.  The sensor package comes with velcro for using the sensor on one finger and an ear clip for handless Bajorian pulse sensing on your earlobe.

The circuit board is out of the pocket for the demo above.  This may be tucked in the pocket along with a battery for costuming.  The USB cable connecting the circuit board and the battery may be routed to another pocket or other inconspicuous place.

Ensure the sensor us against the skin but not too tight.  Adjust it for a steady beat. You can use the Pro Trinket/Arduino onboard LED to view the flashing in addition to seeing the NeoPixels flash.

If you do not get the NeoPixels to flash:

  • If the Pro Trinket/Arduino LED 13 flashes, the processor is working along with the code.  No flash?  Be sure you are holding the sensor and that you loaded the code from the previous page onto the Pro Trinket/Arduino.
  • The green LED in the center of the sensor should be on when it is connected correctly to the Pro Trinket/Arduino.  Check connection wires and power to the project if you do not see the green sensor LED (in the center of the heart). If you see the green LED, gently press the sensor between two fingers to detect your pulse.

The Next Level

The obvious shape for the NeoPixels would be a heart.  NeoPixel strips are not very flexible.  Individual NeoPixels may be soldered in shapes useful for costuming.

A NeoPixel Tiara may be pulsed with the Pro Trinket and an ear clipped Pulse Sensor.  A dress bodice or skirt could also pulse to a heartbeat.  May this project be your start to using the Pulse Sensor and NeoPixels together.

This guide was first published on Sep 29, 2015. It was last updated on Sep 29, 2015. This page (Use) was last updated on Oct 22, 2019.