512 LED cube

Get out the soldering iron and clear your schedule, it’s going to take you a while to assemble this 8x8x8 LED matrix which contains a total of 512 LEDs. We’ve looked in on a 3x3x3 cube, and [Chr], who is responsible for this one, has assembled a 4x4x4 cube before, but this one is quite a leap in complexity. It isn’t just physical assembly problems that increase with scale, you’ll need to consider a power supply too since one layer of a 3x3x3 cube would need at 90 mA, but a single layer of the cube above requires 640 mA to light all of the diodes. Multiplexing is handled per-layer, controlled by  ICs which share 8 data lines and are latched by a shift register. This means the display only requires 11 microcontroller pins for addressing. It is striking how well [Chr] explains the design process, and how cleanly he builds the driver circuits on protoboard. There’s a lot to look at and a lot to learn, not to mention the stunning results which can be seen in the video after the break.

[Thanks Vadim]

Comments

  1. jan says:

    @Daid
    fantastic script!!!

  2. Bhima says:

    Thanks to the guys who are re-hosting the PDF.

    Instructables is the worst site that I occasionally find links to. I’ve washed my hands of the site and there isn’t much that would convince me to return. Certainly I am not going to go back and create an account just to view a project.

  3. Faelenor says:

    @All Instructables haters:

    YOU DON’T HAVE TO FU**ING PAY TO SEE ALL THE STEPS IN ONE PAGE OR TO GET THE PDF!!! ARE YOU ALL RETARDED OR YOU JUST PREFER TO BITCH ON THINGS YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW?

    Sorry for this, but I’m really pissed off by all the whining on HaD.

  4. Chris Muncy says:

    @Faelenor

    If you *READ* this thread, you would know that if you got a FREE account at Instructables in the beginning you can download the pdf’s. This is NOT the case now. You have to have a Pro membership and PAY to download the pdf’s.

    On a side note: Thanks to those that have hosted the pdf’s on their personal web site and creating the scripts to make Instructables more bearable,

  5. jim says:

    Where’s that guy who always says LEDs are kids’ stuff?

  6. svofski says:

    @Dald: kudos to you pal.
    @Instructables lovers: &*^@#.

  7. Firebelcher says:

    @Chris Muncy

    I don’t have a instructable pay membership and I am able to download the PDFs without a problem.

    It works fine.. no payments required…

    Did you even log in and try? Or are you beaking off on something you have no clue about?

  8. xtremegamer says:

    and what if the one led in the dead center dies ?

  9. Chris Muncy says:

    @Firebelcher

    *sigh*

    Have you *READ* the above comments?

  10. Lucky says:

    This is just plain cool. Now, go bigger! Love to see a 100×100 and start seeing some 3D images start to come to life.

  11. B0SC0 says:

    Only 64 votes out of 27,996 views.
    Come on people, these guys put a lot of effort into this project. The least we can do is vote for this project.
    Great project, you have my vote.

  12. Nomad says:

    @B0SC0: you have to login to vote :/

    @Daid: awesome site. Did you write it yourself?

  13. Nomad says:

    Oh well forget about the question about the instructabliss site -.-

  14. B0SC0 says:

    @Nomad: I would think that logging in or signing up is a minimal task compared to the work these guys did. Even if you never logged in again.
    I think these guys deserve that much.
    And no, I do not know them, but appreciate how they went out of their way to provide us with this fine project, along with a great write-up.
    But hey, I know there are some out there that don’t care. So much for open source;-(

  15. vespine says:

    i built a similar cube but with RGB leds, been working on it over a year and it’s only 80% complete, but all that is left is some cosmetic and coding work. Once I have it more finished I’ll submit it to HaD. I’m not a strong programmer so it’s probably one of those things that will never be 100% finished :)

    http://v3spin.blogspot.com/search/label/8x8x8%20LED%20Cube

    chrmoe was a big inspiration for me when he posted his 4x4x4 cube, it’s what got me started, big props to him.

  16. Alexdcd says:

    What happens if a spider get stuck in the grid? Kinda scary,

    Imagine how hard it would be to create one with RGB Leds – next project

  17. vasskk says:

    great job

  18. Squirrel says:

    I think that instructables should allow the all steps view for non-users, but it makes sense that only paid users should be able to download the pdfs, since instructables is losing all of the ad profits.

  19. Skappy says:

    Hi,
    Fantastic project but will we have a chance to discover the Code ?
    Thank you very much
    Have a nice day

  20. Mark says:

    This is waaay cool. Pity my attention span in limited – I wouldn’t have the patience to solder all those LEDs. Probably could manage a 2x2x2 cube :)

  21. vu says:

    can you show me how converter tmp to sch when i open

    http://daid.mine.nu/instructabliss/?url=http://www.instructables.com/id/Led-Cube-8x8x8/

    when i download file .sch Daid thanks

  22. anderlan says:

    OMG, why has someone not combined this with a kinect to display the 3d data from the kinect in actual 3d?????

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