Octoscroller Takes The Hexascroller To The Next Level


The folks at NYCResistor have a new toy in the Octoscroller. For a couple of years now the NYCResistor crew has used the HexaScroller as a clock and general alert system. Now that RGB LED panels are cheaply available, the group decided to upgrade both the number of sides and the number of colors.

Octoscroller uses eight 16×32 RGB LED panels. These panels are relatively easy to interface to, but require constant refresh even to display a static image. This makes them both memory and CPU intensive for smaller microcontrollers. Brightness control via PWM only increases the difficulty.

On the plus side, the panels are structurally strong. This allows the Octoscroller to avoid the plywood ring which made up the frame of the Hexascroller. 3D printed brackets and hardware were all that was needed to complete the Octoscroller frame.

The brain of the this beast is a BeagleBone Black running LEDscape along with some custom software. Imagery comes from the Disorient Pyramid.

If you’re in the New York area, NYCResistor plans to offer classes on building your own Octoscroller.  You can also see the Octoscroller in person at MakerFaire NYC this weekend.

8 thoughts on “Octoscroller Takes The Hexascroller To The Next Level

  1. On the subject of refresh; intel made a push to have monitors refresh themselves so computers can be mad powersaving by switching off the display electronics when nothing is happening on the screen. It seemed interesting but I fear it’s hard to convince monitor makers.
    But anyway, if that would to take off it would be interesting for hackers too I imagine, being able to push an image to a monitor and then switch off again.

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