[Evan] wrote in to let us know about the LED matrix infinity mirror he’s been working on. [Evan] built a sizable LED matrix out of WS2812B LEDs and mounted them to a semi-reflective acrylic sheet, which makes a pretty awesome infinity mirror effect.
Instead of buying pre-wired strands of serial LEDs like we’ve seen in some other projects, [Evan] purchased individual WS2812 LEDs in bulk. Since the LEDs just had bare leads, [Evan] had to solder wires between each of his 169 LEDs (with some help from a few friends). After soldering up hundreds of wires, [Evan] drilled out holes for each LED in a piece of semi-reflective acrylic and inserted an LED into each hole.
To create the infinity mirror effect, [Evan] mounted the LED matrix behind a window. [Evan] put some one-way mirror film on the outside of the window, which works with the semi-reflective acrylic to create the infinity mirror effect. The LEDs are driven by an Arduino, which is controlled by a couple of free programs to show a live EQ of [Evan]’s music along with patterns and other effects.
12 thoughts on “LED Matrix Infinity Mirror”
Sounds like a good application for the glass PCB hack we saw a while back.
awsome thinking and application of the semi reflective acrylic sheet
Not sure why he didn’t buy the pre-wired LEDs since he actually bought them already soldered onto tiny PCBs and just soldered his own wires between them. Maybe a bit cheaper and some kind of middle ground between pre-made and raw parts. But I think I would have spent a few dollars extra then instead of enlisting friends to solder about 800 wires… :)
Creator here, yeah, I should have thought it through better first. However, 200 separate LEDs only cost $38, and I was also free to determine exactly how far apart I wanted my lights.
That being said, if I had known how much of a hassle all the soldering was going to be (not necessarily just because of all the soldering itself as much as the cycle of finding and fixing shorts and faults) I would definitely have gotten pre-wired lights, but by the time I started to reconsider I had already sunk some number of dollars and hours into the project.
On the plus side, I am now really good at soldering :)
True dat. ^_^ I’ve done similar things myself a long time ago – it’s hard to image beforehand how much of a hassle it really is to cut, strip, and solder hundreds upon hundreds of wires. In my head it was like “maybe an hour or so” but when you actually start doing it and the sheer amount of wires sinks in you quickly revise the one hour estimation.
But as you said, is a good exercise in soldering and a good reason to have a beer or two with your mates while soldering….
I’ve made the same mistake, except hand-soldering a 9×12 RGB matrix (individual LEDs, not self-driven): https://c57248e9-a-62cb3a1a-s-sites.googlegroups.com/site/dbtayl/hale/pictures/LED_matrix_wire_mess.jpg
Doesn’t look anywhere near as nice as yours, though. And [un]fortunately, one of the driver chips I was using died, so now I’m thinking it would be less work to just re-do it with WS2812B’s than to re-do the driver board for that mess.
That link didn’t work so well… http://bit.ly/1ErEdUS
Soldering? Just say no. Wire wrap!
Near impossible to buy proper wire wrap tools and wire nowdays. I really miss that awesome kynex coated wire that was perfect for board level hacks.
No shortage of tools or ww wire available online at good prices. Pre-cut and spools of 30ga. + used/new tools at eBay and elsewhere.
Never liked acrylic much, it cracks and scratches so easily.
Having reached the age of 84 I don’t have a clue as to what you guys are talking about. Does anyone read Charles Dickens these days?
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