Pixblasters Video LED Controller

by Pixblasters

Combine LED strips to create a huge display that acts as a regular video monitor.

View all updates Feb 03, 2021

New Controller Updates and the Quick Start Guide Video

by Gordan G

The beginning of the new year is a great time to inform you about the current status of the Pixblasters project, latest developments, and the near future plans. For starters, the Pixblaster MS1 Video LED Controller board is back in stock!

Boards are Back in Stock

The Pixblasters MS1 LED controller board (previously called ‘Pixblasters Go’) and the Array-SL are both in stock and available to order.

A Note about the Array-SL:

The difference between the Array-SL (currently available for purchase) and the Array-S from the original campaign is that the Array-SL does not have mounted connectors. This slight design change was made in order to preserve the functionality and maintain the price of the Array offering.

Progress & Developments in 2020

After the successful crowdfunding campaign, we received positive feedback from different parties, including the innovation award from the Croatian technology magazine VIDI, all of which managed to set our small company on a solid foundation.

In 2020 we did two successful production runs. Though the Pixblasters MS1 Video LED Controller board was carefully tested and designed for production, building larger numbers of fairly complex electronics boards is always challenging. We are very pleased to announce that our production was 100% successful, with no faulty PCBs coming out of the factory.

To improve the product’s quality, we have developed and successfully applied auxiliary HW test tooling, test software, and procedures for testing the assembled PCBs. On top of that, we have perfected firmware flashing and set up the release procedure to assure that only fully tested boards make it to users.

Figure 1: Pixblasters MS1 PCB Second Revision Improvements

We received initial feedback from early users who ordered boards during the campaign. The valuable information actually initiated important changes introduced in the second PCB revision, shown in the above figure. This Pixblasters MS1 Video LED Controller’s version is currently fully available for purchase on Crowd Supply.

Flexible and big video displays sometimes require that the Pixblasters MS1 controller is positioned far from the beginning of display’s LED strips. Since the LEDs use the single-ended signaling, large cable distances between the controller and the LEDs may cause unwanted flickering and other sorts of EMI caused video artifacts. To solve this challenge, and to make things easier for developers of immense displays, we have added on-board termination resistors (1, Figure 1) at the LED outputs. To learn more about this design improvement, please see the new Application Note describing our wiring recommendations.

The new Pixblasters MS1 PCB revision also includes a new chip on the board (2, Figure 1) – the TI DS90C032 LVDS 5V Quad CMOS Differential Line Driver. It effectively extends the distance between the chained MS1 boards in extreme video installations to recommended 5 meters, which is more than double the distance recommended for the first board’s revision. This allows for an additional design freedom and enables even more extreme video installations.

At the moment we are working on a full integration of the APA102-like (4-wire) LED support into the official firmware that will be distributed through our website in the 1Q2021. In case that you’ve missed it, you can read about our plans in this previous update.

Through intensive communication with the existing and potential users, we have detected the parts of technical documentation that should be upgraded. At the end of this short update, please check the Quick Start Guide Pixblasters video clip that demonstrates steps necessary for video LED display configuration and its activation.

More detailed instructions can also be found in Pixblasters User’s Manual.

About the Author

Gordan G

PixiGreen  ·   Strmec Samoborski, Croatia


$25,603 raised

of $8,500 goal

301% Funded! Order Below

Product Choices

$275

Pixblasters MS1 LED controller board

Start building your dream LED display with your own Pixblasters MS1 LED controller. (This item was once named 'Pixblasters Go'.)


$60

Pixblasters Array-SL

These Array-SL boards enable releasable connections with the Pixblasters MS1 LED controller and easy building of the LED matrix. It distributes the video control signals and the power sourced from an external +5 VDC power supply. Each board includes holes for easy wall mounting. Two boards included for a total of 32 LED strips connections.

Credits

Pixblasters

We are a dedicated two-man team of FPGA electronics experts with 20+ years’ experience, with the goal of enabling everyone to build and operate immense and responsive high-resolution video LED displays.


Goran Fiolic

Gordan Galic


L-Tek

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