Description: The SparkFun EL Sequencer is a board that contains an Arduino-compatible microcontroller, and circuitry for controlling up to eight strands of electroluminescent wire. EL wire is flexible plastic cord that glows brightly when high-voltage AC is applied to it. It’s available in numerous colors (see the related products below), runs cool, and requires very little current, but can be difficult to work with because of the high-voltage requirements. The EL Sequencer can safely switch high-voltage AC on and off, allowing you to easily create animated displays or whatever else your imagination can come up with.
In addition to this board, you will need an inverter (a component that generates the high-voltage AC needed by EL wire), EL wire/tape/panels, and a 5V FTDI BOB or cable to load your own programs. The board also has headers for XBee and NRF24L01+ radio modules for wireless projects. SparkFun carries two inverters, a 3V-input version that can drive a few feet of EL wire, and a 12V-input version capable of driving dozens of feet of EL wire. Choose the one appropriate to your power source and driving requirements. The EL Sequencer possesses zero-crossing optoisolated triacs for noise-free operation and full isolation between the AC and DC sides, and includes a 1.5A adjustable linear regulator to supply regulated DC to an external inverter (not included).
Note: We have fixed the silkscreen error on this board; the FTDI “black” and “green” labels have been fixed.
Based on 3 ratings:
3 of 5 found this helpful:
With a plastic bin of Cool Neon wire, I was hoping to whip together a quick animated Yule wreath with this. I didn’t realize from the picture that while these JST connectors are very similar to the ones I find attached to most Cool Neon / EL wire, they are a slightly smaller form factor. It would be really nice if you guys offered a 12 pack of the correct connectors, as a recommended accessory to this board. So, at the moment, this board is sitting on my desk waiting for the right connectors to arrive.
As a follow-up, right after I posted this review I noticed that SparkFun had designed in wondrous pass-thru solder points for each and every connector on the board. I was able to quickly solder in a set of Cool Neon compatible connector cables, giving this board dual functionality with a minimum of effort.
QC isn’t great, the board randomly has strands turn on. Inconsistent features (FTDI/Xbee switch) and incomplete documentation. Also limited pins for buttons. Also no insulation. Only reason I use it is because it’s the only microcontroller that drives el wire.
Each board is hand tested for functionality on each EL line. The power cycling of the random lines may be code related. The hardware should not behave that way on it’s own.