SparkFun LED Driver Breakout - LP55231

The SparkFun LP55231 LED Driver Breakout is a self-contained solution for developing and deploying the nine-channel I2C LED controller. Remarkably simple, the breakout is equipped primarily with just the LP55231 LED controller IC, plus three RGB LEDs. It also features pads and jumpers for replacing the onboard LEDs with external ones, and configuring the I2C bus, which allows you to daisy-chain up to four LP55231s. This breakout drives the LEDs using Pulse Width Modulation (PWM), so it is well-suited for variable intensity and color-mixing applications!

Originally designed to be used in mobile device and automotive applications, it isn’t meant to be overwhelmingly bright, and it has some unique qualities. First, there is an onboard charge-pump power supply, which allows it to drive LEDs with a forward voltage that’s higher than the power supply voltage. Second, the LP55231 has an LED offload engine. This is an LED-specific microcontroller, which allows it to perform LED operations without requiring assistance from the host microcontroller. It can independently perform LED operations like chases, blinks and fades.

Get Started with the LP55231 Breakout Guide

SparkFun LED Driver Breakout - LP55231 Product Help and Resources

LP55231 Breakout Board Hookup Guide

November 3, 2016

Get to know the LP55231 9-channel LED driver., and learn how to configure and program this surprisingly flexible IC.

Core Skill: Soldering

This skill defines how difficult the soldering is on a particular product. It might be a couple simple solder joints, or require special reflow tools.

1 Soldering

Skill Level: Noob - Some basic soldering is required, but it is limited to a just a few pins, basic through-hole soldering, and couple (if any) polarized components. A basic soldering iron is all you should need.
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Core Skill: Programming

If a board needs code or communicates somehow, you're going to need to know how to program or interface with it. The programming skill is all about communication and code.

3 Programming

Skill Level: Competent - The toolchain for programming is a bit more complex and will examples may not be explicitly provided for you. You will be required to have a fundamental knowledge of programming and be required to provide your own code. You may need to modify existing libraries or code to work with your specific hardware. Sensor and hardware interfaces will be SPI or I2C.
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Core Skill: Electrical Prototyping

If it requires power, you need to know how much, what all the pins do, and how to hook it up. You may need to reference datasheets, schematics, and know the ins and outs of electronics.

2 Electrical Prototyping

Skill Level: Rookie - You may be required to know a bit more about the component, such as orientation, or how to hook it up, in addition to power requirements. You will need to understand polarized components.
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Customer Comments

  • I needed some LEDs for debug indicators and was short on pins, so this fit the bill nicely as I can just hang it off the I2C bus I’m already using! I’m not doing anything fancy with it, so the code examples were overkill and, frankly, hard to understand, but after some experimentation with the simple_demo.ino I figured out an easy way to drive these that works great!

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