Affectionately dubbed "Fairy Lights" for their similar appearance, these addressable RGB LED string lights are a great way to light up any project with no soldering required. The insulated strings come in 5m lengths with one RGB LED every 5cm for a total of 100 LEDs. These LEDs have an IP65 waterproof rating to protect your LEDs.
The string of lights terminate on either side with a locking 3-pin JST connector, one male and one female. The wiring and pinout is listed below.
The "male" housing receptacle with (female pin sockets) like the one shown below is the DIN side. The datasheet indicated that the LEDs communicated with "SPI". We tested the LEDs and it uses the WS2812-based protocol. You could use the Neopixel or FastLED library to control the LEDs.
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.
Skill Level: Rookie - You will need a better fundamental understand of what code is, and how it works. You will be using beginner-level software and development tools like Arduino. You will be dealing directly with code, but numerous examples and libraries are available. Sensors or shields will communicate with serial or TTL.
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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.
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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Based on 5 ratings:
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Purchased 2 units a months or so ago. As mentioned in other reviews, the connectors are reversed from every other light strip I own. This caused me to reverse polarity the power. I then cut off the connectors and resoldered, but I guess the damage was done. After buying 2 more last week, I carefully made new connections but still do not have any active lights. These seem like a good idea and appear suited to a project I would like to build, but currently I have spent over $85 plus tax for no result
My light strands seemed to be bad. I was using the female side (male pins) that connects to another strip of pins as the input. Was expecting that it didn't matter which side I used to test them. The male side (female pins) needs to be used for the connection to the MCU. The +5v pin is marked in BLUE with my strands on the male connector end. The female connector end is marked in red. I am able to put 2 strands together and they both work. The yellow tag that labels the wires is correct. In my opinion it is labeled on the wrong end as that is the end that connects to another strand, instead of the input end. Using the FastLED library with WS812 GRB configuration. Good luck!
These lights were exactly what I needed! I had been looking for small yet bright lights for a costume piece and these worked perfectly. I weaved them into a vest and though the rest of the electronics still require additional modifications, these lights did their job splendidly.
Made a "firefly jar" for my deck. All comments regarding which end to use are correct. The sticker comes on the wrong side... Otherwise, an ESP8266 and a level shifter and my fireflies are dancing to the command of my phone!!
I am working on an art project that will use fairie light strings. I bought one of the Sparkfun strings and am delighted. The markings for polarity were completely wrong, but I figured it out. The literature talks about the red stripe. The tag was on the end with a blue stripe, with the other end having an unlabeled red stripe.. I used the end with the label, and got pin polarity using the blue stripe. I used the Sparkfun Arduino libraries and example programs to begin development. The library and code were a great basis to evolve my work. I quickly developed a small fascinator using the one string I bought. I have designed the installation to use 18 strings, but now Sparkfun is out of stock. I could not find a phone number to discuss when they might be getting more light strings in. Frustrating.