A shield for Unexpected Maker's TinyPICO board that connects to a RGB LED Matrix panel.Designed by Brian Lough in Ireland
What is it? A shield for easily controlling RGB LED Matrix using TinyPICO ESP32 development board. This board takes advantages of the cables that come included with most displays. This board is des...Read More…
A shield for easily controlling RGB LED Matrix using TinyPICO ESP32 development board. This board takes advantages of the cables that come included with most displays.
This board is designed to work with the awesome PX Matrix arduino library by 2dom
I have been following Unexpected Maker's journey on developing the TinyPICO for quite some time now and I was very excited to be able to add to the amazing eco-system of shields and add-ons Seon has been developing for the TinyPICO.
The RGB LED matrix panels are one of the coolest displays you can use with an Arduino, but there is quite a bit of wiring to connect them up and also they are a little awkward to power. The panels are only about $20 from aliexpress/eBay
This board makes wiring them really simple! The board just slots directly onto the input header pin, uses the ribbon cable that comes provided with most of these panels to connect the pins of the output header and has screw terminals to connect the power cable that comes with most panels.
I'm pretty certain this was first third-party shield ever created for the TinyPICO! (Bitluni listed his before me though, but mine was designed and built first, I have proof!) I had the board designed and ordered before I even had my TinyPICO.
This really makes using the display as simple as possible. Making use of the cables that comes with the display allows the board to be smaller and less expensive.
Here are some Github Repos with examples of things that can be done using the board. Most are currently for an ESP8266 but could be easily ported! - Some images and a peanut butter jelly time dancing banana
Each TinyPICO Matrix Shield is a kit and comes with the following:
One of the options when purchasing is female pin headers that can be used as socket for the Tiny PICO. There are two options a paid of 1x10 headers or a pair of 2x10 headers. Check out the image above to see the difference between them. NOTE: if you select the 1x10 headers, make sure to solder them to the inside set holes, the Tiny PICO is very small!
The following components are not provided, but are required to use this board.
I created a post on my website that has some basic instructions for assembly and setup: Here
Some people have reported issues with leaving it powered on via the barrel jack while programming so it is advised to disconnect power when using the USB, or alternatively take advantage of the $3 Power BLoughR add-on!
While this board is was physical dimensions are designed to work with a P3 64x32 display, it should be compatible with most displays. There are a couple of areas where you could get caught up and ways to work around them.
Some of these displays come with magnetic screws for mounting them on a metal surface. The assembled PCB is taller than the screws but I have added the option of stand-offs that will extend the screws long enough to work. I have unfortunately not found a good supplier of the magnetic screws themselves yet.
There are two sizes available, M3 and M2.5. All my displays are M3 but in Bitluni's video he mentioned he used M2.5 screws so you will need to check which are the appropriate size for you.
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