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Thread: Another Power Injection Question

  1. #1
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    Default Another Power Injection Question

    Hello all. I really feel like I'm wearing out my welcome here, asking so many questions. I sincerely appreciate all the help I've been given, it has been immeasurably helpful. Maybe once I start getting the hang of all this, I can begin to provide others some answers here.

    I am planning to order lots of pixels, and I was wondering if anyone could let me know if this plan is going to work. I am hoping to use 5v pixels for roofline, and the attached diagram shows how I'm considering wiring. Questions:

    1) Is this OK (or do I need to connect V- from controller and V- from PSU at pixel1?)
    2) Given the distances from PSU to injection point, and # of pixels, do I stand a chance of this working at 80% brightness and no additional power injection?

    While I have bench tested a few sets of pixels (only one 5v set) trying to figure this out on my own, I'm not feeling like the tests are necessarily accurate. The 5v pixels I tested from Amazon had ridiculously small wiring (26-28ga), whereas I'm told that diyledexpress has closer to 19-20ga - which would change things quite a bit.

    I'm really trying to go all 5v, but I don't have $$$ to buys a ton of pixels to test and decide it's untenable given my constraints, and then switch to 12v. Any insights or experience would be most helpful.

    Thank you,
    - pc

    psu_wiring.png

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Another Power Injection Question

    In principle, the diagram you are showing will work. You are pushing things a bit with the 66 pixel group on the left. It would be better to get that count down closer to 50 (or less). The risk you run is that pixel #1 is running way under voltage and that is the pixel that is supposed to receive the data from the controller. Things may not always work under those conditions. However, with reduced brightness this might be just fine.


    2020 Full sized show reworked for the new location. Only adding (famous last words) 13 RBLs that I finally got converted to using pixels
    2019 - Just moved into a new home (yet another change of plans). Will be dim but not dark. Too much to do at the new place to leave time for a show. Dim show (3000 pixels) had regular visits most nights.
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyX...ttrsZNARkUce0Q

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Another Power Injection Question

    Quote Originally Posted by puppycrack View Post
    What AWG wire are you planning to run for your Power Injection? The thicker the wire the less voltage loss you have on a long run.
    2012 - 1st year 64 Channels - 7500 LED lights - 5 sequences
    2013 - 128 Channels - 10,000 LED lights - 7 sequences (2 New)
    2014 - 201 Channels - upgrading 8 Arches to dumb RGB - 8+ sequences (1+ New)
    2015 - 240 Channels + 8 Universes - sequences TBD
    2016 - No Display
    2017 - Back in the Game - 240 Renard Channels + 12 Universes
    2018 - 256 Renard and 9 Falcon Outputs of Pixels - 16 sequences shown over 2 nights
    2019 - 256 Renard and 9 Falcon Outputs of Pixels - 16 sequences shown over 2 nights
    2020 - Emergency Conversion to Falcon F48 with limited wireless

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Another Power Injection Question

    Hmmm running 5V down a 30' line does seem a bit risky on the color quality of that last set of pixels. Probably ok, but not guaranteed. One option, if you know a little about circuits, is stick a boost converter right before the last strip. A China special on one of those would cost not even a dollar. What would drive me nuts is having to weatherproof it.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Another Power Injection Question

    Quote Originally Posted by MartinMueller2003 View Post
    In principle, the diagram you are showing will work. You are pushing things a bit with the 66 pixel group on the left. It would be better to get that count down closer to 50 (or less). The risk you run is that pixel #1 is running way under voltage and that is the pixel that is supposed to receive the data from the controller. Things may not always work under those conditions. However, with reduced brightness this might be just fine.
    Thank you for letting me know it should work - as I was worried I had missed something WRT to PI when using multiple PSUs. I may be able to shift power around to get closer to 50, but it's good to know that I should be close at least!

    Quote Originally Posted by TomL8345 View Post
    What AWG wire are you planning to run for your Power Injection? The thicker the wire the less voltage loss you have on a long run.
    I was going to start with testing using 14AWG, but I can go as big as 12AWG and still be able to hide the wires.

    Quote Originally Posted by 1pet2_9 View Post
    Hmmm running 5V down a 30' line does seem a bit risky on the color quality of that last set of pixels. Probably ok, but not guaranteed. One option, if you know a little about circuits, is stick a boost converter right before the last strip. A China special on one of those would cost not even a dollar. What would drive me nuts is having to weatherproof it.
    I know a little about circuits, but have no experience w/ boost converters - I'll have to look that up. Thank you!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Another Power Injection Question

    Quote Originally Posted by puppycrack View Post
    I was going to start with testing using 14AWG, but I can go as big as 12AWG and still be able to hide the wires.
    I personally run 5V pixels as well and can easily do 25+' runs using 16AWG, 14AWG should not be an issue, but I will let others chime in on that thought.
    2012 - 1st year 64 Channels - 7500 LED lights - 5 sequences
    2013 - 128 Channels - 10,000 LED lights - 7 sequences (2 New)
    2014 - 201 Channels - upgrading 8 Arches to dumb RGB - 8+ sequences (1+ New)
    2015 - 240 Channels + 8 Universes - sequences TBD
    2016 - No Display
    2017 - Back in the Game - 240 Renard Channels + 12 Universes
    2018 - 256 Renard and 9 Falcon Outputs of Pixels - 16 sequences shown over 2 nights
    2019 - 256 Renard and 9 Falcon Outputs of Pixels - 16 sequences shown over 2 nights
    2020 - Emergency Conversion to Falcon F48 with limited wireless

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Another Power Injection Question

    This one runs $2, but it's easy to connect (just solder on the leads), and it pumps 5 amps:
    https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005...archweb201603_
    And it's got a potentiometer on it, so you can adjust it just a hair off minimum setting until the color looks right. You can also bump it up to 12V, so you have options. Nice thing is, if you ever want to go battery-operated, this can boost a 3.7V 18650 battery up to 5V. I actually go up to 5.3V on Arduinos.

    All that being said, you'll probably be fine without it. It's just good to have this in your toolchest.

    (p.s. might not want to order literally that one. I see that this vendor has 0/0 positive ratings)
    Last edited by 1pet2_9; 01-20-2021 at 04:49 PM.

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