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Thread: Fusing Controller

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2021
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    Default Fusing Controller

    I'm just about ready to start building my first controller box(es) and as I was planning out my layouts I was wondering if I should put a fuse on the power line for my controller(s)? And if so what size fuse?

    I've seen some builds that the controllers are fused but I wasn't sure if this was a standard. Standard DC power knowledge is telling me to put a fuse on everything but I wanted to poll here as well. Then if I should be fusing the controller as well what size fuse would suffice? I know most Distro boards come with 5A fuses as a standard as does my Kulp controller so I assumed that would be sufficient but again wanted to confirm.

    Thanks!
    -Russ

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    Default Re: Fusing Controller

    • What happens if you add a fuse and something does wrong - You blow the fuse and all is well.
    • What happens if no fuse is present and something goes wrong - You replace the controller.

    Your choice.

    How big should the fuse be: That depends on the controller and how it drives your lights. My controllers would need a 500ma fuse since I rarely use the V+ outputs on my controllers. Yours would depend on the wire going to the controller and the aggregate of the fusing on the V+ outputs.


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  3. #3
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    Jan 2021
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    Default Re: Fusing Controller

    So I'm going to use V+ on at least 3 outputs, one with 245 pixels, one with 50 and another with 60 rectangular RGB modules (all 12v). Are you saying that I should add up the draw from all of those pixels and fuse my controller power line accordingly? As per Bill Porters presentation 15a fuse can handle 545 pixels at 50% brightness 15A (0.055 draw * 0.5 brightness )so I think 50a would work here or should I use a different calculation?

    Also thinking of my three smart expansion boards. Two will be controlling 800 pixels in my tree, 100 x output total but should only be powering the first 50 per string as I'll add PI at 100. The third will only be powering the 90 pixel star for now. I was planning to add one power in line for all three so I'd add up the draw 15A (0.055 * 0.3) = 909 pixels.

    Thanks
    -Russ

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