Beginner question for a small house in a small street, wled esp8266 or xLights control method?


New elf
Nov 7, 2019
Hey guys sorry if this isn't the correct location for this thread. Now I have a few questions and after an experienced users thoughts..

I have a small yard in a small street where I don't think a full synced show would look any good, how ever i want to ramp up my christmas light display.

I'm thinking I want to outline my roof lines, garage door, 3 small windows, 2 arches, and potentially a few props(yet to be decided).

My question?

1. if I just wanted to roll though some different effects on repeat what would be your go to method? Wled or something via xlights?

I played with a esp8266 with wled on it in a pair of arches and was pretty happy with some of the effects there but wondering how it would look synced with straight lines(roof) and squares(windows) and arches would it look synced or just out of whack?

2. If i were to go with wled, if I have one strand of 100 pixels and another 300 pixels would the effect finish at the same time at the end of both strands.

3. For somthing like this what controller would you go with, multiple esp8266s or falcon


Full time elf
Jan 16, 2018
Hi Badger, a smaller display can still look great with clever prop use.

You mention house outlines inc windows and roof lines etc as well as some arches which can display some great effects.

I don't have any experience with esp8266s controllers but some have had success while others have not.

So answering your questions

1. xlights can do both sequenced to music and animated displays so I would recommend xLights and its possible to sequence numerous great effects with xLights and simply repeat the sequence you create with your show schedular (xschedule is contained within xLights download).

2.Not sure about wled, but xLights does.

3. Falcon F16V3 pixel controller as it will future proof you if you wish to increase your display and the Falcon pixel controllers have great community support if you need any assistance etc. There is other options also for example pi hats for raspberry pi's or Capes Beagle Bones etc to use as a pixel controller.

Here is a sample of some sequences for a smaller displays which may give you a idea of what your layout may look like.


There is also videos of members displays in the media section which could also give you some inspiration.

Note sure of your location but if your near one of the ACL mini's you may want to attend also as part of your research into a light display.
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Been bitten by the bug.
Jan 6, 2014
A. Small yard, small street.....That just makes it easier to be the biggest and best in the street. The world is your oyster, it only comes down to imagination.

1. Rolling through effects can be achieved numerous ways depending on your future plans. For synced... I am assuming you are talking about location based (so they all work together) There are many options for software that achieves this, from light o rama to enttec to vixenlights to xlights to madrix etc.... All the mentioned software will also allow you to repeat the program and there are also stand alone options as well that can be used as just a player, such as FPP

2. Any software that is timing based will let you achieve that.

3. For the controller.. It all depends on future plans, the pixel IC or other products that you may already have and wish to use or products that you are looking at using down the track. From AC or DC controllers, to pixel node to DMX controllers and all the way to ease of purchase and support etc.

All in all there are many options for everything and no two products are exactly alike. Research is your friend and experimentation is exciting.