1. New to Christmas lighting? Get started with the AusChristmasLighting 101 Manual:
    auschristmaslighting.com/wiki/AusChristmasLighting-101

Starting out and looking for Esp8266 info..

Discussion in '101 Display Basics' started by darrenr, Jun 17, 2017.

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  1. darrenr

    darrenr New Elf

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    Hey Team,
    I'm a Noob here, and am starting from scratch and planning a setup with maybe a couple of thousand lights to begin with. To set the scene, I live in a semi-detached house with a small front yard and most of the lights will be on the facade of the house (outline) and the front fence and hedges, so distance is not really a problem.

    However, I have some experience with ESP8622 boards (via my home automation setup) and what I can tell from watching the video from the previous Adelaide Mini that these can be used as very cost effective replacement for the traditional pixel controller.

    I've read the 101 manual and get the concepts. Keen to go with all intellignet RBG strings and srtips, building as I go. Can anyone please point me in the right direction on getting more info on getting started with this and how to proceed with ESP8622 controllers?

    So, as I said I'm starting from scratch, to the goal is reduce the cost and number of cables as much as possible.

    Many thanks
    Darren
     
  2. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

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    I don't know that there's a huge amount of info on the ESP8266 here. There are a few detailed threads on the DIYC forum though if that helps.
     
  3. OP
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    darrenr

    darrenr New Elf

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    OK fair enough, thanks, I'll have a look there.
    I'm going to do a proof of concept, any suggestions for some lights and a power supply to get me going, and can be used later once I scale things up.
    Thanks
    Darren
     
  4. marmalade

    marmalade cats & pixels

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    dan has started development of a local esp based board https://auschristmaslighting.com/threads/espixelsticks.9370/ and he may be able to help out with some test boards.

    I use the espixelstick from shelby on diyc and they work flawlessly, but they are relatively hard to get and work out to be about AU$40 ea once shipping and echange rate is factored in. A cheap 5m strip of 2811 or 2812 leds and a 12V 50w psu is all that needed, but you will immediately want something bigger/better once you see it up and running :)
     
  5. davros

    davros New Elf

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    The PCBs for version 1 are on OSHPARK ($3-$4 ea shipped) if you DIY and might work out cheaper?
     
  6. marmalade

    marmalade cats & pixels

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    Hi Davros, yes the V1 are significantly less expensive (up to $10-12 cheaper if buying the pcbs/components in bulk). However the time taken to assemble the V1's is significant compared to the V2 (smd's already installed), and the design of the V1's meant the regulator runs quite hot (tbh, very hot!) I placed all the V1's (pcbs purchased from OSH) where they had adequate access to free flowing air,and they ran without issue.

    Enclosing the V1's in sealed pvc pipe was worriesome due to the heat issues, so all the outdoor ones were V2's, and they worked without a hitch :)
     
  7. SmartAlecLights

    SmartAlecLights Im a SmartAlec what can i say! Community Project Designer

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    I've got a bit of knowledge with the esp range of chips.
    I made my own version of the espixelstick, an called it the pixel wifi
    I also have wifi home automation, an made my own boards for around the house
    there's a couple of threads on diyc about people doing multi universe's, but from what i read, it just was'nt stable enouth an dropping e1.31 packets,
    but for 1-2 universe's there fine.
     
  8. marmalade

    marmalade cats & pixels

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    my single megatree espixelstick is pushing out 2268 channels (over 4 universes) without any jitter/lag at all, on a sub $200 wifi router shared on my home network and with six other 1-2 universe pixelsticks operating concurrently.

    For those that are having problems getting more than 2 uni's from them it would have to be other external factors, it's an impressive little device otherwise.

    Isn't the pixel wifi you have based on the nrf24 though alec?
     
  9. SmartAlecLights

    SmartAlecLights Im a SmartAlec what can i say! Community Project Designer

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    the pixel wifi is esp-01 based
     
  10. marmalade

    marmalade cats & pixels

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    well done! Are you selling.. I want some more :)
     
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    darrenr

    darrenr New Elf

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    Can anyone please tell me what does the ESPixelstick has in addition to the NodeMCU board? I have a stack of NodeMCUs already and would love to use them if possible?
     
  12. Kockie_nl

    Kockie_nl New Elf

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    A voltage regulator and some handy terminals + buttons to program.
    I use regular NodeMCUs of even bare esp's (with espixelstick firmware) which i wire with the neccesary power (3V for board, 5 V for pixels)
    Programming is a 1-time job, so I use a paperclip to short gpio0 when programming instead of a switch
     
  13. danv

    danv Full Time Elf

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    My hardware version, called the Wixel, will be available here very soon
    https://shop.vizztech.com.au
    I am actually about to send some hardware to marmalade for testing in a few days time and that shipment will include a Wixel or two :)
     
    marmalade likes this.

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