Which gauge of wire would you suggest?

nmiller0113

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Oct 29, 2012
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California
I've purchased 6 of these http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/5m-led-digital-strip-DC12V-input-WS2811IC-256-scale-10pcs-IC-and-30pcs-5050-SMD-RGB/701799_568458133.html. The distance from the E6804 Sandevices controllers will be between 5 and 10 feet. A single strip will never be joined together with another strip, they will all be single 5 meter runs. So my question is which gauge of wire do you think I should purchase for the connections from the controller to the strips? I've been seeing a lot of suggestions for 18 gauge to avoid power loss, but I'm just concerned that it is going to be too big or very difficult to solder onto the 3 little pads on the pixel strip.


Does anyone have any suggestions or input here? Is 18 gauge going to be just fine to solder or should I move to 20 gauge? If I go 20 gauge, do you think I may have any issues?
 

AAH

I love blinky lights :)
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If you look at the latter pictures on that link you can see the attached wire that comes connected to the strip already. Providing you are using full lengths of the strip you never need to connect to the strip directly. With only 10 feet and a single strip in use I reckon you will be quite happy with just 18 gauge wire and you will probably get away without having to inject power at the far end. 12V strip is far more tolerant of voltage drops than 5V strip.
 

nmiller0113

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Thanks for the quick response. I did check the gauge of the wire already attached and it is 20 gauge. I'm only questioning though after reading through the forums and seeing everyone's focus on 18 gauge.


I'll be cutting them even though they'll never be more than the length of a single strip. So my question is whether I'll run into issues using 18 gauge to connect the cut pieces due to the size of the wire and trying to solder them on those small pads...if not, that is fine, I just wanted to check if it would be too big. If it is too big to solder on those small pads then I'm sure the 20 gauge will do. Thanks!
 

Lost sol

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I am using 18 gauge speaker wire for all my power and ground. It is tight soldering it to the strips ut it can be done without too much problem.
 
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