Digital Light Wand

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DIGITAL LIGHT WAND (Version 3)

Here is the tutorial for the latest version of the Digital Light Wand. This version uses the NeoPixel WS2812 RGB LED Light Strip and also incorporates an SD Card reader and LCD display to give you the ability to select different Bitmap images and send them to the light strip as you wish. If you are looking for information on previous versions of the Digital Light Wand, please contact me via email or other means listed on my Contact page. The original version of the DLW used the HL1606 RGB LED Light Strip and the second version utilized the LPD8806 RGB LED Light Strip.

Here are the details for the newest version of the DLW using the NeoPixel WS2812 light strip.

Download the following Files and images:

1) Click here to download the Wiring Diagram for the NeoPixel WS2812 Digital Light Wand
2) Click here to download the Arduino Script File to download to your Arduino Mega Board
3) Click here for a page that will display the parts and assemblies used in the Digital Light Wand
4) Click here to download a PDF file with instructions on how to create Bitmap images for you DLW.
5) Of course you will need the Arduino IDE software
6) You will also need the Adafruit Neopixel Libraries for the Arduino

You will also need to make sure the libraries for the LCD board and the SD Card reader are installed with your Arduino installation. If you are not familiar with the Arduino, you will need to learn how to install the Arduino IDE software along with the libraries needed for this build. There is some basic information on this in the Original Tutorial below but you may need to do some research if you run into problems. There is plenty of information out there on doing this so I will not re-invent the wheel on that part. Just don’t be afraid of it because it is really not difficult at all.

Here are more details showing parts and assembly of the NeoPixel WS2812 Digital Light Wand.

More WS2812 Info recovered from previous blog (click below)

Here are links to all of the comments and suggestions recovered from the previous BLOG for the NeoPixel WS2812 version of the Digital Light Wand. Please search through these first if you are having problems getting something to work or if you have any questions.


For reference, here are some links to the original tutorial and videos. These tutorials are useful to help folks that might not be as DIY inclined as some of us to see how to assemble or come up with other ideas on how to create a Digital Light Wand.

Original Tutorial for the HL 1606 RGB LED Light strip. (Warning! 30MB PDF File)

More HL1606 Info recovered from previous blog (click below)

Here are links to all of the comments and suggestions recovered from the previous BLOG for the original HL1606 version of the Digital Light Wand. Please search through these first if you are having problems getting something to work or if you have any questions.

More LPD8806 Info recovered from previous blog (click below)

Here are links to all of the comments and suggestions recovered from the previous BLOG for the LPD8806 version of the Digital Light Wand. Please search through these first if you are having problems getting something to work or if you have any questions.


YouTube Videos for the Original HL1606 Digital Light Wand.


Video showing the original Digital Light Wand in action

Tutorial – Digital Light Wand – Part 1
Tutorial – Digital Light Wand – Part 2
Tutorial – Digital Light Wand – Part 3
Tutorial – Digital Light Wand – Part 4

Here are some links to some of the old files for the older Digital Light Wands.
Original Digital Light Wand Tutorial (PDF)
Original Digital Light Wand Code Generator by Phil Wright
Arduino Script for Digital Light Wand LPD8806 Single Strip with LCD, SD Card, and Arduino Mega board v3.0
Arduino Script for Digital Light Wand LPD8806 Dual Strip with LCD, SD Card, and Arduino Mega board v2.0
Arduino Script for Digital Light Wand LPD8806 Dual Strip with LCD, SD Card, and Arduino Due board v2.0
Arduino Script for Digital Light Wand LPD8806 Dual Strip with LCD, SD Card, and Arduino Mega board v1.2
Arduino Script for Digital Light Wand LPD8806 Dual Strip with LCD, SD Card, and Arduino Mega board v1.1
Arduino Script for Digital Light Wand LPD8806 Dual Strip with LCD, SD Card, and Arduino Mega board v1.0
Digital Light Wand HL1606 All Length Excel Spreadsheet v3.1
Digital Light Wand HL1606 All Length Excel Spreadsheet v3.0
Digital Light Wand HL1606 48 Light Excel Spreadsheet v2.5
Digital Light Wand HL1606 48 Light Excel Spreadsheet v2.0

2 Comments

  1. zac December 12, 2015 at 6:35 am #

    Hi Michael,

    Im going to start creating a digital light wand of my own in the new year. I have asked around a few of my more technical minded friend for advice and Ive been recommended to use a raspberry pi instead of an Arduino board. Do you have any advice for me? Is it best to stick to your notes? I will keep you updated with my progress once I get started.

    • MichaelRRoss
      MichaelRRoss January 6, 2016 at 5:36 pm #

      Hi Zac, I have not worked with a pi at all so I am not going to be much help in that area. I did read at one time that the pi was not really suited for driving the Addressable RGB LED Light strips and that is probably the main reason I haven’t looked into the pi. I have been thinking about getting one of the new Arduino Zero boards and adopting it into a Digital Light Wand. It has a MUCH faster processor (48 MHz as opposed to 16 MHz) while still having the same amount of memory as the MEGA for program code. I will create a new tutorial if I give it a try but I don’t have much time to play with that at the moment.

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