Table of contents:
- What is the controller and what does it serve
- Separation of devices by control method
- How to make your own LED strip controller
- Should I make my own controller
- Separation of devices by the number of channels
- Summarize the above
There are a lot of options for lighting design of apartments and private houses today. All it takes is a little imagination. And the gray dull room will change so much that it will be difficult to recognize it. However, many of the lighting fixtures require additional equipment during installation. One of the most popular options of this kind is the LED strip, the controllers for which we will consider today. It is especially important to understand what these devices are for and what they can be.
What is the controller and what does it serve
Do not confuse such a device with a LED strip power supply - they perform completely different functions. It is known that the LED strip will not work without a stabilizing transformer, but if it is single-color, it does not need a controller. To dim the glow, a simple dimmer is enough. And here is a tape that has the ability to glow in different colors (RGB),is a completely different matter. So what is RGB? These three letters represent the primary colors that make up all the others:
- R - red (red).
- G - green (green).
- B - blue (blue).
It is the RGB controller for the LED strip that is responsible for switching and "mixing" these colors in the process. From the video below, you can roughly understand how it works.
Separation of devices by control method
Such additional equipment is most often equipped with an infrared remote control. But more expensive models are able to receive a signal via Wi-Fi. Such controllers for LED strip can be controlled from your smartphone or tablet remotely, from anywhere in the world. It is quite convenient to use as a passive home protection. While on vacation, a person briefly turns on the light in the apartment in the evenings, thereby creating a sense of presence.
But such devices are rarely bought due to the high cost. As for the controllers for the LED strip, controlled by remote control, their price is acceptable, which means that everyone can choose the right model, regardless of financial capabilities. If you don’t want to spend money on such equipment at all, you can make a simple device with your own hands.
How to make your own LED strip controller
To do this work, you will need an old Chinese garland, which is not a problem to find. On theat the entrance she has a small box - this is the controller that is needed. Having disassembled the case, you can see 3 output contacts - they are the ones that are soldered to the tape leads. If you use a PSU from an old computer as a power supply, the costs drop to zero. The only disadvantage of a self-made LED strip controller is the absence of a remote control, however, in the absence of costs, its operation in tandem with a three-gang switch is fully justified.
The advantage of any LED strip is that any additional equipment necessary for its normal operation can be done independently. This fact, along with the ease of installation, is what makes LED strip so popular.
Should I make my own controller
If you look, from a practical point of view, there is not much point in such actions. The simplest devices have a fairly low cost, the time spent can be more expensive. But if there is a desire to learn, to try something new, then you can work out. Of the advantages of such work is the experience gained and the satisfaction that the equipment assembled by oneself works no worse than the controller for the factory-made LED strip.
Many radio amateurs who start with such trifles subsequently "fall in love" with this business and begin to assemble more powerful devices for 2, 3 or 4 channels, equipped with remote controls and other control systems.
Separation of devices by the number of channels
LED strip controller circuits may vary. The cheapest models have only one channel, which means that there is no question of any zoning of the room. In fact, this is an analogue of the home-made device described by us. More expensive models expand the capabilities of the home master. With two or three channel controllers, you can simultaneously dim the lighting in one part of the room and increase its intensity in another. This achieves the division of the room into separate zones, when it is necessary, for example, for the father to read the newspaper, and for the mother to put the child to bed.
If such lighting is planned, when choosing the number of channels for the LED strip control controller, pay attention to the area of the room. It does not make sense to purchase expensive equipment with three outputs if the room is very small. Zoning in this case will be simply impossible. Although, as an option, one of the channels can be put on the lower furniture lighting. This solution looks very aesthetically pleasing and beautiful.
Summarize the above
A simple LED strip is beautiful and aesthetic, but an RGB strip with a controller and remote control opens up completely different, more advanced possibilities in interior design. In large rooms, this can be zoning, which helps to visually divide the room. For small areas, you can use such a move as the lower illumination of furniture - in this case, in twilight, it seems thatlockers or armchairs hover above the floor without touching it. The main thing is to have the imagination to use the full potential of the RGB LED strip with a controller.