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120 LED Ring Clock

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Hey, It's been along time since I've posted. but I've been keeping busy with uni and working on some cool projects for the last year.   This is something I'd like to share with you guys, it's not fi

I've been working on the code for the control board. Here is a quick demo.       I've ordered a few more parts (accelerometer, regulator, levelshifter) which my board is running without curr

Here is an updated PCB. 100% compatible with the old one. However this one features the new WS2812B footprint.   Here is the Altium project files. Includes gerbers and schematics. ledRing_2.zip

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Thanks for adding mounting hole to the board, greg!

I am thinking adding a laser-cut, translucent plexiglass cover to the clock for diffusion, so instead of adding the hole between the LEDs, I added a 'tab' to the inside of the circle, hopefully I can saw it off when not needed.

I did some basic editing with my friend's copy (using remote desktop). This is my first time using Altium, The gerber files look fine to me, hopefully I did not make some terrible mistakes.



What's the dimension of the ring once assembled?  Wondering if I can print something on my 3D printer to hold it (not that I couldn't make it in pieces.

The outer-most arc has a radius of 85 mm. So the completed ring would be a circle of diameter 17 cm.


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  • 2 weeks later...

My code above has the MSP430 running at ~8MHz. but I am dividing it by 2 and then feeding it into the USI. so technically the USI is running at 4MHz.


From my experience the MSP's require more clock cycles to do most things that an AVR or PIC could do in less. but on the other hand you get a nice linear memory space.


This is probably one of the best articles I've read about the WS2812 timing though, I'll be sure to put it to practice when I get my hands on those new LEDs :D

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  • 3 weeks later...

Sorry about the delay. but I finally started working on a controller design for anyone intrested.


I wanted to make use of the valueline MSP's oscpin/captouch features. I've designed with capacitive buttons on the top of PCBs before, but due to the limited space I thought something diffrent was in order.

The sensors themselves are small arc sections around the outer edge of the board. Each pad has ~3 vias also. This design should hopefully allow for a reasonable (probably coarse) slider.


But in all honesty it might not work at all. I shall post results when the board comes.


The MSP used is the 28 pin MSP430G2553.

The circuit also features an accelerometer, LDO, and level shifter to drive the LEDs at 5v (just to be safe)



Close up of top. LEDs and capacitor placement on top layer are identical.


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@@cubeberg and @@larsie have been working on some touch PCBs. 

Ideally a clock would need three different touch types. UP, DOWN and SET. You could touch, instead  of a slide.


I forget, but how  do you set the clock on the current ones? Is it set while you program them?


I have alot of these 28 pin G2553's that I bought specifically becase they have lots of touch enabled pins. This will be the second project which I've used them.


It may seem like overkill, but in my mind I'm imaginig tapping the side, the clock would then register that you wanted to change settings, (time / colours / timeout / brightness? who knows :P)

Then the slider would act as a delta, eg sliding clockwise would increment the clock, visaversa.


The clock I made for POTM was driven with a recycled PCB and uses 2 buttons, one resets minutes and increments hours. the other increments the minutes by 5.

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I'm not sure what LEDs would do that close to cap touch pads.  I've had LEDs turned on near cap touch pads make enough of a change that it looks like a touch.  I had to turn the sensitivity down to get it to work (using TI cap touch libraries.  TI also suggests a hatched ground plane below touch pads.

What about having the pads stick out a bit?  You've got some extra space inside or outside of the circle to reduce possible problems.

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I didn't think too much about the LEDs. I don't mind about the sensitivity, If each of the sensors is just a binary value that would work fine.


I have been using the TI cap touch libs on a homemade PCB and it seems very robust.

If the sensors dont work I could try implementing something with the accelorometer, it supports tap interrupts. :D

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