Author Topic: Intro to the Octoscroller  (Read 269 times)

Offline dkulp

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Intro to the Octoscroller
« on: January 29, 2019, 11:20:39 AM »
The Octoscroller was designed to leverage the power of a BeagleBone Black to drive P10 and P5 LED panels. 

Octoscroller Capabilities:
  • 8 HUB75 Connectors/Outputs - each can driver 12 P10 panels or 4/5 P5 panels
  • The Octoscroller supports various types of panels including 1:4 and 1:2 scan "outdoor" panels, various ways panels multiplex rows, etc...
  • SD card with the latest FPP image.  The image can be flashed to the eMMC on the BBB and run from there.
Supported FPP Versions:
Octoscroller 1.x support was added to the BBB LED Panels page in FPP for FPP 1.5.   All versions of FPP since 1.5 support it.   2.x pinout support was added for FPP 2.0.

Supported BeagleBones:
  • All versions support the BeagleBone Black, BeagleBone Black Wireless, BeagleBone Green
  • The gigagit adapter on the SanCloud BeagleBone Enhanced consumes pin P8-10 which is used for the green on the bottom half of port one on the v1.x pinout or the blue on the top half of port 5 on the v2.x pinout.  Thus, those ports would not work properly with the BBE.
  • The BeagleBone Green Wireless WIFI adapter consumes a bunch of pins.  With the 1.x board, nothing will work.  The consumed pins include clock line and several of the address lines.  With v2.x board, ports 1 through 6 will work, 7 and 8 will not.
  • v1.x and v2.x boards use a completely different pinout. You need to make sure the proper version is set on the "BBB Strings" page in FPP.
  • The Octoscroller only has 4 address lines and thus can only support up to 1:16 scan panels.  There are no extra pins on the BBB to be able to add support. 
Octoscroller 1.x (and variants) are available from several vendors.   Some of the variant have added things like RTC's, better connector spacing, extra buffers, etc...
Hanson Electronics
DIY LED Express
Renard Plus
Wired Watts
Octoscroller 2.x are only available as blank boards from dkulp (PM him for details)
« Last Edit: March 26, 2019, 07:02:42 AM by dkulp »
Dan Kulp

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Re: Intro to the Octoscroller
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2019, 05:33:23 AM »
Thanks for putting this info up Dan.I have put up a caution in a few places. Some versions of the octoscroller have had SN74LVC245AN used as the buffer chip in them. The LVC series of 74 series IC's are for 1.6 to 3.6V supply. They aren't suitable for running off 5V which is what they do in the octoscroller. Somewhere, somehow there was a change the original 74LS245 for a 74LVC245 without knowing what they were doing or the consequences. Running a 3.6V chip off 5V is a great risk to kill the IC potentially causing it to go into flames and also potentially kill the Beaglebone Black as its outputs are fairly fragile.
I have Octoscrolla's fully built, with RTC, as bare pcb's, as kits and will soon have them with a couple of extra features. I don't use 74LVC245.


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