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Power issue

Started by CrAsH0v3r, December 07, 2021, 02:01:47 PM

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CrAsH0v3r

Hi all,

I'm not very new in christmas DIY led lighting, as I have a little setup (almost 500 pixels in my windows inside the house) since 3 years.

I live in Quebec, Canada, so I was worring about temperture, waterproof things..  but this year, I told myself : It's time to expand outside the house.

I bought a K8-PB and a smart receiver.  Tested everything for Halloween and everything was working fine.

1,5 months later (and 20 less celcius..), almost the same setup and only the first 20 leds of my roof line are lighting and it seems there is not enough power (red and green are good, but white is more and more red) .

I tested the output voltage of the power supply and it's only 3.94v :O

Does temperature alone can decrease voltage of my cheap 5v amazon power supply? I'll try with an other unit as soon as I can ..and asking myself if I throw everything away for this year.!

Thanks for you advices!

k6ccc

What is the ratings on the power supply and how many pixels are you trying to drive with it?  Also, what is the string configuration (i.e. eight strings of 100 pixels)?
Using LOR (mostly SuperStar) for all sequencing - using FPP only to drive P5 and P10 panels.
My show website:  http://newburghlights.org

Jim

CrAsH0v3r

I think you gave me the answer.  It's rated 10 to 50 celcius.. and today it was -10! 

For now, I only have one string of 100leds (2x50). 

I've been cheap on power supply. I think it's time to invest on some good meanwell! 

Thanks

k6ccc

Quote from: CrAsH0v3r on December 07, 2021, 04:39:03 PMI've been cheap on power supply. I think it's time to invest on some good meanwell! 

Never hurts!
Using LOR (mostly SuperStar) for all sequencing - using FPP only to drive P5 and P10 panels.
My show website:  http://newburghlights.org

Jim

CrAsH0v3r

Hi again,

Turns out that the power supply may not be faulty.
Did a test yesterday and when nothing is plugged, the PSU is outputting 5.25V.  As soon as I plug the Smart receiver, which is linked to a 15ft 20/3 cable and 100 pixels, the load is so high that the voltage drop to 3.94. It is a 200w psu, so there is clearly something wrong. 

I'll try to unplug the cable from the receiver, or unplug the pixels, to isolate the faulty part. 

The only difference between now and halloween, is the new 15ft cable, so it may be the problem, or my welds! 

Thanks!

rayster

First replace the 20/3 and never use it for anything long then a foot. Wires have a resistance to them the longer the run the more loss, so using a small gauge wire has more loss than a larger gauge. For long runs I use 14/3 or 16/3. The 14/3 I use to light a Hope sign (about 140 Pixels) at 35 feet from the controller with no power injection, now if I lived where you do I would run an extra cord and inject power. Yes the cold does have some effect on wires but not as much as the gauge.

Also you do not want to run your pixels at a 100%, when you do you are really wasting a lot of power. If you ever look a marque at full power it is washed out. Use what us hams use as a rule of thumb use only the amount of output power to have reliable communications. So only use the amount of brightness to have a great looking display.
Ray
Using K8-B, Rpi 3b w/PiHat, Rpi 3b+ w/ PiHat, K4-PB

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