THE LOOKThe first order of business is to upgrade the 'look' of the PEGS. The original PEGS are big, boxy, and as some people put it, UGLY. We want this pair to look good with the lights on or off. After several designs and a lot of tweaking the following outline was chosen.
With the frames shaping up, it's time to consider what LED to use, how to drive them (power them) and what arrangement to place them in. One of the most popular suggestions by you was to make them brighter, so a new driving technique is needed. Last time the micro-controller (brain) directly powered the LEDs with the help of a single 595 shift register (a simple chip that allowed us to power more LEDs). With this setup each LED was receiving about 5mA, 1/16 of the time (numbers that mean things). The LEDs used can take twice that much power so a new technique is needed to drive them. MOSFETs (high power switches) and constant current shift registers (like the 595 shift register about but WAY better) will will work and allow for more LEDs. With more LEDs possible the question is how many is too many? I did some budget analyses and found 20 or 24 delivered the most bang for the buck. A quick rendering in my favorite CAD program, MS Paint :) and it was easy to see 24 is much better.
Old PEGS on top; 24x7 middle; 20x7 bottom; Proper aspect ratio maintained.
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