Photon-blasting 60W RGB LED array



Spotted over @, forum member Things shares pics of his mind-numbingly bright RGB LED project

I bought 20 3W RGB LED’s the other day, and wired them all up on a 7mm piece of aluminium. Each colour is controlled by a FET, and by an Arduino (For now). I play to build it into a box and add DMX control with an ATMega. This thing draws around 21A @ 3.3V! I am using a computer power supply to power them at the moment.

This thing is BRIGHT!

Yeah like so bright that you really MUST NOT EVER look directly at it or risk instant eyeball vaporization! No seriously – without any diffusion, I’m guessing this thing must be like a death-ray for eyes – SERIOUSLY! *Ahem* so yeah … that above pic of the unit powered on was apparently taken in a sunlit room – but who needs the Sun with this thing around?!

Pics + discussion in the Arduino forums.

20 thoughts on “Photon-blasting 60W RGB LED array

  1. Good to see some high power LED stuff here. There’s quite a lot available for working with high power LEDs and lots of people doign very cool stuff. If you are interested in more high power LED DIY projects check out the forums at

    The very latest white LEDs are putting out well in excess of 250 lumens per die, there’s a lot of neat stuff that can be done with that kind of light. The trick is in powering and cooling them, but there’s a lot of info and parts out there, takes a little effort though.

  2. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a while, it’s the heat-sink issue that’s slowed me down, the aluminum block looks like a good idea but if you’re going to leave it on for hours at a time, won’t it need fins on the back?

    Also, this particular build seems to have the LEDs wired in parallel. If that’s the case this project is just a giant cloud of smoke and dead LEDs waiting to happen.

  3. Some of the lunatics over on the Candlepower Forums have been doing stuff like this for some time:

    Jason’s quite right, this thing can only buffer heat effectively, not dissipate it. You could increase the surface area of the base plate pretty easily, and add some fans if you wanted. In the current incarnation, I wouldn’t run it more than a minute at a time.

    It’d be well suited as a signaling strobe, though. Real-life Dennō Senshi Porygon anyone?

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