Archive for March, 2012

Writing software for the TLC5940 LED drivers.

Friday, March 2nd, 2012

Last week I had a week off, so I decided to put some time in the LED-cube project again.

Led driver test.

TLC5940 LED driver test.

I’ve been working on the LED matrix on and off (in between  working, gaming and my other project: piko3d) but being free from work for the week seemed like a good opportunity to get some work done on the Cube.

So this week, I thought I’d work on the software part of it all.

In his blog posts, Vespine talks about a free digital book called “Demystifying the TLC5940” by Matthew T. Pandina.

If you are planning on using the Texas instruments TLC5940 LED drivers for your project, than make sure you check out this book. Especially if you are working with AVR microcontrollers like the Arduino sets. What was most interesting to me was a reference to the TLC5940 programmer flowchart by Texas Instruments. The first code-example in the book describes a reference implementation of this flowchart, which is a great starting point for your own project.

Any reference implementation can be VERY useful. As you continue to work on your program, and your own implementation, the reference program can be a great way to see if you messed up your program, or if your TLC somehow got fried whenever it stops working.

So I wrote my own version of the reference implementation for the Pic32 and it works! It was very nice to finally be able to see how this driver business works, and gives me a lot of new ideas about architecture and the next parts of the my Cube’s design. Still brainstorming about a lot of things, but we’re getting there!

If you’re developing on Pic32 btw, make sure you use MPLAB X. I only updated today, and was very pleasantly surprised. A BIG step forward from MPLAB 8.x

Aside from the software, I also managed to build another layer for the LED matrix, which brings me at 5 of 8 layers total now.

Well that’s it for now!
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to mail me, or leave a comment below!

Thanks for reading!