Bright strip light
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Bright strip light

by laird2205 on Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:16 am

My grandson wants to be an Alexia for Halloween. What is a good choice for a blue light up strip that will be bright enough to be seen in early evening daylight and inside lighting in school. I was considering the EL strip or the neon like tubing. I would provide a switch he can hold in his hand with a wire running up his sleeve. Any suggestions?

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Re: Bright strip light

by franklin97355 on Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:29 am

I don't think the el wire will be bright enough. The neon-like tubing or neopixels behind a defuser layer should work.

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Re: Bright strip light

by Disciple on Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:32 pm

If you choose NeoPixel RGB Neon-like LED Flex Strip with Silicone Tube - 1 meter combined with a controller like Circuit Playground Express, then color and motion effects become possible. Amazon Echo color signals like "listening direction", "buffering", "connection lost", "voice message" and others can be controlled with the CPX buttons, switch, and tilting by hand. Maybe even make it sound reactive.
Just throwing out ideas. Best of success.


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Re: Bright strip light

by oesterle on Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:30 pm

Hi, laird2205!

I see that this is your first post – welcome to the Forums!

Disciple's suggestion could produce a beautiful, diffuse animated LED light that resembled Alexa's. It does, however, require some programming, and two power sources – a ~4-6V source for the Circuit Playground Express, and a 12V one for the LED strip. If this was your first microcontroller project, it could be a bit of a challenge.

A simpler project would be to use just the Circuit Playground Express, and program it together with your grandson, using MakeCode, a fun, drag-and-drop, beginner's programming environment. You can try it out here:
Adafruit Circuit Playground Express - Blocks / Javascript editor

Since we're discussing this just a few weeks before Halloween, an even simpler and less expensive option is to use Adafruit's Fiber Optic Light Sources, which come in several colors, together with a simple, switchable battery pack. Check out the demo video on one of the product pages.

As an example you could use:


Since this will be in a wearable, be sure to test how warm the Fiber Optic Light Source metal body gets, as “the metal body acts as a heat sink,” according to the product page.

You can also visit the Adafruit Learning System for inspiration; there is a ton of projects there using LEDs and LED strips.



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Please be positive and constructive with your questions and comments.