Recently I had to use one of these digital controlled RGB LEDs in a project and was very impressed. I have used the WS2812B LED in 5×5 mm package and the APA102-2020 in a 2×2 mm package. The WS2812B needs only one serial data signal, while the APA102 needs additional a clock signal.
The WS2812B is a digital control able RGB LED. You control the color by using only one signal wire. No clock signal is required.
The APA102-2020 is the new model of the APA102 LED in a smaller footprint. Also known as DotStar Micro RGB LED. They are very tiny, measure just 2 x 2 mmm.
They are controlled with two serial signals, data and clock.
Boards with LEDs
APA102-2020 single LED Board [available]
A board with a single APA102-2020 LED. The LED is very useful for status displaying, especially when using multiple RGB LEDs. No matter how many LEDs are used in the system, it requires only two pins to control them all. A serial data signal and a clock signal.
Arduino user can use the “FastLED” library to control this LED.
A very helpful investigation I have found here in the link to Tim’s Blog:
Tim’s Blog – Understanding the APA102 “Superled”
Click here to download the manual for the single LED board. [700 KB]
APA102-2020 64 LED Matrix [available]
A board with 64 (8×8) APA102-2020 LEDs in 120 x 120 mil grid spacing.
Click here to download the user manual for the LED matrix board. [1.2 MB]
Click here to download the PDF schematic for the LED matrix board. [200 KB]
Click here to download the sources for the LED matrix board. [500 KB]
APA102-2020 2048 LED Panel [coming soon]
A panel board with 2048 (32×64) APA102-2020 LEDs.