Just got your AllPixel? Not sure where to start? Look no further!

Wait… what is the AllPixel you say? It is our USB controlled, universal controller for digital LED strips. Watch this for more details:

Now that we’re on the same page… start here:

AllPixel Quick Start Guide.

It will walk you through every step. From installing the optional components to running animations with BiblioPixel.

If you want to know more about BiblioPixel:

BiblioPixel wiki.

Need help getting everything setup? Want to show off what you made? Go here:

Maniacal Labs Forum

If you would like to acquire an AllPixel but missed the Kickstarter, have no fear! The AllPixel and PowerTap are now available for general sale on the Maniacal Labs Seeed Store

Want to to see more? Check out all our AllPixel / BiblioPixel related videos:

One of the major things we’ve been hard at work on lately is getting AllPixel kits a little closer to those who want them and either missed the Kickstarter or want more. So far, the AllPixel and PowerTap are available from these great distributors near (some of) you:

Australia

New Zealand

United Kingdom

For those outside of the above regions, fear not; you can always still order direct from Seeed and they will ship worldwide.

We are still working hard to land distributors in other regions, especially North America, for which we hope to have good news soon :)

If there is a distributor you would like to see carry our products, there are two things you can do to help!

  • Tell us! Send us a note at contact@maniacallabs.com or leave a comment here with a link to their store.
  • Tell them! The best way to get a store to carry a product is to let them know that their customers want it. Sending a quick note to them can go a long way :)

Stay tuned!

PCBtoCase

As the AllPixel Kickstarter neared an end, we wanted to make design files for a case available for anyone wanting to 3D print their own. However, neither of us are particularly well versed in 3D design, and the usual method of breaking out the calipers to laboriously measure all of the final board dimensions seemed silly when all the dimension and placement data was right there in KiCad. There had to be a way to get the data from KiCad into our usual design tool, 123D Design. Yes, there are more powerful tools out there, but 123D is easy to use and free, so it’s been enough for now.

Fortunately, 123D recently added SVG import capability. Unfortunately, it seems to misinterpret units information in the SVG files generated directly by KiCad and renders the output far to large. For example, the AllPixel came out to over 2 meters! Try as I might from this tool and that to convert the KiCad output to an SVG with the right units and dimensions, nothing really worked. Finally, I realized that I would need to just take the output and scale it appropriately. A little trial, error, and some math yielded the steps below. Note that it’s tempting to export direct to SVG from KiCad but it’s export is not very exacting so I was never able to get it working. Sadly, going through gerbv was a must.

Continue reading

Thousands of people have already downloaded BiblioPixel (for use with and without the AllPixel) and we’ve received a ton of awesome feedback. Over the last couple months, we’ve taken that feedback and worked in a bunch of bug fixes and some cool new features.

Check out the details below, but if you want to jump right to it and get the latest version, you can do one of these two options:

  • If you installed originally with pip, run this command:
    sudo pip install bibliopixel --upgrade

  • If you prefer to install manually, grab the v1.2 zip file, unzip it to a local directory and run:
    sudo python setup.py install

In both cases, sudo is not needed if you are running Windows and this will work even if you have never installed it before. If upgrading, just be sure to use the same method you previously used.

Now that you’ve got it, here’s what’s new!

  • LEDCircle: Inspired by the new AdaFruit APA102 Disk display, we’ve made working with circular displays easy! Check out all the details over at our APA102 Disk review.
  • LEDPOV: We’ve talked about it before, but the code for making things like our POVStick project is now built right into BiblioPixel.
  • DriverAPA102: This new SPI-based driver allows you to run APA102 (DotStar) strips right from the SPI pins on devices like the Raspberry Pi and Beagle Bone Black!
  • Threaded Animations: Never wait around for your animations again! The latest code supports the threaded parameter which will make that animation run on a separate background thread, allowing you to continue doing other tasks in your main script or application. Great for web controlled projects!
  • Many Bug Fixes and Improvements: While not the exhaustive list, we have:
    • Improved DriverSerial device detection
    • Improved DriverNetwork reliability
    • Cleaned up the logic of many classes and methods to make them more robust and better at handling any issues.
    • Fixed many, many bugs.

That’s all for now. We hope you love the new features!