Sound Sabre

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  • Lightsaber-esque VU
  • Node kits usable standalone, and in the Sabre


  • Sabre shape
  • Evenly lit
  • Portable power source
  • Must use spectrum analysis instead of volume for VU
  • Individually addressable
  • RGB
  • PWM (Constant current would be nice)
  • Wifi / bluetooth would be nice
  • Accelerometer
  • All through-hole would make for a better kit
  • Voltage regulation each board?

Design Details

  • Round PCB for light nodes
  • I2C for communications bus

Design Tradeoffs

  • Making each board fully functional as a stand-alone kit makes the complexity / price of the Sabre more expensive
  • Using a networking protocol like i2c vs. shift registers or direct wiring or charlieplexing provides more flexibility, but also more complexity
  • The LED density increases resolution, but increases cost and complexity
  • Adding a wireless protocol like wifi or bluetooth allows multi-sabre connection (BATTLE!) but makes the sabre more expensive
  • More LEDs / Higher Brightness LED = more current = larger battery (size / weight considerations) or shorter battery life
  • Is the Sabre a product? Are the individual boards a product? Is the goal to have fun & learn, or make money? - they may be mutually excusive
  • Through-hole construction makes for a better kit, but drives size / cost up

Component Ideas