I've been doing a lot of research regarding powering WS2812B pixel tape. From my tests, running a 5m length of 30 LEDs per metre tape requires powering at both ends to avoid yellowing/browning when running full white.

The way I want to setup the control means that I have a separate "controller" and PSU for every 2 tapes (for ease imagine one µC per two tapes). The controller is powered by the same 5V PSU as the tape. The tapes are lined up in linear fashion, so the 5V PSU is in between the two tapes, with 2x 5m extensions running to the outer ends. At one end is the controller.

  1. Can I run the data out of one pixel tape into another one that is powered by a different 5V supply?

  2. Is there an issue with tying the grounds together of multiple power supplies? (I imagine if I want to achieve what I want in point 1 then this would be the answer). I've read in a few places about some issues with current flow if the voltages are different between the two PSUs.

  3. There's a lot of mention of fuses. What's the best practices with these? Similarly, a capacitor across the 5V supply?

  • \$\begingroup\$ just make sure you tie all the grounds together at some point... \$\endgroup\$
    – vicatcu
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 16:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ These are usually referred to as "strips" not "tapes." \$\endgroup\$
    – JYelton
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 16:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ To use multiple PSUs, check out the schematic in this question: electronics.stackexchange.com/q/402285/2028 \$\endgroup\$
    – JYelton
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 16:58

1 Answer 1


This'll work fine. Just make sure you use thick ground wires connected between all psu's and your controller.

The longer the tape, the more the leds. So update time will suffer. Each led requires 24 bits. So 5x30x24= 3600. At 400khz that's 9ms plus hold time. Not too bad


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