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So my electronics knowledge is pretty limited, But I'm hoping there is a simple way to do what I want. Also I'm sorry if this question is answered somewhere else as I'm probably not using the right search terms or something.

I have an addressable RGB LED strip controlled by an Arduino. It has a 4-wire connector. Basically I want the strip to be wireless. Is there a simple RF transmitter and receiver I can buy where all I need to do is connect the TX to the Arduino and the RX to the strip (and a battery)? The distance would only need to be 3 to 6ft. Obviously I retain the ability for the LEDs to be individually addressable and RGB.

Would something like this work? I'm guessing I'd only need to connect the LEDs to 2 of the pins? since, of the 4 wires, 1 is ground and an other is the 12v input. And I'd need to provide a separate 3.3v for the transceivers. But I wouldn't really know which pins I'd need to connect.

Thanks!

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  • \$\begingroup\$ No, that will not work directly. This is not a simple problem at all; it's probably going to require some software on both ends especially if you want to update rapidly. Additionally questions asking for recommendations on what to buy are off topic under site rules. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Jan 23 at 22:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ thanks for the heads up on the rules! the question is primarily about whether my task is simple or not and brought up the transceivers as an example. \$\endgroup\$ – tyler mackenzie Jan 23 at 22:26
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There are various ways to achieve this. In all scenarios I can think of, you would leave the Arduino (or an Arduino, not necessarily the one you have) in control of the RGB lights.

You then transmit some data to the Arduino to tell it what colour to set the LED strip to, and to turn it on or off, or start some other procedure.

The easiest way to do this is probably with the Arduino IoT Cloud and a compatible IoT Arduino board (eg the Arduino Nano 33 IoT). Noting that the Nano IoT is a 3.3v board. Alternately you could use any other IoT board with an IoT breakout board, or my preferred option would be to wait for the new Arduino Nano RP2040 which should be perfect for your use-case.

You could also use a similar board like an ESP32, but they're a little less straightforward to use which, although not really complex, sounds like it might be a little above the level you want at the moment when you're already introducing new skills and technologies.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ While there are a lot of ways this could be done, given the context of the question, I think this is probably the best solution. There is already an Arduino involved, so programming one is a given. Not much harder to get one that includes wireless networking and leverage the huge amount of code and hardware already out there for the task. \$\endgroup\$ – user1850479 Jan 24 at 18:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ While this isn't really the answer I was hoping for. I now know there is no simple plug and play solution for me. Using an Arduino or some other MCU seems to likely be my best bet. \$\endgroup\$ – tyler mackenzie Jan 25 at 22:24
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There are tons of project on the net using ESP32 to control these LEDs.

This microcontroller has WiFi, which is pretty useful for wireless control.

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The simplest solution is to use an IR remote control chip to Rx and IR LED to transmit. That ought work as well as other LED remote control.

If you can figure out the protocol for the SPI interfaces involved and make it transparent in the cheap radio from Banggood in your link , then you may have found a good solution.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ That would only support switching between pre-defined patterns, not actually sending the data for the addressable LEDs if any quantity of them need to be updated regularly. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Jan 24 at 4:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's true, but this is how inexpensive LED Reels are produced with embedded uC on the Reel and inexpensive canned settings selected by remote. \$\endgroup\$ – Tony Stewart EE75 Jan 24 at 5:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah there's a pile on products out there that work like that. Unfortunately I need the dynamic output that the Arduino supplies as it needs to read from a sensor and adjust the LEDs accordingly. \$\endgroup\$ – tyler mackenzie Jan 24 at 16:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ Send the sensor readings and put the light program at the lights \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Jan 24 at 16:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @tylermackenzie the power drawn by the LEDs will dwarf that drawn by the computer. There are plenty of truly tiny MCU's don't mistake the size of an arduino board for the necessary size, there are smaller boards too - a trinket M0 is pretty small, and only half of it really needed. Anyway, you aren't going to accomplish this without an MCU-equivalent in the receiver regardless. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Jan 25 at 5:38
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Addressable LED like ws2812 has communication protocol with bitrate 800 Kbit/s. You can not disconnect data line and put some simple RF communication between. It is doable with more complicated transmitter-receiver. They already have special MCU inside. So two MCU may communicate.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ So basically you're saying I need to do a bunch of research and learning because I can't just send that signal over RF without some special microprocessor on each end? \$\endgroup\$ – tyler mackenzie Jan 24 at 16:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes. There is a lot on-shelf not expensive controllers with Wi-Fi, IR remote, etc. To do something like that by yourself you need to invest a lot of time and money, probably \$\endgroup\$ – user263983 Jan 24 at 17:05

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