Hey all. I am working on making an animated Bender robot. I've built a prototype and it works well enough but I want to rethink my approach before continuing down my current path.
Early prototype (https://imgur.com/gallery/rERZgwm)
My current setup uses several microcontrollers to accomplish this. One controls the eyes/display. One plays audio files. And I planned on using a 3rd to animate the mouth
In an attempt to simplify my design for both the eyes and mouth I thought, what if both were LED arrays? I can worry about the exact size and custom 3D printed enclosure part later (what I have currently looks pretty good but I want to nail down the electronics better before investing any more time.
This is the general layout I was thinking of.
In both cases the mouth and eyes would use continuous array of LEDs These would at a minimum be single color LEDs but RGB, NeoPixel etc would all be acceptable as well. Since they are a display they would not need to be very bright individually.
Here is what I am hoping you can help me with
1. What combination of LED array types (charlie plex, multiplex, neopixel etc etc) and microcontroller processor etc would be the right fit here?
2. Does it still make sense to use multiple processors. in this case, one for each display, and most likely a 3rd to orchestrate/sync the animations between both displays and the audio, inputs etc.
Some additional info.
This is ultimately a custom clock/animated thing so cost is not a huge factor here.
I need or want it to be overly bright
Having an LED solution that works today and that I can build custom PCBs for later is a plus
Animations on the displays do not need to be crazy fast, just predictable in performance/timing and not crazy flickering.
I have the adafruit displays shown as well as a flexible neopixel array currently available to test with
I'm happy to buy a different microcontroller, currently using a M4 Express microcontroller.
Also happy to do this in Arduino or Circuit Python.