The Lights

The entire display display is comprised of LED Pixels. Each small bulb has a circuit board built in to it which allows me to control any light on the whole house. Using special software, I can set the lights to be any pattern or color that I want since each pixel has a unique address. Every pixel can illuminate 255 different levels of red, green, and blue. This means theoretically there are 16.8 million different color combinations for the lights.

There are two main types of pixel lights that I use. The first kind is the WS2811 pixel node. These nodes are used in the trees, around the windows, and in several small props around the yard since they are the brightest and allow for control of each individual LED. They come in strings of 50 lights but can be cut to any length required. They typically draw about 10 Watts per string of 50 which is half of what normal lights use. Since there is some spacing in between each light, these can be arranged in complex shapes. Depending on where you purchase them from, they cost anywhere between $5 and $20 per set of 50. I purchased mine in bulk from China which is far cheaper than buying individual strings from Amazon or other US resellers.


The other style of lights I use are pixel strips. They are used around the garage, to outline the house, and for the other stars around the yard. Pixel strips are best for long, straight elements since they can be easily constructed and mounted to the house. Most pixel strips work by grouping three LEDs together per circuit board. This means that although the rolls of lights have 150 LEDs, there are only 50 individual colors that can be controlled. Pixel strips are best for covering a larger area since the length is more spread out and they are cheaper per light. Pixel strips come in rolls of 15ft and can be purchased for roughly the same price as pixel nodes.