Novice wiring questions

I have pre-ordered my PBv3 can’t wait to hook it up! I need to get a power supply and have a few questions about how to set it all up. I searched for my ground question but couldn’t find anything clear enough for me to be sure what to do. I have:

  • Two WS2815 strings 300pix each, in series, 600 total
  • Fused 12v pigtail off RV battery to power LEDs
  • 12v to 5v converter to power PB

First question is what to do with the backup data connection from the strips. Should I connect it to ground, data, or leave it open?

Second question, which grounds should be brought together? I will have a ground off the pigtail feeding lights, the ground off the 5 volt power supply, and a ground off the controller. Would it be best for them all to be connected together?

I am currently using an sp108e controller and I really can’t wait to upgrade to the PixelBlaze! Looking forward to learning to program my own patterns and explore the ones available for download.

Hi Randy! Welcome to Pixelblaze!

First, for your ground question: Yes, in this setup (and in most setups in general) you want to connect all your grounds somehow. That includes 12V GND, 5V GND, the Pixelblaze GND, and the strips’ ground.

Now, you mention a backup data connection on the strips. I’m not sure if your strips came with two (IE redundant) connections to the “Data In” solder pad on each WS215 strip, or if you’re perhaps referring to the data connection on the far side of the strip, which is actually “Data Out” (sometimes abbreviated DO). Could you maybe snap a picture and post it here? Whatever the setup, you should only need to connect the DAT on Pixelblaze to the DI / Data In on the strips once. You mentioned, “Two WS2815 strings 300pix each, in series”, so I’m assuming this means all three wires on the “out” side of strip 1 are being connected to all three wires on strip 2’s input.

It’s a 12V strip so you might not have this problem, but if do have problems after trying all different Buffered / Timing options on Pixelblaze’ Settings tab, you might want to “re inject” power at the midpoint or far side (and even in this case, you’re leaving the far side Data Out disconnected).

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@jeff thanks for clearing up the ground question!
As far as that data and backup data thing - here is a picture of my light strips:

Oh! Gotcha, I see, it’s a redundant signal path like the WS2813. I forgot the WS2815 had these.

[Edit: removed my suggestion to leave it NC - see below]

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Hi @SeaLaVie ,
The data sheet shows the first pixel connecting BI to GND: