An engineer (and even Adafruit) would recommend that you use a logic level converter so that the Pi outputs a 5v and not 3v control signal. They would also recommend using a separate 5v DC power supply. This means adding a breadboard and lots of extra wiring.
I checked with the folks at Pimoroni about how their UnicornHAT works and it turns out that as long as the current draw is safely below 1A things will probably be OK. I connected my Multimeter in series and measured 0.85A at 100% brightness. Pimoroni’s Jon said this means things will probably be OK with my 60 LED NeoPixel strip.
Plug the DIN pin from the NeoPixel or strip into Pin 18 and then connect 5v to 5v on the Pi and GND to GND on the Pi.
Each Friday is PiDay here at Adafruit! Be sure to check out our posts, tutorials and new Raspberry Pi related products. Adafruit has the largest and best selection of Raspberry Pi accessories and all the code & tutorials to get you up and running in no time!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.