Adafruit 16×8 LED Matrix Driver Backpack – HT16K33 Breakout: This is the magic sauce in our 7-segment and matrix backpacks, now available in breadboard-friendly breakout board format. The HT16K33 is a neat little chip that has the ability to drive a multiplexed 16×8 matrix (that’s 128 individual LEDs). The communication protocol is I2C so it uses only 2 pins, and you can have up to 8 selectable I2C addresses so thats a total of 8 matrices, each one controlling 16×8 LEDs for 1024 total LEDs. Read more.
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This looks AMAZING. What an upgrade! I’d love to do something similar for my set, but I’m having trouble tracking down a slip ring. Or, at least, one that would work with the kit without costing an arm and a leg, but Google isn’t being all that helpful. Did trueger use something similar to these – https://powerbyproxi.com/slip-ring/ ? Any help would be appreciated – really inspired by this upgrade! 😀