Need advise before buying


I would like to install a SK6812W led strip (15meters), IP65, 60 Leds/m to put on my outside “pergola”
with an esp32 with wled.

Since there is 15 meter long and around 900 leds to drive:

1/ Is it possible to buy a 5v leds or do i have to consider buying 12v or 24v leds ?
2/ The SK6812W need power and has 4 channels RBG and W , is there a schematic explaining the wiring somewhere ?
3/ Do i need a “shifter” ? what is the goal of the shifter?
4/ Is it possible to find a 15m long led strip or only 5m are available ?
5/ Since my pergola is square, do i have to set 4 segments of LEDs strip ? i mean is wled able to drive 4 SK6812w leds strip ?

Thanks for your help

Save yourself headaches and get a 12v system.

  1. The difference between 5V/12V/24 is the amount of power injection you need. The lower the voltage the more current you need and the more power injection points. 12V and 24V setups need less current and therefor less injection, but often limit the pixels you can change individually (they often group “one” pixel as a set of 3 or 6). That can change what effects you might run.
    Personally, I like to add a 24V “bus” using something like 18/2 wire and add 24V->5V buck converters along the strip at the injection points. That lets you have the best of both worlds IMHO.

  2. SK6812 RGBW wires up exactly the same as WS281x (or any of the other 3-wire addressable protocols). The extra data for the “W” LED is handled in software by WLED, you simply choose the SK6812 protocol to drive your strip.

  3. A levelshifter is recommended. It’s job is to take the 3.3V output of the ESP32 and bring it up to the 5V level the LEDs require to run reliably.

  4. The majority of strips are 5m max, you might be able to find longer lengths (someone else may chime in) but joining strips is pretty easy too. Use shorter lengths of lighter wire <5cm and 18-20AWG to make it easier to solder.

  5. You can easily drive 900 LEDs off of 1 GPIO pin on the ESP32. You simply put all the strips in series, “daisy chain” the Data Out line of the 1st strip into the Data In of the 2nd, and so on. You may see some performance limits depending on the effects you try to run, in which case you could split it up into 2 strips of 450 running off of 2 GPIOs. Checkout the details in the KB: Multi Strip

Everything they said^

I would put the Esp in a corner and run off of 2 ports one going right and one going left vs using one port.

Thanks a lot (more clear now)
what kind of “shifter” can i used ? do you have reference ?


Again, from the KnowledgeBase: KB - Levelshifters