Colors Shield

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Colors Shield.jpg

The Colors shield can directly plug on the Arduino board, and hook up with the RGB LED matrix, you can use the Arduino to drive the matrix like the Colorduino/Rainbowduino. The code of Colors shield is the same as Colorduino.

The Colors shield can be plug into the Arduino UNO/Duemilanove, so the controller is based on ATMega 168P/328P, the same as Rainbowduino. This design is to make user easily modify or write the firmware of Colorduino by Arduino IDE. But in order to better drive the RGB matrix and reach their best performance, we use the professional LED driver chip, and this chip comprises shift registers, data latches, 8×3 channel constant current and 64 x 256 gray level PWM for per color! Each channel provide a maximum current of 60 mA.

Each RGB dot has 160K colors in theory, and it’s easy to use the 6bit correction register to calibrate the current error for each color LEDs – we don’t think that Rainbowduino use an adjustable resistors to calibrate the current error is a good idea, because just 1 lap the resistor change from 0R to1K , you cannot get the exact value you need, but now, you have a 6bit software value to correct it.

Go shopping Colors Shield (IM120417002)


  • 8bits colors support with 6bits correction for each color in every dots
  • Hardware 16MHz PWM support
  • Without any external circuits, play and shine!
  • 24 constant current channels of 100mA each
  • 8 super source driver channels of 500mA each


PCB size 60mm X 60mm X 1.6mm
Indicators PWR State
Power supply 5V DC
IO 13
RoSH Yes

Electrical Characteristics

Parameter Min. Typical Max. Unit
Power voltage 4.5 5 5.5 VDC
Input voltage VinH (Target Voltage = 3.3V) 3 3.3 3.6 V
Input voltage VinH (Target Voltage = 5V) 4.5 5 5.5 V
Input voltage VinL -0.3 0 0.5 V
Current Consumption (Except LED matrix) - 20 40 mA
Drive current (Every channel) 500 mA
Drive current (Every dot) 58 mA



Pad Name Type Description
SDA I Serial input for grayscale data
SCK I Synchronous clock input for serial data transfer. The input data of SDA is transferred at rising edges of SCK.
SB I If SB is H, shift-in data would be stored in the 8-bit BANK 1. If SB is L, shift-in data would be stored in the 6-bit BANK 0.
LAT I When LAT converts from H to L, grayscale data in both shift register banks are latched.
RSTn I The shield is initialized when RSTn low. There is an internal pull-up in this pin. This pin couldn’t be floating. Before using the shield, it must be reset first.
C0 I Channel 0 enable input, High level active
C1 I Channel 1 enable input, High level active
C2 I Channel 2 enable input, High level active
C3 I Channel 3 enable input, High level active
C4 I Channel 4 enable input, High level active
C5 I Channel 5 enable input, High level active
C6 I Channel 6 enable input, High level active
C7 I Channel 7 enable input, High level active
+5V Power Power supply for Color shield, input range is from +3.3V


Datasheet for DM163

Datasheet for Colors Shield

Datasheet for M54564fp e

Schematic for Colors Shield

Demo Code for Colors Shield

Useful Links

Franklin Dattein's Blog <Arduino Build Light>

by Stanley <DIY a fancy car realtime data indicator with Arduino & RGB LED matrix >

by L8 SmartLight <L8 SmartLight :: The SoundLess Speaker :: for Phone/PC>