As anyone, who’s ever put together a DIY electronics project knows, managing large amounts of wiring can be a real hassle. This is especially true if you’re trying to build a DIY LED lighting system for your aquarium, while maintaining a certain level of aesthetics.
Most of the DIY LED builds that I’ve seen posted in recent years still struggled with this issue, and often used creative means to address it. This thread will show how I chose to tackle the problem.
I’ve been building DIY LED lighting systems for Aquarium use as a hobby for a few years now, and recently completed work on a little project that will hopefully be of value to other Aquarium Hobbyists .
Recently, the fine folks at MeanWell, came out with a new LED driver design designated the LDD series. This new series of driver is tiny, as it does not include its own AC power supply. The LDD series are available in two different flavors. First is the LDD-L, which is made available in different, pre-programmed current outputs, and rated to handle up to a 36 VDC input. Next is the LDD-H. It’s the larger of the two, available in different preprogrammed current outputs, and rated up to 56VDC
. You can read more about the LDD-L series of drivers here- LDD-L-spec.pdf (application/pdf Object)
and the LDD-H series here-LDD-H-spec.pdf (application/pdf Object)
The performance capabilities, diminutive size, and 5VPWM dimming had me intrigued, so I went ahead and ordered a few for testing. The LDD’s are available either prewired or PCmount. Since I was interested in reducing the wire count in my LED builds, the PC mount was the option I went with.
I started this project by designing a new Pcb that would contain 4 LDD-100H. Each LDD-H would share a common power and ground connection and receive its own separate PWM signal. I also redesigned the ever popular “Typhon” LED controller to mount directly to the LDD-H Pcb. I did my best to incorporate design features that would lend themselves to customization and ease of repair. Each LDD-H “plugs-in” to a chip socket rather than being soldered directly to the Pcb. This makes the replacement of the LDD’s easy in the case a damaged LDD or for swapping LDD’s of different current ratings. The LCD on the “Typhon” is also a “plug-in” affair, making replacement easy, if needed.
All said and done- I’ve managed to build a very compact and powerful LED lighting system that requires a minimum amount of outside wiring. All that is needed is a 48VDC supply to power the LDD’s/ LED’s and a 9VDC “wallwart power supply” for the “Typhon” Controller.
This little project will provide enough power to light up to 15- 3W LED’s per each of its 4 channels. That’s 60 LED’s! With “Sunrise/Sunset” dimming, “Moonlighting” ect... Here’s a few photos of the finished project. Let me know what you guys think…. I’ll post all of the Pcb build files, Bill of Materials, and Software needed to create your own, if there’s an interest.
Top view of the "Typhon" LED controller
Bottom View of the LDD-H