We have some great news about my Snowflake Decoration: Starting today, you can buy an assembled version of the project from Pimoroni that can be shipped worldwide.
Pimoroni did an excellent job on this project. No soldering is required at all, meaning this is the user-friendliest version of the project ever released!
The project comes in a nice package, containing a pre-assembled panel and flat cables used to connect all snowflake boards.
Changes to the Original Project
The overall design from Francesco Mazzola did not change. The snowflakes look exactly the same, and all delicate lines on the front side are perfectly manufactured.
The circuit did receive some improvements. First, the platform is now powered by 5V instead of 3.3V. Each board utilizes a small voltage regulator to provide the 3.3V for the microcontroller.
A higher voltage reduces the current on the flat cable on the strand. Also, the voltage regulator will provide a less noisy power supply on each board.
Next, the 19 resistors for the LEDs are combined in resistor banks. I have considered doing this in the past, but decided against it, primarily because the components are quite difficult to hand-solder.
The boards can be connected using the provided flat cables. This is simply an addition to the solder pads. If you prefer, you can still solder your own cable to the snowflakes.
Finally, all components are pre-soldered. Assembling my original kit, which was available exclusively to Boldport Club members, was a great challenge – primarily due to the tiny 0402 LEDs.
The snowflakes from Pimoroni are 100% compatible with those used in my original project. Therefore, if you created your own firmware for the project as I suggested, you can easily use it on these new snowflakes as well.
If you have questions, missed any information, or simply want to provide feedback, feel free to comment below or reach out to us through Twitter!
Snowflake Assembly Video
Snowflake Power Converter
Snowflake Project Videos
How to Wire the Snowflake Decoration
Programming the Snowflake Decoration
4 thoughts on “Snowflake Decoration Available on the Pimoroni Store”
What’s the maximum number of snowflakes that can be connected together?
The built-in patterns expect 1-5 snowflakes in one strand. If you modify the firmware, you can easily chain 20 or more. The limits are just delays in the communication protocol.
Hi, Would be great if you could publish a walkthrough of building code from source and uploading. I wanted to help kids design their own display sequence. I have a UsbTinyIsp AVR programmer, but think that I might need a JTAG programmer, so would help to know what kind So I can buy a cheap, non professional one. Thanks
Such a tutorial is currently in the making! 🙂 For the programming, you need Atmel Studio IDE, which is a free download but only works on Windows. You also need an SWD programmer. I recommend the Segger J-Link EDU Mini, you can get for ~$20 from many suppliers and ist only for non-commercial use. This programmer can be used for many different types of MCUs and works flawlessly on Windows, Mac, and Linux.