Miss/LED - two more LED music visualisers


Comments • 896

  • Matt3401
    Matt3401 4 months ago +339

    I find these things fascinating. They're largely pointless and these two are difficult to justify given the high price, but I must admit I could find space for the second one. Looking forward to the sequel to the sequel Mat!

  • Ian GC
    Ian GC 4 months ago +280

    I've got to admit I liked the look of the first one and when you showed the second I was thinking what I could make the box out of. Then you told us the price and I realised I didn't need it that much.

    • flandrble
      flandrble 4 months ago +3

      @ModdQuad are they each individually controllable?

    • ModdQuad
      ModdQuad 4 months ago +2

      @flandrble I build a 10x12 led grid for a guitar pedal. Each led costed 4.7 cents at a quantity 600 or about $28 total (plus the PCB and pick and place).

    • fedepede04
      fedepede04 4 months ago

      I felt the same 😂

    • mc349iii
      mc349iii 4 months ago +3

      I think the board has a problem and it's not working properly. That stuck red led is also a worrying sign. Doesn't look like good quality control unfortunately.

  • Rene Seckler
    Rene Seckler 4 months ago +87

    The second one would have been almost perfect, but it looks like they made the spectrum linear instead of logarithmic. That's why the very highs take up so much space and don't do much.

    • Zer0 Bin0pse
      Zer0 Bin0pse 4 months ago +2

      probably just a matter of changing some setting

  • Graeme Hill
    Graeme Hill 4 months ago +111

    In 1983 or so I built a 8 channel one of these from a design in Practical Electronics. I taped up and etched the boards drilled and populated them. Took me months to afford the components from my pocket money. All entirely analogue using filters based on 741 opamps and an LM3915 in each channel for the display.

    • Mickey Mouse Park
      Mickey Mouse Park 4 months ago +6

      @Graeme Hill
      very well done..this type of idea actually goes even farther back music sensitive flashing lights for entertainment..back in the 1970's there was instructions to build one in Popular Electronics:
      take an old stereo speaker box
      remove the guts
      mount christmas lights inside (twinkle or fairy lights... standard christmas incandescents would probable catch fire)
      put a sheet of prism plexi on the front
      buy a filter board from Radio Shack (fully assembled or as a kit) it had RCA phono jacks on the board that you could mount inside the speaker box...
      usually no mic input just RCA phono jacks..
      throw some Disco on your 8-track and you are good to go...
      total cost excluding the old speaker box was under $20...

    • Jason W
      Jason W 4 months ago +5

      I built one like that too in the early 90's from an old project book. I remember the LM3915 being decently pricey, and getting it in a brick-n-mortar electronics store back in the day.

    • Nick Wallette
      Nick Wallette 4 months ago +12

      @Rodrigo Belinchon Well, if you’re doing RMS measurements, some latency is inherent anyway.

    • Ken More
      Ken More 4 months ago +7

      Cool! I miss those days.

    • Rodrigo Belinchon
      Rodrigo Belinchon 4 months ago +10

      no latency , unlike these digital things

  • Doug Johnson Productions
    Doug Johnson Productions 4 months ago +193

    It really seems like the makers of the LED panel product don't understand that our perception of audio frequencies is logarithmic. Its display seems a lot more linear, with even midrange frequencies showing up at the left end of the display. Midrange frequencies ought to be in the middle, especially if the upper end of the range is limited to a few kHz.

    • Anthestudios
      Anthestudios Month ago

      I think it would be difficult to communicate to the (uninformed) end user what's happening. You'd need to start using the MEL scale (because you're no longer displaying true frequency), and that requires some knowledge you just can't assume of users of a "funny lights go boing boing" product. HOWEVER, I do share your frustrations, and I would love if it were an option.

    • Kornaros
      Kornaros 2 months ago

      @famitory windows media player....

    • Flowxing
      Flowxing 4 months ago

      @Zer0 Bin0pse not while handling the io of the display at the same time. Also that requires a proper implementation

    • Zer0 Bin0pse
      Zer0 Bin0pse 4 months ago

      @Flowxing really? decent FFT seems pretty trivial nowadays, and since those 32 bit arm chips don't have to run much else, they can dedicate most of their cpu time to the task.

    • baylinkdashyt
      baylinkdashyt 4 months ago

      @Dave Lordy Oh. I missed the caption, but that's not what an audio sweep looks like on an RTA. :-)

  • Wade Bowmer
    Wade Bowmer 4 months ago +218

    The LED panels in the second one are the same ones used in video walls - Adafruit were selling some a while ago. I'm impressed at the programming they've done to use three of them. However, I agree the lack of a case is a big omission!

    • Daniel Lopez
      Daniel Lopez 4 months ago

      The case is probably missing because it wouldve increased the size of the package considerably and thus Also the postage considerably.

    • 8bitwiz
      8bitwiz 4 months ago +3

      Those are typical HUB75 panels, and are the size used for smaller video walls, a few feet across. The P number (P4 / P5 / etc.) indicates the pitch of the LEDs in mm, and they seem to be 32x64 size. They cost about $20 each from the typical AliExpress seller, and maybe $35-$50 via Amazon, so that's a rather pricey controller board.
      A right-angle plug might be nice, but that's the standard power plug for those.

    • Martin King
      Martin King 4 months ago +1

      @flandrble It doesn't scale well unless you move to fast FPGA's and break the system up into smaller modules with a pre-processor/scaler to break up the data to be sent to each module (which is exactly what video walls do).

    • flandrble
      flandrble 4 months ago

      @Martin King yeah but, once you've done that all for one panel (or a handful of the LEDs in series), it's reasonably trivial to keep the chain going.

    • Wade Bowmer
      Wade Bowmer 4 months ago

      @Martin King You described exactly how I understood they were run.

  • - ̗̀A Bacchus ̖́-
    - ̗̀A Bacchus ̖́- 4 months ago +28

    Wow! That second one ( £182.49 ) - those DMD boards can be purchased on Aliexpress for £6.00 each, and I'd say the PCB module would be another £8.00ish... So, about £150.00 too expensive!

    CARL iCON 4 months ago +21

    9:11 "using a higher level 32 bit ARM processor" what a time to be alive when we have 32 bit processors controlling blinky lights for our music viewing pleasure!

    • Blahorga Slisk
      Blahorga Slisk 4 months ago +5

      I remember when NEC launched a laser printer that had a 32 bit ARM processor and 4(? 2? 6?) MB of RAM. It was a lot faster to print than any laser I had used before that. The print mechanism wasn't much faster, but the time from sending the data to the printer starting was the big thing. I'm not certain about the memory as it's been a long time since, but as I remember it was upgradeable. The amount was important as it limited how large a graphic image the printer could print. Note that we are talking a black and white printer here, no color graphics, but at what I think was 600 dpi a full A4 page (and yes I'm in Europe, so sorry but I have no idea about US paper sizes) takes up just a bit over 4 MB. And as some of the memory were used by the printer OS not all of it was available. But given that the printer couldn't print all the way out to the margins it meant that with 4MB of memory it could print almost a full A4 with 600 DPI graphics. Now a processor that's almost certainly more advanced, faster and probably have more memory is used for a light show like this...
      Times really changes...

  • Sam'sTrains
    Sam'sTrains 4 months ago +12

    That first one was absolutely amazing... awesome!

    • Sam'sTrains
      Sam'sTrains 4 months ago

      Yeah, no good at all for proper visualisation... Just fantastic aesthetically (I think)

    • biggoofybastard
      biggoofybastard 4 months ago +1

      @Botany 500 If that's all you're looking for what's wrong with that?

    • Andrew Macdonald
      Andrew Macdonald 4 months ago +1

      It is nicer but it's flawed. 😕

    • Botany 500
      Botany 500 4 months ago +5

      Looked like it was just responding to sounds rather than the frequencies. More like random flashing.

  • mr y mysterious video
    mr y mysterious video 4 months ago +29

    I’ve always thought the Winamp built in visualiser on pc looks great, hypnotic and capable of much more than these hardware devices

    • PongoXBongo
      PongoXBongo 17 days ago

      @Nick Wallette OMG, I forgot about those! Just seeing the names again brings back great memories (esp. on snappy CRTs).

    • XTorinX
      XTorinX 3 months ago +1

      @Nick Wallette a 24/7 Milkdrop 2 display would be amazing :O

    • YAUUN
      YAUUN 3 months ago +2

      It really whipped the llama's ass.

    • Mister Bishi
      Mister Bishi 4 months ago +5

      There are several newer audio players that can use Winamp plugins, too. Then there was G-Force and Whitecap.

    • Nick Wallette
      Nick Wallette 4 months ago +9

      We need an LED panel implementation of Geiss / Milkdrop.

  • Gloomy Blackfur
    Gloomy Blackfur 4 months ago +16

    The "operating system" on that second system really places it into a higher class of device from those ones where you have to click one button dozens of times and you can't save your settings between boot ups.

  • TonyZed68
    TonyZed68 4 months ago +18

    Am I the only one wondering if the first one's "seemingly useless switch" was for switching between a mono source (so it displays on both sides) and a stereo source?

    • TonyZed68
      TonyZed68 3 months ago +2

      @BOYD1981 Damnit, missed that. Thanks.

    • BOYD1981
      BOYD1981 3 months ago +5

      It switched the audio input between phono and the microphone, he did it right before talking about it not being true stereo.

    • Artemis
      Artemis 3 months ago +1

      I think he wouild have tried the switch but hey may have missed it

  • devicemodder
    devicemodder 4 months ago +14

    Interestingly, Item 2, the LED panels specifically use what's known as Hub75 for the protocol/interface. Meaning that these are the very same panels that are used in those LED advertisement billboards on the street. I have a few of these panels myself, along with a controller that can do video and even take HDMI in.

    • PongoXBongo
      PongoXBongo 17 days ago

      Nice. Would cost a fair bit, but an entire disco-tech type wall display would be amazing. Or maybe put it on the ceiling and program it to display 360 degress out from the center.

  • Doughnuts El Gato
    Doughnuts El Gato 4 months ago +19

    The second panel interests me, I could see creating a simple metal framework to make a corner mounted display, which would be lovely in this dead space in the corner next to me. As you said though, the price is eye watering. At nearly $200 US for the smaller 3 panel kit, that prices it outside of my fun money budget.

  • quetsch
    quetsch 4 months ago +14

    As an EE, I was delighted to see the aliasing effect on the frequency sweep, when the Input signal exceeded the sampling frequency of the device. Really cool.

    • Nick Wallette
      Nick Wallette 4 months ago +3

      Yeah! And a really linear response from the source and sampling devices!

  • coondogtheman1234
    coondogtheman1234 4 months ago +5

    The second visualizer is missing an ocilloscope feature so if you have electronic music playing like chiptunes you can see square waves triangle waves.

  • D G Roberts
    D G Roberts 4 months ago +15

    These episodes are my favorite breakdown videos. I'm not entirely sure why dancing LEDs bring me so much satisfaction, perhaps my genetic coding went wrong along the way. Anyways, nice built-in teaser for future episodes, taunting us with a big, heavy unit and then saving it for another time. Nice work Matt. Oh and converting to Canadian Dollars was a nice touch...

  • Thomas Jager
    Thomas Jager 4 months ago +12

    That second one seems pretty nice as a decorative thing. I love the single-pixel columns modes particularly.

  • Jeff Davies
    Jeff Davies 4 months ago +31

    That first one was not only duplicated, it was also mirrored mono and was obviously so as soon as it began working. That second one was my favourite though.

  • Anona Mouse
    Anona Mouse 4 months ago +5

    That second one is 97 band and 30 step if I'm counting correctly. Depending on how those frequency settings affect it, it might be an accurate and useful tool for fine EQ adjustments.
    The cost is not unreasonable for what it does.

    • strangersound
      strangersound 4 months ago +2

      The first one is a fake, but the the second one is legit. Not only does it do what it's supposed to, it does it in an epic way. A perfect addition to any studio, bar/club, audiophile setup, mancave, etc. The fact it needs encased is actually a plus, because it leaves the options open.

  • ZGryphon
    ZGryphon 4 months ago +34

    This general class of gadgets makes me nostalgic for the Virtual Light Machine in the old Atari Jaguar CD, which was probably the coolest non-game function ever included in a game console.

    • Chris Giorgi
      Chris Giorgi 4 months ago

      I should dust of my JagCD one of these days, VLM was the entire reason I bought the CD attachment, didn't care much about the CD games :P

    • Thomas Myles
      Thomas Myles 4 months ago +1

      @JennOscura Hey Jenn, thanks for the reply. Wow the Atari consoles (78/2600 et al) are the stuff of legend for me. Again, I had the equivalent of fleeting glimpses at them and the commodore 64/128s of the 8 bit era and nes/snes/segas of the 16 bit times. I remember early levels on pitfall? And the Sid Meier's Pirates game? Oh and Mario and Sonic obvs. None of these are Atari but just sharing my experiences. There's a great channel by a lovely human called Robyn, who's the singer of one of my favourite post-punk nerd bands called 8 bit Show and Tell(channel name, Band name is "Bedford Level Experiment."? They're Canadian and of the Gen X era, Check them out, I feel like you would like them xxxxx

    • JennOscura
      JennOscura 4 months ago +2

      @Thomas Myles I remember my cousin telling me about the not yet released Jaguar. This was the 16 bit era. The thought of 64 bits was mind blowing. I was born in 79. So I grew up with the Atari 2600 and the 8 bit consoles. I had an Atari 7800. It was awesome because it was backwards compatible with 2600 games. At the time Toys R Us was selling 2600 games really cheap. So it let me beef up my game collection on the cheap. To this day I still really like some 2600 games. Video pinball, River Raid, and Combat are my favorites.

    • periurban
      periurban 4 months ago +3

      What about the Trip-A-Tron for the Atari ST. A light show in a box.

    • Ian Phillip
      Ian Phillip 4 months ago +5

      Ooh, that was Jeff Minter wasn’t it? I had an earlier visualiser of his for the Atari 8-bit machines. He made some great games as well, like that version of Tempest on the Jag.

  • igor szamaszow
    igor szamaszow 4 months ago +75

    I like the idea of the second display. You can rewire these panels in a different order once in a while - 123, 231 and so on, so the LEDs would degrade more or less equally.

    • GodmanchesterGoblin
      GodmanchesterGoblin 4 months ago

      Yes - or someone is mixing up with OLEDs which are completely unrelated. Normal RGB leds using three LED chips do not use phosphors. They use Red Green and Blue LEDs (not sure why @eekee started to mention UV LEDs - UV LEDs are recent compared to Blue). Blue LEDs are Blue, and do not use phosphors. So those panels would have a very long life provided that the driver circuits do not over-drive the LEDs.

    • Billy Bobby
      Billy Bobby 4 months ago +2

      Think you're talking about vfd display like what is avr displays

    • Daedalus Young
      Daedalus Young 4 months ago +3

      @igor szamaszow If they get noticeably less bright real fast, then they get too much current pushed through them. Most single LEDs will be wired to get 20-30 mA, but they'll work just fine with even 5 mA applied, and they'll last longer.

    • Lucien86
      Lucien86 4 months ago +1

      @eekee With old school tvs/tubes it took quite a lot to really burn them in. Mostly or completely static displays left up for years, especially with high contrast lk monochrome computer displays.
      I know it can be an issue with OLED tvs. For ordinary LEDs I think its basically a matter of basic quality.. Also current loading & driving plus thermal management can have a big impact on lifespan

    • eekee
      eekee 4 months ago +6

      @igor szamaszow Uh... I'm confused, let me "think out loud". There are multiple types of LEDs. The original type only came in a few specific wavelengths which were directly emitted by the diode. Those don't fade, but they don't come in blue. When they found how to make LEDs emit UV light, they immediately started making them with phosphors in the same way as flourescent tube lights. I can't recall if flourescent tubes faded noticably, but the phosphors in TV screens could clearly 'burn' which is similar enough to say they did. Then came OLEDs which I know nothing about except for the fact that OLED screens can burn; same again. _So..._ it depends on the type of LED. I'm not really comfortable with the "rather fast" qualifier for phosphors though. You'd think old-school TVs would quickly get messy if it was true.

  • Rob S
    Rob S 4 months ago +28

    For the price of the second one you could "almost" buy a long LCD panel and make a display that could do more than music. I know, not quite the point of flashing LEDs but a little more useful.

    • Chris
      Chris 4 months ago

      Almost? Decent 32" lcd tvs are like $50 less here. Agree the software would be a bit of a problem tho.

    • Andrew Mitchell
      Andrew Mitchell 4 months ago

      You could but then you'd have to have the relevant hardware and software to drive the display. These are at least plug and play with next to no configuration/setup required.

  • DeathInTheSnow
    DeathInTheSnow 4 months ago +30

    _£350??_ You could've got another bundle of used MiniDisc players for that!
    But seriously, thank you for the work you do and your channel. You bring to the fore so many fascinating pieces of history and present them in a loving way, even when they're utter tosh.
    You know, I'm surprised we haven't had a decent mini amp with a visualiser bolted on top using something like a phone screen. Or if there is, at least and affordable one. But I guess the market is quite slim for that in an age of wireless headphones (whose batteries are probably quite knackered by now...).

  • David Rahd
    David Rahd 4 months ago +17

    The second one is very cool, it can be easily to setup in some places without a case, I imagine they would look very cool mounted directly on a wall, if you don't care about the audio input jack and are ok about using only the mic there is no need to have the audio input jack accessible too.

    • David Rahd
      David Rahd 4 months ago +1

      @Started not necessarily it depends the amount of effort you are wiling to put into it. Energy wires are already built in the walls.

    • Started
      Started 4 months ago +2

      Well ya gotta have it plugged into the wall so wires are going somewhere, may as well route a 3.5mm extension cable with it

  • LiK
    LiK 4 months ago +5

    I love visualizers. Was fascinated with them ever since the Winamp days. Always enjoy your impressions for these physical ones. Looking forward to more impressions when the others arrive. Btw, the random currency converter made me laugh lol

    • chillstar
      chillstar 4 months ago +1

      Be cool if they did a 4 panel version that could be arranged in series for spectrum analyser display, or in 2 x 2 and it was capable of displaying Milkdrop scripts (one of the popular Winamp visualiser formats)

  • Pat Hills
    Pat Hills 4 months ago +11

    Nice Swiss Army knife. Looked like you clicked “all” for which blades you wanted to have off the options list 😀

    • DuskHorizon
      DuskHorizon 4 months ago +3

      I'm half wondering if it's a running gag where the knife will get wider and wider until it fills the screen ;)

  • Ciborium
    Ciborium 4 months ago +6

    If that first device actually worked, i.e., it was in stereo, I'd say it would be pretty neat for parties or the like.

    • J K
      J K 4 months ago

      or if it wouldn't try to pretend it's stereo (ie. if it wouldn't mirror the display but use the whole width for a mixed down channel/the mic input).

  • Torbjörn Hagenstam
    Torbjörn Hagenstam 4 months ago +13

    That second one would look pretty sick if ya put it into the wall, or well, a recession in the wall, right above your stereo set and between the speakers.
    The gap between the panels would dissapear when putting it into a box that's dark

    • Just Another Viewer
      Just Another Viewer 4 months ago

      Possibly if having tinted glass sheet over the front and having the brightness turned up... as it is surely more the reflection of light from the front rather than seeing the light behind shining through?

  • TheDuerden
    TheDuerden 4 months ago +12

    One thing coming out of this video, I noticed my speakers were wired up so the left speaker was the right channel...so cheers for that.

  • gigaherz
    gigaherz 4 months ago +6

    The mono/stereo thing in Item 1 may be so it can support mono inputs. It feels to me like instead of autodetecting if there's signal in both cables, they just clone the Left into the Right in the processor, so it will have full display on either case.

  • Alec Ver Bunker
    Alec Ver Bunker 4 months ago +13

    I think the only real advantage of wiring something like this in is you get the true stereo display. That is if the device uses it properly in the first place 😂

  • FreePress
    FreePress 4 months ago +5

    Thanks Matt, you saved me time & money - can't wait to see the assembly of device number 3, whether its hot air soldering, conventional or both, how you handle the components; type of flux etc.

  • mickey thompson
    mickey thompson 4 months ago +3

    Always good to see your visualiser reviews :-)
    I don't think there's anything 'wrong' with the first one. It's just a fake - not 14 bands.
    Nice enough effect, though, with the mirroring - and you don't really need separate L and R displays for this. Second is very attractive, and might even be useful in a studio.

  • G Henrickson
    G Henrickson 4 months ago +4

    Thanks once again for “taking one for the team”. As fascinating as these displays are, I feel they should not cost more than a decent useable cell phone or tablet. And we would not know this if you did not review them for us. Thanks again.

  • Sodori
    Sodori 4 months ago +15

    I think that if they can better make the second one a bit more flush and especially bring down the price it'd be rather interesting to buy!
    Thank you as always for great content

    • ChromeDestiny
      ChromeDestiny 4 months ago

      Techmoan profiled a similar one in the past but this one has a few more features.

    • JennOscura
      JennOscura 4 months ago +1

      Same here. I really like the second one. But I am not sure if I can justify the cost.

  • Vwlss Nvwls
    Vwlss Nvwls 4 months ago +10

    I have always loved techno gadgets. I remember fiddling with a oscilloscope for far too long on my friends stereo when I was in high school.
    I always wanted something like that, but never knew I could buy them separate from the music devices.

  • Dave Lordy
    Dave Lordy 4 months ago +21

    A better way to balance the spectrum (rather than limiting the frequency range) would be to tilt the response curve, most professional EQ displays offer tilts like 3dB or 6dB (etc) per octave, so the upper frequencies are more prominent.
    If you have the knowhow you can tilt the audio before the input stage.

    • Erik
      Erik 4 months ago +3

      In a display for pure visual appeal, it seems like those parameters should be adjustable.

  • Santa Claus
    Santa Claus 4 months ago +16

    Nice fair review, Mat. I’m going to ask the elves what kind of led VU meters they can come up with.

    • canaconn23
      canaconn23 4 months ago +11

      @Techmoan He's always working! Gotta prepare for next Christmas.

    • Techmoan
      Techmoan  4 months ago +27

      I thought you were on holiday now.

  • Hidden
    Hidden 4 months ago +13

    I love the second one. Since you anyways need to build a case for it I wonder if it would look nice with translucent white plexiglass on top of it, that would also hide the seams.

    • The Truth
      The Truth 4 months ago +1

      @D G Roberts Exactly what I was thinking too :)

    • D G Roberts
      D G Roberts 4 months ago +2

      And here I was thinking,black ectrical tape would hide this nicely

  • Rommee Manuel
    Rommee Manuel 4 months ago +8

    Would have been cool to test the EQ on the first light display such as kick drum only for bass register and snare or other for the upper register. Nevertheless great vid as always 😊👌

  • Williston Audio Labs
    Williston Audio Labs 4 months ago +17

    Music sounds better with visuals…Acme research proven! Great vid, thanks 👍

  • steubens7
    steubens7 4 months ago +2

    there's actually a bug in the FastLED library that causes red pixels like in the first visualizer. wouldn't have guessed it used an arduino but that's s crazy specific bug

  • Tom55data
    Tom55data 4 months ago +2

    Thank you for the review of these.
    I have a different version of the first one , it is a 14 band single channel device, not 2x7 band device, so shows 63H to 16kH from left to right across the 14 towers. This works fine, and a frequency sweep shows it works as intended, and the device uses the average of left + right channels. I am happy as I prefer something physical rather than a panel which I can simulate better on a computer screen (or TV monitor), my preference being a 3D item that is coloured.
    Since I can simulate the second option on a cheap TV + computer then it is not what I wanted, while the 1st option has a value to me as cutting 20x14 blocks of acrylic was not possible without expensive equipment.
    Your millage and thoughts probably vary.
    My guess for the problem of the first one is that the microphone (mono) is connected into the stereo input and is "shorting" out the stereo signal - maybe disconnect the mic input plug to see if this fixes the problem.

  • Jari Heiska
    Jari Heiska 4 months ago +3

    The larger one could really benefit from some kind of, display graphics-option. It's possible, considering the logo.

  • S R
    S R 4 months ago +6

    Great video as always. I loved the second one with 3 large panels - looks the biz! Looking forward to the next video with the 3rd product.

  • Niko Obermayr
    Niko Obermayr 4 months ago +3

    The second one seems like it's representing the spectrum linearly instead of logarithmically. The latter would make much more sense. With the linear representation you basically get most of the action from the lows and mids in the left half and all the top end on the right half. With the 5k "Frequency" setting, 1kHz would still be about at the center of the leftmost panel.

  • Hellish Meat Noodles
    Hellish Meat Noodles 4 months ago +1

    I've been looking for a device like this to add to my hifi setup and lately I've been seriously considering the leaf nano. It would fit this segment really well, and a techmoan review would be really helpful - the others I've found have been vague.

  • Gunstick
    Gunstick 4 months ago +4

    With some other electronics, you can turn these LED panels into a nice scrolltext display. Or maybe even reprogram the existing controller.

    • 8bitwiz
      8bitwiz 4 months ago

      HUB75 is quite difficult to make a large display of without using an FPGA, because you are shifting in entire rows of on/off pixels at a time, and usually can only select one or two rows at the same time. Brightness control requires manual PWM from whatever is driving it.
      Reusing the existing controller also requires you to have the tools to create a new program and load it. If you're lucky, they will be STM32 clones.
      I've made an STM32 drive one before. I used a logarithmic PWM (4/2/1 cycles for each brightness bit), but it was a lot of work. The most annoying part was that the input chips are designed for 5V CMOS signaling that needs at least 3.5 volts, and they get wobbly with 3.3V inputs.

  • Branflakes4547
    Branflakes4547 4 months ago +12

    Wow that is one HECK of a swiss army knife. Mat must have like 10 video projects going at once. The quality, quantity, and consistence is quite perfect.

    • Phrea Nix
      Phrea Nix 4 months ago +2

      Looks to be a Victorinox Swiss Champ XXL or a Swiss Champ XLT maybe.

  • Angelino
    Angelino 4 months ago +2

    I personally don’t care if they are stereo or not since I’d be using them for decoration and fun, not analysing sound waves, which I don’t suspect they’d be great for anyway. So for pure pretty, number one gets my vote. Thanks for your hard work!

  • greenaum
    greenaum 4 months ago +2

    The thing near the beginning round 2:04 where the LEDs look cyan then green might just be to do with green LEDs being more efficient, they light up stronger with less power, than blue ones do. So whatever simple way they've done the LED dimming (PWM probably), fading the green and blue LEDs by the same level will disproportionately affect the appearance of the colour, so producing that effect.

  • JarekMa2
    JarekMa2 4 months ago +7

    7:00 isn't the magical switch on the back responsible for changing between mono and stereo mode?

    • JoJo
      JoJo 4 months ago +2

      No, it switches between microphone and audio input.

  • Circan Rigaund
    Circan Rigaund 4 months ago +2

    The first LED panel looks to run from something very much like the Teensy (2.0 ++) controller. If so, it would be possible to check their code. Processing isn't a terribly difficult language.

  • Fiasshole
    Fiasshole 4 months ago +5

    as a child of the 90s, these were always so fascinating.

  • Jose Valle
    Jose Valle 4 months ago +4

    El segundo se ve mejor, sin embargo, creo que por el precio, pudo haber tenido algunas mejoras. Principalmente, estéticas. Da la impresión de un kit para armar desde cero .

  • Dirty Plumbus
    Dirty Plumbus 4 months ago +1

    This series will be of particular interest to me. This is something I'd love to add to my music related videos. However, these two products are a no go for me, too expensive for what they are.

  • Philip Zimmerman
    Philip Zimmerman 4 months ago +1

    Yo, Techmoan, love your presentations! I want to share...Had a friend years ago who purchased an osilliscope, hooked THAT into his stereo. One of the coolest things I ever saw.👍🏻. Keep up the outstanding work, and thank you.🙂

    • mescko
      mescko 3 months ago

      @mattmanyam There were a couple of Marantz units that had them.

    • mattmanyam
      mattmanyam 4 months ago

      There was at least one that had one built in (Technics?) Might be a video on this channel...

  • Dmerlo
    Dmerlo 4 months ago +1

    This LED spectrum would be fitting at music producers as well. IMO, the first one looks astonishing!

  • Rod RodI
    Rod RodI 4 months ago +1

    Great video. The three panel model would be worth the price if it had an option to display a digital clock or the ability to scroll text across the three panels.

  • igor szamaszow
    igor szamaszow 4 months ago +34

    I always love it when Canadian and / or Australian dollars get a mention. I hope New Zealand will pop up for the third one!

    • The Truth
      The Truth 4 months ago +1

      @Erik Very true. Especially with different overseas delivery costs and import taxes.

    • Erik
      Erik 4 months ago +1

      Price quotes in YT reviews are pretty soft information, anyway. If you're watching the vid from any other country, or much later in time, you're probably not going to find the thing for that anyway.

    • eekee
      eekee 4 months ago

      I was half-expecting something super-unexpected for the third one. 🤣

    • orochu saki
      orochu saki 4 months ago +2

      @nequests As an American I appreciate it because it sent me down a rabbit hole of comparing the history of the aud to usd exchange rate. Not all of us are solipsistic egomaniacs... even though recent history may suggest otherwise...

    • Richard Polhill
      Richard Polhill 4 months ago +9

      My assumption was that enough people, who were unaware that currency conversion is available right in Google, complained that he always quotes prices in UK Sterling instead of "dollars" so he's trolling them.

  • Royson Parsons
    Royson Parsons 4 months ago

    Fun to see! I bought my first spectrum display after seeing your review of it here a few years ago. It is really cool and I still use it. Coincidentally, I bought the second one in this review last year. I only bought a single panel version and I am in the process of building a custom frame for it. My project will have a glass front plate etched with the Pioneer Elite THX logo. It should make a good aesthetic highlight for my home theater. Your electronic interests and projects often align with mine. Great Job!

  • Birbal
    Birbal 4 months ago

    Thank you for this video! It came at the right time for me as I was looking to buy a visualiser. After this, I end up buying the second option even though I agree, the price is too high.

  • Ian Rolfe
    Ian Rolfe 4 months ago +1

    The second one is nice, I like the fact that it can drive multiple panels, I just think however if you're contemplating a spectrum analyser display this large then maybe just get a widescreen monitor, raspberry pi and program it to be a VU meter or an old fashioned winamp style visualisor!.....

  • Verified
    Verified 4 months ago +3

    Love that second one, until I saw the price tag!
    Then nearly died! lol

  • Peter Agurkis
    Peter Agurkis 3 months ago

    Thank you for having such a calm voice and a calm subject matter about things that should be lame but you actually make them very engaging and interesting. I especially like the history lessons in your videos because it brings a real human aspect to the topics you discuss, and above all thank you for making videos that help me calm down and fall asleep when I'm feeling anxious and restless. I don't fall asleep because they are boring, I fall asleep because they bring me peace.

  • Xeraser
    Xeraser 4 months ago +1

    Despite the price I really like the second one, might get it if it ever goes on sale.

  • Captinmax
    Captinmax 4 months ago

    Great video. The second one from Aliexpress is always more expensive if you get the kit all-in-one. What I did was to get 3 LED matrix panels (£11 each) the controller (£17) and the power supply (£3). There was no way I was paying £180+ for the same kit. There are a million sellers on Aliexpress selling the same items and they range from very cheap to overly expensive, it always pays to spend some time to compare prices.

  • fltwoodsmonster
    fltwoodsmonster 4 months ago

    Yesss! Your first few music visualizer videos encouraged me to look into making one myself using an arduino... I haven't gotten too far in the goal of making one with an arduino (turned out to be a lot harder than expected for a complete novice like myself), but I learned a lot about how to use an arduino along the way!! I'm looking forward to more music visualizer videos!!

  • Andy Cortez [El Smeghead]
    Andy Cortez [El Smeghead] 4 months ago +1

    13:45 I'd have loved to have had one of these back in the 1980s installed in my car!! Does it run on 12v DC?? 😜

  • Yohanan Arjoon
    Yohanan Arjoon 4 months ago +1

    Awesome video. 😁👍
    Keep up the good work.
    I like music visualizers, they're cool.
    The first one was the best to me.
    But I wouldn't buy it, because the input is not in stereo.

  • Casey Rice
    Casey Rice 4 months ago +1

    I'd love to have that second one as a showpiece RTA next to my soundboard at gigs.

  • Robert Wing
    Robert Wing 2 months ago

    Great bit of kit m8! I'm looking forward to getting the 2nd screen and the next video.
    All the videos on point. Love them!

  • Brutus B. Martins
    Brutus B. Martins 4 months ago

    It's always hard to find a good spectrum analyzer for a cheap price. Luckily my keyboard has a left-right channel one built in as a feture with the backlights.

  • arcade.ly
    arcade.ly 4 months ago

    Thanks Mat - I appreciate these reviews. I'm going for a sort of DJ boothish vibe around my hifi in the lounge so one or two of these kinds of things might feature for parties and suchlike.

  • Blown Capacitor
    Blown Capacitor 4 months ago

    Cheers on the video! Always a good day when techmoan drops a video! Just got in a batch of lm3915 ic's for a new VU meter project so needless to say I've already got dancing LEDs on the brain

  • ChrisF
    ChrisF 4 months ago

    Great video. Did you notice if with the 3 panel display there is a option to flip / mirror the image (so you could have two of these either portrait or landscape and create a symmetrical display)?

  • Mal-2 KSC
    Mal-2 KSC 4 months ago +1

    The gaps between panels can be mitigated by putting electrical tape on the back side of the seam to keep light from coming through the crack. I do this with multi-monitor setups when perfect alignment is impossible. It sure beats being able to see the wall behind.
    ᴇᴅɪᴛ: I have also discovered the wonder that is black hot glue.

  • baylinkdashyt
    baylinkdashyt 4 months ago +1

    Thanks for showing the modes on the wide panel one -- as one of those people for whom it's an audio tool, I'm always interested in how close it will get to what I need, which is separated bars, peak hold, and "real" colors (70% green, 15% yellow and 15% red, or so)...

  • 23 Names
    23 Names 4 months ago +1


  • deapecunia
    deapecunia 4 months ago +1

    Great content as always. Has Mat ever reviewed the honeycomb display visible during his intros? It's on the top right corner, I'm intrigued by that one.

    • espurious
      espurious 4 months ago +1

      He has not. We all want one, but he's keeping tight lipped about it!

  • Ash
    Ash 4 months ago

    I watched the other audio displays last year and I'm mostly intrigued with them. Be nice as a background audio thing.

  • Buckaroo Bunny Slippers
    Buckaroo Bunny Slippers 4 months ago +10

    When a man who opens packages with a Swiss Champ XAVT tells you something might not be worth the money, listen to him. (Just jealous of course; that's the most insane SWAK ever!)

    • Buckaroo Bunny Slippers
      Buckaroo Bunny Slippers 4 months ago

      Wow, I stand corrected!

    • mpf1947
      mpf1947 4 months ago +1

      The most insane SAK ever is the Wenger Giant. It has 87 implements and weighs in at 1.3 kilos.
      It also carried a $1300 price tag.

  • B Scott
    B Scott 4 months ago +1

    Love your work!!! Long time watcher!! You really shed some light on the subject!!!

  • Albert Filice
    Albert Filice 3 months ago

    That swiss knife is MASSIVE! Love it. As a kid my favorite tools was always the magnifying glass and scissors.

  • Dennis Thompson II
    Dennis Thompson II 3 months ago +1

    The reflection on your work surface during the second unit demo is a nice touch.

  • Archi
    Archi 4 months ago

    Great video. I've been looking for something does not use XLR as a control interface, these arent great but it's nice to be an informed consumer.

  • Andi Archer
    Andi Archer 4 months ago +3

    The first unit looks really cool design as a show-piece on a sideboard near the stereo . The second design could have been thought out better as those connections could have been made to slide in sideways or even on the side of the panels so they connected when joined together and mount the electronic controller on the back. As to mounting, maybe some long stand-offs on a large dark-coloured back panel would work. That said, I think it would have look better with a mirrored option that started in the middle and went outwards on both sides as the right-hand panel is mostly unused.

    • 8bitwiz
      8bitwiz 4 months ago

      The panels of the second one are literally how they are built as spare parts. Everything except the controller board is a standard HUB75 display panel part that can be purchased separately.

  • AllboroLCD
    AllboroLCD 4 months ago

    In further reviews of these type products, give us a good frequency sweep using a tone generator for accuracy testing ; )
    I watched this using a proper old school Spec Analyzer (ADC Sound Shaper SA-1) Item 2 seems complete novelty, and item 1 is actually somewhat accurate to a degree. Lowest freq response from item 1 was around 120hz or so FYI.

  • TheGodOfAllThatWas
    TheGodOfAllThatWas 4 months ago +3

    Thanks for the video. I'd say you should probably complain about the Mono VS stereo issue so the seller/manufacturer can improve... Though I'm not sure what the realistic chances of that working are.

  • Ocular Cavity
    Ocular Cavity 4 months ago

    Thanks for continuing to cover these. Finding something that works right is such a STRUGGLE. I am STILL looking for something like this I want one the ACTUALLY where the lights responds to specific frequencies but they have gotten so out of hand price wise that I cannot justify the purchase. The 3 segment led panel functions the way I would want but it is $150-$200 USD and with $50 shipping and it is just naked electronics so you still need to build a cabinet and it is made rather simplistic manner. Considering how few COMPONENTS and the fact it is not done it should be MUCH cheaper Maybe 60$ or $75, if it was complete maybe in an acrylic or 3d printed housing maybe $100-$125 but $200 is outrageous ESPECIALLY from aliexpress, so the quest continues

  • Paul Curran
    Paul Curran 4 months ago +2

    Oh dear - bank account is going to take
    Another hit lol Great video Techmoan! Absolutely love visualisers! 👍🏻👍🏻

  • M. G.
    M. G. 4 months ago

    These are great.. Never knew such thing exists. Thanks for the demo

  • Dave Harriman
    Dave Harriman 4 months ago

    I think the first one looks good, being that the display is symmetrical, the second one, when a box is made the gaps would be less visible, finally, I like the second one when it was upright, cheers!

  • JaccoSW
    JaccoSW 4 months ago

    I would have loved these ones as a child. In fact I just dug out the 12" Luminglas plasma disk I bought with my hard earned pocket money back then. Classic ones are expensive, especially the 20" versions, but there is something very satisfying to seeing lightning bolts move to the music. New ones are fairly affordable.

  • Máté Szűcs
    Máté Szűcs 4 months ago +2

    The aliexpress page shows 2 options: 14 segment finished and Double 7 segment. The photos show the frequency range too, so this isn't stereo just a dubble mono option for the same price as the 16 column version.

  • William Van Landingham III

    In less than an hour since this video was uploaded, you had 1,400 views. The amazing thing is that 1000 of those 1400 upvoted it. I don't see that level of engagement on most channels. 👍

  • Cappen Boidseye
    Cappen Boidseye 4 months ago

    I like the look of the second one, can't wait for the sequel to this video.

  • Cody Marshall
    Cody Marshall 4 months ago

    I love the VU meters, especially the second one you have.

  • Jason Brindamour
    Jason Brindamour 4 months ago

    I was hooked until I saw the price...LOL, both are pretty sweet although I would like a mode for using the proper spectrum and splitting in true stereo, a few more options as such for the second one and I might consider it worth the price. I could make my own sweet looking case for it and possibly even make it an infinity mirror.