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Old Dec 26, 2012, 08:48 PM
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Best way to power a lot of lights

I'm putting more and more lights on my quad for fun night flying, and instead of using 3 extra channels on my receiver with Y connectors to power them all, I want to add a separate UBEC off of the pack and to power everything. I'm worried that the Rx will not be able to power all of this and will fail. Problem is, I like using switches on my Tx to turn them on and off. What is the best way to go about this?

I'm lighting up:
(2) 12 LED clusters (4.8-6v)
(2) navigation strobes (3-8.5v)
(2) 200mm LED strips (4-12.6v)

Would a micro 3A UBEC be sufficient? Or a 5A to be safe... How would I remotely power these on and off? I would like the strobes, strips, and clusters to all be on separate switches.

I'm thinking of doing the 3 or 5A UBEC off of my 3s main pack, then soldering a total of 6 servo wires on the Rx power cable to power all of the lights. Would this work sufficiently?

Thanks
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 12:23 PM
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This is what I plan to use, you will probably need 3. For those lights that run at 5v you can connect it to a BEC, for those that can run at 11-12 you can connect directly to the battery

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...idproduct=8833
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 03:24 PM
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I just bought a couple from Dpcav since everyone buys up the hobbyking ones and sells them on Ebay for $15...

I'm going to use 1 for both 12 LED clusters and a 4 LED cluster, and one for the strips and strobes.

I'm still a little confused as to how I will power it all though. If the strips require around 11v to operate at full brightness, they will be powered through the 3s battery which isn't hard. Now for the ones that can't exceed 5v, how would I power these? If I get a separate UBEC just for them, how would I remotely power the UBEC with the receiver switch so I can control on/off?
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 05:55 PM
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The units I linked to can run any voltage up to 30V, So you could add a BEC between your battery and the power input for one of these, then they will switch 5v/6v, or just use a free ESC BEC even (since you probably have spare ones on a multi rotor anyway
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 07:27 PM
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So this would be the setup. I'm assuming it will work and is the best way to control the LED strips and LED clusters separately. Any other ideas or solutions? Or will this fit the bill...

(sorry for the clustered crude paint picture)

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Old Dec 27, 2012, 08:30 PM
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Yup, that should work. You could probably happily run them on the same RX channel by both tying switches into the same channel
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by WendoNZ View Post
Yup, that should work. You could probably happily run them on the same RX channel by both switches into the same channel
Cool. Yeah if I run out of channels, I will. But I like being able to control the strips and other LED's separately.

I'm still trying to figure out what more I can draw out of my receiver though. I want to plug in 2 color changing LED's, but I don't know how much more that DJI PMU unit has after powering the receiver, NAZA unit, and all ESC's..
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 09:06 PM
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Current draw on things like the rx switches should be almost nothing, you're basically only flipping a transistor, all the real power comes from the input side (either BEC or battery directly)
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Old Dec 27, 2012, 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by WendoNZ View Post
Current draw on things like the rx switches should be almost nothing, you're basically only flipping a transistor, all the real power comes from the input side (either BEC or battery directly)
No I mean I want to directly plug in a couple more LED's straight into a couple extra channels on the receiver, not the remote switches. I'm doing the remote switches because I know the large 12 LED clusters will be too much, but I don't know about a couple other color changing LED's and strobes. Should only be around 75mA's for 3 LED's, but I don't know how much there is to spare. I read that the PMU is a 3A unit. 5 channels for the quad's movement and NAZA could possibly be taking up quite a bit of that.
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Old Dec 28, 2012, 12:05 AM
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Your 5 channels are all to the FC, not to servo's, so those to should be close to nothing. I dn't know what the draw of the rest of your Naza pieces would take but 3A is a lot of power for embedded type hardware
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 09:01 AM
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What is individual lumen output of those LED strips?

If they are really high, say. . .above 400, I assume you'll need a heat sink for them as well as a driver?
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Old Jan 02, 2013, 06:58 PM
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What is individual lumen output of those LED strips?

If they are really high, say. . .above 400, I assume you'll need a heat sink for them as well as a driver?
400 lumens? Most high powered flashlights don't put out anywhere near that. Did you mean mA's? The strips are pretty low powered...

I haven't received my order of lights and hardware from HobbyKing yet, but I went to Lowes and found 40 lumen 4.8-6v replacement flashlight LEDs. I bought 2 of them since this was PERFECT!. I soldered them to a Y connector and plugged them into an open channel. They work great! They get a little warm, but not nearly as warm as if they were in a flashlight. I put reflector housings around them from a couple cheap LED glow sticks I found as well.

I'm assuming the 12 LED cluster will draw much less per LED, but they will be bright.

Here I mounted the LED's up front to test them out in the air last night. They work AWESOME. They light up my shop real well from about 50ft away. I was flying around the field without a problem as it lit it up brightly.

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Old Jan 02, 2013, 07:29 PM
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You might want to check the current draw. My LED ribbons take nearly an amp. Decided to give them their own LiPo.
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Old Jan 02, 2013, 08:23 PM
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How do I calculate the correct draw of these? I can't get my voltmeter to give a precise number for some reason. And my HK wattmeter doesn't work for that either...

These are the LED's..

http://www.dorcy.com/p-354-41-1644-4...ment-bulb.aspx
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Old Jan 06, 2013, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by JB5587 View Post
400 lumens? Most high powered flashlights don't put out anywhere near that. Did you mean mA's? The strips are pretty low powered...
Sorry, I was assuming you were going for high illumiation. I am trying to put 6,400 lumens on mine to be seen, not for the illumination for the quad to see, i.e., night flying FPV?

I have eight 10W 800-lumen strips, that I am trying to configure on a quad. My problem is they all need a driver(s) and a heat sink, and most likely their own battery, so they most likely will have to be in some sort of central assembly so I don't have to use more than one heat sink. I don't expect more than five minutes of illumination.
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