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I'm looking to make a long run of LED strip lights (20m) in crown molding around a large room and am trying to figure how to power the entire unit.

After quite a bit of research and testing, I've decided to use LEDENET's Double Row RGBCCT strips which has 6 pins.

I've read that "running parallel 'feeder' wire and tie to the strip as convenient" works and I had planned on putting the entire run in a loop (4 x 5m runs for a total of 20m), running power down 5m on each side to power the back two strips, but I'm not sure how 'feed' it into the run. I've found 5 pin mini-amplifiers, but haven't been able to find anything for a 6 pin. Any ideas would be wildly appreciated.

Thank you!

  • My Gosh... they're actually RU-Recognized with a file number... and the price is still sane (for the complex thing it is)... – Harper - Reinstate Monica Aug 30 at 17:37
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They make a lot of socket connectors and other kit for novices. Unfortunately this product is a bit too "out there" and I wouldn't expect to find stuff like that. You'll have to do it old-school, by soldering leads onto the solder pads.

Solder on short (<12", 6" is better) #20 or #22 wire pigtails, stranded if possible. Otherwise the wire is too stiff and it tends to "wag the dog" i.e. the wire pushes he strip around and can even tear the solder pads off. I know that wire seems awfully light but it's OK for a short pigtail as long as you keep current below absolute limits for that wire (under 5A for #20... or under 3.5A for #22...)

Those tie onto the feeder wires. At such short distances voltage drop won't be an issue.

What you really have there is 5 channels plus a "common". Now, 3-channel amplifiers are ubiquitous. 4-channel (RGBW) amplifiers can be had. 5-channel, forget it. You'll be forced to use two 3-channel amplifiers, which is fine. You don't need to distribute the amplifiers all over the place if you have a big enough central amplifier to drive the whole shebang and are willing to run 6 feeder wires. You'll want to make the common extra large; it's carrying 5x the current of the others...

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  • Thanks for this information. It's exactly what I was hoping for. I'm not opposed to soldering (I have an iron, solder, but my skill is very much lacking). I’ve suffered the “wag the dog” scenario several times since I’ve gotten into LED strip lights, and to combat it tearing the solder, I got some heat shrink, which then folds the strip light onto itself and causes the solder points to touch. So, I would need two central 3-channel amplifiers to drive the 5 channels. How would I determine if it’s ‘big enough’ or not? Would that be total amperage? – user1975030 Aug 30 at 18:35
  • On that note, I tried to use a multimeter determine the total current draw of the LEDENET strip and can’t get anywhere near the 5.25A usage they claim on the listing. With just the white channels running at full blast (through a Gledopto 2ID controller), I get 1.41 A. With all the RGB channels on, I get 1.38A. With ALL of the LEDs turned on, I get 1.94A. Since I never plan on running both the White and RGB channels at the same time anyways, do I need to really compensate for 5.25 * 4 = 21A (the breaker for this room is only rated to 15A). – user1975030 Aug 30 at 18:35
  • Also, I did find THIS item: “6pin Mini RGB+CCT Led Amplifier”, however I’ve never ordered anything from AliExpress so I’m not sure how trustworthy it would be and I wanted to get this project done in the next week (shipping puts this a month out). Would you recommend this as an easier option if I had time to wait for delivery? – user1975030 Aug 30 at 18:35
  • Oh heck no, don't bother with that. Amplifiers are very simple things. A 3-channel RGB amp just puts 3 amplifiers in the same box. So you can just use 2 of those, and get better ones off Amazon instead of that Alibaba krappe. Trick being now you have to do a little wire work to make the connections. You'll want to anyway; those "connectors" are hokey as all getout and will have connection problems down the road. I see what you're trying to do with feeder, just carry + and - to amplifier(s) at the end of the last strip to drive the next strip. Yeah that's fine. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Aug 31 at 3:11
  • As far as measuring channel current, bypass the controller altogether and hotwire the channel straight off -24V. (remember + is common). Measure that. You can just measure one 5m strip and figure out amps-per-meter. Note that current draw on W and WW will probably be different than on R G and B because they are different emitter types (3528 vs 5050). – Harper - Reinstate Monica Aug 31 at 3:13
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If you feed a 5m segment of these (or any) LED strips from one end, then bring the far end around close to the supplied end, you'll almost certainly find that the end where the supply connects is noticeably brighter than the far end. The effect is more pronounced with strips that have higher LED counts. Similarly, if two 5m segments are arranged end-to-end and each is fed from one end there'll be an awkward spot in the middle where one strip's bright end is next to the other strip's dim end.

To combat that plan to run wires around the room along with the LED strips. Solder thin wires to the pads on the LED strip periodically and tie these into the heavier wires that encircle the room. In this way you can feed both ends of every strip and even consider feeding the strips in one or more places mid-span if the variation of brightness is noticeable.

Thermostat wire might be a nice choice for the feeder wires. It is usually 18 ga solid and is available with up to 7 conductors in one jacket. Use something smaller, like a 20 ga stranded speaker wire, to jumper between the thermostat cable and the pads on the LED strips.

Bench test the setup before you build it into the room. That'll help you determine how many feeds to make into each 5m LED strip while it's all easily accessible.

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