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A project log for Over-engineered LED strip controller

Way too much stuff to light my garage MY way.

WJCarpenterWJCarpenter 07/22/2020 at 03:300 Comments

I've had this project on the back-burner for a while, but I've recently started dusting it off.

First, I have to say that I'm pleased with the amount of effort I put into labelling pins on the schematic. It's a fact of life in microprocessor board land that every pin tends to have 3 designations. There is the name the chip maker gives the pin on the chip. There's the name the breakout board maker prints on the silkscreen. And then there's the constant defined in some board definition that fits into a programming framework. Those multiple names bedevil us all. However, I put just about everything that I could identify onto the schematic, so it minimizes the amount of remembering that I have to do now after all this time. Yay, me!

Second, I'm slightly annoyed at something, and I can't find anyone to blame but me. When I got to laying a few things out on the breadboard again, this time with connections matching the schematic design, I discovered something about the ESP32 that I guess a lot of people know. GPIOs 34-39 are input-only pins. I knew that and took it into account in my schematic and board layout. The part that I didn't notice is that those pins also don't have any internal pull-up/pull-down resistors. In my design, I'm using pins 35 and 38 as the inputs pins for the switches built into the rotary encoders. Not only do they float, they wander aimlessly up and down on the breadboard. Grrr. Looking at the board layout, it looks like I won't have too much trouble soldering on external pull-down resistors. It's just annoying. 

It would be less annoying if I hadn't already had the boards made long ago. If I end up having to re-do the boards for some other reason, I can fix the design to change a couple of pins. With the current design, I've still got a few no-connects, and I was thinking of adding a bit-banged I2C bus (I might as well have a temperature sensor in my garage). 

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