Neopixel LED Chase Controller

PN: ece-C-21-004

Due to the popularity of Neopixel LED strips, we have developed this controller to provide chase patterns for them. In its basic configuration, it can provide five user selectable chase patterns. The user can designate the “ON” color (RGB) of the LEDs as well as the “OFF” (RGB) color. These controllers have a “run” input and a “direction” input the user can utilize to start, stop and change direction of the chase pattern.

The first chase pattern we call “Pulsate”. In this mode all of the controlled LEDs will gracefully ramp up to the color selected, hold it for a controlled amount of time and then ramp it back down to the off state. The amount of time of the fade and the time period for on/off are designated by the end user using potentiometers on the circuit card.

The next chase mode we call the 3-LED circuit or traditional chase mode. This replicates the earlier single color LED chase strips where the strip had three LED circuits on it. Each circuit controlled every third LED. To obtain the illusion of movement you would turn one LED circuit on and then off and then do the same for the next circuit and again for the last circuit. To change the direction of the motion you would simply change which circuit the second LED actuation so it was on the other side. We replicated this scenario for the Neopixel strip. We also added the ability to gracefully fade up and down the start and ending of this pattern. And, we gave the user the ability to determine the speed of the chase.

The next chase pattern is the 4-LED chase pattern, which was not possible with the old mono-color LED strips. In this pattern the first four LEDs are on and the next four are off. This pattern is repeated down the entire length of the LED strip. Then the entire pattern is incremented by one LED in one direction to achieve the illusion of motion. To get the reverse direction we merely change the end of the pattern we increment. We also gave this chase pattern the ability to gradually fade up at its start and gradually fade down at its end. The chase speed and the time of the fade is once again user controlled.

These next two patterns were also impossible with the older single color LED strips. The next pattern we call the “Runway” pattern. It starts by incrementing the first LED and then sequentially adding the next LED on every time period increment. This can be pictured as a growing tail. Once all of the LEDs were illuminated, starting with the first LED turned on, it will sequentially turn each LED off until all are off. If the speed of this chase is very fast, it appears as an airstrip’s runway lights. The direction for this pattern can be reversed for the sequence to start at the far end of the LED strip. There is no fading capability for this pattern.

The last pattern available in the standard Neopixel Chase Controller we call the “tracer round” of “inch worm” pattern, depending on the speed selected. This pattern essentially has and LED segment travel the entire length of the strip. When the selected speed is slow, it appears as an inch worm traveling down the strip. At very fast speeds it looks like a tracer round from an automatic weapon (or from a Star Wars’ X-Wing Fighter). The user can select the length of the LED segment from three LEDs to five. there is no fading ability for this pattern.

Download the manual for this device to better understand its capability and limitations. Although we think this device provides a broad variety of options, we know we have not covered every possible case for using Neopixel LED strips. We are therefor open to discussion other options you might desire for your exhibit. Call us to discuss.


  • Neopixel Chase Commander raw circuit card on standoffs $250
  • Neopixel Chase Commander in plastic enclosure $375
  • Custom firmware or custom circuit for advance Neopixel effects –  Call