Question about connecting 12 volt LED lights


(Jane) #1

I want to connect some LED lights to a 12 volt PS. I have three zones that I want to have go on at a certain time and go off at a certain time. Very basic. I am wondering what device that will integrate with smartthings can use to do this?


Fibaro RGBW Controller (DTH link in post 32, police light smartapp link in post 79)
(Paul) #2

If you want control 3 zones independently then I think you’d need 3 devices (someone will correct me if I’m wrong). There’s a couple of options, search the forums for the following:

  • Fibaro RDB controller
  • Dresden FLS-PP-IP

There are also other solutions, all depends on what you’re trying to achieve. I have both and they work well. Both can be added to ST as things and will allow you to do what you need to do. Note that you will need a 12V power supply in addition to the LED strip.

Start here:


(Jane) #3

These aren’t LED strips. They are small LED lights wired together. They are lights I am putting in my deck for lighting. I have three different wired sets with all wires coming through the wall into the basement. I have a 12 volt PS but I want to know if I would be able to connect the three sets to the Fibaro and control them individually?


(Paul) #4

You should be able to do that but you’d need to check the rating on the lights you have.

Here’s the spec of the fibaro:

Max load is 144W at 12V.

And you have combined 12A (sum of all connected output channels); 6A for single output channel.

To answer the last question, yes you could control them independently. Red for one, Blue for another, etc assuming that they will work based on the spec above. Are they dimmable?


(Jane) #5

I am actually not sure if they are dimmable. I will try to find out. Do they have to be? Or can I just have the lights come on at a certain time and off at a certain time? Another question is if I am using the Red channel, for instance, will It still go on as white (which is what these are)?


(Paul) #6

If they are not dimmable then using the RGW controller at 100% should work just fine.

The unit itself has 4 channels, RGB and White. For the sake of this conversation they could be labelled 1,2,3 and 4 instead of RGBW. They simple supply a voltage which illuminates the lights/LED’s connected to that channel. The point of the multiple channels is that it permits you to make more than 3 colours by combining coloured LED’s at different levels (green and red make purple). If you wire up your lights to any channel and tell that channel to power up it will illuminate your lights.

Should you want to control them completely independently and see them as 3 unique sets of lights in ST then you probably want to use 3 independent relays. There are probably numerous ways to resolve your requirement. You could for example simply buy 2 more power supplies and use the transformer connected to a smart plug. That said I’d be inclined to see if they are dimmable as it might be good for your use case?

Without knowing more I’m unsure and in fear of confusing the pair of us :slight_smile:


(Paul) #7

What you (and I) really need is for some nice soul out there in this wonderful community to help us out with one of these:

It’s a relay that is capable of supply high power/ low power or acting as a power relay. It has 3 pairs of terminals (so you could control 3 sets of lights).

Unfortunately I can only turn it on or off at the moment (all pairs on or off). The ability to control each pair would make this is a top piece of kit and at less than 40 USD (32 GBP, I’m in the UK) it would be quite useful for a number of use cases!

I can but ask :blush:


(Jane) #8

So if I want to have all three sets of lights run independantly in ST I would have to have 3 Fibaros? Or I could hook them up using 3 separate PS plugging into 3 separate smart plugs?

The relay above has to be connected to its own hub and it probably won’t connect through ST.


(Paul) #9

If you want them as 3 completely separate items in ST then the easiest way will be to have 3 devices. Either 3 sockets (with two additional power supplies) or 3 Fibaro relays connected in parallel to a single power supply.

The Orvibo relay will also work (I have one controlling my garage door). ST detects it and you can use the default Zigbee relay device type handler (DTH). At some point I hope to get the Orvibo working so that I can control 3 items (not just one).

Not sure how familiar you are with the IDE and custom DTH, have a read of @JDRoberts guide if needed here:

Hope that helps.


(Eric M) #10

Sorry, don’t have time to read this whole thread at the moment so I’m not 100% sure it will fit your requirements, but a very cost effective solution (~$10):


(Jane) #11

Just so I am clear. Even though I can connect 4 different light sets to a Fibaro I can’t run them independantly in ST at different times? I thought that this was possible.


(Paul) #12

The problem you will have is that the standard Fibaro device handler will allows you to select a colour within the app. So you could select Red and the red channel will illuminate, and if you selected purple then the green and red channels would illuminate, but you won’t be able to illuminate/control each of those 3 sets of 12V lights independently from ST using the standard device handler, you would need some custom code I believe. Therefore you couldn’t for example control each set of lights on a schedule.

So, I should probably apologise, having read your original thread and having better understood your use case the Fibaro RGB controller probably isn’t what you are after. If you want to control 3 sets of lights and see them as 3 independent lights or switches in ST you will need 3 devices. I stand to be corrected on that by other members of this exceptional community but i believe that to be accurate. Perhaps CORE could do that? Or perhaps with the use of virtual switches.

The quickest and simplest way to achieve independent power to 3 sets off lights would be to buy 3 devices. How you do that is still up for discussion and will depend how much money you want to spend and how complicated you want to get.

I see some of your options as follows:

  1. Buy two more power supplies for your lights and use a standard ST compatible power outlet to switch them, this immediately rules out the possibility of dimming if your lights are dimmable. By far the easiest solution.

  2. Buy 3 controllers (Fibaro for example). Power those 3 relays using the single power supply you have (wired in parallel) and then connect each relay to a single set of lights. If you used the Fibaro dimmer instead of the relay that would give you the option to dim if your lights allow it.

  3. If you wanted a cheaper solution then could look at @erocm1231’s Sonoff solution and use 3 of those. This provides an ST compatible switch for not a lot of money. You’d need the two additional power supplies but the rest of the kit would be relatively inexpensive. This requires some tinkering but it’s well documented in this excellent thread:


(Jane) #13

OK, so the option for outlets was something I was thinking of but my hubby says no to that one. He doesn’t want to put in three separate plugs. And the option to buy three Fibaros is too expensive at $89 CDN each. So I am interested in the Sonoff device. One thing that you said though is that I would need a PS for each device but can I not just use one?


(Paul) #14

The Sonoff solution is for 90V-240V. It is therefore not possible to supply the Sonoff with a 12V supply and switch downstream. You would need to connect each Sonoff to an independent power supply (thus requiring 3). To clarify, the Sonoff controls the 110-240V input of the power supply that will drive your 12V lights.

Here’s what I’m thinking:

I’ll tag @erocm1231 and hopefully he’ll clarify something another thought process which may or may no help you out.

Eric, the use case here is to independently control 3 sets of 12V lights so they can be scheduled or activated independently from ST. Assuming the draw of those 3 sets of lights is suitable for the H801 you discuss above (I’ve ordered one for a tinker) would your custom device handler allow the activation each channel independently so that @pcgirl65 could control each of the 3 sets of lights independently? For example could you power up and down the red and green channel independently of the blue channel or for that matter any other combination?

Or could you for example use Red, W1, W2 to control the 3 sets independently to achieve the goal?

Thanks


(Jane) #15

Thanks you have a good understanding of what I am trying to accomplish. Hopefully Eric can shine some light on how to do it. Also, is this H801 above the same as the Sonoff?


(Paul) #16

Sonoff = high voltage switch (90-240V).

H801 is a Low voltage 12-24V LED Driver.


(Eric M) #17

With 3x H801s you could easily achieve this. At less that $10 each. buying 3 would still be cheaper than a single Fibaro or Dresden (which you would probably have to purchase 3 of as well).

If you want to try to accomplish this with 1x H801 it would be a little different. With the H801s current firmware, you would need to create a specialized SmartApp & Virtual Switches, but you could achieve what you are looking for. It wouldn’t be too difficult to program (especially if you are looking to achieve just on/off, but dimming wouldn’t be too much more work).

I have already created the framework for such a thing here. You would essential need to change the virtual handler of the SmartApp to first check what the current color value of the H801 device is and then send setColor(hex:"#00ff00") to adjust the channel you are wanting to change. So, for example, say you want to turn the red channel on:

SmartApp would check the current value of the device. Let’s say it returns:
#00ffff

So then the SmartApp would send #ffffff.

If it would have returned #0000ff, then we would have send #ff00ff. The goal would be not to disturb the state of the other channels, that is why you would have to query the device first.

I have had it on my to do list to add the ability to control H801 to have independent lights on each channel and to be able to control them individually. I will think about it further and decide exactly what it would take.


(Jane) #18

OK, so I have some programming background but I think this is beyond my capabilities. So I could definitely hook up 3 H801s to the one power supply? Also, I have read all your posts about flashing this and adding the devices and smartapps, however, one question I have is after flashing if they all have the same IP, how to I get into each one? I would have to change the IP’s on 2 of them wouldn’t I? How do I do that?


(Eric M) #19

You could use one power supply as long as it is strong enough to power the 3 devices and the strips attached. I am assuming the power draw for the H801 by itself is very minimal, so it would be more of a matter of having the power to supply the strips.

The devices use DHCP, so they should all get different IP addresses. After the flashing, the setup is very simple. You power the device and it creates an Access Point. You connect to the access point and put in the info to have it connect to your Wifi. After that you run the SmartApp and it finds all of the H801 devices on your network and sets them all up for you. Very easy process.


(Jane) #20

Thanks for the help! I am going to try the H801 devices. Took me awhile to find the wholes with the white line around them in your other post but I finally found them. I also have to get the FT232RL FTDI Usb to TTL Serial Adapter right? How do I set the FT232RL to 3.3v?