For a bit of history and understanding as to my reasoning, check my previous post.


A standard R2 dome has 3 sets of lighting in it. There are other options, and builders will constantly be adding new things, and as we use the ReelTwo library, things are relatively easy to add on.


I have designed a set of front and rear logic boards using 2x2mm WS2812B LEDs. This means that you can get an array of 27×4 to fit nicely into the area for the rear logics, and 9×5 array for each of the front logics. The mounting holes are in the same position as the teecees ones which should make it nice and easy to mount.

The code used is based on the LogicEngine by Paul Murphy (Joy Monkey), so has a lot of the features included in that such as the ability to change the colours, trigger effects, fade, etc.


The PSIs are more detailed in these posts, as these were my first attempt at getting PCBs manufactured and populated.

This was what gave me the confidence to be able to go ahead and have a go at doing a full logics set. Not just from a technical point of view, but also how low the cost was.


The HPs are based off the FlthyMcNasty HP system, so use off the shelf 7 LED boards from places like Adafruit. (Why reinvent the wheel?)

The HP servos are not included in the setup, but can be added with a small code change and a PWM servo module.


As the main processor, there is a choice between an Arduino Mega, or an ESP32. I have been running ReelTwo on a Mega for a couple of years now with no problems. The ESP32 brings a much more powerful processor as well as wifi and bluetooth to give other options for triggering effects.


By default the lighting system will run standalone. Standard patterns on the logics and PSIs, and the HPs will randomly turn on. However, if you want to trigger effects there are many options.

  • i2c
  • Serial
  • Wifi – Serial
  • Wifi – Marcduino Serial
  • Bluetooth

Currently, I’ve only tried i2c, but will be testing the Wifi option and integrating that into my r2_control software.

If you want a set of Astropixels, my store can be found here:

If they are currently sold out, you can sign up for notification on the UK Droidbuilders Portal here:

For more information on how to use the Astropixels, check out this post: Astropixels Assemble

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Ricardo

    I like the Astropixels… congrats!
    My only question is if will be possible to use that with the marcduino boards (master & slave). I mean, changes the Teeces for Astropixels, but not lose the effects that you currently have with Marcduino (shortcircuit, leia message, scream, etc).
    Do you have in mind to do an upgrade to the code to support that in the future? Or is possible right now?

    Thanks and congrats again.

    1. dpoulson


      I use the ReelTwo library which already has support for i2c and jawa lite language. I’ve not much experience with the MD stuff, but have been talking with Neil who is the current caretaker of MarcDuino and I’ll be sending him a set of boards to mess with in the next few days.

      Here’s the documentation for ReelTwo (which I’m working through currently to fix errors, etc.)

      Hopefully once the UK run is done (and it works!) I’ll open up to the world. Just need to get the .net approval for a run.


    2. Msriddle

      Are Astropixles available in the US?

  2. Ricardo

    Thanks Darren.

    Sounds good. I’ll keep an eye out for when it can be purchased outside the UK 🙂

  3. Drew Dewsall


    I recently purchased the Astropixles kit and was wondering if it connects to the padawan360 or if it is possible to control with the p360?

    1. dpoulson


      It would involve additions to the P360 code to trigger effects over i2c, but it is possible. I’ve not that much experience with Padawan360 as I’ve never used it and only glanced at the code a few times.

      As it is, the astropixels are designed to just run standard R2 patterns so need no connection with the control system, but the ability is there if you want to do it.


  4. Ken Benobi

    How does the Astropixels connect to the MarcDuino? I’ve an absolute novice, so I’m trying to figure out where on the Astropixels board do I run wires to the MarcDuino board? Sorry if this is very obvious, but I’m pretty oblivious…

    1. dpoulson


      Connecting to marcduino is not something I’ve done myself, but I know others have using the astropixels Plus firmware. It uses one of the serial connections on the board.

      I know someone else produced this image:

      Unfortunately, as I don’t have a marcduino, I’ve not been able to mess around with it myself. All this work is extra stuff that others have done for the community.

  5. Ken Benobi

    Cool, thanks very much, that helps.

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