Waterproof RGB LED Strip


Cheap, quality source of 5 volt programmable colored LED strips

This week I’m going to show you a 16-foot reel of WS2812B LED lights. I got these for under $30 on Amazon. There are an incredible range of maker projects out there that take advantage of Adafruit’s Neopixel Arduino code and Neopixel brand of LEDs. Using the code, or a competing code library like FastLED, you can control and animate the color and brightness of each LED on this strip using just a single data wire.

The WS2812B variety of addressable RGB LED strip is compatible with both Neopixel and FastLED code. It works with Arduino or Raspberry Pi. They run off 5 volts, though you can get away with 3.3 for short runs. And you can cut it to whatever length you need using the cut lines on the strip.

This strip in particular has a black backing and comes with a waterproof casing. Both ends are wired with a 3-pin JST connector.

Best of all, with 16 feet of this stuff for under $30, it’s an incredible savings over the name brand stuff. I bought this specifically to give my Kitty car some animated underglow so it will look cool at night. This, a $10 Arduino-compatible Gemma board, and a battery pack were all I needed. I even had LEDs left over.

Now the downside to using this stuff is that it’s not enough to just wire it up to power — you have to have a board of some kind sending it instructions over the data wire. So if you’re not at all comfortable with Arduino of Raspberry Pi project boards, these are not the LEDs for you.

For me though, having a cheap, quality source for these has really opened up some project possibilities. If you’d like to get some for yourself, using the link in the description takes you right to Amazon. And remember, you can see thousands of reader recommended tools like this at

-- Donald Bell 03/13/18