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12V LED external power

edited March 2013 in Hardware

I've been wiring up some illuminated arcade buttons to my brain v1 but only just found out that the LEDs that fit into the button housing require 12 volts. I've tried swapping the bulbs out of the button housing and replacing them with lower voltage LEDs but because the buttons are translucent green, the LEDs are too dim to be effective enough. In order to use the 12v LEDs I'd have to have them running off an external source/batteries, outside of the brain but then there function would be purely aesthetic and I'd like them to switch on/off when I press the buttons. Is there any way I could get around this?



  • I think I've figured something out. The switches I am using have three solder lugs, common, normally open and normally closed, with the common and normally closed sides going to the button pin header, leaving the normally open lug free. I've connected a battery to one leg of the 12v LED and the other leg to the common then connected the normally open lug to the battery again meaning that when the switch is pressed the LED goes off. It doesn't interfere with any signals the brain receives, the buttons just act as switches for the LEDs and aren't connected to the brain in any way. I'll obviously have to have a seperate power source for the 16 LEDs I plan to use but my worry is that the 12v supply might damage the switches or even the brain. Could this happen? 

  • Hmm I haven't tried this before but it seems like it might work. If it's working I'd say give it a whirl.

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