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In this Instructable I am going to show you how to make super bright, very sturdy, properly cooled, variable brightness, accurate color producing 72W LED PANEL for photography, video work or any general lighting. This LED panel's design focuses on the lighting quality, durability of the panel and the LED strips longevity.

My new, more advanced DIY LED Light (more efficient - same illumination at 50W, more powerful - 100W, has active cooling and is ~35% lighter) -

Provided Amazon links are affiliates



Step 1: Preview of the LED Panel That We Will Be Making

Picture of Preview of the LED Panel That We Will Be Making
Desktop Screenshot 2018.04.07 -
Desktop Screenshot 2018.04.07 -
Desktop Screenshot 2018.04.07 -

First, some different angles of the LED Panel.

Okay! Let's start!

Hi, I really like this project! I'm planning to make it, and have ordered the materials you list, but I have a question. Looking online, I find that 5630 LEDs require .4 watts per LED. Does that seem right?

I ask because at 300 LEDs, that's 120 Watts, which at 12v works out to be 10 amps. So why then is the power supply you suggested only 8 amps? I think my math must be off? I'm a total novice with electrical stuff, so please forgive me if this is a silly question!

diyperspective (author)  Makery Pokery1 year ago

Thanks, I am glad you liked it. Maybe you are looking at single LED specification and not whole strip? Also in real life there is power losses at that high amperage.

On amazon Marswell LED strip page it says:

"Power Consumption (per 5m length): 60W"

Max current what I could achieve on this build with high quality computer power supply (150$) was ~7.5A (~90W). But I doubt any cheaper portable power brick will achieve that high amperage. So you end up with ~6A ~72W, which is more that enough, like you can see in my comparisons vs florescent light panel.

So 8A power brick will be enough. :)

Amazing led bright

In the event that you can't find an 8A 12V power supply at your local store, multiple dc supplies can be placed in parallel to increase the amp availability.
Killawhat1 year ago

Nice instructable! Just a couple of things I noticed. Although having the ends exposed for cooling, it will probably draw in dust as well making the plexi dirty (which scratches easy if you try and clean it). Maybe using a small panel of glass might be a better option? Then again, I suppose you could just replace the plexi, it's fairly cheap. With the bus wires you use, again with the heat it may shrink the insulation and cause a short on the back chassis. Maybe a better option would be to use copper tape over some left over plastic edging and solder to that. Or you could use some small strips of PCB board, silicon it to the back chassis and solder to that. All up, cool project

diyperspective (author)  Killawhat1 year ago

Thanks! It's really nice of you that you provided detailed input of this build what can be improved. I just don't 100% sure about electrical tape shrinkage. I am using premium electrical tape which states that it can handle:

Temperature resistance
90 °C

Dielectric breakdown voltage
5000 volt

But I guess time will tell. Again, thanks for the useful info. :)

It will be something that happens over time and usage. See how you go. What I probably would have done was just put a copper strip on top for the positive and ground all of the negative side to the back chassis.

Do you know if there could be a problem with heat issues with placing the plexiglass that close to the LED's? It looks like it could trap the heat in there. I know the aluminum plate takes a lot of the heat away but I made a LED panel with them mounted on a aluminum plate but the front of the LED's get pretty warm after running for a long time. I want to add a plexigalss cover as well but am afraid it could trap in heat and cause problems. If yours stays cool then it will give me confidence with adding it to mine.

Mine stays cool because there are gaps in the bottom and top of the LED panel (between aluminum plate and Plexiglas). Cold air goes from the bottom and on top hot air escapes (automatic natural air circulation). If you are not planing completely trap air, it will be fine.

RyanK441 year ago
I very much appreciate the style of your narrative, in that you obviously know what you're doing and you address the reader as if they do as well. You've kept it simple, clear and concise, and as someone who has experience with tools, hardware and electronics, you waste no words on useless disclaimers, obvious explanations, etc that seem to plague a lot of this site. The use of appropriate technical language is likely a pretty decent filter for discouraging most of the clueless types from attempting and failing/hurting themselves anyway.
In the end, this is pretty basic stuff, so anyone that doesn't understand your instructions should probably not be anywhere near power tools anyway. I wish there was more content available of this quality. (I'll check out what else you've got available now.. Followed!)
diyperspective (author)  RyanK441 year ago

Thank you! :) I just don't like wasting people time, so I am trying to narrate key points of the build and go little in depth where needed. I am just starting out, I don't have huge amounts of experience, I just have huge passion for DIY. And I am kind a perfectionist, so I take my time on every project I make. I always prefer quality over quantity. And on my scale, my Instructables/videos are quite far away from perfect, but over time with more experience I hope I will achieve higher quality that satisfies my standards. Again, thank you. :)

You're very welcome. I'm just wanting to pay tribute to the quality and effort put in, and (hopefully) inspire and encourage many more like it.
I thought it was an outstandingly well done instructable & I shall be watching with interest to see what you come up with next. Take care.
6312CWR1 year ago

Is there any reason one could not use plastic in place of the aluminum? By plastic I mean polystyrene or persplex/plexi-glass.

diyperspective (author)  6312CWR1 year ago

The main reason that you shouldn't use plastic is - overheating of the LED strips. Aluminum absorbs heat way better, and prevents LED strips from overheating.

If you running LED strips at 12V then you need some sort of metal heat sink.

If you don't want to use any heat sink then you should run LED strips at lower voltage, like 9V.

aakbulut1 year ago
good jop. how many lumens of the system.
diyperspective (author)  aakbulut1 year ago

Thanks, to be honest I have no idea. I don't have any light meter. I can only tell you that those comparisons (new vs old panel) in the end was filmed with Canon SL2 / EOS 200D at ISO100 + 24mm f/2.8, 50fps 100 shutter speed and panel was 2.5 meters from the monitors. :P

wirekat1 year ago

Great project. I like the fact that you didn't just daisy chain the strips but each one is powered so you get consistent output.

diyperspective (author)  wirekat1 year ago

Thanks :) Yea, I thought that was proper way of doing it.

jgoad11 year ago
What is your estimated total cost of materials?
diyperspective (author)  jgoad11 year ago

For me it was around €60/75$, but I had aluminum plate (~€12 /15$ new) and few other cheaper components. If you would need to buy all the parts I think it would be around €80/100$, but it depends how much materials cost where you live.

KrisF231 year ago

As a miniaturist, I require magnification and LOTS of light to do my work. I have a magnifier with a florescent ring on it mounted to an articulated arm but it makes the color so off that I have to constantly turn it on and off during painting. The bulb died recently and I was planning on doing an LED mod to it and you just tool the guess work out of it for me. Great post. You have a teachers blood in ya. Thanks so much.

cath pillars.jpg
diyperspective (author)  KrisF231 year ago

Thanks, that's very nice to hear :)

Very nice! Looks like something you could buy in a store!

Thanks! :)