Hey there! Seeking Help with OpenHoop Project

I’m thrilled to share my OpenHoop project with you all and reach out for some assistance to tackle a small hiccup.

My aim with OpenHoop is to craft a smart BLE hula hoop featuring mesmerizing pixel art effects that illuminate as you sway. Sounds pretty rad, huh? But here’s the deal: I’ve hit a bit of a snag with the electronics side of things. While I’m passionate about programming and all things open-source, when it comes to hardware and electronics, I’m feeling a tad out of my depth.

Here’s the issue at hand: I’ve opted for 288 Adafruit LEDs (that’s two strips of 144 LEDs per meter) to achieve the pixel art effect. To power them, I’ve got two 5V 5A Mini560 DC-DC converters running in parallel, complemented by a 7.4V 8.4V 2S BMS PCM charge/discharge protection board. On paper, it all seems like a smooth setup, but… the system shuts down abruptly, and the battery life falls short of my expectations, even with a conservative power configuration.

And here’s the kicker: the diameter of the hula hoop tube is a mere 7/8 of an inch, ruling out the option of larger batteries.

Diagram link here

The motivation behind this project is simple: I wanted to create a special gift for my girlfriend. She had her eye on a pixel art LED hoop, but the price tags were astronomical. I figured it’d be way more fun (and budget-friendly) to roll up my sleeves and build one from scratch. So here I am, grappling with some technical challenges and hoping to cook up something awesome in the process.

Got any bright ideas to help me troubleshoot these issues? Or perhaps you’re keen to experiment with some pixel art effects and share your findings? I’m all ears and would greatly appreciate any input or assistance!

Thanks a bunch for taking the time to read this, and I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

For more project details, swing by the GitHub repository here!