The HE123 is a pixel board based on the single board computer BeagleBone Black (BBB). It uses design elements of the RGB123 48 output pixel board that can be controlled with Falcon Player (FPP). The HE123 is the motherboard that the BBB plugs into as well as 3 other daughter boards. The 48 outputs are for 2811 and compatible pixels.
NOTE: Several photos show a Beaglebone Black installed in place. The Beaglebone Black is NOT supplied
The number of pixels per output are the same across all outputs and it doesn’t matter if they are standard outputs or differential output.
Under Falcon Player (FPP) version 4.x and later the maximum pixels per output are 800 per output at 40fps and 1600 at 20fps. This gives a maximum number of pixels of 38,400 at 40fps or 76,800 at 20fps. That’s with all 48 ports fully loaded. The HE123 has 16 outputs on the main board and there’s 16 each on the 2 plug on daughterboards.
Earlier versions of FPP limited the maximum number of pixels to about 600 at 40fps and 1200 at 20fps due to different timing.
The preliminary user manual is still in progress but it’s available here
A revised user manual which is still very much a work in progress is at HE123-User-Manual-V1.4-beta1.pdf
-16 fused pixel outputs with 4 outputs per power input
-2 expansion headers of 16 each
-inbuilt real time clock
-connects to HE123RJ, HE123TX, HE123PX
HE123-PX powered pixel expansion daughterboard
-16 outputs. 4 power inputs. 4 fuses per output
HE123-RJ pixel breakout daughterboard
-16 outputs. no electronics. pixel outputs match standard RJ45 pairs
-mates with 4 HE123EX
HE123-TX pixel differential expansion daughterboard
-16 RS422 balanced pair outputs for long range tx
-16 outputs. pixel outputs on standard RJ45 pairs
-mates with 4 HE123RX
HE123-EX 4 channel pixel power breakout (available now)
-RJ45 connector to 4 channels fused pixel outputs
-mates with HE123RJ
-can be used for as a breakout to power unfused pixel outputs like on rPi-28D or J1Sys P2
HE123-RX 4 channel RS422 to pixel receiver
-RJ45 connector to 4 channels powered, buffered pixel outputs
-mates with HE123-TX
HE123-4T 4 channel pixel to 4 RS422 balanced pair outputs for long range transmission
-connects to any 2811 pixel board to allow long range transmission.
-mates with 1 HE123-RX
The below screenshots show the most basic setup for setting up the HE123 with 170 pixels and 1 universe per output. The screenshots are for FPP version 3.5 and are for the most basic setup with the BBB/HE123 running in bridge mode rather than master or slave.
The 1st stage of the installation is burning the Falcon Player image to a micro SD card. This involves downloading the .zip image from github and burning the image with Balena Etcher (or similar). Process and links at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxFvhK74wbw
I recommend doing an initial configuration via plugging in the BBB to a USB port of a PC via the supplied cable that comes with the BBB plugged into P4. Don’t plug the BBB onto the HE123 until the initial configuration is done.
Install the micro SD card with FPP on it into the BBB, plug in the usb cable to the BBB and the other end to a PC. A virtual Ethernet port is created. The computer will ask for permission to setup the comm port if it’s the 1st time that a BBB virtual comm port has been created.
Access to the BBB can be made at initial setup via a web browser and the 192.168.7.2 IP when connected from a PC direct to the BBB via a USB cable.
The second screenshot shows the network setup page with a static IP set to 10.0.0.160 which is a suitable IP for my computer network.
10.0.0.x and 192.168.0.x are the 2 most common ranges. Choose the range that suits your computer. The netmask of 255.255.0.0 allows connection between 10.0.0.1 and 10.0.255.255. The gateway IP is the IP of the router that it is connected to.
Set the clock date, time and time zone. If the BBB is to be used for a standalone installation also set the RTC as DS1307. The setting of RTC requires that the BBB needs a reboot. Save.
Under the Input/Output setup under the Input setting set the Bridge universes. In the example I’ve set 48 universes of 510 channels which gives 170 pixels per output. Save.
Under Input/Output setup under the Output tab on the BBB Strings tab enable the BBB String Cape and set to RGBCape48F. Set the start channels and number of pixels for the outputs. Save.
Under Status/Control click on the Status setting and change the mode to Bridge mode. It’s worth enabling the “Live Update of Statistics” while doing the initial setup and testing.
(Restart the FPPD if it asks to).
FPP can now be shutdown via the button at the bottom. When all the lights are off the USB cable can be disconnected and the BBB plugged onto the HE123 and it will be ready to be booted up and can be accessed in a web browser via the IP configured in the setup. It will usually be possible to access the BBB/FPP via http://fpp in a browser.