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First things first, I am new here and this is my first post. So if this is in the wrong place I apologize and please just let me know.

I am a programmer that is getting into working with an Arduino compatible board, so my questions are 99% of the time with the hardware side and not the software side.

I just went through a tutorial on how to connect LEDs in parallel to a shift register so that I can control each LED individually.

My project goal is to make a Christmas house for a family member that will use some predefined songs to blink the lights to. So what I am actually looking for suggestions for is how to make a string of LEDs (5mm) that I can hook up to a small house without it looking messy. I was thinking I could maybe use 2 wires to run along the + and - of all the LEDs and then maybe there is some kind of connector I can use to split the 8 LEDs off to their respected hookups on the shift register.

Any good ways of doing this and keeping the metal unexposed?

I thank you in advance for your answers and your time!

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    Honestly? Find yourself a string of WS2812s and use that instead of trying to tear apart a conventional string of lights. – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Nov 13 '16 at 5:02
  • I have no idea what that is. I am trying to make my own string of lights using 5mm LEDs. – Nick Young Nov 13 '16 at 5:07
  • This is a string of WS2812s: amazon.com/Mokungit-WS2812B-WS2812-Integrated-Drivers/dp/…. You'll spend more time (your time = money) soldering together 5mm LEDs and getting them to be robust and not break than the cost of a pre-made string of LEDs would set you back. They are individually addressable, so you can command each one as you please. There also are dozens of tutorials on using these with Arduinos which you may find helpful. – Los Frijoles Nov 13 '16 at 6:30
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Here is a string of Stripleds operated from a CPU 12V supply with built-in double-sided tape under the hand rail in one of my homes. Red downstairs and blue upstairs.

Now define your input and output attributes to modulate the current.

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    "in one of my homes" .... +1 for being subliminally ostentatious ;-) – Roger Rowland Nov 13 '16 at 10:05
  • ( that I have previously lived in)FYI +0 value added comment – Tony Stewart Sunnyskyguy EE75 Nov 13 '16 at 13:05

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