Adafruit NeoPixels vs WS2812

I am wanting to venture in to using some LEDs with our Micro:bit unit at our school. I am looking for the easiest “plug and play” option for kids and came across the NeoPixels by Adafruit and also the WS2812 strips.

There is a huge price difference between the two. What is the difference and which is most practical for a subject where we focus mostly on the code, rather than hardware/electronics.

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Hi Scott,

These two products use the same chip and are only superficially different.

Programming them both would be the same and they would both use the NeoPixel library. If you are purchasing for a classroom then the WS2812 strip will work great!

Awesome, thanks Stephen. Crazy to see Adafruit having a 120% price difference to the homebrand.

Hi @Stephen.

My WS2812 strip arrived last week and I haven’t had a chance to play with it, yet.

Quick question. Can it be used with a Micro:bit? (Forgive my ignorance with the electronic side of things).

5V + GND to 5V 10a power supply

Data + GND to Micro:bit

Is there any issues I’d run in to?

Hi Scott,

That should work just fine. If you are using a Micro:bit you can use the NeoPixel library for Arduino, or program it with MakeCode by adding the NeoPixel extension.