Pico + LiPo SHIM + GlowBit

I’m a beginner with the Pico, and have done a few breadboard projects with it so far.
Recently, I bought the Pimoroni LiPo SHIM and a 3.7V 1100mAh Lipo battery which works well to power the board for basic stuff.

My question is, will that setup provide enough power to run the pico and a GlowBit 8x8 LED Matrix? The GloBit is also listed as 3.3 to 5 VDC. I know larger light arrays require an external power supply. Would that also be the case here?

PS. sorry for my ignorance, I have yet to do my own ohms law calculation!

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Hi Timothy,

Welcome back to the forum!!

In short, yes you’ll need a larger supply to be able to power the GlowBit 8x8 matrix. The good thing is that you’ll be able to power it through a PowerBoost module! It also handles detection of a low battery so you can disable the Glowbit!

Each pixel can draw up to 60mA each at full brightness(getting close to 4A) so dialing down the brightness in code is a good idea.
It’d also be worth checking out this USB Power bank if you’re drawing above 50mA consistently, it handles charging and automatic cutoff when the battery gets too low: USB Power Bank Fast Charge 10000mAh | Core Electronics Australia


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Hi Liam, sorry for the long delay on this. I’m ready to make an order for this project. But I’m still confused as to what I will need in the way of Lipo products to support a portable and re-chargable pico/glowbit.
I should clarify that this will be intended to be sown into a jacket, so using something like the USB Power Bank is too large for that.
The PowerBoost 1000 Charger - Rechargeable 5V Lipo USB Booster you suggested looks good, but I have a few questions about it.
If I use the PowerBoot 1000 Charger, do I still need the Pimoroni LiPo SHIM? Also, is the 3.7V 1100mAh the best lipo to use for this project? I can certainly dim the brightness in code as you suggest, but would like to know what it’s going to take to run the project.
Thanks in advance.


Hi Timothy,

Good news! You can connect the BAT and GND pins on the powerboost into the VSYS and GND pins on the pico, and the regulator on the Pico will take care of regulating this down to the 3.3V the pico wants.

Let me know if this gives you more questions :slight_smile: