Art and Technology are Friends

Aurora 48 Kit

Aurora 48 is a compact and thin profile full LED sequencer. It’s built entirely with surface mount components, so the profile is nice and clean.

  • Capable of individually controlling 48 Full color LEDs.
  • Each LED can be faded in 7 bit per channel - 2,097,152 colors.
  • Gamma corrected brightness curve for very smooth fades.
  • Simple, one button control.
  • 11 sequence pattern (as of firmware version 1.0).
  • Compact – 2.68 inch (68 mm) in diameter.
  • Thin profile construction (0.137 inch (3.5 mm) thick).
  • No leads sticking out on the back. Ideal for wearable projects.
  • Firmware is easily upgradable via 5 pin ICSP connection.

Please review the instructables before purchase – assembly requires some skills. You will also need PIC programmer such as PICKit 3, ICD 2, ICD 3 (PICKit 2 doesn’t work with the PIC used). If you don’t have a programmer, you can purchase the PIC programmed with the latest firmware.

- Detailed technical information at

- Aurora 48 Schematic-rev3a (PDF)

- Aurora 48 part placement (PDF) (revised Feb.18, 2013)

- Firmware ver.1.0 (aurora48smd-1.0.hex)

*** Purchase Here ***

22 Responses

  1. Rakesh

    I saw at the maker fair last year. Were your stuff in the shed or at your stall. My dad would not alowe me to get any thing.

    May 15, 2014 at 8:52 pm

  2. Rakesh

    Is the Aurora 48 better then the Aurora mini 18

    May 15, 2014 at 8:51 pm

  3. Jack Marcinkowski

    Hi, I’ve just finished building the aurora 48 and hooked up a battery pack for 3 AA’s and pressed the switched and nothing.

    No led’s are lighting up or anything, I’ve had a look over the board several times trying to see if I’ve done something wrong but I can not seem to find a fault,is there anything you can think of that I might be missing?


    December 19, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    • Hello Jack,

      Please check the battery pack, first. Make sure that the voltage is getting through to the connector.

      Soldering problems are very hard to spot just by looking. I’d use a loupe to get a real close up look at the IC pins. When in doubt apply a good amount of liquid flux on the pins and reheat the joints. It’s also helpful to remove extra solder using solder wick. With SMD soldering less solder to get the job done is usually better.


      December 19, 2013 at 5:56 pm

      • Jack Marcinkowski

        I don’t think it will be anything to do with the soldering as I used plenty on flux throughout the soldering, and also did it all underneath a mantis, but I will check over them all again underneath the mantis and see if I can spot anything. And I will check the battery pack first off like you said.

        Thanks, Jack

        December 20, 2013 at 4:45 am

        • Jack Marcinkowski

          I have solved the problem.
          Faulty battery pack!!! Changed it for another and it is working perfectly, looks great! Especially in the dark.

          I was just wondering if you could point me in the right direction for a Surface mount coin cell holder that will work with this Aurora?

          Thanks, Jack

          December 20, 2013 at 5:25 am

  4. Christopher Li

    How do you find the polarity of the led?

    June 6, 2013 at 8:51 pm

  5. Christopher Li

    can you send me an instruction sheet?
    I want to know how to assemble it

    June 6, 2013 at 8:46 pm

  6. David Bailey

    Hi Aki,

    Met you at Maker Faire last weekend, where I bought one of these with my 8-year-old son who was so interested in learning to program it.

    We’ve ordered a PICkit and I’ve set up MPLAB X and downloaded your .hex, and in poking around I found your source code for the Aurora 9×18 so I have some idea how you code these things. But I’d *love* if you could point me to your source code for this particular Aurora, so that we can dive right in.

    I haven’t done assembly in a couple decades so this should be fun. If you’re willing to share the source, it would make a huge difference in being able to make progress fast enough to keep the interest of an 8-year-old!


    May 20, 2013 at 11:39 pm

    • Hello David,

      I will email you the source file. It’s great that you are teaching your kid technology already!


      May 21, 2013 at 11:41 am

  7. Herb

    I have the kit ….. I’m having trouble determining the orientation of the 74HC238.

    The parts placement shows a notch on one end. Mine seems to have a notch on both ends (on the mold line between upper an lower halves of the encapsulation).

    I can see no other obvious orientation marks other than the ID number and other marking is all towards one end.

    How can I tell which way to install it?

    February 17, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    • I realize that some 74HC238 package has a slanted side to indicate the IC orientation. In this case the slanted side will go left of the PCB. Here’s the pinout – the pin 1 and 16 go towards the notch indicated in my chart.

      74HC238 pinout

      February 18, 2013 at 12:41 am

      • Herb

        Thanks for that ….. I did some digging before seeing your response and tracked down a data sheet for the NXP part (which I have). Once I knew about the chamfered side I found it easily enough.

        Hard to notice if you don’t know it’s there though.

        February 18, 2013 at 12:27 pm

        • I will add this info to the guide.


          February 18, 2013 at 1:04 pm

  8. Eduardo

    Hi mr. Akimitsu.
    Do you have a recommendation where I can buy this PIC model PIC24FV16KA304?
    I bought the Aurora 48 and it´s amazing, I´d like to test more, but it difficult to find this chip with good price.


    January 10, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    • Yeah PIC24FV (or any 16 bit PICs) are not cheap. I buy from Digikey, Mouser or Microchip Direct. Unless you buy 100′s of them the price is high.

      Depending on the qty you want I might be able to give you a better price than those resellers. Email me if you are interested.


      January 10, 2013 at 10:53 pm

      • Eduardo

        Hi Mr. Aki,
        I´d like to buy about 4pcs for PIC24FV16KA304 and 4 pcs PIC24FV16KA301, but do you know if shipping cost will be expensive? I don´t care if you send me by USPS, since the packet come to Brasil,rs. Please, could you check the total cost for zip 04045-004, Brasil.


        January 14, 2013 at 7:00 pm

  9. Ev

    How much soldering does this one require?

    Is it easy to modify the pre-programmed looks?

    November 4, 2012 at 11:20 pm

  10. david ciciotti

    I am building a project using a NFLS-RGB High Power RGB Led Flex strip inside a tube, the tube has holes along the sides for the light to project out. I am using a MCBRF-RGB4 mini controller w/RF remote to control the strip.These I purchased from My problem is I want to also project the lighting at the open end of the tube, it stands upright, much like a lamp. The flex strip can not be bent to the small dia. of the tube. Your Aurora 48 looks like the perfect dia. to fit this. Can it be connected to my controller so all the lighting is in sync? If not, do you have or can you make any suggestions to help me?
    Thank you for your time and consideration in this matter.
    David Ciciotti

    October 29, 2012 at 11:33 am

    • The short answer is that your controller won’t be able to control Aurora 48. I think it’s possible to modify the firmware to read what the controller is sending (which is 3 PWM signals) and change color(s) accordingly…
      The LED strip you are using is analog type, which is simply RGB LED with current limiting resistors attached. Very easy to add your own LEDs.


      November 1, 2012 at 9:56 am

  11. Steve Christian

    Hi, I have just purchased a kit ‘not programmed’. Where do I download the .Hex file for the programming the PIC?

    October 1, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    • Sorry, I forgot to upload it. Now I just added the file above, and to the instructables.


      October 1, 2012 at 9:59 pm

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