Getting Started with SmartMatrix

Hi everyone, I am new here to the community and was looking for some general help or advice on a project that I am working on. Currently I have a teensy 3.6 with a smartmatrix v4 along with two 32x64 led panels. I have them powered by a regulated 5v 4a power supply, however, they’re are not displaying anything at all aside from few pixels. I have quadruple checked my wiring and everything seems correct, but still having some issues.
I am following a guide set up by Sparkfun to the letter, but am not having any luck whatsoever. If anyone can be of assistance, I would greatly appreciate it.
This is the link that I am currently following to get set up.

Hi, which sketch in the guide did you use?

Is this line in your sketch uncommented? (the instructions are actually out of date, that line should be uncommented by default now)

  • uncomment line " #include <SmartLEDShieldV4.h> " if you are using the shield

Which pixels are showing? Are they moving? Can you take a picture?

Try the Bitmaps sketch, are you getting a blinking LED on the Teensy?

I am using the FeatureDemo included with SmartMatrix library. I am getting a blinking LED on the Teensy. Here are some photos of what I have connected.


The shield is plugged into the wrong side. It should be plugged into the side with the “in” arrow not the “out” arrow

Sorry about that, I was experimenting. Tried it on both ports and still nothing.

Do you get a similar random pixel pattern?

Can you send another picture of the back of the panel with the SmartLED Shield mounted correctly?

Currently I am not getting any response now with no pixels lighting up in the correct Hub port.

The shield is in the right port, but upside down

Tried again with a new panel and different ports. Tried a new barrel jack connector and wiring and a new psu but still no luck.

The shield is in the right position in the second picture.

It’s possible the shield was damaged by powering the panel and shield with the teensy in backwards or especially in the wrong port. (It’s not good to attach an output pin - from the shield - to another output pin - from the panel, or from an output to ground)

Is the panel displaying anything with the shield in the right place?

Sorry, I’m out of ideas at this point.

@Pixel, yeah, sadly it’s possible that you damaged the board and/or the teensy by plugging it backwards (plugging in the output port is ok, it won’t work but won’t damage anything, but plugging upside down could do damage).
I hate to say it, but to save time, try getting another teensy and another smartmatrix board, and try again. If plugged correctly, it should just work, unless you have panels that require a special init first.
Check your board carefully and see if the black chips with around 16 pins, say FM6126A on them. If so, try the reset/init code before you replace any hardware.

Finally figured it out turned out it was a combination of cheap Chinese panels and a damaged SmartMatrix. Got a new one and everything worked perfectly. Now the only thing I’m left to figure out is attaching an IR module and mounting it on a totem pole.