Demo Model: Friends Pop Star Stage (set 41105)
What better way to showcase the phenomenal lighting and sound abilities of the PFx Brick than a pop music concert! This LEGO® Friends set 41105 already has awesome play-value, but the addition of lights and sound takes it to the next level! This model also shows that the PFx Brick is versatile enough to be used with just about any LEGO® theme. This was an ambitious demo model since it required fitting 34 tiny white LEDs in a way which was discreet and retained the original character of the set. The best way to see the results is through this video of the model in action! All of the audio in this video is directly recorded from the camera without editing. When filming the video, the light effects were carefully choreographed manually by selecting them with the remote as the music was playing.
The wiring of 34x individual LEDs required careful management of wiring. The overhead marquee wiring was consolidated and discreetly run through black 1x1x2 cylinder bricks to ground level where it connects to the PFx Brick. All of the wiring from the LEDs connects to a Light Accessory Board (LAB). LAB accessories connect to the 10-pin lighting dock connector on the PFx Brick and have the following advantages:
- Modular and organized
- Support connection of 8x up to 32x individual LEDs
- Includes individual current limiting resistors for each LED connector (if applicable)
- Supports different connector types of LEDs depending on vendor
- Allows easy disconnection of the PFx Brick for configuration, use in multiple models, etc.
The schematic diagram below shows how this model was configured:
The lighting was basically partitioned into three groups:
- Overhead Marquee lights with 7x pairs plus one central light
- Stage lights with 7x pairs and one central light
- Two pairs of spotlights on the left and right stage wings
The marquee lights and stage lights where connected as mirror images and share light channels 1 to 8. The spotlights were connected to an odd and even numbered lighting channels (3 and 8) so that they could alternately flash in some of the combination light sequences.
An XL speaker was mounted to a purpose built speaker stand at the rear of the stage and projects the sound forwards toward the "audience". The versatility of a brick-built speaker accessory allows you to seamlessly integrate speakers into models as well as providing the acoustic performance of a sound box behind the speaker cone.
Activating the various sound and lighting effects was achieved with configuring a dual joystick remote as shown in the diagram below.
Actions were functionally grouped into each of the 4 available IR channels. One channel was dedicated to activating sound effects, two channels were assigned various combination lighting effects, and the 4th channel was configured for "utility" functions, namely brightness and audio volume control. It is a huge benefit to be able to adjust the global brightness of the model as well as the volume of the sound. Depending on where and when you showcase this model, those around you will appreciated the ability to limit the sound!
This was a fun model to fit with the PFx Brick because it truly showcases its key abilities of sophisticated lighting effects and high-fidelity audio playback. This LEGO® Friends stage truly comes alive with the magic of dynamic lighting and powerful audio!