AmbiLED HD Setup

Box Content

  • LED Strip
  • AmbiLED Controller
  • Main Adapter with US,UK,EU and AU plugs
  • USB Cable


LED Strip Installation

  1. Preparing The Monitor Surface
    The strip comes with 3M 200MP adhesive back. This adhesive  is removable and reusable for few times depending on the dust on the surface. So, please clear the back of your monitor with soap and water and let it dry before installation. This is important for long term usage. If the monitor surface is non-stick or adhesive tape is loosing it’s adhesion capability, no worry, you can follow the 4th step of installation.
  2. Finding Right Position For The Strip
    All monitor frames are different, so you should find the best location for the strips before installation.
    The beam angle of LEDs are more than 120 degrees. So, you can install the strip to the sides or back depending on the distance between monitor and wall.
  3. a- You can install it on the frame tips.  I’m using this setup with my Samsung LED TV.frame1or you b- You can install the LED strip to the same position with your display. This type of installation helps to prevent  orientation problems and requires shorter LED strip than first option.frame3
    c- You can use the outer edges of your monitor.  It’s a good option for thick wall mounted monitors. Illuminated wall area will be  few times bigger than back mounted LEDs, but LEDs will be visible on the edges.
  4. Bending Corners
    The strip is only 100 micron thick. So, you can bend it to any direction easily. The only important thing about it is the conductive copper lines on the strip. Do not bend it more than 8-10 times in any direction, the lines can break.
    We are suggesting 2 types of bending method for corners.
    1. 45 + 45 degrees bending
    2. Sharp 90 degrees bending
  5. Install
    Remove the non-stick paper from the strip, place and press it to the surface gently.
    Finally, Press on the each LED  to fix it.

  6. Montage of the Controller
    The controller box is the smallest but the most important part of AmbiLED HD setup.  The controller includes a microcontroller to convert USB signals to LED control signals and works as a hub to connect Power, USB and LED cables.
    You will see an adhesive foam tape on the controllers back surface. This is a strong adhesive for single use only. So, please don’t attach your controller to back of your monitor before you are sure that everything is OK.
    You can choose any place for the controller, but remember, we added a color/light sensor on it for future usages. You can place the controller to bottom/center of your monitor or sides for easy access.
  7. The Cables
    1-Plug the LED Strip cable to the controller,
    2- Plug the Power plug to the controller,
    3- Plug the USB cable to the controller,
    4- Plug the main adapter to the wall plug,5- Plug the USB cable to your computer and follow these steps for install the FTDI driver. (If you already have a working Arduino environment, you can safely skip this step.)_MG_5346
  8. Permanent Strip Installation To  Non-Stick Surfaces
    The adhesive material of the strip is reusable, so the adhesion capability depends on the load and surface conditions.
    You can use contact adhesives to install, if it comes loose in time.
    Just remove the strip from the surface,
    Apply a thin layer contact adhesive to the surface and let it dry for 10 minutes.
    Then press the strip to the surface. Now, it’s permanent on the surface but still you can remove if you wish. You just need more effort.
    Warning: Do not use PVC glue or Instant glue to install. These adhesives  damage the surface and the strip.  We are suggesting only contact adhesives. 

Software Driver for Windows

AmbiLED HD is an open source project which is based on Arduino platform.
The controller module includes an FTDI USB to Serial converter and an ATmega328P microcontroller at 16Mhz with Arduino Pro Mini 5V Bootloader. (No worry, If you are not an Arduino-savvy person)

  1. Download the AmbiLED HD Installer from this link.
  2. Run the Installer. It will install the software and place the FTDI driver files into the C:\Program Files (x86)\AmbiLED folder.
  3. Plug the USB cable to your computer. The Strip will turn on then off in 3 seconds. This is the start-up sequence of the controller.
    Congratulations! Your setup is ready to use.
  4. Install the FTDI Driver.

    Note: if you already have a working Arduino environment, you can safely skip this step.

  5. Run the AmbiLED_HD.exe

  6. AmbiLED_HD.exe will detect the last USB serial port on the computer and this is the right port for %90 of users and AmbiLED HD will run and you are ready for settings.
    If you receive a com port error or nothing happens,
    please check your setup, cables and plugs first. If everything is OK, go to settings for choosing right com port.

Software Driver for Raspberry Pi

If you are using standard media packages like RaspBMC or OpenElec, you don’t need to install any FTDI driver. For special linux distros, please Google it.  you can find FTDI driver installation help from Raspberry Pi communities/forums.
Read  this article for Hyperion software setup on Pi .


60 thoughts on “AmbiLED HD Setup”

  1. Hi Guys,

    Thanks for the product and the card. Hope you have a great Christmas. Perfect Kickstarter = best one I’ve been part of to date!
    Just waiting for the Raspberry Pi code to be cooked and I’ll be super happy ;-)

    Sad thing happened – my TV was faulty and had to be returned – good thing was I got to choose a new 4K TV but now I need more LEDS as the screen is slightly different mounting option. Where do you guys buy these from – or specs so I can source? OR can I send back my reel of LEDS and get a longer strip for some extra bucks?

    many many thanks for all your hard work and effort on this project -hope it has paid off for you guys financially.


    1. Hi Simeon,
      We are using WS2812B 60 LED/meters strips. You can find and buy them on ebay and solder it to the end of the strip easily.
      My personal suggestion is, don’t add a strip and leave a gap on the bottom center. Our software supporting this option and bottom center illumination is not important, if you are using a TV stand.

  2. First of all, love the product!!!!

    I’ve got an issue though, I use a 120hz monitor. When the program is running, moving windows around is jerky. Is there any way to fix this?

    1. We noticed similar problems. We are using windows core based capture method but it’s slow. If we choose directx based one its fast but not working on some setups including Win8. So, capture methods must be selectable for different computers.
      We are working on AmbiBox support now. I guess this software will be better for most of user because of different capture mode settings like DirectX.

  3. Hey Guys,
    at first i will give you congratulations for your awsome project, but i have a problem with the instalation. I installed the FTDI driver and followed the installation order and the Strip turn on then off in 3 seconds, but if i start the .exe the programm starts but the led dont glow up.
    Hope you can help me

    1. Please check the COM port, some computers have internal com ports and the program can lock to the wrong port if you didn’t select it correctly

      1. I checked the port in the device menager but the right port was already choosen in the AmbiLED settings (there is only one to choose) so there have to be another problem, right?

        1. We didn’t noticed this kind of problem. The only possible reason, the com port is wrong or com port driver is not installed properly.
          If everything looking Ok including driver, please direct contact with me over Kickstarter Message system. It must be a controller problem.

  4. Already excited to write my own interface in Qt C++ for the product with a few more advanced features. Are you planning to provide a simple command interface summary for the hardware if I want to talk to it via serial or should I reverse engineer it from the C code when you release the firmware?

    Good work so far, anxiously awaiting my turn for shipping ;)

    1. Protocol is really really simple.
      Serial Baud: 115.200
      Data package in bytes: RGBRGBRGB….RGB (color data) + 0xFF (single byte 255 in decimal as End of data and print to strip command)
      That’s all. You should wait more than 30 milliseconds after 0xFF to printing the data to strip, then start with R (red) for second data.

      1. Ah, so just 3 byte colour words with a 0xFF+wait 30ms at the end for a single strip write. Seems simple enough.

        So that would put the maximum refresh rate at around 30fps?


      2. Hmmm… just tried that. Sending 00 00 00 80 00 00 ff at 115,200 results in the whole strip slowly lighting up to full white over a few seconds and then dimming down to off again over a few more seconds. I want to test individual LEDs on the strip with a small C++ program… Am I missing something? Do I need to send enough data for the whole strip and if yes, what is the magic number of LEDs in the strip?

        1. OK, to answer my own question: 180 LEDs and you need to write to the string repeatedly or it will turn off again. Also, I needed to increase the delay to 70 ms. But it works great now! Another quick question: What is the maximum value I can set all LEDs to at the same time without overloading the power supply? Can I go for 255/255/255 or is there a lower limit?

          1. Thanks for the quick reply! Didn’t realized that the firmware code is available before your comment… that obviously answers all questions! Thanks again for a great piece of hardware, really enjoying to play with it!

  5. I´m sorry for the doublepost but i thought you didnt see my post so, I checked the port in the device menager but the right port was already choosen in the AmbiLED settings (there is only one to choose) so there have to be another problem, right? I uninstall the driver and installed it again but doesnt work.

  6. Will you add an option to allow mounting in a clockwise order? I wasn’t aware of the order limitation and with the cabling as is it cannot reach my PC easily

      1. Useless answer. When I use Ambibox the Ambiled randomly turns on and off, or flickers (even if I limit update to 1 fps).

        You should not have released your product until it was stable.

  7. Seems ambiled crashes amd gpu drivers on heavy use. Any steam game and when having multiple videos running on a single display the display drivers stop and ambiled throws an error. ambiled won’t light up again until i unplug its’ usb and plug it back in, no matter what i click and restart the app (including running as admin).

  8. Hi there,

    I have received my pack and set it up. I have a 425cm led strip going around 3 pc monitors which make 1 big single display. I have put the correct firmware for the unit (long LED Strip), but the colours are not aligning to the screen.

    Hope you can help.


    1. Hi Pritesh,
      As you can see in our campaign page we are not supporting 3 or more monitors. And multi monitor support is limited by dual.
      “Is it supporting Dual or Multiple Monitors?
      Current software isn’t supporting Multiple monitors.
      You can use it with your primary monitor on multiple monitor setups.
      We are working on “side by side dual display support” as a good option but we can’t promise if it works or not.”

      1. Hi There,

        I have 2 GTX 770 EVGA Classified Cards 4GB each and 3 Dell Monitors Setup side by side (the same as in the link I have provided). They are all setup via Nvidia Surround settings which Spans the desktop across 3 monitors (mine are setup exactly as in the link, landscape).

        Your answer when asked by myself if this would work before I backed the project was:

        Inovatek Electronics Ltd.
        Inovatek Electronics Ltd.

        Sep 23, 2014
        Report Spam

        Yes it’s ok if you are using hardware based stretched monitors. It’s one monitor for Windows.


        1. Yes this is right “if you are using hardware based stretched monitors”.If your start menu on the left monitor and clock on the right. Yes you are using hardware stretched monitors. So, the software must be capture it as a one monitor.
          If you have gaps between monitor edges, alignment problems are normal. You should cut the strips on the edges and add some wires for extend to other monitor.

          1. Ok this is getting a little frustrating now the only way is to show you, please take a look at these images:


            As you can clearly see I have 3 monitor’s stretched and the led strip goes all the way around the 3 (no gap). It is obvious from the pictures that the colours are not aligned to the image. My resolution is 4800×1600.



          2. Ok, I can clearly see your led counts 2 times higher than required. Try half of current values. (specially if you are using longer strips firmwares)
            Unfortunately you are the only user who is using 3 monitors and stretching and there is no way to test your setup here.
            So, finding a solution will take time if you cant do that before us. (this is why it is an opensource project)
            Please share the solution if you can find.

  9. lights seem to be working good. just one thing every now and then the leds seem to flicker/ go a different color/strop/ go very bright for just a split second. even when just on the desktop with nothing open they go funny ever 2 to 3 mins. anyone ells getting this?

    1. I guess your capture speed is too fast because of disabled Windows Aero.
      Open config.ini (into the ambiled.exe folder) with Notepad. And increase the interval value from 1 to 30. Then restart the driver software.
      It resolves the problem.

      1. yep that sorted it thank you so much. have to say i love the ambiLEDs there far better then my Philips AMBX setup. AMAZING WORK!!!!

        Just want to know if there will be a forum for the AMBILEDs? just i want to know some info on doing some mods to the LEDs? like can i use a 10mm 4pin L shape Adapter like the ones in this link for the corners? or something like it?

        plus i want to know if i can upgrade the leds to 144/1m ? if so can you recommend a good strip to use?

        thanks again best kick starter ever keep up the good work.

        1. @David,
          Thank you for your support,
          We didn’t used them in our project because of connector resistance and possible connection risks but you can use your own setup.
          AmbiLED is an ambient light system and current LED count is few times more than required. You can use 144LED strips but it will be slow because of high LED counts.

  10. is there a working like for 2.0 i just keep getting this error

    We’re sorry…

    … but your computer or network may be sending automated queries. To protect our users, we can’t process your request right now.

    See Google Help for more information.

  11. Hey, Just got my Ambiled package in the mail yesterday and I’ve been trying to set up Ambibox 2.1.7 , but when I select Ambiled, it simply states Device status: ambiled not connected. I looked up the com port in my system devices, but I already picked the correct one. Can anyone help, as I would like to get fullscreen capturing (direct3d) working ? Also, I notice a lot of stutter in my movies when they play in pseudo fullscreen.


    1. We didn’t noticed a “not connected” problem when com port is right and not in use. Please restart the computer and be sure AmbiLED driver is not working when you run the AmbiBox.

  12. Had time to setup & configure my AmbiLED HD last night. Installed the new software and it works great. Thanks for a great Kickstarter and a really cool project.

  13. I installed my AmbiLED backwards (free end on the bottom right, going counterclockwise and ending at the end with the 3-pin plug in the bottom left. As a result, the lights are backwards from what I see on my screen. Is there a way to flip this in the AmbiLED software?

    1. Yes, please download our latest software. You will see “change strip direction” button into the advanced tab, just press it :)

    1. If you can stick it on back of your monitor, yes it works. We have detailed installation manual including non permanent surfaces. So, If the surface is a problem you can follow the steps.
      1440p is not a big problem but 144Hz is your monitor pixel rate. It will be around 10-12hz for ambientlights.

  14. Just wanted to say thank you, the stock 3m strip is enough for my 50″, the gap at the bottom isn’t noticeable!
    Hyperion on the raspberry pi is doing great, yesterday I’ve upgraded to osmc on the raspberry pi2, awesome!
    Installing hyperion was almost straightforward, I just needed to change libprotobuf7 to libprotobuf9, copied my config file and in less than half an hour everything was up and running :)

    Thumbs up!

    1. Thank you for the details. I’m in vacation till 26th Feb. Then I will install it into my new Pi2 and publish a manual for it.

  15. Just got around to installing these finally. Looks amazing. Really easy to set up on OSMC. Instruction s on this website made it too easy.

    Thank you very much from a very happy backer!

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