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Bandai Luminodot: Like a Lite-Brite on Steroids

by Paul Strauss
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The Lite-Brite is one of my fondest childhood toy memories. Maybe it was the fact that it was THE original way to make pixel art. Or maybe it was the “living on the edge” thrill that any minute I could choke on one of the of hundreds of tiny candy-like pegs. Delicious. Of course, the biggest problem with the original was the fact that you couldn’t do particularly detailed drawings, and its clear that the guys at Japan’s Bandai channeled their frustration into the design of their new Luminodot.

The Luminodot has an insanely dense grid of capable of holding about 3500 light pegs (more than twice as many as the original Lite-Brite).  Thanks to its grid of 70 x 50 individually addressable locations, you can create much more detailed scenes than you could ever with the original.

The Luminodot features a bright LED backlight, which not only offers full-on illumination, it can be set to sequence through one of 25 animated light patterns too.

In addition to a handful of included designs (and additional image packs you can buy), the best part is that you can create your own custom pixel pictures thanks to an online PDF template generator.

Bandai ships 1600 pins (in 12 colors) with each Luminodot, so if you want to fill in the entire board with color, you’ll have to buy some spare pegs too.

While the Luminodot isn’t officially available outside of Japan, I did manage to find one for sale over on eBay for $128 USD. On the other hand, if you happen to live in the area, you can order one from Amazon Japan on sale for ¥10,035 (appx $96 USD).

Assuming you can read Japanese, you can find out more over at Bandai’s Luminodot website.

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