Are SPI NeoPixel LEDs compatible with Photon?

I have the Photon 1 and Adafruit's Ultra Skinny NeoPixel 1515 LED Strip. Are they compatible with each other? According to the LED's datasheet, it uses the SPI Protocol.

With my current setup, the LED does not turn on.

Relevant links:

I'm skeptical that it's actually SPI. And the "datasheet" doesn't list any useful information about speed, protocol, etc.. The Adafruit page has this:

the chip only uses a single pin for input and a single pin for output. The protocol used is very very timing-specific and can only be controlled by microcontrollers with highly repeatable 100nS timing precision

The Photon 1/P1 can probably generate that, however it does not appear that the Particle-neopixel library supports the 1515, nor do any other libraries list that in their README.

It's probably not impossible on the Photon 1/P1, but it would be a lot of work. It would require DMA on nRF52 and RTL872x devices to meet that timing, which would be even more work.

Thanks for your help, Rick!

It seems like this LED isn't the best documented/supported. Do you have any advice on which microcontroller boards (whether it be Particle or Arduino) I should buy that are compatible with this LED? What about libraries? I know you mentioned other libraries didn't list their support for 1515 in their README... perhaps I should reach out directly to Adafruit and ask what their setup was?

Sorry for the barrage of questions; I just got into this stuff yesterday. I would appreciate any guidance you can give me.

Hi Alex,
Adafruit is very good at documenting their stuff in general.
I checked the page for your LEDs and this is what they say:


Hi @gusgonnet , thanks for sending this over. Ah yes! So it is supported by the Arduino Uno and Mega. My followup question is where is their "example code"? I've looked pretty much everywhere for that, yet I can't find what they are talking about.

not 100% sure, but I ran a search and this is what I got: