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Take Me To The Gadgetory!
DIY Cinder Speakers

Posted November 11, 2015 by Chris

"Daniel Ballou and Dashdot are developing a system that transforms the humble cinder block into a high fidelity speaker. Concrete is a low resonance material that minimizes vibrations and reduces coloration of pure sound delivered by the drivers. A drawback of course is that it’s heavy to handle and ship, and labor intensive to mold."

The Making of the Melloman

Posted August 24, 2015 by Chris

"The Melloman was mostly built in my kitchen…with a Bucket o’ Walkman and a Walkman Army and some breadboarding of the first idea of opto-coupler keying."

A Journey Through Microcontroller Audio

Posted July 4, 2015 by Chris

"There are 4 distinct modules, all connected by a 4-wire bus that provides power, ground, and two com lines. I separated the tasks into input-output pairs: audio i/o, user i/o (button and light), and radio i/o. The center module coordinates communication between the others and memory."

Monster 16×12 Grid Step Sequencer Hardware, Built with Arduino

Posted June 27, 2015 by Chris

"For some, there’s the step sequencer you dream of. Maybe it has a massive array of buttons for patterns, capable of spreading musical ideas across a lit grid. Maybe every last rhythm is visible, maybe it juggles layers and patterns with ease. This guy just went and built what he wanted."

PropBLE-LED Custom Hardware to iOS Test Platform for Bluetooth

Posted June 12, 2015 by Chris

"This post introduces the hardware itself and the work I’m doing on this side to establish a decent test-bed for my continued experiments with finding iOS control patterns for BTLE applications along with determining the magnitude of the work and the code footprint when adding BTLE Radio support to an embedded project."

Adventures in Piano Building

Posted April 3, 2015 by Chris

"So it was one day when I found myself in an antique store just idly browsing the shelves, that I was intrigued by a stack of old QRS piano rolls. …I wondered if anyone had ever gone about trying to scan a piano roll to replicate them in MIDI format. I had a few vague ideas of how to accomplish such a thing, so I bought a roll for a mere $2 and brought it home….."

Perfect Pitch: An Accurate-Pitch Sensor and Sounder

Posted March 28, 2015 by Chris

"The circuit in the picture is a sound sensor that measures both the overall strength of sound and the amount of audio energy in a specific frequency of up to 4kHz. This allows it to detect whether a tone of a particular frequency is played: it compares the audio energy in that frequency to the total amount of energy, and if the ratio is high enough, say above 1/8, it concludes that somebody is playing the tone."

Making a simple clap switch

Posted March 21, 2015 by Chris

"A clap switch is a fun project for beginners. It switches on and off electrical appliances with a sound of clapping hands. Today we will discuss about making a simple clap switch that operates when it detects two clapping sounds in a row. It uses an electret microphone as a transducer for converting a clapping sound into an electrical signal. The microcphone output is amplified by a transistor and is then sent to the PIC12F683 microcontroller which performs an ON/OFF switching action when valid claps are detected."

GainClone 2x68W LM3886 Audio Power Amplifier

Posted February 20, 2015 by Chris

"I bought a set of these chips long ago and they were gathering dust in one of my electronic part cabinet drawers, until a friend of mine got a gainclone kit for himself. Not feeling to be left behind, I decided to put my hands into the dirt, literally: I had a bunch of non-working 20 year old transistor based amplifiers that I got at a yard sale, along with a nice pair of Technics SB-LX7 8ohm 3-way 200W speakers."

PCM Sound Generator

Posted January 17, 2015 by Chris

"This is a simple sound generator based on 8-pin SD Audio Player. It is built with an Atmel ATtiny861 microcontroller and an SD memory card. The tiny861 has fast PWM outpus like tiny85 so that it can generate clear sound compared to any other AVR chips. On 20-pin device, many GPIO pins are available. It enables to control the sound generator by external signals."