Turn an old mixer into a MIDI input fader with Arduino

Arduino Team February 21, 2017

Using an Arduino as an HID, Evan Kale turned a “gently used” analog mixer into a computer interface.

Older audio equipment may not have the interfaces that you need to make totally electronic music, but they can be very well-built, so are perhaps worth salvaging. In the video below, Kale salvages potentiometers from an old mixer, then hooks them up to a Pro Micro. This allows the Arduino to take these 12 inputs, and output them as a USB MIDI signal.

Along the way, Kale points out a few very important hacking tricks, including that the library may have a printer ready for you to use, and that analog slider pots many times are logarithmic (or close to it) and need to be calibrated. Also, around 5:25 he introduces viewers to analog multiplexers which can give you eight analog inputs at the cost of three digital and one analog pin. Read the rest of this entry »

M2 by Macchina joins AtHeart!

Arduino Team February 21, 2017

M2 by Macchina

We’re excited to announce the latest member of Arduino’s AtHeart program, MacchinaNow live on Kickstarter, M2 is an open-source, versatile development platform for hacking and customizing cars.

M2’s two-part design is compact, modular, wirelessly connectable, and based on the popular Arduino Due. It consists of a processor board with a SAM3X8E Cortex-M3 MCU, a USB port, some LEDs, an SD card slot, and built-in EEPROM, as well as an interface board with two channels of CAN, two channels of LIN/K-LINE, a J1850 VPW/PWM, and even a single-wire (GMLAN) interface.

The tiny device (56.4mm x 40.6mm x 15.7mm) can be wired under the hood for a more permanent installation or plugged into the OBD2 port, enabling you to do virtually anything with your vehicle’s software.

 

Macchina has partnered with Arduino, Digi and Digi-Key to develop M2, and believes that its highly-adaptable hardware will most benefit hot rodders, mechanics, students, security researchers, and entrepreneurs by providing them access to the inner workings of their rides.

M2 accommodates a wide variety of wireless options thanks to its Digi XBee form-factor socket, enabling you to easily connect your car to the Internet, smartphone, satellites, or the cloud using BLE, WiFi, GSM, LTE, and other modules.

The platform can be programmed using the latest Arduino IDE, and is compatible with a number of software packages. Moreover, given its open-source nature, potential applications are bounded only by the collective imagination of the coding community. Read the rest of this entry »

Make sure guests never miss your house with these numbers

Arduino Team February 20, 2017

If you’d like for someone to visit you, it’s quite helpful if you have the house number displayed somewhere on your premises. Rather than simply rely upon someone reading the numbers as they drove by, “Superbender” has decided to do something a bit different make his home stand out.

During the day, you can identify Superbender’s residence by the giraffe mailbox, but to help point the house out by night, he came up with the glowing Arduino Uno solution seen in the video here.

The numbers were cut on a scroll saw and RGB LED strips were added in the back to enable them to illuminate. The setup allows for one color per night, or the numbers can change every three seconds in “party mode.” Read the rest of this entry »

Bring some zen to your living room with this CNC end table

Arduino Team February 17, 2017

Why settle for a some boring furniture, when you can have your own sand and rock display powered by an Arduino Uno and stepper motors instead?!

According to his write-up, Instructables user “MakrToolbox” gets many ideas that never leave the pages of his Moleskin notebook. Although it has to be difficult to decide which ones gets to live in reality, this Zen Garden CNC End Table seems like it was a great build choice.

The table consists of a piece of plate glass covering a “garden” of sand and stones. On top of this is a metal ball that moves around via a joystick on the side of the table, traversing the sand and making interesting shapes, like a giant Etch A Sketch. The ball is pulled around with a magnetic servo-powered gantry system underneath.

Look like something you’d love to have in your living room? Be sure to check out the project’s page for more! Read the rest of this entry »

Homemade MDF desktop CNC router for €200

Arduino Team February 15, 2017

Using an Arduino Uno with a CNC shield,  Thimo Voorwinden has made his own CNC out of MDF for just over €200 ($212).

CNC routers really open up what the type of item you can make, but tend to be expensive. Voorwinden’s homemade version, however, features a work area of 200mm x 250mm x 100mm. As shown in the results video below, it’s accurate enough to cut two pieces of MDF so that they can nest securely inside of one another. Impressively, the whole assembly was created using basic tools.

Two interesting features on this build are that the workpiece is fastened down with wood screws into the Y-axis gantry, and that it employs an offset motor with a flexible shaft to transfer power to the cutting head. 12 bearing blocks and 8mm diameter steel rod are used to keep everything lined up. Read the rest of this entry »

Giant interactive crossword puzzle uses 130 Arduinos

Arduino Team February 14, 2017

In what is perhaps the most Arduino boards used together, 130 Arduino Nanos, (plus an Arduino Mega), 130 RFID readers, and 750 RGB LEDs power this interactive crossword puzzle.

As you might suspect, bringing a giant crossword puzzle to life was lot of work. If you’d like to know how much, you can see the process laid out in the video below. Like many great hacks, this project starts out with a lot of prep, making sure the mechanical pieces go together as they should. Everything is then wired and programmed, and on day six, it finally goes out the door, destined for the National Museum in Warsaw, Poland.

Each letter is equipped with an RFID tag. Under the table lies custom circuits consisting of a Nano, an RFID reader, and some WS2812B LEDs, which are connected to the Mega via an I2C interface. The Mega communicates with a PC, which reveals a visualization on the nearby wall.

Blank squares are dimmed. However, as a letter is placed down, the LEDs will light up in either green or red depending on whether it is correct. Once a word is completed, the entire table produces a disco-like animation with sound effects.

It’s quite a colorful display, and it looks like the kids playing with it in the “Anything Goes” exhibition love it! You can see more about this project in Robert Mordzon’s write-up.

Save the date for Arduino Day 2017: April 1st

Arduino Team February 13, 2017

For the fourth year, we invite the open source community to join us in celebrating Arduino’s birthday on Saturday, April 1st!

Arduino Day is a 24-hour-long worldwide event – organized by our team and the community – where people interested in Arduino can get together, share their experiences, and learn more about the platform through all sorts of activities, tailored to local audiences. Participation is open to anyone, from young Makers and students to professional engineers and designers.

More than 330 were held by Arduino enthusiasts across the globe in 2016. This year, we are hoping to make that number 500! If you want to organize Arduino Day festivities of your own, please fill out the online form and submit your proposal here by March 11th.

In the coming weeks, be sure to visit the official website to learn more or find an event in your area. And don’t forget to post, engage, and follow along on social media using the hashtag #ArduinoD17!

Replace a microwave’s beep with the Windows XP startup sound

Arduino Team February 10, 2017

When your microwave is done with its food, it generally beeps… and beeps… and beeps. Though you definitely want to know when your frozen burrito is edible, if you get to it right when it wants, things can get quite annoying. Tim Gremalm decided to do something about it, and replaced the buzzer in his appliance with an Arduino Nano, an amplifier, and small speaker.

His initial speaker/amplifier combination wasn’t loud enough so he replaced it with more appropriate options. After this hack, he now has something that can play a more pleasing tone—in his case, the Windows XP startup sound—and do so only once!

Read the rest of this entry »

An extremely well thought out marriage proposal with Arduino

Arduino Team February 9, 2017

Once solved via a series of brain teasers and a physical challenge, this puzzle box opens to reveal an engagement ring.

When proposing to your significant other, the normal course of action is to hopefully do something romantic, get on one knee, and present your hopefully soon-to-be fiancé with a ring. David Hoskins however, apparently confident that his girlfriend would have the will as well as the mental and physical capacity to pass his test, instead created “The Box.”

This device put the user through challenges including a water weight puzzle that will be familiar to Die Hard fans, an audio puzzle, a visual puzzle, and even an endurance challenge involving an exercise bike. Of course, if his girlfriend failed to complete the puzzle, that would really ruin the setup, so Hoskins, who got the idea for the game while studying for a masters degree in user experience design, tested things thoroughly beforehand. Read the rest of this entry »

A DIY Laser Scanning Microscope

Arduino Team February 9, 2017

With a DVD pick-up, an Arduino Uno, a laser, and an LDR, Instructables user “Venkes” has managed to create a DIY Laser Scanning Microscope (LSM).

A laser microscope works by shining a beam of light on a subject in an X-Y plane. The intensity of the reflected light is then detected by a photoresistor (or LDR) and recorded. When the various points of light are combined, you get an image.

Obviously you need a very small laser beam. Since a DVD laser unit has to work with the extremely small bit markings on these disks and has coils to steer the lens built-in, this seems like a logical choice to use with a custom microscope. Though it took quite a bit of effort to make, it’s capable of 1300x magnification and attaining a resolution of 65,536 pixels (256 x 256) in an area of .05 x .05mm. Results start around 3:00 in the video below. Read the rest of this entry »

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