PIC24 drum machine prototype

This is a project I’ve been working on for over a year but haven’t had the time to complete yet. Electronics takes second place to children… ūüôā

It’s a mini drum machine modelled on classic machines like the Roland TR808. My version is digital, playing samples rather than analogue and uses a single pic24 to do the work.

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Charlieplexed lighthouse version 2 PCBs have arrived

A long exposure makes it look quite funky

My version two charlieplexed lighthouse circuit PCBs (charliediscs) have arrived back from the Seeedstudio’s fab. I used the same deal as for my last boards, this time it took around 3 weeks in total.¬† That’s pretty good for 20USD!

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Quick post about the DSO Nano

DSO Nano (Image taken from Seeedstudio.)

A friend asked me about the oscilloscope I was using in my last post, you can see it in the very poor quality video at the end of the post. So I thought I’d make a quick post to explain.¬† It’s called the DSO Nano, it’s sold by Seeedstudio and the short of it is that it’s a fantastic tool for a great price.¬† It is limited in bandwidth, and has only one channel but I love it all the same.¬†¬† It has around 1MHz of analog bandwidth which is admittedly quite low – giving a useable working limit to signals of around 100KHz – but that is more than enough for audio and fine for just about everything I’ve been doing such as debugging my PWM output from my LED fader.

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Simple PWM control for LED strip

I have been playing around with building a lamp for my desk using a LED strip and constant current driver that I bought from Deal Extreme a while ago combined with a PIC12f683 to provide variable brightness via Pulse Width Modulation (PWM).

The demo using a plain old green LED as the output.

[UPDATE OCT 20 2010] I’ve updated the firmware for this project to include new features. More info and firmware download here.

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Eagle CAD files for lighthouse circuit

For any one that is interested I have tidied up the Eagle CAD files for my lighthouse circuit.  You can grab them here. They’re not perfect and are probably not suitable for sending to a PCB production company but they might give you a head start of making your own version.

They’re saved from Eagle CAD version 5.6.0 so you’ll need to go to thier site to get that if you don’t have the latest version.

Reviving a dead NiCad battery

UPDATED! : I’ve added a photo to the battery terminals, see below.

Recently my trusty Black & Decker Quatro drill/driver/saw/sander started misbehaving.¬† It’s been great for years and gotten us through a lot of DIY and IKEA modification.¬† But now it could barely manage to cut a 15cm length of 1cm chipboard.pict0027

Time for a bit of investigation.

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