Posts with «mega» label

Don’t Forget Your Mints When Using This Synthesizer

While synthesizers in the music world are incredibly common, they’re not all keyboard-based instruments as you might be imagining. Especially if you’re trying to get a specific feel or sound from a synthesizer in order to mimic a real instrument, there might be a better style synth that you can use. One of these types is the breath controller, a synthesizer specifically built to mimic the sound of wind instruments using the actual breath from a physical person. Available breath controllers can be pricey, though, so [Andrey] built his own.

To build the synthesizer, [Andrey] used a melodica hose and mouthpiece connected to a pressure sensor. He then built a condenser circuit on a custom Arduino shield and plugged it all into an Arduino Mega (although he notes that this is a bit of overkill). From there, the Arduino needed to be programmed to act as a MIDI device and to interact with the pressure sensor, and he was well on his way to a wind instrument synthesizer.

The beauty of synthesizers is not just in their ability to match the look and sound of existing instruments but to do things beyond the realm of traditional instruments as well, sometimes for a greatly reduced price point.

Electric-powered fan rocket takes off and lands(?) vertically

Does a rocket need to use a certain type of fuel, or even be capable of spaceflight? While James Bruton’s build might not fit everyone’s definition of this type of craft because of its electric ducted fan (EDF) propulsion, it does face the same major challenge of controlling a tall pipe-like structure from thrust coming from the tail. It’s meant to both take off and land in a vertical orientation as well, something inconceivable in traditional rockets until very recently.

For control, Bruton uses an Arduino Mega inside the main fuselage of the craft, which regulates the speed of the three EDFs. It also turns two of these fans with a servo and linkage system in order to compensate for unwanted roll. A second Arduino and an IMU are embedded in the nose cone, which passes data to the Mega board via a serial connection. 

The build and early tests can be seen in the video below, and a full test is planned for the future alongside Ivan Miranda, who has been working on his own version.

Check the weather on this Arduino-controlled split-flap display

Split-flap displays show information using characters changed by an electric motor. While they’ve largely been replaced by more modern means, hobbyists like “gabbapeople” have been keeping this this technique alive, in this case as a four-character weather display.

The device is built using laser-cut plexiglass, and uses four individual servos to actuate the character flaps. Control is accomplished using an Arduino Mega programmed in the XOD visual programming environment, along with the requisite driver modules. Weather data is pulled from the AccuWeather API. 

You can see it flapping away in the video below, displaying the weather in abbreviations such as “ICLO” for intermittent clouds, as well as the temperature in degrees Celsius.

Generating waves with Arduino

Need a wave generator to test out your latest boat, barge, or submarine design, but can’t quite afford one? If so, then you might consider Subham Bhatt’s DIY tank that he was able to construct for around $1,200 USD. 

Bhatt’s device features a pair of stepper motors and lead screws that push a stainless steel paddle through the water, producing waves formed to his precise specifications. An Arduino Mega is used for control, along with a single stepper driver to power both motors. 

User interface is provided through the Arduino IDE’s serial interface, set up to take commands via a simple text-based menu system. 

Light painting rig is a masterpiece of artistic hardware hacking

Light painting is an art form where dark areas are selectively lit to form interesting effects. While normally a manual operation, Josh Sheldon has come up with a rig to automate and enhance the process. The results are nothing short of spectacular, producing not static images, but astonishing animated light displays.

His device resembles a 3D printer made out of aluminum extrusion. X,Y, and Z axes are controlled by a series of stepper motors, but it uses a point of controlled light instead of melted plastic to form shapes. 

Light animations are set up in Blender, and a hardware and software toolchain including Processing, an Arduino Mega, and a Dragonframe module are implemented for control.

Check out the whole story in the video below, or see code/build documentation are available on GitHub.

Ceiling-mounted cable robot with Arduino Mega

Cable-based robots are a common sight at sporting events as remote camera operators, but what about one for your living room? As spotted on Reddit, Nathaniel Nifong decided there was no reason not to have one of these devices, and made his own personal Skycam-like robot.

The system uses four servo motors to wind cables attached to the ceiling around 3D-printed wheels, and can be controlled using a smartphone via Bluetooth and an Arduino Mega. 

The prototype—constructed using cardboard and what appears to be LEGO components—is seen moving around Nifong’s dwelling in the videos below, and the eventual goal is to let it move items around using a servo gripper assembly.

This is the first wireless movement demonstration of a robot I’m building. It’s based on parts from an XYZ 6-DOF robotic arm.

The Bluetooth control is done by using Nordic toolbox to send commands to a an MDBT40 Bluetooth module that was reprogrammed with an ST-Link V2. The module forwards the command to the Arduino.

Commands are to move 10 cm in any direction. It calculates what the change in rope lengths would be to achieve the new position.

Stop motion short filmed with the help of Arduino

One can imagine that making a stop motion animation film is a lot of work, but if you’ve ever wondered what one involves, James Wilkinson decided to document the process of making Billy Whiskers: The Mystery of the Misplaced Trowel. 

The main character of this film is a mystery-solving feline, who is animated with the help of five servos that control mouth movements under Arduino control.

In order to get shots that move properly, Wilkinson also came up with his own motion capture rig, moved by a number of stepper motors via an Arduino Mega. His documentation is certainly worth checking out if you’re interested in animatronics or advanced filming techniques, and you can see a trailer for the film below.

Smart hydroponic assembly made with Arduino Mega

If you love electronics as well as plants, what better way to combine the two than with a smart hydroponic system? Students at the Juan de Lanuza School decided to do just that, creating a portable hydroponic assembly that’s automatically controlled with the help of an Arduino Mega.

The system uses six lengths of PVC pipe to house plants and pass a nutrient rich liquid solution through their roots. The control assembly measures elements such as temperature, humidity, and pH, then adjusts the lighting, water pump, and nutrient feeder to accommodate for conditions. 

The device transmits data to ThinkSpeak for human monitoring, and also features a smartphone app for visualization. Build details are available here in English, or you can see a video of the setup in Spanish below.

An Arduino “Whack-a-Button” Reaction Game

After Instructables user R0RSHACH’s son won a place at the World Scout Jamboree in 2019, the maker decided to create a fairground-style game for fundraising. 

The resulting device is akin to a Whack-a-Mole or Batak game that can be found at high-end gyms, and features eight large light-up buttons per player on a wooden frame.

When activated, an Arduino Mega turns on the button-lights in sequence to test how long it takes participants to push each one. While it can be made in a single-player version, the two-player game looks like a lot more fun, allowing participants to compete on opposing boards. 

Code and instructions are available here, and you can see it demonstrated in the videos below.

TerraDome is a Jurassic World-themed terrarium

If you need a warm place to keep your tropical plants, then look no further than the beautiful “TerraDome” from maker “MagicManu.”

The device is equipped with an Arduino Mega that helps regulate the temperature inside its clear octagonal structure via a reptile heating pad, along with a fan salvaged from a PC power supply. A DHT11 sensor is used to sense temperature and humidity, shown on top of the dome by a small LED display.

Aside from taking care of plants, the project is decidedly dinosaur-themed, specifically Jurassic Park/World. It even features a servo-driven wooden door assembly on the front that looks like it came straight out of the movie, which swings open automatically to allow heat (or dinosaurs) to escape. 

You can check out the build process in the video below (in French), or see the second for a short dino-style glimpse of the assembly.