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Disco Dance Light
#1
Hi All.  Let me introduce myself.

I am a beginner in electronics.  Started really getting into it a year ago.  Thanks to dipmicro I have over come the introductory hurdle.  Judging by what I have read here in the forums.  I have got a really long way to go.  

Anyway I would like to contribute to the forum and post the second project I have made.  The first I have completed.

My wife and I like to have a few drinks on occasion and dance together.  She bought a disco ball at the dollar store for $3.  I thought cool and shinned lights on it and such, but the thing is pretty much useless unless it spins.  At the same time I was getting into the arduino.   I thought I could spin that ball with a stepper motor and shine lights onto it.
I bought the all the parts from dipmicro, and I used the code they supplied on their website with slight modifications to run the stepper motor.  I paralleled 10 extrabright white led's that flash a few times a second, and I hooked up two large rgb leds (that change color periodically) into a flower type mirror I found at the dollar store.   I stored the whole circuit into an old router case, and hung the ball on the motor.   
I also tried to use an audio sensor I bought at dipmicro to try to get the white leds to flash to the beat, but I was unsuccessful in doing so.

Here is a pic of my dance light in my garage.  Notice the house spider web on the ball.   The thing lights up alot brighter then my exposure shows.  The walls and the floor show the reflected light very well.  I thought to cut the exposure time short so as not to show star trails.

[img][Image: _DSC6698_1.jpg][/img]
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#2
Cool - probably you just need a low pass filter on the sensor output and use that to trigger things to get it to respond to the beat. Not sure if you are trying to drive them directly or use the sensor to arduino to trigger - either way can be made to work. With the arduino in the mix then you have a choice of an electronic or digital filter (ie some resistors and caps OR some code).

BTW - you are very lucky to get involved at a time when there are other people around who can help you, parts are relatively cheap and available, and you have that great resource called the internet to look at for advice on how to do pretty much anything. When I started out, none of the above were available, and I know the frustration of building something and then having absolutely no idea why it doesn't work, and not having the proper tools to figure it out.
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If things weren't meant to be modified, they would not come with wires attached.
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#3
Darrin, welcome to our group !

Also congratulations, very cool use of stepper motor and LEDs.

Btw why you were unsuccessful with modulating white LEDs by sound ?
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#4
Thanyou you guys.

I purchased this audio sensor,
https://www.dipmicro.com/store/SOUNDSENSOR-MOD

while testing it with the serial monitor and talking into the mic, I didnt notice any gradual changes in input voltages. Id have to yell loud to get it to output something into the serial monitor and the output was either on or off, no in between. Anyway I wrote code to turn on the led pins for a 10th of a second, everytime the output of the audio sensor maxed. It didnt work at all, then i just gave up without trying anymore. I was satisfied with the light already.
I didnt have any low pass filter as jon was saying. I just had it directly hooked up the arduino
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#5
(2015-12-15, 10:39 AM)jon Wrote:
BTW - you are very lucky to get involved at a time when there are other people around who can help you, parts are relatively cheap and available, and you have that great resource called the internet to look at for advice on how to do pretty much anything. When I started out, none of the above were available, and I know the frustration of building something and then having absolutely no idea why it doesn't work, and not having the proper tools to figure it out.

Yes it is a great time for knowledge to spread so easily  My first temp at electronics was a great book, written in 1959, but I have the 1965 edition is "Introduction To Electronic Circuits, by Herbert Jackson".  I still read this book.  i got it at the annual book fair on mothers day weekend every year for a $1.  Cheap price for 100's of years of knowledge.  At the time the source was my only place for components and I had no internet.  Anyway I didn't get too far, and I postponed electronics for another time.   

Then about a year ago, I noticed some books on amazon about electronics and bought a bunch of them.  I also noticed dipmicro whenever I drove by it. I was amazed at all the different components that I could bye for cheap compared for what they do.  I immediately knew I am getting into this.  
When I eventually found out about micro=controllers and how you can use programming to replace electronic components I was ecstatic, because I have been an amateur programmer since my first computer the vic 20.

Electronics is a hobby that is never ending, you will never get bored, there is always something new to learn and do.  It is also knowledge to a deeper understanding of the universe we live in.
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#6
My dad was avid Amateur Radio collector and had them all since 1967 when he was 17. He stopped in 1997. He always had them bound by year and we had one full bookcase shelf full of the Amateur Radio. He kept them in the small loft room on the top floor we originally used as storage and place to tinker with electronics, I ended up spending so much time there that when my parents stored an old bed there from grandpa, I adopted the room as my own and stayed there permanently and left my old spacious 250sft room to my younger brother Wink

When I was teenager I spent hundreds of hours worming through those books and trying various circuits out. Dad also had small stockpile of parts plus there was a store in next town so once a week or two me and my friend made a bicycle trips there. My friend lived couple houses down the street, so we made a radio transmitters on regular FM band and spent countless hours yapping about electronic circuits while I was working on mine and he was working on his. Now you can just buy Walkie Talkie set, they were not that common where I lived at that time.
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#7
Very nice story Roman. A walkie Talkie would be nice for me to have. I could keep one in the garage and one in the house. My wife could contact me without texting. Be like an intercom. Anyway you could point me in the right direction to learn how to build a set?
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#8
If you really want to build it, here is a schematic and very nice description: http://www.circuitsgallery.com/2012/09/s...itter.html

Or this one is very similar and amplifies signal from microphone if too weak: http://www.next.gr/circuits/fm-transmitt...41063.html

These transmitters are unstable, pain to setup and they will drift with voltage and temperature and time. Also if you are close-by. You can buy iphone car FM transmitters for $3, open it up and add antenna. You still need the receivers though. Or you can get a set of of ready-made walkie talkies and hack the switch so you do not need to hold it Smile

But in this time and age, if you have WiFi at your garage, lookup Intercom at Google Playstore. E.g. this one: https://play.google.com/store/apps/detai...fiintercom
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#9
You talked me out of the first two circuits.
I was thinking a strait permanent intercom. One in the garage and one in the kitchen. Wife in the kitchen just has to press a button in to talk in, to start a live chat with garage intercom. I will eliminate your last option because I want a permanent intercom, you may not always have your phone with you. So I guess My best bet is to buy iphone fm transmitters and make receivers to go with them.
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#10
Better is to go for Walkie-Talkie but since they will be stationary you can hook them up to wall-wart and leave them on 24/7.

Or a cordless phone sets have usually intercom function. That reminds me, I have a set of 4 Uniden PowerMax 5.8GHz sitting in the box somewhere I did not use in 6yrs.
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