Awesome Electronics

Thermochromic Digital Clock

Thermochromic Digital Clock

This fascinating tabletop clock tells the time by changing the temperature. Instructables contributor Twisted & Tinned created the display using thermochromic foil and surface-mounted resistors that heat up liquid crystals. They previously made a temperature and humidity display using a different

    technique.

How a Split-Flap Display Works

How a Split-Flap Display Works

Split-flap displays used to be common in everything from tabletop clocks to arrival and departure boards at airports. While not as popular these days, these electro-mechanical displays are still marvels of engineering. Scottbez1 walks us through how they work with a demonstration of his single-digit Arduino-controlled display.

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CheatKard Electrical Engineering Reference Cards

CheatKard Electrical Engineering Reference Cards

Engineers, makers, and anyone else who works with circuits will love these pocket reference cards. The durable card set includes measurements, schematic symbols, a component value calculator, SMD footprints, laws and theories, and more. It comes in black and gold or a Kickstarter limited-edition PCB green.

The Smile Mirror

The Smile Mirror

Unless you’re a vampire, a mirror will reflect your face when you look at it. But The Action Lab’s unique mirror is a bit different. It uses a liquid crystal panel to block out the mirror and an expression recognition app that detects if its user isn’t smiling. We like the creative approach he came up with for the triggering system.

Switches: The Secret Life of Components

Switches: The Secret Life of Components

If you know anything about electronics, you know there are tons of different types of switches. Engineer and inventor Tim Hunkin delves into some of the many kinds of switches, how they work to complete circuits, and how to choose the right type for your projects.

Motherboard Chopping Board

Motherboard Chopping Board

This circuit board-inspired glass cutting board is a great kitchen accessory for tech geeks. Unlike an actual motherboard, it’s perfectly smooth, so you don’t have to worry about getting bits of onion stuck in the electronics. If the circuit looks familiar to you, that’s because it’s based on the board inside the classic Sinclair ZX81 PC.

Volumetric OLED Display

Volumetric OLED Display

A volumetric display can show images that produce the illusion of depth. After maker Sean Hodgins got his hands on some see-through OLED displays, he designed and built a miniature display that can display a 3D image by spreading its components across its multiple layers. This thing looks straight out of science fiction.

iFixit Manta Driver Kit

iFixit Manta Driver Kit

With this 112-bit driver kit from iFixit, you’ll never be caught without the proper tool for opening gadgets. It comes with 1/4″ and 4mm bit driver handles with magnetic bit sockets, knurled grips, and swivel tops, and high-quality bits made from S2 and 6150 steel. And if anything ever breaks, it’s covered by iFixit’s lifetime warranty.

Building a Googol Counter

Building a Googol Counter

Googol is the mathematical label for 10 to the hundredth power or 1 followed by 100 zeros. If you tried to count to a Googol, even in milliseconds, you’ll never live to see the end of your count. Look Mum No Computer built an electronic counter that he hopes can be kept alive and running well past his time here on Earth.

Spacecraft Switch Gear

Spacecraft Switch Gear

Concord Aerospace makes replicas of the switches found in NASA’s space vehicles, including the Apollo command module and the Space Shuttle. The switches feature accurate labeling, and can be wired to control circuits, should you decide to build your own basement simulator. You can also order switches with custom labeling.

Seven Nation Army on Tesla Coils

Seven Nation Army on Tesla Coils

With the right circuitry and engineering skills, tesla coils can be programmed to play music. Franzoli Electronics previously wowed us with their high-voltage version of Toto’s Africa. Now they’re back with a powerful cover of The White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army, replacing the thumpy garage rock sounds with a fuzzy electronic sound.

Making an LED Sphere Ornament

Making an LED Sphere Ornament

Last Christmas, maker Jiří Praus decided he wanted a unique ornament. So he set about building a light-up sphere that can display colorful patterns. He built the orb using meticulously-soldered brass wires, 194 individual RGB LEDs, and an ESP32 microcontroller. Check out the full build details on Instructables.

Innova 1000 CarScan Mobile

Innova 1000 CarScan Mobile

When the dreaded “check engine” and other dashboard warning lights flare, discover what’s wrong without a costly trip to a mechanic. The Innova 1000 Car Scan Mobile turns smartphones into advanced OBD2 diagnostic tools. It pairs with the RepairSolutions 2 app for systems health checks of most cars made since 1996.

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8BitCADE XL

8BitCADE XL

This DIY handheld gaming system offers gamers an opportunity to learn about electronics. The system features a 2.42″ monochrome widescreen and comes with 200 Arduboy games pre-loaded into its memory. Advanced users can even program their own games for it. Available with or without a tool kit.

Sony PS5 Teardown

Sony PS5 Teardown

We’re only a month from the release of Sony and Microsoft’s latest consoles, and both brands have been more liberal about showing the inner workings of their systems than before. Sony mechanical design VP Yasuhiro Ootori disassembles a brand new PS5, and explains each of its components. English subtitles available.

The Cocktail Piano

The Cocktail Piano

Last time we checked in with musician Mezerg, he was playing the watermelon. This time, he performs on a more conventional instrument – though Voël Martin rigged up this upright piano with an electronic circuit and pumps that dispense a variety of juices and liquor to make a custom cocktail based on the notes he plays.

LED Video Cube

LED Video Cube

There are some off-the-shelf kits out there for building colorful LED cubes, but we’ve never seen anything quite as impressive as Mike Caan’s custom-built light cube, which features a whopping 24,576 RGB LEDs across its six 64×64 faces, each capable of displaying animations and videos uploaded from his computer.

Neopixel LED Face Mask

Neopixel LED Face Mask

Electronics hobbyist splat238 shows off an awesome mask they built with 104 RGB LEDs layered in front of the fabric, and behind a mesh structure. Working with a Wemos D1 Mini and an Arduino-compatible controller, it’s able to display more than 40 different lighting effects. Check out the full build details on Instructables.

Circuit Playing Cards

Circuit Playing Cards

Elephant’s playing card tech-decks feature custom illustrated fronts and backs inspired by the intricate traces on printed circuit boards. They come in blue, green, white, or our favorite, a premium edition with two-tone foil on its box, and gold and silver metallic inks.

Building a Giant Battery Pack

Building a Giant Battery Pack

The Q was looking for a way to power his plug-in gadgets while away from home. While he could have just bought a ready-made power pack, he decided to build his own, wiring together dozens of 18650 batteries, then connecting an inverter to convert the DC power into AC.

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Vollebak Garbage Watch

Vollebak Garbage Watch

Working in collaboration with Wallpaper* Re-Made project, men’s apparel brand Vollebak comments on electronic waste with a unique timepiece. The colorful Garbage Watch is made from recycled components taken from old circuit boards. Vollebak is accepting waiting list requests for its 2021 release now.

Humble Circuits & Electronics Bundle

Humble Circuits & Electronics Bundle

This Humble Bundle is packed with over $1000 worth of reading material from Morgan & Claypool to help you learn about electronic circuits, microcontrollers, and engineering principles. Pay what you want, and if you spend more than $15, you’ll get all 17 e-Books, while supporting the National Coalition Against Censorship.

Raspberry Pi HQ Camera Module

Raspberry Pi HQ Camera Module

This low-cost add-on for Raspberry Pi computers lets you build a 12.3 megapixel camera that accepts interchangeable lenses. Its 1/2.3-inch Sony IMX477 sensor can also shoot 4K/30 video. Its mount accepts C- and CS- lenses, which are common in CCTV and 16mm film cameras. It also has a tripod mount for ease of use.

Circuit Board Spaceships

Circuit Board Spaceships

Artist Daniel Shankalonian takes old circuit boards and other electronics, and recycles them into desktop sculptures. Among his many creations are spaceships from Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, and Star Trek, as well as a model of NASA’s Space Shuttle. He also made an awesome sculpture of BioShock’s Big Daddy bouncer.

Magic of Magnetism & Inductors

Magic of Magnetism & Inductors

Electrical engineer Mehdi Sadaghdar of ElectroBOOM presents a series of simple demonstrations involving magnets, batteries, and wires, each of which might seem magical, but can all be easily explained by science. He might have a goofy approach to teaching, but if you stick around, you might learn a thing or two.

Electricianz Carbon Z Watch

Electricianz Carbon Z Watch

This unique analog wristwatch looks like something that you might find inside of a bomb you’re attempting to diffuse. It’s got a 45mm carbon composite wrapped stainless case, and to the left of its display is a bundle of colorful wiring. Now do we cut the blue wire with the white stripe, or the white wire with the blue stripe?

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