Someone built a Modular Analog Synth

As seen on the stand of the dutch electronics forum Circuitsonline at the VERON Fleamarket : a home built modular synthesizer. IMG_20150321_111929 IMG_20150321_112105 IMG_20150321_112121 IMG_20150321_112143

It’s hard to find more information, all i have found is the  forum post (in dutch : translation here).

The setup is similar to the  Elektor Formant and Compact and the modules from Doepfer. Of course those are all inspired by the Modular Moogs.

The use of PCB as frontpanel is innovative. It’s a clever solution: PCB can be made cheaply and easily, in all sorts of colors and with text. Mikes electric stuff explains  how and why.

I hope to find more information about this machine, a kit like this needs to be heard as much as seen.

Philips adds new models to LivingColors product line.

In a clever plan to keep their customers permanently slightly confused, Philips has added new models to their LivingColors product line. The boxes and lamps are virtually the same, the remote is different. Both versions are labeled as “Generation 2”

LivingColors Gen2 but no SmartLink
LivingColors Gen2 but no SmartLink

The new buzzword is “smartlink“.

LivingColors Gen2 with SmartLink
LivingColors Gen2 with SmartLink

According to the manuals, both the old ( 69143 ) and the new version ( 69171 ) of the Gen 2 lamps  use IEEE 802.15.4.

So now we have the “Generation 1” which does not work  with the “Generation 2”, and there is the “Generation 2 smartlink“. Gen 1 and Gen 2 will not work with each other and i’m pretty confused about mixing “Gen 2” with and without “smartlink“.

The original LivingColors was pretty over engineered of what it did and it gave me the impression that Philips had bigger plans for these lamps. Apparently they do now with smartlink, but the original LivingColors was more of a prototype.

smartlink is interesting and promising. Philips was one of the founders of the Zigbee name and concept and they used some of the concepts and protocols of Zigbee for the smartlink enabled LivingAmbiance lamps.

For now, I’m stuck with two incompatible lamps.

 

 

 

 

Serial Arduino and CC2500

Recently I built a one-off serial Arduino with a CC2500 for someone wanting to control a couple of LivingColors and through an external system.

This is what Patrice has built with it. It seems like a big setup (compared to most Arduino projects) and I’m pleased it works.

Control Living Colors by Beckhoff SPS

Nice setup !

The serial Arduino is useful if you want to control LivingColors lamps from a system without USB.

IR-Toy and DX RGB lamp

DealExtreme has a couple of IR controlled RGB led lamps available (1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ) with GU10 or E27 connector. Kees, the unstoppable tinkerer, loaned me one of these  (I’m assuming it is this one) to play with. Aldi Netherlands has them as well.

Remote Control RGB LED
Remote Control RGB LED

RGB LED with GU10 socket
RGB LED with GU10 socket

RGB LED Remote control
RGB LED Remote control

Dangerous prototypes has has a toy called “IR Toy” that can record and playback IR Remote signals.

Dangerous Prototypes IR-Toy
Dangerous Prototypes IR-Toy

To control the lamp the IR you first have to record the signals of the remote. For WinLIRC the procedure is described here. In my case I first had to upgrade the firmware of the IR Toy to 09a.

The DX RGB lamp is well built with a metal housing and neat PCB and seems hackable.

The RGB LED lamp internals.

Notes: 3

The RGB LED lamp internals.
The RGB LED lamp internals.

Notes: 3

The RGB LED lamp internals.

Professor Layton puzzle and Wolfram Alpha

Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is a puzzle game for the Nintendo DS.

Puzzle number 40 is this :

The description is a bit unclear. What they seem to want is :

a * b = c + d

and

a + b = c * d

Plugging this in Wolfram Alpha as :

((a + b ) = (c * d)) and ((a * b) = (c + d)) and (a > 0) and (a < 10)