Wefted Waveforms – Light Sculpture

What do you get when you cross a Teensy 3.6 with a Raspberry Pi 3B, 2448 RGB LEDs, a thousand pieces of origami, and a papier-mâché sculpture?

If you’re PJRC forum member beil, the answer is Wefted Waveforms, an “interdisciplinary light sculpture” completed as part of their Visual Arts degree at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia.

The project uses gLEDiator to animate the LEDs, along with our OctoWS2811 Adaptor to wire them up. A detailed write-up can be found on the Core Electronics project site, and a rather hypnotic video of the Wefted Waveforms in action can be seen in the video below.

1970s Star Trek Game Emulation

Mike Mayfield’s 1971 Star Trek was a strategy game designed for computers with no graphical display.

While Teensy boards are more than capable of driving advanced graphical displays, PJRC forum member jim lee ported the BASIC source to Arduino with the help of Arduino forum member WildBill, and then added a GUI to provide keyboard input, and … an entire Teensy 3.2-based handheld unit for on-the-go play. The source, available on GitHub, also provides a version that runs on the Arduino IDE’s serial monitor, so that you can try it without any extra hardware.

Hand Crafted Mechanical Keyboard

A popular meme pokes fun at the DIY mechanical keyboard community by suggesting that enthusiasts must surely realize significant savings by building their own keyboards rather than purchasing a commodity preassembled unit,

whereas anyone who has ever even dipped their toe into that rabbit hole knows that this is typically far from the case. Rather than toss some keycaps, switches, a board and a case into a shopping cart and whacking them all together, however, PJRC forum user stefan.jakobsson took things to the next level with a scratch-built, Teensy LC-based 60% keeb.

We’re not sure what switches or caps are in use here, but the plate is 3d-printed, and the matrix is hand-soldered, dead bug-style, rather than using a PCB. A bespoke 1.5 steel plate forms the bottom case. Custom firmware, written using the Keyboard class, supports a standard layer plus second Fn layer, and has a simple built in debouncing handler. Source code is available in the thread, although Stefan is still working through some issues with sleep mode.

Restoring Mr. Christmas Decoration

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse – which was frustrating,

because the Mr. Christmas “The Night Before Christmas House” was supposed to be playing audio and flashing light bulbs that correspond to the story, but a previous failed repair attempt had rendered it inoperable. That is, until PJRC forum member edseitz replaced the cassette player and associated electronics with a Teensy 3.6 and Prop Shield!

The seventeen light bulbs were replaced with LEDs, and a custom class was added to simulate the warming and dimming of traditional bulbs. The Teensy’s microSD storage was ideal for .WAV files of the original cassette audio, with their playback facilitated by the Prop Sheild’s integrated 2-watt audio amp. And we heard edseitz exclaim, as he hid the wiring out of sight – “Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

XR-1 Drum Machine, Sampler, and Synthesizer

We’ve covered plenty of Teensy-powered grooveboxes on the blog here before, but this Reddit post unveiling the Audio Enjoyer XR-1 really caught our eye. If you’re looking to go DAWless, this Teensy 4.1-powered drum machine, sampler, and synthesizer looks like a great all-in-one machine.

Modeled after Roland TR-909 sequencing conventions, it has 16 banks of 16 patterns of 16 tracks, with up to 64 steps per track.

Around back are standard stereo in/out and 5-pin DIN MIDI jacks, and eight 0-10V CV/gate outputs. Mono RAW or stereo WAV samples are stored on microSD, along with project data. The unit also features a capacitive touch keyboard and hard buttons arranged in an MPC-style 4×4 grid, plus an OLED display for presenting the UI. A demonstration of the XR-1 can be seen below, and Audio Enjoyer have a signup form on their website for more info.

HP45 SMD Tape Printer

When injket printers became commercially available to the home consumer in the 90s, they seemed like a tiny revolution; gone was the dominance of the drab black and white laser, with cheap devices providing full color at a fraction of the cost.

Exploitative refill prices, evil DRM, and a transition away from paper to digital has somewhat stymied the inkjet market of late, but Dutch maker Yvo de Haas is bringing inkjets back with his Teensy 3.5-based controller for the HP-45 inkjet printhead. One application of this controller that caught our eye is an SMD tape printer that lets you mark your parts just like the big vendors.

Using custom software, the controller can manipulate each nozzle on the cartridge in order to output bitmaps. The software and firmware are available on GitHub, and the below video provides a brief glimpse of the controller in action.