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/silicon/ - technology

from the trenches
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Remember to keep it cozy!

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The Uboachan / Sushichan Associated Gamejam Initiative (U.S.A.G.I. Game Jam) goes LIVE on January 1st!
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 No.773

Anyone else interested in electronics around these parts? I have some experience with making my own (simple-ish) circuits and fiddling with microcontrollers, and I've found it to be a ton of fun. I should get around to getting a bunch of assorted electronics junk so I can start tinkering with stuff at home as well, I've got plans for a couple of gadgets of varying usefulness.

 No.774

its one of those hobbies i feel like i could get into if i had an income that allowed for it. Just seems expensive to get into.

I really love seeing other people's work with it, though.

 No.775

>>774
advanced technology has never been cheaper

 No.776

>>775
It is still too expensive.

 No.781

>>775
The components themselves might not cost much, but you'll still need to pour a fair bit of change into tools and equipment unless there's some kind of makerspace nearby that you can use.

 No.782

Hey OP! I'm studying electronics at my local college. It's pretty fun, and I'm finally getting into the math of the stuff, after doing it hobby style for a number of years.
Getting a bunch of junk is probably fun, but I would recommend getting stuff for a project rather than just random parts. Do you have ideas for projects?

 No.783

>>782
I'm actually doing a degree in EE right now and landed a course with lots of hands-on work after a few years of not really doing anything with electronics, which inspired me to make the thread in the first place. I agree on random component orders being pretty pointless, I just don't have anything at home right now and I need to stock up on some basic things.

As for projects, I'm personally planning on making a USB handbrake with an expansion header for possible additional DIY controllers in the future. The main obstacle is trying to figure out the mechanical side of things, making it sturdy enough to withstand use while keeping costs low is always a challenge, the electronics are going to be the easy part.

 No.800

>>783
I'm also getting an EE degree. I would play with hobby stuff more if I had the time/money… but I might restart a project to build an audio mixer that I was working on.
I found that the first couple of years did little to make me very interested in starting my own projects. Now that I'm deep in the higher level courses I'm starting to get some ideas. But I have fuck all time to make extra cash to support those ideas…. so I just screw around with LTSpice.


Do any of you sushi rolls have experience with modding laptops/more sensitive electronics?

 No.802

I've liked taking things apart and modifying them since I was a child. Repairing electronics is also a lot of fun and keeping stuff from ending up in a landfill is a definite plus.

Minored in EE at university, but haven't really done much with what I learned there. Every time I come up with a cool gadget or another project someone already seems to be offering it for super cheap on ebay.

 No.1705

I love making arduino robots! What do you do?

 No.1714

I am obsessed with electronics. Building robots, radios, antennas, setting up self-watering gardens and fancy vision systems, creating art with electronics… it's magic, really. Pure magic. I'm headed to college for an EE degree next year.

Electronics projects don't have to be prohibitively expensive. Microcontrollers, components, etc are dirt cheap these days, and while nice soldering irons are expensive, cheap irons work. Build a parts list and order it all in one go. Be okay with jank and you'll have fun.

>>1705
>I love making arduino robots!
Me too!

 No.1716

>>1714
I'm currently suffering through reading a schematic for the first time, it's gonna help me make arm attached flamethrowers I hope

 No.1717

>>1716
That sounds pretty rad, you better post if you actually make them
Be careful you don't burn yourself though

 No.1743

>>774
>>776
In the end this is anecdotal, but I find electronics to be one of the cheaper hobbies to get into.
What do you really need in terms of tools to get started?
A soldering iron
Solder + Flux
(Good investment is a multimeter)
That's it in terms of tools. A bad (but working) version will cost you 20-30$. If you want a decently good setup (what I use I would describe as decent) is 120$ for soldering iron, solder, flux and multimeter. That's not very expensive as far as hobbies go.
Then the "running cost" will be the cost of the parts you use. Again, how wild you want to go is up to you. If you want a cheap project, that's a arduino nano (2$/piece), wire, sensors (~1-2$/sensor) and depending on application actors (starting at 3$/piece). Of course things can be more expensive depending on your project. If you buy parts from aliexpress etc. in packs of 5-10 they are dirt cheap.

Overall hobby electronics seem cheap in terms of upfront cost and only middle of the pack in terms of running cost.

And as >>781 said, if there's a makerspace, you can basically save the cost for tools. Also tools double as … well tools. Having a multimeter is a good idea either way to repair stuff in the house, and a solder iron can save you hundreds of dollars when you fix something that is broken.

 No.1744

>>1705
Arduino is a great platform. It's cheap, open source, versatile, easy to get into, yet close enough to the chipset that it helps you if you ever want to go into designing your own boards / design actual products you have a foundation to build upon. Learning how to implement a control algorithm in arduino is surprisingly close to doing so in a product later.
Can't beat having a decently powerful chip for 2$ that you can do so much with.
>>1716
When done, please do share. I love hearing about other peoples projects and indeed collect pictures of them for motivation/inspiration.
>>1714
>I'm headed to college for an EE degree next year.
It'll be fun. As someone in a EE degree (EE+business), it's really cool if you also do it as a hobby. Knowing what you are learning things for and how to apply it is such an advantage.

 No.1745

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Hey EEfriends. I agree about it being a great cheap hobby (if you know the tricks), when I was younger and living somewhere it was hard to order components online I got really good at getting components off old household stuff. Recycling!

Today I whipped out my old Arduinos and ordered some new components to start programming an info display/controller for my cars hybrid electric system, since our forum's resident expert just did a PoC and I thought I'd have a go before I bought one off him.
I'll also be rigging up a trickle charger to balance the Hybrid batteries cells off mains using some LED drivers.
Later in the year I'm thinking of replacing the Ni-MH battery with a custom Lithium one. Buy individual 3.2V Lithium pouch cells -> build (3d print?) a frame for them -> slap 35 together = brand new drop in battery.
You can even add more cells in series and get a higher total voltage, which in combination with some spoofing tricks allows you to push a more total KW through to the motor with the car being none the wiser.

That aside here's some pics from a year ago of soldering my keyboard together (bonus Sushi themed keycaps). Soldering is so fun, I've missed it a lot.

 No.1746

>>1745
That's an incredibly cool keyboard, I'm jealous of your skills.

 No.1747

>>1745
Really cool keyboard sushi, love it.
As for 3d printing, as long as the enclosure isn't supposed to protect the cells from mechanical forces it's a great use case. I've been starting to use 3d printing more and more for enclosures for electronics projects.



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