Welcome to Pete Brown's 10rem.net

First time here? If you are a developer or are interested in Microsoft tools and technology, please consider subscribing to the latest posts.

You may also be interested in my blog archives, the articles section, or some of my lab projects such as the C64 emulator written in Silverlight.

(hide this)

.NET Gadgeteer Module Contest at GHI

Pete Brown - 11 November 2011

I love electronic sounds. My bin of SID chips and my waiting-to-be-built MFOS sound lab ultimate boards all attest to that.

But what can you do in a relatively small amount of space with a Gadgeteer and a Piezo speaker? Maybe it's not even sound generation, maybe you can use the piezo for something else? You can use them as speakers as well as microphones and sensors. In fact, I believe many inexpensive electronic drum triggers are actually just a piezo with a drum head.

Have some ideas kicking around? Good! Submit the idea to GHI's Gadgeteer Piezo Module Design Contest by December 1, and if your idea is one of the ones selected, build out the prototype module by January 15th. Here's the information from GHI's site:


Piezos are great for making sounds at a low cost. For piezos to work, they need some sort of waveform. Although the processor on a Gadgeteer mainboard is capable of generating waveforms, this will waste some processor utilization for something that can be handled better in hardware. Take the 555 timer for example, great for generating alarm sounds. You may also use a simple microcontroller to generate noises. The Propeller chip is a good example, it can synthesize retro-style arcade sounds.


GHI is interested in offering a sound module for the community. This contest aims to help create the best, simplest, design for a Gadgeteer Piezo Module. An end user should be able to "configure" the sound through one of the standard Gadgeteer sockets. For example, it can use socket type X and then 3 I/Os can be used to control the alarm sound frequency or alarm type. Or use socket type U to send the alarm configuration over UART (serial port). We understand that manufacturing prototype circuit boards can be costly, submitting designs on DuinoProto board is acceptable. DuinoProto is provided free by GHI for approved concepts.

First price is a new FEZ Hydra Gadgeteer mainboard, plus a $250 coupon to buy lots of stuff to hook up to it. That's pretty sweet.

posted by Pete Brown on Friday, November 11, 2011
filed under:        

Comment on this Post

Remember me