Cold cathode art piece controller

cold-cathode-art-piece-controller

[Andrew] built a light box for an exhibition last year that displayed different colors statically. After showing it off, it went unchanged but future improvements remained in the back of his mind. Recently, he pulled it out again and hacked together a controller to drive the colors individually.

He’s actually reusing some of the hardware he built for a different project. At its core is a PIC 16F628 that actuates the lights using relays. In this case, only four of the eight on the board are used to control red, white, blue, and green cold cathode tubes. The video after the break shows the device randomly rotating through different patterns. This is a nice start to making the piece more interactive and we can image adding web-controlled color changes, or perhaps some Daft Punk inspired functionality.

Comments

  1. babble says:

    I’m actually shocked that I liked the effect, nice work.

  2. cyanide says:

    make it so i can hook the output of an instrument or MP3 player up to it and it creates patterns based on frequency.
    i bet you could use an arduino for that.

  3. therian says:

    @cyanide
    do you have any idea how fast relays can with ? unless you mean a continuous tone, which is not part of most songs

  4. th0mas says:

    Hey cool! I actually saw this when it was at cube gallery in Ottawa! I miss Candela, it was an amazing show.

  5. AO says:

    Thanks for the post and comments, everyone!

    @cyanide: although it wouldn’t work well directly hooked to the audio, per @therian’s comment, it could be cool have it driven by processed audio (extracted beats, etc.); something I’m working on for my lighting pieces in general.

    @th0mas: I’m sorry to not see a Candela show this year as well :(

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