Nanotouch: a tiny AVR media thing

[Rossum] is at it again. This time, he has created a super tiny media device to get us drooling. You might recall him from the 8-bit device we showed you before. The Nanotouch is roughly the dimensions of a 96×64 OLED screen(slightly larger than a quarter), with about 1/3 to 1/2 of an inch of stuff packed behind it.  The screen itself is mounted atop 4 buttons. This allows you to depress the screen edges for navigation.  He does mention that this design needs a little work to prolong the life of the screen, but we really like the intuitive way of navigating.  At its heart is an ATmega32u4.

We thought his last version was fantastic, but this one has us enamored. He states he’ll publish schematics and code, as he did before. We just didn’t want to wait to share.

[thanks Joakim]


  1. Paul says:

    So it’s a tiny homemade version of the Iriver Lplayer? Mind you, that’s no criticism – it’s a tiny matchbox-sized music and video player and it works great (I use an Lplayer and it’s wonderful). It blows my mind that they’ve built one Even Smaller.

    Well done!

    And where did you get that screen? My old Lplayer LCD was cracked in turbulence on a plane trip and I’ve searched everywhere for a replacement 2″ QVGA screen. Anyone have ideas?

  2. Eric says:

    0_0 WOW, that is skill. Yes, silly little gadgets impress me. I dig the interface.

  3. Maximina says:

    If this were packaged and sold as a watch that I could program and tinker with, I would pay handsomely for it.

  4. ino says:

    Simply amazing

  5. Riq says:

    I would be interested in a bare bones version of this

  6. Ben Ryves says:

    Absolutely incredible work, and the user interface looks very usable for something so tiny.

  7. Slipster says:

    Now THIS is Hackaday quality!

  8. emuboy says:

    I want one of this!

  9. japkin says:

    Very impressive!

  10. wolfy02 says:

    that truly is a thing of beauty. I love the UI. I would never have thought of the buttons behind the screen, but it totally works! wonder how long it’ll take before you see something similar at radio shack or walmart.

  11. icebrain says:

    This is amazing, not only the hardware but also the graphics manipulation using an µP with only 32k of flash.

    @Paul: he provides a link in his page to an eBay seller. But they’re no 2″, they’re 1.04″!

  12. poot says:

    I bet the iDonkey phone OS couldn’t run as smooth on an 8bit ARM … LOL … This guy has some serious skills

  13. Fallen says:

    I am very impressed.

  14. clint says:

    sweet! I see the Atmega32u4 is gaining in popularity. (this is good, because they’re non-stocked chips at many outlets – I want to see this change)

    I wonder if he used the stock Atmel bootloader or hacked his own in there.

    In any case, what an excellent piece of work!

  15. Steven says:

    Amazing! Seems super smooth for an 8-bitter.

    Need more input like this on HaD!

  16. googfan says:


    Id pay 75 for one

  17. Lupin says:

    i intended to build something very similiar to this. i was thinking of using capacitive inputs placed behind the screen (maybe foils glued to the back of the display). but i dont know how this would work out.

    the screen looks like it is missing vertical scanlines at the end of the video. Is the display already wearing down on mechanical stress?

    i want to see how he managed to cram everything on such a small pcb.

  18. Ho0d0o/Heatgap says:

    I love this and want to see specs and build. I hope he posts build notes.

  19. mess_maker says:

    That is damn cool. I’d love to make my own video player, but for now I am working with character lcd’s… pretty far away from what he is doing.

  20. Mikey says:

    @Paul try SparkFun.

  21. Greg says:

    Check out the mobiblu cube. I don’t know why it never took off. It is a great player. There is a color version too.

  22. Mic says:

    Pure insanity.

  23. mess_maker says:

    @Greg I had one of those, it was awesome!

    The only problem I had with it was I tried to make a custom cable to charge it with using my Solio (solar charger) for a trip to Europe.

    Anyway, short story long, since you charge with a cable that goes from USB to custom 8th inch mini, I accidentally wired it wrong and blew out the internals sending 5v where it didn’t need to go.

    Oh well, I did like it and wondered why it never took off, as well.

  24. jeditalian says:

    damn, thats even smaller than those screens they put in those magazines.
    idk wtf you would do with something that small, but it would be funny to stick some hilarious GIFs on, lol wearable GIFs

  25. jeditalian says:

    shoulda watched the video first. its nice. buttons everywhere. it would still make a nice pin/badge thing. and that thing kids pass around the classroom but this time the teacher never finds it cuz its so damn small

  26. mikeymike says:

    that would make a sweet watch!

  27. Tachikoma says:


    I would also like to see more technical info on this…

  28. charlie says:

    cool stuff. i have played around with those small oled displays, and can attest to the fragility of the fpcb connection. borked two of them myself. …starts with black rows in the image. this would probably work great if he found the right buttons, with a very small travel.

  29. jim says:

    strengthen the back of the screen and its connection, add a volume up/down and audio, and viola – the world’s cutest pmp

    i would totally buy one of those

  30. rob says:

    “slightly larger than a quarter”
    …than a quarter of what? The OLED screen?

  31. Max123 says:

    This is a truely good old Hack-a-Day-Quality-not-Quantity post and an amazing project.

    Thank you!

  32. Blackbelt-nl says:

    haha this is great !

    doom looked like it was playing quite nicely too

  33. PKM says:

    @Rob- a quarter as in $0.25, the standard US measure of scale for small things.

    I was remarking recently how touchscreen smartphones are the computer panels sci-fi always told us we’d have attached to our wrists, but in real life it’s easier to hold them in your hands. Given the size and simple control method I would totally have one of these on a watch strap.

  34. Panikos says:

    +1 for the watch idea although I would prefer a touch screen on top as well as the buttons. That would be cooler than TI chronos even without RF

  35. Panikos says:
  36. blue carbuncle says:

    Very cool project! Reminds me of my Tiger Massively Mini Media Player. $20 online if that.

  37. markii says:

    Hey this is very very good? I love it!

  38. Finger says:

    I’ve played around with these things before, and found that (for my board at least) putting the buttons on the back of the board works better (if you then mount all of it in an enclosure). That said, I am currently working on a slightly larger (2-3″) version right now that will be touchscreen based, maybe when I get done with it I’ll post a link…although my coding skills are nowhere near this guy’s skills. But I will be looking through his code in hopes of learning a few tricks for that snazzy interface :)

    Kudos to you dude, your projects never cease to impress.

  39. Doktor Jeep says:

    How can I get such a tiny screen to work directly off a computer?

  40. TechnoMan says:

    Very cool and inventive. You should sell a kit. At the very least, get some folks started on this with schematics, mechanics and pcb.
    Nice work. Well done.

  41. Shawn K. says:

    Where can I learn more!?

    Honestly, if I could I’d want to ask this guy how he went about getting the skills he has today!
    I’d love to learn, I just ordered my first PIC (Arduino) a couple days ago…hoping I can catch up on learning hardware and lower level programming.

    I once attempted to teach myself assembly, but just didn’t have the resources or patience to follow through.

  42. clint says:

    @shawn k.:

    Start by looking at this guy’s code. You shouldn’t need much in the way of resources to learn assembly, just patience. Most everything, except for the CPU, is freeware.

    If you *really* want to learn how stuff like this works, endeavor to learn how a compiler takes C-code and compiles it into assembly and then machine code.

    If you can understand this process, the world is your oyster.

  43. Richy04 says:

    Try those screen protectors stacked on the front and rear of the display to extend the life of the unit. Give it some rigidity. Excellent workmanship..

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