If Nixies aren’t cool enough, maybe it’s time to step it up to magic eye tubes.
Magic eye tubes are, like Nixies and Dekatrons, display tubes. Unlike the alphanumeric characters of Nixies or rotating points of light in a Dekatron, Magic eye tubes are either bar graph or ‘Pac-Man’ displays that were used to show the signal strength of a radio station on very expensive radio sets.
After doing a few experiments with tubes, [sylvain] thought it would be cool to do something with magic eye tubes. He sourced eight vertical ‘bar graph’ magic eye tubes and built an audio spectrum analyzer.
One of the more difficult things to do was to compute the power levels for each frequency band. There are a few graphic equalizer ICs available, but [sylvian] decided to go the old-school, harder way by putting an FFT algorithm on an ATMega624.
An impressive piece of work that would look amazing next to a nice tube stereo system.