Hard Drive Oscilloscope

hard drive scope

[hackgadgets.com is back up… maybe]

[Alan] put together a list of the Top 5 Dead Hard Drive Projects. He suggested we post about the hard drive laser oscilloscope, since he couldn’t find the project anywhere else. I actually saw a similar project during dorkbot-sf‘s presentation at Maker Faire. A laser is mounted to the drive case. The beam is bounced off of a mirror connected to the read/write head. He’s got a video of it in action on his site. Have a look at the other hard drive projects as well.

20 thoughts on “Hard Drive Oscilloscope

  1. Forbidden
    You don’t have permission to access /2006/04/25/top-5-uses-for-a-dead-hard-drive/ on this server.

    Additionally, a 403 Forbidden error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

    …and may a plague of a thousand rabid rodents decend upon all of the “first post” llamas!

  2. need to start autocaching these sites regardless of the host. that way if the site gets hosed by us, dorks (i mean digg), or in the odd case slashdot we can still see it. I have seen eliot or whoever posts doing it for geocities or anglefire but i think it needs to become a standard option.

    Oh well, somebody tell me when it is back up.

  3. Why not turn on the hdd’s motor and it spin the mirror at a certain number of scans per second/minute? It would be alot more precise than moving the platter yourself.

  4. I built one of these before, not with a harddrive tho. The horizontal deflection works best with a 60Hz Sine, so it can scan back and forth allowing the high frequency vertical deflection to display a very nice visual.

  5. idea:- reduce the oscillator frequency of the controller chip on the hard disk. this can be done by replacing its crystal with a lower frequency one.

    i’ve done this to a 5 1/4″ disk drive to lower the rotation speed before.


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