AV Test Box Meets The Incredible Shrink Ray


[Chris] recently finished building a miniscule AV Test Box, capable of fitting inside a standard Altoids tin. It is a revision of a project he constructed a few years ago. His previous test box worked well, but was large and cumbersome – definitely not something you would want to carry around from place to place with any frequency.

The new test box does everything its predecessor is capable of, which includes displaying an 800×600 VGA test pattern as well as generating sound signals for testing audio systems. He updated the circuit design a bit, employing a newer PIC processor to run the show, otherwise most of the design details have remained the same, form factor aside.

His build log is full to the brim with details as usual. You will find thorough descriptions of all the components he used, schematics, source code, as well as the theory behind the build.

Be sure to check out the video embedded below of his new AV tester in action.


7 thoughts on “AV Test Box Meets The Incredible Shrink Ray

  1. As a former tv tech, we used to have Sencore boxes that supposedly were $2000 we used to output test signals – granted they were “officially calibrated”, but we rarely used them for ISF calibration anyway, mainly just setting the proper hue, brightness/contrast and overscan/centering. These functions could easily be done by something like this, just add YCrCb and analog outs and maybe more resolutions. Neat

  2. The creator needs to step up his game in the enclosure department. Just because it’s a hack, doesn’t mean it should look like poo.

    Come on people, get your stuff together.

  3. Surely I can’t be the only one that thinks the word Altoids sounds like some weird medical condition?

    “Ow, my altoids is playing up again, best make a visit to the doctor…”

  4. He REALLY needs current limiting resistors on the RGB output. 5V/75 ohms = 67mA, about 2.5x what the PIC is spec’d to output.

    Also, 5V into some modern monitors analog inputs could damage them.

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