Kids’ Jukebox Based On Arduino With RFID

Consumer electronics aimed at young children tend to be quite janky and cheap-looking, and they often have to be to survive the extreme stress-testing normal use in this situation. You could buy a higher quality item intended for normal use, but this carries the risk of burning a hole in the pockets of the parents. To thread the needle on this dilemma for a child’s audiobook player, [Turi] built the Grimmboy for a relative of his.

Taking its name from the Brothers Grimm, the player is able of playing a number of children’s stories and fables in multiple languages, with each physically represented by a small cassette tape likeness with an RFID tag hidden in each one. A tape can be selected and placed in the player, and the Arduino at the center of it will recognize the tag and play the corresponding MP3 file stored locally on an SD card. There are simple controls and all the circuitry to support its lithium battery as well. All of the source code that [Turi] used to build this is available on the project’s GitHub page.

This was also featured at the Arudino blog as well, and we actually featured a similar project a while ago with a slightly different spin. Both are based on ideas from Tonuino, an open source project aimed at turning Arduinos into MP3 players. If you’re looking to build something with a few more features, though, take a look at this custom build based on the RP2040 microcontroller instead.

10 thoughts on “Kids’ Jukebox Based On Arduino With RFID

  1. Even though it’s commercial, Yoto does exactly this: RFID cards, local playback, but when internet connected even remote control and streaming. Making custom cards is super easy as well, and controls are super child friendly, even out 2yo can operate it for a while. We’ve the mini version and it’s awesome!

    1. Upvote here for the Yoto. I was looking to do the same thing as the post here and found Yoto. When you factor in the high cost today for arduinos and pi boards, the Yoto gives you a lot of bang for your buck. You can associate entire playlists with an NFC card, rather than just playing one MP3 per card. The app lets you do things like set a software volume limiter, it can be a Bluetooth speaker, it can be a nightlight, the pixel display is fun,….

  2. Find it odd using the resistor in series with the speaker. The dfplayer allows digital control of the output volume. I would probably go with an encoder connected to the arduino.
    I made a similar type of device a few years ago for the kids, but just with a 18650 + BMS , dfplayer (sdcard, no rfid) , usb connector for charging, 3 buttons (one toggle button for power, the other two as push-buttons for short press does skip fwd, rev and long press adjusts the output volume).

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