Binary Watch Rocks A Bare PCB With Pride

Most of us learn to read digital clocks first, which display the time in obvious numbers. Analog clocks are often learned later, with the hands taking our young brains a little longer to figure out. Once you’ve grown into a 1337h4XX0r, though, you’re ready to learn how to read a binary watch. Then you can build your own, just like [taifur] did.

The watch rocks a simplistic, bare bones design with the PCB acting as the body of the device itself. It’s not great for water resistance, or even incidental contact, but it’s a sharp look with the golden traces on display. The heart of the operation is a ATmega328P, as seen in the popular Arduino Uno, and it’s paired with a DS3231M real-time clock module to keep accurate time. 13 SMD LEDs are charged with displaying the time in binary format, with [taifur] choosing to spec a classic red color for the build. The watch is powered via a CR2032 coin cell, which you’re best advised not to swallow. So far, [taifur] has found the watch will last for over a month before the battery is tapped out.

It’s a fun build, and one that looks good when paired with a classic NATO watch strap in green. If, however, you desire a watch that definitely won’t last a month on a single coin cell, you can always build a Nixie watch instead. Video after the break.

18 thoughts on “Binary Watch Rocks A Bare PCB With Pride

  1. I have been working on a Christmas Ornament that counts down to Christmas in Binary. My first 3 or 4 versions were based on the ATMega328. My first couple of versions didn’t have an RTC at all, because I was convinced that I could maintain a clock on the 328 in very low power mode. And I probably could have, but I eventually added an RTC and an LED driver to simplify my life. I even briefly experimented with using an ATTiny45 after that.

    Seeing this reminds me I need to finish the firmware!

      1. That was my original plan – but it turns out that there is no reliable standard for how those bulbs connect. They all have kind of the same size and shape, but they’re all over the place in terms of mechanical compatibility. Not to mention that we’re seeing a mix of 120/240v incandescent and 5v LED lights. After spending some time looking at, I decided it wasn’t worth the effort. It has to get 5v from a separate input.

    1. Lie in wait in a dark alley, and when the wearer walks by, rush him from behind, throw a blanket over him, hold it tight around his waist, have an accomplice cut the wrist strap, take the watch from him and run in opposite directions. Later, meet with the accomplice, and exchange the watch for the money you would have spent paying a Chinese company to build a watch ⌚ to those specifications.

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