Talking analog in Cyberpipe

01.01.2011 18:16

With a new year comes a new challenge. In the following months I'll be organizing a series of talks revolving about electronics in Kiberpipa. It's an effort to bring some more hardware oriented topics to Ljubljana's hacker space. And with hardware I don't think Arduinos or FPGAs which are mostly software first and hardware later. I mean things where you need a soldering iron and an oscilloscope instead of a keyboard and a debugger. The stuff that works between 0 and 1.

I'm hoping to cover topics like analog audio and video, radio, batteries and power supplies. However I guess that mostly depends on the feedback from the audience and the interests of speakers. So the details will probably get filled in as we go along.

Banner with a random photograph of a PCB

The first talk will be this Thursday, 6 January at 19:00 by Miha Leskovec and Urban Medič, the team from the Faculty of electrical engineering that won the Texas Instruments' European Analog Design Contest last year. They will present their fully-analog interference-free optical pickup system for bass guitars:

The idea for the project came just before the competition was announced and it came as a prefect candidate to demonstrate that analog design still plays a major role in the era of the microprocessor. As a musician Urban came up with the idea to try and create a new pick-up for his Bass-guitar. We noticed that another company was already manufacturing a light-based pick-up that promised a big improvement over the widespread magnetic system that has been present for more than half a century. So we set up a proof of concept test rig and experimented with a DC driven IR transmitter and receiver module placed under the strings and found a lot of noise in the output from the ambient lighting. Instead of covering the pickup together with a substantial part of the strings as the existing company did we searched for a better solution to cancel the interference from ambient light based only on analog components.

Full paper in PDF format is available from the Texas Instruments site. The talk (in Slovenian language) will be streamed live and recorded by Kiberpipa.

Posted by Tomaž | Categories: Analog

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