Hacked Gadgets Forum

March 6, 2010

Strobeshnik Hard Drive Clock

at 8:36 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, Computer Hacks, Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks


Svofski sent in a neat hard drive clock design he calls Strobeshnik. The clock looks wonderful and he has documented the entire build including how he etched through the aluminum hard drive platters to make the number cutouts. There is a full schematic and code for the microcontroller provided.

“Strobeshnik uses stroboscopic effect to create the illusion of persistent numeric display. The hard drive platter has 10 digits, colon and dash marks, cut all the way through it. Behind the platter, in the HDD chassis, there is a PCB with groups of diffused LED’s. Groups of LED’s in each character position can be strobed independently at any given time. By careful timing of the light strobes, an illusion of still-standing numbers can be created.”



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10 Responses to “Strobeshnik Hard Drive Clock”

  1. ceebee Says:

    a nice futuristic looking clock.

  2. technabob Says:

    strobeshnik hard drive clock tells time perfectly once it spins up to speed…

    Check out this cool clock made from an old hard drive. Built by modder Svofski, the clock tells time on the face of the hard drive’s rapidly spinning platter. The Strobeshnik hard drive clock uses a stroboscopic effect to make it look like the nu…

  3. strobeshnik hard drive clock tells time perfectly once it spins up to speed | Tamasindo Secret & Technology Says:

    […] [via Hacked Gadgets] […]

  4. Andrew Says:

    That was pretty sweet once it leveled off!

  5. NatureTM Says:

    Very cool!

  6. Hard Drive Clock Says:

    […] old hard drive where the disk has been cut to produce the numbers, therefore is cannot be read. The design makes uses of the fast spinning disk to display the time in a digital […]

  7. Strobeshnik Hard Drive Clock Says:

    […] no Hacked Gadgets, um projeto de relógio muito interessante. O Strobeshnik, nome dado pelo criador Svofski, é uma […]

  8. Pouncer Says:

    I love it. Looks really awesome, but a little noisy. I wonder if it’s because it’s not the original motor driver.

  9. svofski Says:

    @Pouncer, yes, my motor driver is very primitive and it’s the primary source of harsh noise. I think using the original driver could be a better idea, but that particular drive had a controller that would stop after about 1 minute of idle spinning. I’m trying to improve my driver, with only so-so results so far.

    (For those who have experience with motor control) ULN is a low-side switch and it’s controlled programmatically, so I can’t really add PWM to it. To reduce the noise, I added a PWM-controlled high-side switch based on a BC817 and some p-channel MOSFET, which allowed me to shift the noise into less audible range. But the ULN2803 doesn’t seem to like high inrush currents and I experience bad cross-biasing between ULN’s switches. I’m currently going to replace the low-side switches with IRLML2502 MOSFETS and see if they perform better than the ULN. Any piece of advice is appreciated.

  10. audio controller driver Says:

    Neat and quite out of the ordinary to have a clock like that. i wonder how Svofski thought of that kind of concept.

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