Hacked Gadgets Forum

September 24, 2010

DIY Laser Listening Device

at 2:20 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks, Electronic Hacks

diy-laser-listening-device


So you need to hear the secrets that are being spilled in the building across the street? If the conversation is happening over the phone you could build a DIY Telephone Listening Bug and tune into the conversation on a radio but what if the conversation is  happening between two people in the room? The answer is a Laser Listening Device, we have featured one of these DIY Laser Listening Devices in the past but this project article by Lucid Science is laid out and explained better.

The idea is that sound from someone speaking will vibrate the window that is in the same room as them. If you bounce a laser beam from a 5mW laser module off the window the laser beam will be deflected slightly as the window vibrates. If you monitor this vibration  you will be able to hear what is being said.

Via: HG Comments


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11 Responses to “DIY Laser Listening Device”

  1. SH Says:

    Would IR laser and IR sensor work better? At least they are hidden from naked eye 😛

  2. NatureTM Says:

    It would take some planning to have the light bounce back to a place you could easily put the sensor, unless the window was at your elevation and the glass was plumb. You’d probably have to be the government, but then you could just do this: http://www.zdnet.com/news/fbi-taps-cell-phone-mic-as-eavesdropping-tool/150467

  3. Andreas B. Says:

    Fantastic, even from the very first notes played I knew it was “Iron Maiden – Number of the Beast” 😉

  4. josh Says:

    I remember using one of these a long time ago. Back then, it was a more complicated setup. It used a HeNe laser on one end and a fairly sensitive receiver connected to a photodiode with a focusing lens (think rifle scope) on the other. They do work best when you’re on the same level as the room you want to bug but the window doesn’t have to be perfectly plumb since the laser light diffuses a bit once it bounces off the glass.

  5. rallen Says:

    A retro-reflector (planted before the event, if you can) would let you hit the window from any angle and get a signal back. Think mirrored bicycle reflector. 🙂

  6. clone4crw Says:

    I’m thinking that IR might work better. Very cool anyways. And the Sansa made my day.

  7. Rick Says:

    I designed and built my own laser listener over 15 years ago using an IR laser diode. In order to align the laser I used a built in 10 kHz oscillator to modulate the outgoing laser beam. That made it easier to lock on to the return beam and fine tune the receiver position. You really need a very stable mount and it’s best to design the transmitter and receiver in the same unit. It was pretty cool to be able to eavesdrop on conversations. With the wind blowing dust particles in the laser path it made some eerie sounds. I eventually sold it on Ebay but might build another someday just for fun.

  8. Week 38 in Review – 2010 | Infosec Events Says:

    […] DIY Laser Listening Device – hackedgadgets.com The idea is that sound from someone speaking will vibrate the window that is in the same room as them. If you bounce a laser beam from a 5mW laser module off the window the laser beam will be deflected slightly as the window vibrates. […]

  9. Laser DIY – How to Build a Laser Listening Device! Says:

    […] via hackedgadgets, Project Page […]

  10. Bob Says:

    will a laser device work if there is a screen attached to the window? a screen in front of the glass?

  11. Rick Says:

    A screen in front of the glass window might interfere with the laser beam.

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