Hacked Gadgets Forum

November 27, 2015


at 1:00 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets



If you are looking for a compact development board that has more computing power than your Arduinos this might be the time to take the plunge into the Raspberry Pi world now that the RASPBERRY PI ZERO has been released. TheRaspberryPiGuy gives us the run down. They have made it much smaller, removed all of the larger components and some have been replaced with mini counterparts. If you blow it up during testing, no worries since it costs $5. Need something that will live in a project, again no worries since for this price there would be no need to scavenge for parts in old projects, just buy a new Pi.

“Pi Zero, made in Wales and priced at just $5. Zero is a full-fledged member of the Raspberry Pi family, featuring:

  • A Broadcom BCM2835 application processor
    • 1GHz ARM11 core (40% faster than Raspberry Pi 1)
  • 512MB of LPDDR2 SDRAM
  • A micro-SD card slot
  • A mini-HDMI socket for 1080p60 video output
  • Micro-USB sockets for data and power
  • An unpopulated 40-pin GPIO header
    • Identical pinout to Model A+/B+/2B
  • An unpopulated composite video header
  • Our smallest ever form factor, at 65mm x 30mm x 5mm”

November 25, 2015

Teledyne LeCroy Factory Tour

at 12:40 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, Electronic Hacks


KF5OBS shares a tour of the Teledyne LeCroy Factory. Unlike a high volume electronic manufacturing like TV manufacturing this facility has stations where the equipment spends significant time. They can afford to do things this way since these are not built in the millions. It is interesting to hear that these scopes need to have an antivirus scan performed before it ships. Just like high end sports cars, many of these scopes are being built for a specific customer.

Via: Dangerous Prototypes



November 22, 2015

PCB vias made using Conductive Ink

at 11:46 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks


When you are making some prototype PCBs it is quite simple until you go double sided, now you need to potentially solder through hole components on both sides, stick small wires in each via and solder both sides or insert small rivets in the holes. DIYyouwhere is playing around with a method where they attach a brush to the drill so that they can electrically detect when the metal drill bit drills through the PCB and hits the bottom layer of the copper. As soon as it detects contact the bit is retracted. They now use a syringe of conductive ink to link the copper layers together by squirting some ink in each hole.


November 17, 2015

HacKeyboard – Hacked Mechanical Keyboard

at 11:46 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks

HacKeyboard - Hacked Mechanical Keyboard_3


So if you are looking for a neat keyboard mod I think you can take one or two of the ideas that you can see in the HacKeyboard and run with it. I really like the hidden USB storage drive which is mounted with a secret keyboard sequence. If the keyboard was just regular looking that would be very secure since who would think there was some secrets lurking inside this throw away peripheral. To jazz things up this version also has a key logger so you can see what secrets the users are hiding, there is also a USB hub for productivity and a light show to keep you entertained.




November 15, 2015

Internet Radio in an Antique Case

at 9:51 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, DIY Hacks

Internet Radio in an Antique Case



You can see the case above that Tony Flynn built the Internet Radio project around. The outside may look old but the internals are sporting a powerful Raspberry Pi. It uses your local wifi to tune in internet tunes.

“The radio is configurable by anyone and no programming skills are required.  All the stations and settings are stored in a text based configuration file which is stored on a USB memory stick accessible at the back of the radio.  When the user wants to change the settings or add new stations they remove the USB stick and edit the text-file using a laptop and any text editor.”


November 14, 2015

Component Tester FISH 8840 Review

at 7:21 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets, Electronic Hacks, Reviews



This is an inexpensive component tester called the FISH 8840 which you can find from many online eBay retailers for around $30. The interface is very simple, attach a device to be tested and press the test button. It turns off after about 20 seconds, pressing the off button puts it into sleep mode immediately. There is a ZIF socket that allows you to insert leaded devices and pads that allow you to press SMD devices directly onto the tester. Their are number 1 through 3 on the tester where you connect the device under test to and then the screen will display the recognized component with the lead numbers on a component schematic picture. There seems to be an issue with the capacitor testing mode with a range of values, I will discuss this with the seller to see what the resolution to this is. I have seen this tester work fine with capacitors so I think it is just something with this one. You can see the features and functions below.


“NEW Function:
1:Automatic detection of NPN and PNP transistors, n-channel and p-channel MOSFET, diode (including double diode), thyristor, transistor, resistor and capacitor and other components
2: Automatic test the pin of a component, and display on the LCD
3:Can detect the transistor, MOSFET protection diode amplification coefficient and the base to determine the emitter transistor forward biased voltage
4: Measure the gate and gate capacitance of the MOSFET threshold voltage
5:Use 12864 liquid crystal display with green backlight
Specifications: For you reference
1 two -button operation, automatic shutdown .
2,Only 20nA shutdown current.
3,Automatically detect NPN, PNP bipolar transistors , N -channel and P -channel MOS FET, JFET , diodes , two diodes, thyristors small power unidirectional and bidirectional thyristor.
4,Automatic identification components pin arrangement .
5,Measuring bipolar transistor current amplification factor and base – emitter threshold voltage.
6,Via the base – emitter threshold voltage and high current amplification factor to identify Darlington transistors.
7,Can detect bipolar transistors and MOS transistors protection diodes.
8,Measuring the gate MOS FET threshold voltage and the gate capacitance.
9,Can simultaneously measure two resistors and resistor symbol is displayed. Displayed on the right with a decimal value of 4 . Resistance symbol on both sides shows the pin number. So you can measure the potentiometer. If the potentiometer wiper is not transferred to an extreme position , we can distinguish the middle and both ends of the pin.
10,Resistance measurement resolution is 0.1 ohms , 50M ohms can be measured .
11,Can measure capacitanceCan measure capacitance of 30pF-100mF , resolution 1pF.
12.2uF more capacitors can simultaneously measure the equivalent series resistance ESR values. The two can be displayed with a decimal value , resolution 0.01 ohms.
13,Can be in the correct order and the diode symbol display two diodes , and gives the diode forward voltage.
14.LED is detected as a diode forward voltage higher . Combo of the LED is identified as two diodes.
15,Eeverse breakdown voltage is less than 4.5V Zener diode can be identified.
16,Can measure a single diode reverse capacitance. If the bipolar transistor connected to the base and collector or emitter of a pin , it can measure the collector or emitter junction reverse capacitance .
18 can be obtained with a single measurement rectifier bridge connection.
Notice: Before measuring capacitance , the capacitor must be discharged , otherwise very likely damage the meter .”




November 9, 2015

Self-flying Drone Avoids Obstacles at 30 Miles per Hour

at 2:49 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks, Cool Gadgets

Check out this Self-flying Drone Avoids Obstacles at 30 Miles per Hour. It looks like this technology is
is not just for smart cars trying to avoid pedestrians and parked cars. CSAIL PhD student Andrew Barry has made this project open source for everyone to benefit from. It can fly through the treetops and dynamically avoid branches and tree trunks. It does this by using a stereo vision system.

“Running 20 times faster than existing software, Barry’s stereo-vision algorithm allows the drone to detect objects and build a full map of its surroundings in real-time. Operating at 120 frames per second, the software – which is open-source and available online – extracts depth information at a speed of 8.3 milliseconds per frame.

The drone, which weighs just over a pound and has a 34-inch wingspan, was made from off-the-shelf components costing about $1,700, including a camera on each wing and two processors no fancier than the ones you’d find on a cellphone.”

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