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Need to find an auto-hi-speed 8 way switch

Discussion in 'General Electronics' started by Gobagoo, Jun 2, 2004.

  1. Gobagoo

    Gobagoo Guest

    Im working on a burning man project, and need to build or find an 8
    way switch that can distribute a single input, at speaker power level,
    to 8 different speaker outputs, one at a time in sequence with a user
    adjustable speed (~0 - 1200 Hz?).

    I've already come up with a mechanical switching system, using a 12v
    cooling fan motor speed adjusted by a rheostat that turns and
    sequentially triggers an array of momentary micro-switches. However, I
    think the mechanical "clicking" and the interference noise that's
    generated by the switches is going to be way too loud.

    Oh yeah, the whole thing has to run off a 12v power source, that is, a
    deep cycle marine battery (90 amp hours), so Im looking to minimize
    power consumption so the contraption will run for a while without
    sucking my battery dry. The cooling fans use almost .6 amps apiece.
    Hope there's a better alternative. Ultimately I want there to be two
    of these switching systems in parallel sending their output to the
    same set of 8 speakers, but be independantly adjustable (so we can
    play with the harmonic crazyness, especially if the second switcher is
    reversed and going the opposite way)

    Does anyone have any ideas? I've been trying to puzzle this one out
    for a while. Im not an electrical engineer, more of an electrical
    hacker... but I can learn!!! I hope to find the most simple, and
    durable design possible.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Luhan Monat

    Luhan Monat Guest

    Hi,

    I may be useful to back up a step or two here and explain just what this
    whole thing is supposed to do. That may lead to a more usable solution.
     
  3. Gobagoo

    Gobagoo Guest

    Hi,
    Sure,

    This is meant essentially to be an audio toy for the Burning Man
    festival. The idea I'm shooting for here is this:

    8 speakers in a circle, about 10 feet equidistant from a central
    point, facing inwards, towards the user at the center with the
    controls.

    At the central controls would be a system of distributing an audio
    signal to the circular speaker array in a sequential, rotating,
    adjustable speed manner. Ideally, I would like two distinct audio
    signals to be available, one spinnging in one direction, the second
    spinning in the other direction (or possibly reversable directions
    too). Through one audio channel would be an ambiance musical
    collection of random stuff off an MP3 player. On the other audio
    channel would be the output of a collection of a bunch of sound
    generating nick-nacks and junky kids toys, messed-up casio pianos,
    etc... that would be available to play with and make noise. The speed
    of the spinning audio channels would also be adjustable from close to
    0 cycles/second (hz) to some upper limit towards where it no longer
    sounds like distinct individual speakers (unknown speed as of yet, Im
    guessing something like 30 - 60 Hz.

    In addition, I want the whole thing to be triggered on only when
    someone walks up to it and engages it, otherwise it would continue to
    drain the battery while no one is around... it needs to last a few
    days in the desert before a recharge. Was thinking of some kind of
    power relay triggered by a switch in a small foot panel thing when the
    user steps up to use the controls, like maybe a bathroom scale. That
    would turn on a couple of small 12v lights, or possibly LED light
    arrays to illuminate the controls at night. When idle, the
    contraption would have a blinking stobe on top to attract attention
    and keep people from riding their bike into it in the dark.

    So far I envisioned using a mechanical switching system with the afore
    mentioned cooling fan motors speed adjusted by a rheostat (still
    rotate too fast I think even close to stall speed ~4.5v) triggering an
    array of small momentary reed switchs (which I think are too
    electrically noisy). These switches would distribute a speaker level
    signal from a single amplifier to the eight speakers, with the left
    channel going clockwise, and the right channel going counterclockwise.
    From what people have been telling me on online forums, a solid state
    IC approach switching line level signals, distributed to 8 discrete
    amps would be better.

    I also have an assortment of other 12v appliances, such as a car alarm
    siren, a 12v black light, and some other assorted lights and junk,
    including the cooling fans, and relays, etc..

    Hope that helps make sense of the project goals..... thanks again for
    any advice you guys might have!

    -Gabe
     
  4. Gobagoo

    Gobagoo Guest

    Hi,
    Sure,

    This is meant essentially to be an audio toy for the Burning Man
    festival. The idea I'm shooting for here is this:

    8 speakers in a circle, about 10 feet equidistant from a central
    point, facing inwards, towards the user at the center with the
    controls.

    At the central controls would be a system of distributing an audio
    signal to the circular speaker array in a sequential, rotating,
    adjustable speed manner. Ideally, I would like two distinct audio
    signals to be available, one spinnging in one direction, the second
    spinning in the other direction (or possibly reversable directions
    too). Through one audio channel would be an ambiance musical
    collection of random stuff off an MP3 player. On the other audio
    channel would be the output of a collection of a bunch of sound
    generating nick-nacks and junky kids toys, messed-up casio pianos,
    etc... that would be available to play with and make noise. The speed
    of the spinning audio channels would also be adjustable from close to
    0 cycles/second (hz) to some upper limit towards where it no longer
    sounds like distinct individual speakers (unknown speed as of yet, Im
    guessing something like 30 - 60 Hz.

    In addition, I want the whole thing to be triggered on only when
    someone walks up to it and engages it, otherwise it would continue to
    drain the battery while no one is around... it needs to last a few
    days in the desert before a recharge. Was thinking of some kind of
    power relay triggered by a switch in a small foot panel thing when the
    user steps up to use the controls, like maybe a bathroom scale. That
    would turn on a couple of small 12v lights, or possibly LED light
    arrays to illuminate the controls at night. When idle, the
    contraption would have a blinking stobe on top to attract attention
    and keep people from riding their bike into it in the dark.

    So far I envisioned using a mechanical switching system with the afore
    mentioned cooling fan motors speed adjusted by a rheostat (still
    rotate too fast I think even close to stall speed ~4.5v) triggering an
    array of small momentary reed switchs (which I think are too
    electrically noisy). These switches would distribute a speaker level
    signal from a single amplifier to the eight speakers, with the left
    channel going clockwise, and the right channel going counterclockwise.
    From what people have been telling me on online forums, a solid state
    IC approach switching line level signals, distributed to 8 discrete
    amps would be better.

    I also have an assortment of other 12v appliances, such as a car alarm
    siren, a 12v black light, and some other assorted lights and junk,
    including the cooling fans, and relays, etc..

    Hope that helps make sense of the project goals..... thanks again for
    any advice you guys might have!

    -Gabe
     
  5. John Miller

    John Miller Guest

    Just a thought (or maybe a complication:)

    If you fade (as opposed to hard switch) between speakers, you could do it
    with four, 90 degrees apart.

    --
    John Miller
    Email address: domain, n4vu.com; username, jsm
    Surplus (FSoT):
    F. Besson International (800) trumpet, Bb, silver
    New Conn V1 double trumpet case, no logo
    Tektronix 465B oscilloscope
     
  6. Soeren

    Soeren Guest

    Hi Gabe,

    I have to agree, but I think you would need to fade out during the
    shift, to avoid cliks and pops anyway.

    If you use two analog multiplexers (as they are called), one can control
    the music and the other the sound fx - with variable speed clocked
    up/down counters to control each, you can pretty much get the sound
    patterns you care for.


    --
    Regards,
    Soeren

    * If it puzzles you dear... Reverse engineer *
    New forum: <URL:http://www.ElektronikTeknolog.dk/cgi-bin/SPEED/>
     
  7. Bob Masta

    Bob Masta Guest

    The clicking is going to be present with electronic
    switches as well, simply due to the dicontinuities in
    the waveform. You will need to fade in and out to
    avoid that, which means you are probably better
    off doing it at low levels and using separate
    power amps for each channel.

    Fader mechanisms are many and varied. You can
    use incandescent lights and CDS photocells for a
    fairly simple system, with the internal time constants
    of the bulbs and photocells providing the fades,
    possibly with an RC added to the bulb drivers. (In
    which case you could use LEDs instead.) The CDS
    cells are slow-responding variable resistance, so
    just use them in voltage dividers to the various amp
    inputs.

    As usual, you can get a *lot* more sophisticated
    if you feel the need.



    Bob Masta
    dqatechATdaqartaDOTcom

    D A Q A R T A
    Data AcQuisition And Real-Time Analysis
    www.daqarta.com
     
  8. One way to do this which might not be too expensive would be to use
    digital potentiometers. The dallas DS1866 is a digital pot which has a
    3 pin parallel control input, yielding 8 possible settings of the pot.
    Using some kind of counter circuit, you could program the settings for
    these, and use their outputs as inputs to your 8 separate power amps.

    To do two channels rotating in different directions, you would have to
    have two sets (meaning 16 of these DS1866s,) each pair of which would
    be followed by a circuit to add the outputs. Then, the final output
    would be the input to the power amplifier for that speaker. The
    digital logic design is a bit hairy, I think. You would have to
    present the control pins on the different digital pots with a control
    stream looking like ...,0,0,0,0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,6,5,4,3,2,1,0,0,0,0,...
    to bring up and fade out the volume. The same control stream would go
    to the other speaker controls, timeshifted for the rotational effect.
    The 8 different levels might cause pops on the speakers when they were
    changed, I don't know.

    There are digital pots which have more settings, but you would have to
    program them with a microcontroller using some kind of 3 pin
    interface. Actually, that's probably the easiest way to do this; use a
    set of maxim DS1801s to roll the volume signal through a set of 8
    cascaded digital pots. You need two sets per channel, so you'd need 8
    total DS1801s (they have two pots each), and 6 control output pins on
    a microcontroller to run them. You could also program this array using
    output pins on a parallel port of a PC. However, the microcontroller
    would be far lower power, which is an important consideration for you,
    I think.

    Again, the outputs of corresponding 'channel' outputs would go to
    different opamps, set up in an analog adding configuration, so you
    could add the two channels together. The output of each of the
    addition modules would be to the power amp for that speaker, which
    could be as simple as MAX9716, a single channel power amp. You'll want
    to keep it lower power to conserve battery power anyway.

    If you were brave, you could probably hack up discrete digital logic
    to do the three wire control without using a microcontroller; however,
    a microcontroller would be the easiest thing. Using the
    microcontroller (or PC), you could easily experiment with various
    kinds of rolling motions, delays, etc, quite easily.

    Regards,
    Bob Monsen
     
  9. Gobagoo

    Gobagoo Guest

    ok... so assuming I'm going to take the non-complex approach to this
    problem, and use a 555 timer RC controlled -> counter -> 8 channel
    multiplexer, other than the datasheets, how would I go about actually
    getting some kind of schematic together? such as example schematics
    that use these chips together, or seperately.... Im capable of hooking
    it all up, but the datasheets are pretty dense with technical jargon.

    I suppose the best thing to do would be to get the chips in hand and
    hook 'em up to a breadboard and see if they work, eh?
     
  10. Bob Masta

    Bob Masta Guest

    Note that you will still have the clicking with this method, since you
    will still have abrupt transitions in the waveform. You will also
    need a power amp for each channel, since the multiplexer will
    only handle low-level signals. So the upshot is that if you can
    tolerate the clicking you already have with a rotary switch, you
    may want to stick with that... it won't improve with the electronic
    multiplexer, and it would cost a lot more. If you want to get rid
    of the clicking, you have to control the rise/fall times of each
    transition.



    Bob Masta
    dqatechATdaqartaDOTcom

    D A Q A R T A
    Data AcQuisition And Real-Time Analysis
    www.daqarta.com
     
  11. John Miller

    John Miller Guest

    What Bob said.

    I suppose this horse is pretty well beaten by now, but I'd sure use linear
    volume control at line level into the amps, as opposed to hard switching of
    speakers. And with smooth modulation of volume, you could probably get
    exactly the effect you want with only four speakers (two stereo amps would
    do the trick).

    --
    John Miller
    Email address: domain, n4vu.com; username, jsm

    In Brooklyn, we had such great pennant races, it made the World Series just
    something that came later.
    -Walter O'Malley, Dodgers owner
     
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