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Speakers Timer

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by GrnEgz, Mar 6, 2012.

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  1. GrnEgz


    Mar 6, 2012
    I'm a newbie here and to electronics, but I want to build a project for my Toastmasters Club.

    The club uses a series of lights, green, amber & red, to inform the speaker on the time they've been speaking, green means the minimum time has been met, amber means halfway through min & max, red means max time. Right now the unit uses filament bulbs with colored lenses and manual toggle switches to do the trick. And it plugs into the wall (110V AC)

    I'd like to design a new unit that runs off of a 9V battery & uses very bright LED's. I'm thinking this unit needs a visible timer, start/stop button, reset button & time selection interface (be it digital or selector). The operator selects the time & presses Start when the speaker starts speaking. One or two minutes before the speakers max time, the green LED is lit, 30 seconds or 1 minute before max is met, the amber LED is lit, at the max time, the red LED is lit.

    Here's sample speech times
    Greeen Amber Red
    1 1.5 2
    2 2.5 3
    4 5 6
    5 6 7

    Have I missed anything? Thanks guys.
  2. jackorocko


    Apr 4, 2010
    My first thought is to use a micro-controller. How are you at programming?

    Someone else might have a better idea, but with the number of different timings that you require would be handled much easier in software.
  3. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    The timing part will be the easiest bit. The interface to inform it of the timings required and to provide feedback that you've selected the right one is actually a lot harder.

    If you're programming is not the best, I would suggest a PICaxe as they are probably the simplest to program and relatively cheap to get into.
  4. GrnEgz


    Mar 6, 2012
    Thanks for the response guys.

    Programming wise, I can program a TI-85 Calculator...

    What's the highest voltage (i.e. brightest) LED I can use on this project?
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