The pictures of everyones fav builds got me thinking (verrrrryyyy dangerous) ....
Has anyone used some kind of switch that can activate some led lights, sort of the way an EQ meter works. It would be fun to add this to a build or two !!!

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Yeah - I'm thinking of whatever makes the strobe lights react to the beat.


I have been thinking of doing something similar. I have bought two different modules off eBay to have a play around with

they arrived yesterday and I plan to give them a quick test over the weekend. I will let you know if they work.

Yeah - if a peizo generates electricity and the more the vib the more it generates - who knows...

Pretty sure someone has done this, with both a homemade amp, and a git. Remember seeing pics or a vid sometime last's one, but not the one I remember:

Yes jawbone, very dangerous - I recently went down this rabbit hole.  I've always wanted to put LEDs in place of/underneath fret markers in the neck and have them respond to my playing.  I got an Arduino for Christmas and was able to breadboard a fairly simple circuit with some readily available code to make a VU meter.

Something like this:

Here is a more refined version.  The necktie layout makes me think fretboard.

Food for thought. I only know enough to be dangerous.  It seems like you could get some stuff to light up without the Arduino, but I'm not sure that it would be responsive to the dynamics in playing.  More like on/off with sound/silence.  I'll leave that to the electrical engineers.  What I really want to do is to have the LEDs light based on the note that is being played.  G is green, A is red, E is yellow or whatever. 

Maybe a piezo could trigger a switch ??? 

This might be a good beginning ??
But that tie looks promising !!

That looks pretty good too jawbone.  I was able to spend some time playing around today and found this circuit.

Only a battery, 2 leds and a transistor.  I didn't want to crack open my guitar, so I wired into some old sunglasses.  Works better than I thought it would except for the fact that it needs some kind of amplification.  I have a small amp that I used here, but a preamp or lm386 circuit would be the way to go if you were going to install it in a guitar. Oh, and you can't see out of them!

After doing some research, I think there are better options like David L's links that are really cheap, but it was fun to put something together with parts I had laying around. 

Hey Turtle - that's exactly what I was thinking of - I'm gonna try that.

Does this circuit work - I'm terrible at trying to read schematics !!

Not sure if schem works, having not tried on a breadboard, and dont have those parts. But if you just want a circuit that can be turned on/ff that activates LED lights, the only component besides a battery and an LED is a 330ohm resistor.

That's it Jawbone, I've got it working on the breadboard right now.  I've tried some other common transistors and they seem to work as well if you mind the pinouts.  Still needs to be amped somehow before you get to this circuit at least with my piezo guitars.  Going to try a lm386 tonight and see what happens.

EDIT:  Just hooked up my MP3 player to this and it works without the amp, so that might be something to try as a test.


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