April 12, 2013

DIY Arduino-powered solid wood digital clock

 Working with real time and Arduino is quite simple, and thus almost every Arduino enthusiast has made a clock or two during experimentation. However moving projects from the workbench to the living room is the ultimate goal of such clocks, and the following project by Instructables user "J_hodgie" is a fine example of this. By building an LED matrix into a solid block of wood, and without drilling right through the wood face - a minimalist and detailed display is possible, for example:

However by using an Arduino there's more than just time - a few games have been included which are controlled via an old Atari 2600 joystick which is connected via a DB9 socket on the rear. It's a great project and a good read. And for more, we're on twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.

The most important part of any clock project is the inclusion of an accurate real-time clock IC. Here at Freetronics we have the Maxim DS3232 real-time clock IC module:

Apart from keeping accurate time for years due to the temperature-controlled oscillator and having a tiny coin-cell for backup, it is very simple to connect to your Arduino project. A driver library allows your program to easily set or read the time and date. Perfect for clock projects, dataloggers or anything that needs to know the date and time. Furthermore it contains a digital thermometer and 236 bytes of non-volatile memory to store user settings and other data. For more information, check out the module page here

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