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Customizing a toy so it makes noise/speaks per button.

AlexAutofarer

New Member
Hey Electro Tech guys,

I was thinking to get a plush toy and have some kind of speaker/button/battery setup which i put into the plush and have the button somewhere underneath it's surface like plushs you can purchase have, which make some kind of noise or a song or say something. Basically I'm really new and have not really big understand of electronics besides basics from my University lectures. i would think the idea is to have a small speaker attached to a microcontroller output which found just send the voiceline into it, and have a big flat button to activate it with. Use Button Cells as the voltage ressource for everything. Goal would be for it to hold atleast 5 years, although that's the least of my concerns

I'm looking for pointers on where i could get such a device or how to make one myself with transferring the voiceline i would want it to play from my computer onto a microcontroller or just a storage. The idea is fairly easy but I honestly don't know where to begin. I'd appreciate to know if this forum might be wrong and what kind of forum i should look up, or where i could gather information and do it myself.
 

Pommie

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I would start with something like this. Combined with an Arduino you should be able to get a prototype up and running quickly. How are you at programming?

Mike.
 

AlexAutofarer

New Member
I would start with something like this. Combined with an Arduino you should be able to get a prototype up and running quickly. How are you at programming?

Mike.
I'm not too knowledgable about the hardware things of stuff, what do you refer as an "Arduino"? Programming wise i know basics for C Source, but am really confident in being able to learn quickyl as much i'm needed.
Edit: I had a course for basic hardware setups, so I understand pins and their purpose and the energy soruces and so on.I struggle to undersatnd how i should intrigate everything and putting everything together in a proper way.

Even easier than that Mike, you can fit a play button directly to the MP3 module.
Could you elaborate?

The thing is i would like to have the intelligence somewhere inside of the plush in the back perhaps, and have a button leading to the front where it can be pushed, speaker somewhere in the middle so sound comes out from the front.
 
Last edited:

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
I'm not too knowledgable about the hardware things of stuff, what do you refer as an "Arduino"? Programming wise i know basics for C Source, but am really confident in being able to learn quickyl as much i'm needed.
Edit: I had a course for basic hardware setups, so I understand pins and their purpose and the energy soruces and so on.I struggle to undersatnd how i should intrigate everything and putting everything together in a proper way.



Could you elaborate?

The thing is i would like to have the intelligence somewhere inside of the plush in the back perhaps, and have a button leading to the front where it can be pushed, speaker somewhere in the middle so sound comes out from the front.
The little MP3 player board can have simple press button switches connected to it, and for a simple 'play' key requires no extra components at all.

The board also provides a direct speaker output.

All you need to do is put the single MP3 file you want on the SD card, and it will play when you press the play button.

So the entire project consists of the MP3 module, an SD card with the required file on it, a loudspeaker, a push button switch, and a suitable power supply.

You will also need an ON/OFF switch as well, to avoid draining the batteries.
 

AlexAutofarer

New Member
So the entire project consists of the MP3 module, an SD card with the required file on it, a loudspeaker, a push button switch, and a suitable power supply.
I see! That sounds fairly promising and exactly what i had in mind! Do you know how this module works? Will it play the voice line on repeat or just play it once per button press? I would need it to be just per button press.

Additionally, do you think a few button cells will hold enough power supply for it to run a few years, or should i look into something more powerful?

And lastly, are there on/off switches which turn themselves off after a short time, does maybe something Capacitor based exist so it turn off when it doesnt have charge left?

Thank you very much for the answer!!
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
As far as I'm aware, the default setting is that it plays just once.

Wanting auto-power off and long battery life is an entirely different story, and far more complicated than the simple project so far.

I would suggest using a processor (I'd use a PIC) sat in sleep mode - this would be woken by the key press, power up the MP3 module, play the file, and then go back to sleep.

So you would need a handful of components, plus the programming skills to write the software.
 

DrG

Active Member
I bought these and I am impressed with the performance and the price. You can simply copy one or more MP3s to the SDcard, connect it to power, a switch and a speaker, and it works. It has an on board amplifier and is "loud enough". It auto-repeats. By placing a second mp3 that is 15s of silence, it plays them sequentially, offering an interval between plays.

If you want to use them with an Arduino, there are a few tutorials/project articles on line, e.g., this one.

BUT, because of your need for button cells and longevity (interpreted as many plays between battery changes), I suggest a simpler solution by getting one of these (there are many varieties. They are designed for what you want to do and they are simple to record and use. They probably do not sound as good as the other board, however, and cost a little more.
 

hyedenny

Active Member
I've had great luck with these from ISD Nuvoton. They are very easy to interface with microcontrollers, and offer a variety of peripherals and options..
 

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