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Sound Effects In Tardis

Started by Rox, Aug 27, 2008, 08:21 pm

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Hi Not sure if anyone can help me with this question I have. I am getting a full size Tardis built for outside but I was wanting  to have the sound effects inside it triggered as soon as you open the door as well as the light would flash in time to the Tardis in flight sound I was hoping there might be someone that can help me or know where I can get help on finding parts and how it all wires up etc. I am from the UK Thank you David


Nov 12, 2016, 07:12 am #16 Last Edit: Nov 13, 2016, 07:44 am by galacticprobe
Well, I'm not sure how much this will be of help, but take a look through these Build Diaries. Their builders have installed some electronics (much of it programmable via Arduino or Raspberry Pi):

http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=1578.0 - the electronic part really gets going on Page 3;

http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=6540.0 - lots of great electronics workings in here;
http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=6732.0 - there's a video for the above showing the Old Girl in action;
http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=6089.0 - more with a video showing her working (all three threads from the same member).

I hope this helps a little.

"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"


Thank you for that message I was hopding for something less complicated as I don't want to program things. Thank you


Nov 13, 2016, 07:46 am #18 Last Edit: Nov 13, 2016, 07:46 am by galacticprobe
Yeah, I know what you mean, tomatofish1. I'm rubbish when it comes to programming things. I just thought some of it might help give you a few ideas to work with. Maybe you could PM the builders to see if they have some less complex way that would help you out.

"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"


Hi Just another quick question how do people trigger there sound/light system to work once the door is open. and turn off once door is shut Thank if you have any photos please feel free to post they will help as well Thank you


I've used the little reed switches that come with home security products. You screw them to the door frame, and the other half (which contains a magnet) to the door. Then you've got a pair of wires that will switch something when the door opens.
You may be able to find a kit in Maplin or somewhere like it (or Radio Shack in the US) that will play a sound sample when you press a button. If you replace the button with a connection to the reed switch, you're part of the way there.

I think I once attached a low voltage light bulb across the output of a stereo amp, and made it flash in time to the music. Maybe some electronics whizz here could help with the resistor you might need to avoid shorting out the amp, though my stereo survived this abuse at the time! I wouldn't try it on anything you value, unless you know more than I do about this. D'you have some old separate PC speakers anywhere that you could take apart?



Hi Crispin thank you for replying its just the problem I have is with the reed switch were the 2 wires connect and what to Thank you


Your two wires, presumably need to complete the circuit, by having your power source on the ends.

When the magnet is added, it will complete the circuit by affecting the reed switch.
Kind Regards,




does it need to be connected to the play button on an audio device thank you


I think that's what I would do. You'd need to remove the existing play button and connect the two wires instead of it.
You can buy small kits which will store a short sound sample, and either play them once or repeat them.
Sometimes they're pre-assembled, sometimes you just get a bag of parts and have to assemble them yourself with a soldering iron. Or ask a friend to do it. I think they tend to cost £10-20.

I would google something like "sound recorder circuit board", or variations on that and see what you find.
I can't make any specific recommendations, as I've never tried that approach.

Like most things in prop building you'll have to improvise, as the world is full of task-focus-group designed single-function complex products that have given no thought to how you might use them for anything other than the niche they're being sold for. It's much easier to buy a blender than a motor. Such is the consumer paradise in which we live.



Nov 21, 2016, 08:13 pm #25 Last Edit: Nov 21, 2016, 08:14 pm by elkad
Try https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-audio-fx-sound-board?view=all#uart-pins

Easily programed, all you have to do is label your sounds, upload the sound files to the sound board, wire up your buttons & switches & connect the sound out to an amplifier & speakers.

For more info on how to program & use the sound board, go to the link above.  ;D



The Adafruit soundboard could be easily paired with the Arduino used in the NST2010 build to allow a light to operate at the same time--. some minimal alterations to that ardunio  sketch would be required,  but that would allow you to do both light and sound.  I considered this approach when I did mine, and decided the Rapsberry Pi based system would be about the same cost, but I could also add a web interface. The downside of course is that I have to use software PWM instead of hardware based PWM.

There just isn't a good off the shelf solution.  Both approaches are  going to require some soldering and hook up, and some minor software tweaks ( My software only looks for a quick on/off pulse from a button - and wouldn't stop when the door was closed.) It wouldn't take much to modify my code to read the switch like you want,  and it also wouldn't  take much to modify that ardinuo sketch to read your button and send a signal to the hold looping trigger.

Either way, I don't think you are going to find an off the shelf solution. Both approached will work fine, and wouldn't take more than an afternoons tinkering to get working. Bot platforms are designed to allow children to start tinkering with electronics, and as such are engineered such that noting is really all that complex or hard to accomplish.