Altera USB Blaster, Capacitors, CrowdSupply, Engineering, FX Dev Board, Jig of Destiny, Labs, MEP, Octavo Systems, OSD3358, Podcast, SAIM, Space Echo

MEP EP#18: Classy Capacitors and Lab War Stories

Download: MP3
RSS Feed: Link

Runtime: (45:26)

Parker Dillmann
Stephen Kraig


Podcast Notes

  • Parker has been working on the SAIM (Semi-Automatic Inspection Machine) this week. Work had to pause as Parker broke off a M5 x 0.8MM drill/tap combo bit off inside the extrusion. Should be able to remove the tap when a left hand drill bit arrives from McMaster.
  • Parker also designed a “man in the middle” board for the Altera USB Blaster programmer. This allows the programming cable to also power the device that is going to be programmed reducing the number of cables needed to hook up while in production. See Figure 1. This board is open source. Files on the MacroFab GitHub.
  • The Jig of Destiny is almost complete. Parker is waiting on a 2-56 tap from McMaster to arrive before he can finish the Jig of Destiny.
  • There are plans to use Octavo’s OSD3358 IC in a project. Parker plans on having a project lined up by the next podcast.
  • Stephen is currently working on the FX Dev Board. He is waiting on CrowdSupply getting back to him on when they can start the campaign. The enclosure has been priced out. A prototype of the enclosure will be ordered next week.
  • Last week, Stephen was playing around with the NuTubes. They have limitations but Stephen is almost done with a audio amplifier that uses them.
  • The SSPS now has a simpler analog control. Stephen was able to reduce how many opamps he needed to control the larger OPA541 opamp.
  • Fixing the Space Echo started this week. Stephen is starting by replacing all the capacitors and Parker is working on the front plate. See Figure 2 and 3.
  • Stephen and Parker go on a lengthy rant about capacitors. Stephen bought some “Fine Gold” audio grade capacitors. Parker likes the Nichicon’s UBW series since they are baby blue in color.
  • Stephen mention Mundorf capacitors.
  • Asus is going to make a robot. Called the Zenbo. The Zenbo is basically IoT, home automation, and a robotic pet all rolled into a $600 package.
  • RadioShack is returning. After closing 2000+ stores they hired a new CEO Dene Rogers. Parker wants to see a “will call” style setup for getting electronic parts.

Powered USB Blaster
Figure 1: The “man in the middle” PCB for the Altera USB Blaster.

Figure 2: Stephen working on the Space Echo RE-201

Figure 3: New adapter plate for the Space Echo RE-201. Allows it to fit into a standard 19″ audio rack.

Special thanks to whixr over at Tymkrs for the intro and outro theme!