Arduino Glasses a HMD for Multimeter

Building an HMD with no special parts, to make work easier and safer

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Trying to build a cheap Arduino Data Glasses for everybody.
It's working, and now it can even help to avoid accidents. From the first idea to the working prototype, it took 4 Month

The challenge was, that It should be constructed out of common materials that can be found easily.
The project is more about how to build the optical system for this HMD
I have a few ideas and one of them is to connect it to a Multimeter over Bluetooth to get the Data right in front of my eyes.
One thing is clear, you can not just place a screen in front of your eyes, because it will not be possible for them to focus it.

In the logs you can see from the first tests to what I have now.
The whole project runs under Open Source License.

And please, if you use my design, do not forget to mention that it is based on my idea and add a link to my homepage
Thank y

The optical design will be the most difficult part, but I think I found a solution for this.

Follow the project logs to see the updates. The costs of the prototype amounted to 70Euros.

Video of the working device

Link to the video and Link to the video in German

One of the Prototypes

Link to the video

Standard Tesselated Geometry - 150.67 kB - 09/24/2016 at 21:03


Standard Tesselated Geometry - 160.63 kB - 09/24/2016 at 21:03


Standard Tesselated Geometry - 58.68 kB - 09/24/2016 at 21:03


Standard Tesselated Geometry - 62.58 kB - 09/24/2016 at 21:03


Standard Tesselated Geometry - 36.61 kB - 09/24/2016 at 21:03


  • 1 × arduino pro micro
  • 1 × Bluetooth V4.0 HM-11 BLE Module
  • 1 × 280mA Lipo Akku
  • 1 × 50 - 500mA LiPo Charger Circuit
  • 1 × 30mm acrylic plano convex lens with a FL of 100mm

View all 9 components

  • Feeling pissed off

    Alain Mauer02/26/2018 at 21:08 15 comments

    I'm really feeling pissed off, when I see people using my designs and try to sell them as their idea.

    This guy makes a nearly 100% copy of my Data Glass and only after I send him an email he added "inspired by Alain^s Projects". just inspired, really ???????

    I think that's not the way open source should work. If you use the work of someone else, the minimum is to mention this person and set his website link in the description.

    The only thing which calms me down, is that it is still my invention and other people will know it.

  • Lens Alternative

    Alain Mauer12/18/2016 at 11:27 2 comments

    Hi, the lens is still the problem, because it is not easy to find.

    I think, I found a good alternative. A small Fresnel lens. Easy to find, cheap and you can cut it with a pair of scissors.

    Hopefully I will find the time to test it.

    The focal length is about 110mm, with should be fine.

  • New Display 0.49 inch

    Alain Mauer10/18/2016 at 19:56 5 comments

    The new displays just arrived. Will build a smaller version.

    I think I will start a new project for this.

  • Things to do

    Alain Mauer10/10/2016 at 07:24 0 comments

    Thinks to do:

    • Finishing the Software, to auto connect to a Owon Multimeter
    • Adding a battery indicator in the display. The BLE module has this feature.
    • Building different reflectors with tint and mirror foils, to make the glasses work in a bright area,
    • Reducing the weight and redesigning the enclosure.
    • Testing with a smaller 0.49 inch display.
    • Creating a technical Data sheet

  • The end is near

    Alain Mauer09/19/2016 at 16:07 0 comments

    Finally, all fits together.
    Now a nice video of it, a full description and I'm done.

  • Modifying the charger circuit

    Alain Mauer09/17/2016 at 19:28 0 comments

    I needed to change the LiPo batteries. I use now a smaller, 280mA, instead of the 330mA. For this I had to change the resistor in the charger circuit. It's 3k smd part. I soldered a normal resistor with the value of 5.6k in place to reduce the charging current to 200mA.

  • A small reflector modification

    Alain Mauer09/16/2016 at 07:43 0 comments

    Until now, I heated the reflection screen and bent it to 45 degrees. To make the construction easier I printed a new holder. In the picture, you can see the difference

  • I looks like this will be the final design

    Alain Mauer09/15/2016 at 08:33 0 comments

    I finally start handling the 123Design software and my 3d Printer.
    I was totally focused on my cardboard design enclosure, but at the end, I had to redesign the glasses due 3d print problems. Now you can adjust the reflection screen, to get the best view.In the next few days I'll test the electronic with the new LiPo, but I'm still waiting for the lenses.

  • B.T. Data Glasses in his new enclosure

    Alain Mauer09/02/2016 at 16:08 2 comments

    I finally printed out the covers for the enclosure. The mirror and the lens are mounted with all the electronics. All fits in, and it works great. This one has a lens with a focal point of 100mm.

    All in. The controller, bluetooth, display, charger and the LiPo Batterie.

  • First 3d printed enclosure

    Alain Mauer08/31/2016 at 07:25 0 comments

    I just bought me a 3d Printer, and this is the first enclosure for my Dataglasses.

View all 37 project logs

  • 1
    Step 1

    How it works

  • 2
    Step 2

    The Lens

    The lens was a tricky thing. I had not really an Idea about optics. So I googled and googeld, and I learned a lot about real images, virtual images focal points, and magnification. The best working lens is an Acrylic Plano convex lens with a focal point of 100mm. If you place the screen at a distance of 73mm from the lens away, you will get a virtual image at a distance between 27-30cm. The magnification factor is x3

    That's perfect, because another important thing is, that your eyes can only start focusing things at +-25 cm

    I found this website to calculate the object distance.

  • 3
    Step 3

    The electronic

    Here are all the parts for the data glasses

    I just used a smaller battery.

    To use the 280mA battery, I had to change the 3k resistor against a 5.6k resistor on the original board. The charging current is now reduced to +- 200mA.

View all 6 instructions

Enjoy this project?



Chris wrote 02/27/2018 at 01:09 point

Saw your post.... there is always one. Many thanks for your inspiration and your creativity.

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David H Haffner Sr wrote 02/15/2018 at 15:41 point

This is viciously cool :)

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Alain Mauer wrote 02/15/2018 at 18:27 point

Thank you. Working already on a newer one :)

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michael wrote 02/15/2018 at 15:05 point

cool idea

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Alain Mauer wrote 02/15/2018 at 18:26 point

Thank You

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Antonis Katzourakis wrote 01/28/2018 at 16:17 point

Hi, first of all, this is a great project! I have a question though: Aren't double convex lenses also an option instead of plano lenses? They are easier to find due to all the DIY VR goggles and potentially cheaper too.

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bambie1234 wrote 01/22/2018 at 20:39 point

Can text not be mirrored and displayed on the lcd rather than use mirrors to do same?

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JVS wrote 02/25/2018 at 21:01 point

I was wondering the same, just place the display against the glass

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uagaleharshal wrote 09/13/2017 at 06:16 point

Alain, i am a engineering student ,i am  excited to work on your project ,but have you published any  paper on this project...if  you have  then plzz mail me your published paper on ( thanks in advanced

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sujianjis147 wrote 09/13/2017 at 04:48 point

nice project.can u plz send me code and SPI details

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vega68256 wrote 06/25/2017 at 17:26 point

'Serial1' was not declared in this scope :( 

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Thomas wrote 06/08/2017 at 18:55 point

Hej Alain,

Great project! And thanks for the detailed explanations and images.

I wonder how you connected the USB breakout board, in order to still be able to program the pro micro. Ie. did you connect the D- D+ to pins on the board?



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Alain Mauer wrote 06/06/2017 at 08:17 point

Thanks Yann, this does explain the like explosion :)

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John Heritage wrote 05/30/2017 at 11:29 point

Hmm,  you might consider swapping the side the battery is on for safety reasons; this project looks awesome!

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osemrocak wrote 05/09/2017 at 12:23 point

Do you have parts list for the next smallest model?

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Paul Perrin wrote 03/14/2017 at 18:42 point

A fantastic project.

I was wondering if there any mileage in putting the lens before the mirror - like very close to the display? I was thinking this would make the 'transmission' from original display to eye 'standard' - and different lens/display combinations/modules could be used at the back end.

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JVS wrote 01/14/2018 at 19:48 point

I was thinking the same besides wouldn't it make the design less bulky and shave weight since you don't need the hollow arm and mirrors anymore? could use a thin arm with the display right next to the glass

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ahmedfarahat926 wrote 03/12/2017 at 22:34 point

hello i want the project code 

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Tony G. wrote 02/25/2017 at 13:27 point

Hello Alain, very nice project that you built up. I try to be able to comunicate an arduino pro micro and my Polar V800. I use an arduino pro micro mother board and a Bluetoot HM-11 module. Currently I tryi first to send somme info on the micro oled screen from sparkfun. For "static" data (I means hard coded) it works but when I try to send data from my modile via Bluetooth is does not work. So I just would like to know how you did connect you HM-11 bluetootj module to the pro micro? RX to TX, TX to RX and GND+VCC or do you put some other connexion? Because I saw on you pictures that you have more than 4 cables between the module and the mother board.
Thanks in advance

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misaelrod wrote 05/03/2017 at 14:53 point

Hi Tony, were you able to make any progress on this? I was actually thinking of doing the exact same thing.

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Tony G. wrote 12/22/2017 at 22:36 point

Hello misaelrod, I did stop my investigation due to triathlon season. From your side do you go further?

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misaelrod wrote 12/26/2017 at 13:45 point

unfortunately I did not continue researching this either.

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Alastair Young wrote 02/22/2017 at 06:30 point

I've been wanting to build almost exactly this to enhance my Dalek head control system. Being able to see where the eye is pointing is the next step towards full Kaled mutant transformation!

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Alastair Young wrote 02/22/2017 at 06:49 point

I need video, but it can be closed circuit, and the electronics can be mounted elsewhere, but I have to thank you for all the insight into the optics!

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Chris wrote 02/20/2017 at 19:07 point

Alain, thanks for the great project. I'm trying to build this for my first project. Is there a schematic for this. 

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Alain Mauer wrote 02/21/2017 at 08:14 point

I did no really make a schematic, just a hint as you connect it, since you can use other modules.  I'm actualy working on a smaler version and I hope I can put it online in 3-4 weeks, this time with a complete schematic. Regards Alain

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vega68256 wrote 06/24/2017 at 22:13 point

No hace la conexion 

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sean egloff wrote 02/15/2017 at 19:55 point

The acrylic plano lenses are for sale in pairs for $2.95 from this site:

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hidayatodin wrote 01/16/2017 at 09:25 point

It's so cool. Don't you want to sell it on Ebay as a DIY HMD?

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Eckehard wrote 01/14/2017 at 17:28 point

Hi Alain, thanks for sharing this fantastic project! As a rc modell pilot, I m planning to use your glasses to view some telemetry data during flight (e.g. heigth, modell plane is currently flying, voltage of receiver battery, ...)

One probem is the mirror, which should be a surface mirror to avoid ghost images...

During search for such a surface mirror a friend point me to try an old disk of a harddisk drive...

Easy to find (for techies like us). Cutting the round disk to rectangular peaces is easy too..

Polish with toothpaste will clean it for final adjustment in housing.

I will give it a try...

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