50s Intercom Raspberry Pi Echo

Turned an antique intercom into an Amazon Echo

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I picked up an old intercom from an antique mall in Austin for about $20. After about a day of thinking of what to do, I landed on installing a Raspberry Pi Zero with Amazon's Alexa voice service installed on it.

Turned a 70 year old intercom into an @amazon echo with a #RaspberryPi Zero. #DIY #Electronics #Hacking
A video posted by Nick Brewer (@nickrbrewer) on Aug 17, 2016 at 12:07pm PDT

  • Software

    nick.r.brewer08/17/2016 at 20:19 0 comments

    This Frederick Vandenbosch's blog post was a huge help.

    Follow the steps. It's not as daunting as it looks.

    This is also a really great guide to getting the USB Audio card up and running.

  • Full Build Log

    nick.r.brewer08/17/2016 at 20:11 0 comments

    I'm guessing this thing is about 70 years old, but honestly I have no idea. Picked it up for about $20 at a local antique mall.

    The inside is very simple. A 2-position switch flips the speaker into a microphone and back.

    Decided to just wire the speaker and use one position of the switch to activate Alexa.

    Parts List

    - Old Intercom

    - Raspberry Pi Zero

    - USB Sound Card

    - External Mic (the speaker/microphone didn't play nice with the sound card)

    - USB Hub

    - Wifi Dongle

    - Two LEDs

    Wiring was pretty simple. I modified the USB hub's plug to a usb micro plug to cut down on space.

    The microphone is positioned right behind the speaker. Talk towards the box, push the switch up and Alexa begins listening.

    Here's the final product. I used the smallest LEDs I could find because I wanted it to look as stock as possible.

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