More floppy drives (8!)

A project log for Unconventional Instrument Ochestra

using hardware like floppy drives and 3D printers together to play any MIDI file

laurensweynlaurens.weyn 09/11/2015 at 16:250 Comments

Alright, time to actually write an update log.

I now have 8 floppy drives in total, all functional. Here's where all my drives came from:

Fitting 8 drives in a camera frame, and a 3D printer, 2 HDDs and possibly a doorbell is pretty difficult, but I think I've decided on this layout:

8 floppy drives is more than enough for any song I'd need to play. The big problem now is power. Tests show that these drives take up about 0.5A at 5V each when running. Some more, some less, and it changes based on pitch of the note (since that's defined by the speed of the motor). I don't have any 5V power supplies that supply anything remotely close to 4A to power this thing right now, and so the project is not making much progress.

It's pretty useless to have 8 drives if I can only play 2 of them at a time. I was going to use an old desktop PSU to power the thing, but the only one I still had has now blown up. Turns out not drawing enough power from all voltage lines breaks them. Oops.

Now to just find a 2nd hand PSU and some beefy load resistors to keep it alive, so I can continue working on this thing.