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Your New Years Revolutions Tomorrow we wave goodbye to old man 2015, and welcome in a brand new year full of hopes, dreams and possibilities. And, for us here at element14, lots of great new electronics projects! So to usher in the New Year, we want to hear all about the projects you want to accomplish in 2016, and we'll come back around this time next year to see how they've come along. Sticking to New Year intentions isn't always that easy, but I'm confident that you guys will manage to ...
element14 Blog Posts There's simply so much content on the element14 Community that is almost sounds nebulous saying "top blog posts". Every project and conversation and competition could be included here, so what exactly is it that we're looking for in our Year in Review round up? Well, I'd like to chalk it up as an entertaining read. Something informative, fun, engaging and inspiring, which you're likely to have read while on a coffee break, or waiting for some code to compile (I know how yo ...
Was there a defining moment when electronics became a fascination, grew into a hobby, and eventually turned into a career?   Pinpointing that exact moment of realisation might be tricky, but I'm willing to bet a lot of us found our way toward the dim glow of an old LED through Christmas periphery. Whether it was an electronics kit, a video game console, a home computer or a techno toy that you broke/took apart/fixed.   The Not So Great Gargon At a guess, I'd say this was a gift that f ...
We've gathered up a list of great Star Wars projects and posts from right here on element14 to get you ready for the new movie, but I'm going to subject you to a bit more shameless self-promotion as I dazzle, impress and astound you with my own Star Wars project from around 20 years hence.   Luke's Lightsaber Admittedly, this isn't an electronics project. At least, not yet. But I'll show off my prop replica of Luke's lightsaber without the slightest provocation, and I do, one day, intend to ...
I was exactly the right age when Star Wars first arrived, both for the movies and for the torrent of desirable merchandise that followed in its wake. Because of this, I've been a lifelong fan, and although I've not seen it yet (NO SPOILERS!), I'm very optimistic about The Force Awakens. It seems like a return to form in all ways... except one.   The first Star Wars film was actually an independent production, and that indie vibe shines through it in every respect. It was put together by pas ...
Here are a couple of interesting relays that I salvaged out of some older Dental X-Ray equipment. I am guessing they are 1960's era. The first one is a 24 VAC solenoid that uses a cantilever to switch between the activation of one SPDT micro switch or another.     The second relay that I want to show you is actually two relays set up in such a way that each one latches the other and each one resets the other. These are 120 VAC coils and they each have 3 PDT switch configurations so ...
This blog was inspired by shabaz and his 50 year ago post. Sometime around Christmas 1965 I built this Eico 324 RF Signal Generator Kit which still works. For the fun of it but with a little fear of what kind of a solder job I might find inside, I also opened it up and include a couple pictures of the insides. The Owners Manual is dated 1954 but the unit was still being sold in the mid 1960s. Since the transistor was still green behind the ears at this time tube technology equipment was stil ...
I thought it might be interesting to see what was around 50 years ago in the electronics world (will also check to see what I've got from 40 and 30 years ago etc. Would be cool to see what others have too).   This was from the December issue of RSGB's magazine exactly 50 years ago - not a multimeter but a multiminor! Quite an attractive design, pretty good accuracy! and convenient section for storing the probes.   I found this photo on ebay: AVO was a pretty famous company, ther ...
  *Update: The website upgrade has now been completed.  We hope you enjoy using the new features and if you need help or have questions feel free to post in Feedback and Support or @mention element14support.    Greetings element14 Community members,   The element14 Community website has recently undergone some changes as part of a regular site upgrade every couple of years.  Questions about why we upgrade? See here. This website upgrade is a combination of improv ...
IBM 701 Plug-in Unit figure 1. The 701's vacuum tubes were collected into "pluggable units", a concept introduced with IBM's  604. The 701 was developed in 1952 in the Poughkeepsie Laboratory. The 701 known as the Defense Calculator. The 701's used 18-bit instructions, with maximum,  memory of 4096 words of 36-bits. It used Williams tubes or magnetic core memory which had a cycle time1 of 12 microseconds, and could do 2000 Multiplies and Divides per second.    Photo fro ...
element14 Community Awards The polls are closing soon! Your vote is your voice!  Morning all!   Just a quick reminder that the polls close tomorrow in the 2015 element14 Community Awards, so time's running out if you haven't yet performed your democratic duties! And remember that you need to vote in all seven categories if you want to get the 2015 I Voted badge, which will also close down tomorrow when the polls do. If you miss it now, you'll miss the badge for good, and th ...
Jan Cumps

Reel to Reel deck

Posted by Jan Cumps Dec 2, 2015
I've purchased a 1977 vintage tape deck yesterday. It was a bit of a wild purchase, because I couldn't test it. It turns out that it's performing well. It's not a top model. 30Hz - 20kHz on low speed, 28 kHz on high speed.   Documentation is available from hifiengine.   Here's my first checkout:   ...
jw0752

Super Computer History

Posted by jw0752 Top Member Dec 2, 2015
In the mid 1960's Seymour Cray moved back to the Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin area (his home town) with his family to continue his research and development of the worlds first super computer the Cray One. As a young man I was friends with a couple of Seymour's children and on one occasion I was given a tour of his lab which was situated just south of town in a wooded area. I remember seeing large circuit boards with high populations of discrete transistors as there was very limited integration at t ...
There's nothing like a beloved piece of childhood technology hitting a milestone anniversary to make you feel old. The 16-bit gaming warhorse, the Sega Mega Drive (the Genesis, to our transatlantic cousins) is celebrating its 25th birthday.   25! We could go drinking with the Mega Drive now, and it wouldn't even get asked for ID. But you know we're big lovers of retro gaming here at element14 -- after all, we just turned our first ever Raspberry Pi Zero into a Mega Drive! -- so it seemed o ...

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