DIY Light Theremin

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Make’s Steve Hobley put together a tutorial on building a DIY light theremin:

Anyone who’s shivered in the dark at a scary movie or laughed at the unintentional cheese-ball of a bad sci-fi (paging Ed Wood) knows the eerie sounds of the theremin. In the classic theremin design, two antennas control pitch and volume, and you play the instrument by moving your hands near the antennas without touching them.

This simpler design uses interrupted photons (light) instead of radio waves, and can be built with a handful of common components, including the versatile 555 timer chip. When we’re done, we’ll have a decent sounding mini-theremin. You can experiment with its sound by changing the type of light sensor used and the capacitance of the circuit.

It’s designed to be built with parts available at most Radio Shack stores.

Details at the Make site.

Make A Light Theremin

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Instructables has a new tutorial on how to make a simple light theremin:

The Light Theremin (or L.T. for short) uses a simple 555 timer IC and a few components to control a pitch and tone generated by your shadow.

This is a great project for anyone who wants to make some crazy sounds, or get started in electronics.