BUILDING A SOLAR POWERED TABLET – PART 2

The photo was taken with solar powered camera. Photo: Okko Meinilä

The photo was taken with solar powered camera. Photo: Okko Meinilä

In the first part, we wrote about our little audio recorder project and now we have made some progress with the device. The aim is to explore a possibility of a solar powered sound recording system with highest possible audio quality. It should be able to run indefinetely with a solar panel as a field recorder but first we are going to use it for normal music recording duties. At the moment, the project is in prototype phase and it looks a bit crazy but it will get much nicer soon. The audio is getting into the prototype and the thing is starting to sound good.

The photo was taken with solar powered camera. Photo: Okko Meinilä
The photo was taken with solar powered camera. Photo: Okko Meinilä

The audio electronics is based around top-of-the-line chips which we’ve been auditioning for a while. Low energy consumption is a priority because of solar charging so everything must be running efficiently but it should have enough power for great audio quality.

The Raspberry Pi3 computer is running on a Linux operating system but you have to be willing to modify some code to get the thing running especially with custom hardware. It’s not a ready-made plug and play system but we’ve managed to get it running quite good already.

The photo was taken with solar powered camera. Photo: Okko Meinilä
The photo was taken with solar powered camera. Photo: Okko Meinilä

This is our first this kind of digital audio design project so it’s been quite a steep learning curve so far. There’s been a lot of trial and error and sourcing parts all around the world but it seems the work will be paying off soon.

Next step is to make some nicer looking circuit boards and fit it all in a neat enclosure.

We’ll come back to this soon!