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Shaping The Silence Hardware Projects

Zach DeCook


Indistinguishable from Magic

Hardware problem, or software problem? In our experience building custom gear, we’ve learned a thing or two from the process.

  1. Everything you need to know to solve your problems can usually be found in a large PDF file readily available on the internet.
  2. No really, read the datasheet.

I could fill this intro by talking about my taste in capacitors, or a shocking story about disposable cameras, but that mightn’t be very professional. Anyway, here are some of our projects.

Life Box

Features wireless MIDI sync and LED control, motion controlled strobe light, and a randomize feature that will keep the audience jumping. 

Transform DJ’s biggest concern was how to get this through airport security.

The wireless receiver. (Some day I hope to get a second extruder and conductive filament, so I can 3d print circuitboards into their cases.)

Can be seen at the 44 second mark, and at various points throughout.

Combo Breaker

The magic of multiplexing. What do you do when you’re out of pins on your microcontroller? Multiplex! When great power met irresponsibility (and a really good sale on the highest quality arcade buttons), this project was born. The layout is based on the harmonic table, and the lights help you navigate it by indicating an octave above or below.

(Jared’s really proud of the inside)

Here we are recording with it.

guitar_2 aka project naira

Don’t ever let anyone tell you EL wire isn’t cool.

This was a lot of fun to program. Along with including 30 different musical scales, I enjoyed making an algorithm to generate chords from each scale. Along with chord mode, there’s a note mode, where you can use a binary pattern to play different notes. This thing is proof that guitar hero controllers can have a decent life after retirement.

Jared surviving his first show (before the guitar was wireless).

“Wireless is so much better because you don’t have random USB disconnection issues.” - Jared

“The future of technology … is wireless. You know, things like walkmans, flashlights, and solar calculators.” - Strong Bad

For inquiries, email shapingthesilence@gmail.com