Picture of Arduino IR Musical Stairs

This is a small scaled musical stairs! It was a project that had a deadline; had only two days to build it. So, it is a very small scaled project, but still serves its purpose! IR Sensor (receiver) that I used is TSOP38238 from Adafruit, and the IR LEDs are also from Adafruit. The little black boxes have the IR LEDs in them (made the boxes to help people avoid stepping on the LED), the sensors are all attached on different breadboards at the left end of the stairs. This has 4 active steps, one playing a single note on the piano. For this project, the notes are C,D,E,F, respectively from first step to the top step, and if you press the right arrow key on the computer (on processing), the notes all change to G,A,B,C, respectively from the top step to the lowest. Then, if you press the left arrow key again, the notes go back to C,D,E,F. So, even with these small piano stairs, you can play the whole scale from C to C (one octave)!

If you want to see more tutorials on more sensors, shields, etc., please visit:

Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Parts

Picture of Parts
Parts list:
1 x Arduino (Uno is what I used) []
4 x Breadboards []
1 x Set of Male/Male Jumper Wires []
1 x Set of Alligator Clips []
4 x IR Sensor TSOP38238 []
4 x IR LEDs []
Tape (any kind of tape is acceptable)
ahmedbio2 months ago
thats cool. .. go on with this. .. i just wonder if that work with 16 or more stairs?

For some reason I read that as 'Muscle Stairs' I was expecting some kind of escelator. Musical stairs are way cooler.

helenbang (author)  shootermatic9 months ago

hahahahaha Thank you! :)

i like that, i hate stairs, now never more, enjoy music!

helenbang (author)  mabreu francescoli9 months ago

Thank you! I definitely had much more fun going up the stairs with music :)

vennev10 months ago

It seems to me that you are basically using the IR LEDs and receivers as like lasers and photocells. Would it not be more cost effective to replace the IR receivers with photocells, and the IR LEDs with normal LEDs or lasers?

helenbang (author)  vennev9 months ago

Yes! That would have been much more cost effective, but I didn't go purchase these for this project. I happened to have these, so I used them! If I had a choice and purchased the best components, I would have considered photocells with normal LED or lasers. Thank you for your suggestion!:)

your project is cool , keep up the good job ;)
helenbang (author)  bigpaulie251 year ago
(removed by author or community request)
helenbang (author)  helenbang1 year ago

thank you! :) (i have no idea why the prior comment was deleted..)

I love it. I'll see if I can send you the videos I have of me playing with it since I think I only sent you photos.

helenbang (author)  carolinebholmes1 year ago

sounds good! :)