Introduction: Make an IPod Video Projector

Picture of Make an IPod Video Projector

Project video and pictures on a screen using your iPod!

Step 1: The Setup

Picture of The Setup

The idea is simple, Focus the light from your iPod onto a nearby screen by means of lenses and mirrors.

Step 2: Cardboard Is Underrated

Picture of Cardboard Is Underrated

Making prototypes is fast and easy using cardboard and a glue gun. A layer of black tape and that Apple sticker makes for a nice look.

Step 3: Lights Down

Picture of Lights Down

In order to see anything it must be dark in the room.


ChaosMarine (author)2013-05-06

In theory, this would work for Android phones too, correct?

Yes it would

eva_maree_dixon (author)2014-01-13

U can use a magnifying lens and a box check out mine!

Jacky P (author)2013-06-22


crazy lazy man (author)2013-02-22

hi tanntraad can i just use magnifying glass instead of projector lenses

Philisawesome (author)2012-12-02

Is it possible to do this w/out an old projector lens?

darkcurtis (author)2012-10-25

that is awesome
pretty cool and simple

Mermaids_R_Real (author)2012-04-28

Awesome!!! I'm getting an iTouch at the beginning of middle school, I'm making one of these!!!


Bajwa (author)2012-02-16

interesting... i'll try this for sure!

Kryptonite (author)2012-02-08

In today's day and age, where abouts can one get a lens setup like that? If nothing else, how could one improvise?

Harun Miya (author)2012-01-10

How many lences can be used there?

sinrockets (author)2011-10-06

Maybe ill make one and add a bunch of like 5 or 6 leds and maybe get a better projection?

im3733 (author)sinrockets2011-12-14

That would just wash out your image. because the color comes from the lcd, and adding leds outside the lcd would be no different than trying to watch it in a brightly lit room.

beehard44 (author)sinrockets2011-12-01

he light source must come from the screen or else you'll just end up with a bad image. The light passes through the LCD to get filtered out to it's individual colors.

sstivers-menz (author)2011-12-11

I so what to do this!!

To everyone asking about LEDs...I"m no tech wizard but I do know that no matter what style of projector you have, using a proper screen will always make it nicer.

psycho_3852 (author)2011-12-10

could this be used by another devise that is not a ipod, but another kind of screen that is still LCD?

pyromonkey (author)2011-12-10

Very cool, you used the principal of a DSLR for a projector. Well done :)

SirNoodlehe (author)2011-12-10

Amazing idea, well done!

ixisuprflyixi (author)2011-12-10

That is pretty bad@ss. I don't own an ipod but I can see this being useful for other projects. 5 stars.

vincent7520 (author)2011-02-09

Love this QAD (quick and dirty) instructables !!!…
No fuss, no perfection … just an excellent idea put into use as soon as it comes with whatever is in the attic or at the rear of the garage …

Moreover it revives those old movies parties we had when I was a kid. All curtains had to be drawn and it felt like "cinema at home" … was much better than TV or so we thought for a brief moment of our childhood !…

Excellent !…

tanntraad (author)vincent75202011-03-07

I agree on that "cinema at home" feeling. At only half your age, I still have some of my childhood on slides. No amount of mega pixels can beat that.

thebeltshelf (author)tanntraad2011-07-25

how big is the projection?

vincent7520 (author)thebeltshelf2011-08-02

this you should ask the author : I only posted a comment on his / her project … 

vincent7520 (author)tanntraad2011-03-07

How nice is your answer …
The only true life in this world in when we are kids !!!!…

Lately I found slides that my father took of my sister and I back in 1961 in Macedonia, Kosovo, and Montenegro with al those monuments intact (who could guess a war would rage 30 years later ?). These pics are the best memories in my life … although I did a lot of traveling, lived in the US, sailed on various part on the Atlantic, North Sea and Baltic …
Butt the "naive" touch is still remembered best.

generations after generations life / emotions are still the same…

MCzone (author)2011-03-11

If I use my touch, will i get a bigger projection

Mr. Pyro (author)MCzone2011-07-24

"If I use my touch, will I get a bigger projection?" the simple question sounds so suggestive... I am not however immature


MCzone (author)Mr. Pyro2011-07-25

i wonder if the quality will be better

dombeef (author)2011-03-15

I made one using my iPod touch, with retina display!

matstermind (author)dombeef2011-06-13

how well does it work?

dombeef (author)matstermind2011-06-13

Eh, The mirror and magnifiying glass are both scratched up, but It is useable, the quality is ok

Paintballer98 (author)2011-05-01

dude what is up with that picture for step 3

junits15 (author)Paintballer982011-05-21

Its a hot girl with stickers on her body...why in the world are you questioning it?!

Jimmy Proton (author)junits152011-06-12

I immediatly wet to step 3 when I saw that comment. lol

Paintballer98 (author)junits152011-05-24

because people tend to avoid this stuff

junits15 (author)Paintballer982011-05-24

who...who avoids 1/2 naked girls?

Jimmy Proton (author)junits152011-06-12

I DONT!!!!

mg0930mg (author)Paintballer982011-05-28

Only 12 year olds.

junits15 (author)Paintballer982011-05-25

that came out wasn't supposed to be :|

baileygrib (author)2011-05-23

can this be modded to project an ipads screen?? even though i know that the screen in big enoguh! haha

crimson shadow (author)2011-05-22

how big is the projection?

jrg3ni0us (author)2011-03-12

Is there anything else I can use besides an old slide projector lens?

jaxxster1 (author)2011-03-10

this is just what i needed! a cheap and easy to make ipod projector.

jaxxster1 (author)jaxxster12011-03-10

also what type of lenses did you use?

(())jAkE(()) (author)2011-02-26

im doing this with my ipod touch 4g and i use one mirror and an old slide projector lens. but the mirror makes the top of the projected image super dark because it has to be at an angle. what do i do?

tanntraad (author)(())jAkE(())2011-03-07

Remember to use a large enough mirror. The angle of the mirror has no effect on the darkness. That lens is best for smaller screens (like the iPod nano) so some darkening of the corners would be normal but not only on top like you've described it. I'm guessing that you've got a mirror that's too small and that the whole setup might not be aligned properly. I found that the best way to get a proper image is to position the iPod and lens at right angles with the mirror at 45° (as per figure).
Building a box of some sort is by far a good idea. Then you get the angles right and stray light is blocked out, resulting in a much better picture.
Be sure to post some pic's here!

Nimer11 (author)2011-01-21

The new Ipod touch has a very high pixel density, the "Retina Display"
It also has a very bright backlight, as compared to other devices/previous Ipod touches. Since the screen size is larger,has a nice resolution and is quite bright, won't this work better with the 4th gen Ipod touch ?

Assuming I use lenses from good magnifying glasses, a a method to make the distance between the mirror and the lenses adjustable,and an Ipod 4th gen realistically how many inches can this thing output for things to be watchable in pitch dark room.

Basement_Modder (author)2011-01-08

Meh, I'd rather sacrifice an ipod and pull off the reflective layer on the back of the LCD glass/ backlight assembly, mount the LCD, and use an LED with high lumens (The giant ones) for light, then make an adjustable lens tube so that you can use it like a real projector.

Then again, better to use a screen that accepts other inputs, just to make it worthwhile.

charlie.nourse (author)2010-11-15

I saw this in an issue of Popular Science one time!

tanntraad (author)charlie.nourse2010-11-16

Yeah, That was me :)

tomtortoise (author)2010-11-04

yo i have a lense from a old film movie projector but its like 1 inch in diameter will it still work or will i need more distance between the screen (itouch) and lense for it to work.

About This Instructable




Bio: Name: Bård Lund Johansen Engineer, Materials Technology
More by tanntraad:Controlling a keypad matrix via a microcontrollerMake an iPod Video ProjectorMake a remote controlled camera from a cellphone!
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