Ultra TV-B-Gone

This TV-B-Gone uses a 9V battery to send its signal through a matrix of 20 IR LEDS. This extends the working range of the device to about 90ft (line of sight). Using this in a regular sized room you are pretty much guaranteed to kill the TV no matter where you point it.
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Step 1: Get the Stuff

You wont need much to build this, here is a list of the materials:
1 2N3904 Transistor (experiment with what you have around, it will probably work)
1 9V battery
1 9V battery holder
20 IR LED's

As far as tools go here is what I used:
soldering Iron + solder
desoldering pump
hobby knife
wire cutters/strippers

If you dont have the TV-B-Gone already you can get one at the Make Store:

Step 2: Modify the TV-B-Gone

Take apart the TV-B-Gone and examine the board, you will notice it uses two sets of batteries. The two 3V batteries on top drive the LED's and the bottom 3V battery powers everything else. To save a little space we moved the 3V battery to the top holder and connected the stuff that was connected to the 6V supply to the 9V battery.

To get rid of the lower battery holder you have to use a sharp cutting tool to break the connection on the right side of the top battery holder. Then on the left side solder a wire from the big pad through the hole that is right next to it. Now you can remove the lower battery holder and move the bigger 3v battery to the top holder.

Step 3: Add Wires

Remove the IR LED that is on the TV-B-Gone and replace it with a pair of wires. Then solder wires for gnd and +9V in the two places shown in the photos below.

Step 4: Make the LED Array

Start with two LED's and decide which direction you will stitch. Bend the inside lead towards the second LED and solder it then repeat until you have a string of four LED's. Then repeat the entire process five times.

Now bend the leads of one set to the side and attach another set between the two bent leads. Repeat this until you have filled out the entire grid.

Note: Always check the polarity of the LED's you are soldering. This configuration creates five parallel blocks of four LED's in series.

Step 5: Complete the circuit

If you are looking at the flat side of a 2N3904 with the pins down the pins are called Emitter, Base, and Collector from left to right. Attach the Collector and the LED- connection from the TV-B-Gone PCB to the negative side of the LED array. Then connect the Base to the LED+ wire. Next connect the emitter to ground on the circuit board.

Now wire the positive side of the LED array to the 9V supply. Finally connect the ground and 9V wires from the PCB to the 9v Battery clip. Attach the LED array and PCB to the battery clip. You can use anything from around, duct tape will work nicely. I had some double stick foam so I used that. The End.
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ewilhelm6 years ago
putty1cat3 years ago
My tv b gone is different but I went ahead and tried to mod it. I get nothing out of it. I am clueless. Can someone brainy, please, have a look and tell me what I've done wrong? This is only my second soldering project. The chip is the SE02 500 A3A3 if that is any help.

Hello, I have the same model. How can I fix it?

Would these LEDs work? If so, this would be very cheap.
d60Dave3 years ago

Perhaps my TV B Gone unit is different but as standard the IR LED positive terminal is connected to the positive of the battery and it appears to be the negative side of the IR LED that is switched to turn it on and off.

If as you suggest the positive side of the IR LED is connected to the base of a 2N3904 (npn transisotor) with the emitter connected to 0V there willl be 9V across the base-emitter junction. It will therefore be on all the time or at least until it blows which shoudn't take long as a typical npn can only support about 0.7V (one diode drop) across the base-emitter.

Am I missing something??

jrigvd d60Dave2 years ago
Hey Dave, I think your tv-b-gone is different than the on described here. Maybe you can use an PNP transistor instead of the NPN described in the instructable.

vlxwgn7 years ago
because infrared light is picked up by digital cameras, would this work as a night vision light?
You dont even need the tv be gone! Just search up infra red night light, or some such :)

what you do is that you make a ring of thes irleds in a ring around the camera
it would probably blink though
not if you just connect it to 3 volts, i have done it and it dosn't blink
Um Does This Destroy Ur Tv So It Wont Work Again?
You only capitalize the first word in a sentence.
ShogunD Derin2 years ago
My question is why the hell someone Would Take The Time To Press The Shift Button For Every Single Word.
My pinky is tired.
overblast Derin3 years ago
derin, This Is Not Craigslist, No Spelling Or Grammar Nazis Allowed Here,
no .....silly, it just sends a signal (just like a regular remote) telling the tv to turn off.
it has a program that has all the tv remotes "off" pattern. Each tv is different ( different modle) and has a special inferad signal which turns it off. The tv-be-gone knows and plays one by one, so it may take a few seconds for the tv to turn off.
no it just sends some sort of signal (not sure) that turns the tv doesn't kill it
degenstamm2 years ago
so im trying to find someone legit can i make it with a ir detector and emitter or do i have to get something diffrent
ksikes2 years ago
Do you think its possible to build your own TV?
bears0 ksikes2 years ago
someone said their dad made one. don't remember who, but it would not be a project for people with limited supplies equipment or tools.
64bitgenius3 years ago step is to gather over 9000 ir leds and do this. lets turn off the tv's in a town....
ahughes3 years ago
Ok i have the tv b gone from thinkgeek that i got on march 22 i opened mine and it has a couple extra things and don't know if this is compatible with the one i have or if you can make one for the newer tv b gone it would be very appreciated.
ahughes ahughes3 years ago
here are some pics of the tv b gone i have so u can tell me if this mod will work on it.
I also would like to know the answer to your question. This is the gen 4 TV-B-Gone. I have made the IR LED array. From what I understand the bottom battery powers the micro controller so I am leaving that in place. The thing that stumps me is the capacitor. So being the curious person I am, I will eventually just solder the negative wire from the 9v battery pack to the negative side of the capacitor pad. The positive to the pad of the existing battery case just below the capacitor. At this point I imagine you all can guess I really don't have a clue what I am doing. Please correct me. Then I will house it all inside of a tic tac 100 plastic box. Like it says on the packet 'Refreshing little lifts'.
get an old video camera with night vision and turn it on then point it at the tv b gone with night vision on and see what happens, it is cool
codongolev3 years ago
I love huge matrices of LEDs and I cannot lie.
good work
things4 years ago
 lol, why bother with 20 little IR LED's when you can buy 3W star LED's? :D

I built a TV-B-Gone using an Arduino and 6 3W IR star LED's with lenses. I could turn off TV's from down the street if they happened to have their windows open :D
Could you please tell me how you did it?? Seems really interesting.. A circuit diagram and the necessary components would also be of much help..
Whats a 'Star LED' btw?
The 3W IR LED's "things" is talking about pump out a tremendous amount of Infra Red light. Since the 3W's take up more space all you have to do is accommodate space on your bread board or circuit board.

And of course you can always ask Google for more info on the 3W IR LED's

Highjump445 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
The instructions are dumbed down to the point of imbecility...  it's probably NOT possible to simplify them further to the level of "moron".
I'm guessing you're good at tech. stuff, but are short on understanding. Many of us have other gifts/skills that you don,t have. Don't be too hard on us. Try a little humility, it'll save you lots of anguish as you age. Ultimately, the ravages of time, then death, humble us all. To the arrogant, it is a more painful journey.
Ya i agree :D
kiwisaft7 years ago
LEDs in parallel is no good - they never get exactly the same current each. one might get some more current, maybe too much -> it'll die, and in chain reaction the others will die, too
Yea, it isn't the best electronic design. Given that most that do build it won't have a multi-year device, I still think this is a great hack. Normally, putting a resistor at the end of each 'string' of LEDs to keep the current in check is the 'right' way, then you can run the 'strings' in parallel. That way if one 'string' dies, it all won't come tumbling down.
the design eliminates the need for a limiting resistor by putting groups of four LEDs in series. these groups are then connected in parallel. connecting the LEDs in series effectively adds their resistance in series with the other three LEDs in that group. so in effect, they do have the protection of a limiting resistor.
this will work, but it's not true. except you use an high accurate voltage supply ;) 1mV more or less for a diode will cause many mA more or less current. that is what diodes for and LEDs are diodes
i'm sorry, but this post makes absolutely no sense.
first of all: "this will work, but it's not true." what does that mean?
second, i have no idea what you are trying to say diodes are for, so i'll tell you. they are mainly used to allow current in one direction and not the other.
as for the 1mV thing, i'm not sure what you're trying to say here either. but i am aware that diodes follow ohm's law.

infrared LEDs typically have at least 1.2V required to forward bias. so by putting four of them in series: 1.2 x 4 = 4.8V your voltage drop is around 4.8V. a 9volt battery minus 4.8V = 4.2V. so the LEDs are seeing 4.2V each.
i've measured the internal resistance of two IR LEDs. one had 81ohms, the other had 82ohms. lets even play it safe and say they are only 50 ohms each. 4.2V going in to four 50ohm LEDs in series = 21mA. that's low enough right there. but when you consider that they were closer to 80ohms, you get only 13mA.

in short, you are in absolutely no danger of melting an LED if you follow the instructions that m_jake gives for this project.

as a side note, IR LEDs have the lowest internal resistance. as you move up in hertz, you get higher forward bias, and higher internal resistance. so blue LEDs are the highest. (i've never seen a purple LED.)

have fun
i have bought a few purple and pink LED's . red seems to be the strongest current hungry roundup of LED ( i'm refering to those transparents glass on top ones ) Purple seems to be on par with Green , Red & blue two colour LED's aren't really current hungry , but it is power hungry when it switches colours ( as my name implies , i'm really not having much knowledge about diodes , etc. ) that's all i know ( I'm a grade 10 singaporean )
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