Introduction: DIY Octoalert Aka SoundButton

My Daughter loves the Octonauts. So after seeing how much she enjoyed the Octoalert tablet app i wrote for her, i decided that i would make her a hardware version.

Basically what this does is plays a random sound from the SD card when the button is pressed.

i grabbed some sound bites from the show using Audacity's loop back adaptor:

and loaded those on an SD card.

Then just for fun i added an ESP8266 so it could be triggered via a tablet app.

the end result was a small box with a big button that she can push.

It was a big hit!

Step 1: Electronics

Bill of Materials:

Adafruit Wave Sheild $22.00 + SD card

Sparkfun Big Dome Button $9.95
Economy Dome $5.95 (i used this and wish i had gotten the better one)

Arduino Uno$24.95

Switch WARNING! i used a generic one from an old toy so the hole in the box will be different sized.

4xAA holder $2

3w amp module $2 - PAM8403 2X3W Mini Audio Class D amplifier board 2.5-5V input

Speakers or old over ear headphones something like this would work: LINK

Some wire

Most of the parts i had in stock so it was sort of work with what i had, i only had to buy the adafruit wave sheild.

Total: 63usd.


Laser cutter (for the box, you can use any enclosure.)

Drill (if not using the laser)

Heat glue (to glue parts to the box, could use velcro)

Soldering Iron

Step 2: The Code

The code is simple.

it uses the WaveHC library from here:

you name the files 1.wav - 5.wav then the arduino generates a random number and will play that file and light the button LED.

its very low tech.

Step 3: Grabbing Sound Bites

So i can't share my sound bites, however i can show you how to do it. basically i used audacity to record sound bytes off my laptop that were playing on youtube.

Step 4: Make a Box

The finishing part of this is the box. its the part that everyone's sees so you need a good box for it.

I have attached a black copy of my box.

Step 1: Measure your parts and work out how bit. Then go here and put in your sizes 8inx6inx3in.

i made mine a bit bigger so it would have a good feel.

Step 2: Add cut outs for the speakers and buttons. Remember kids, measure twice cut once.

Step 3: Decorate, now i haven't included my decorations, but you can add your own. i used the trace bitmap feature in inkscape on octonaut colouring pages:LINK

Step 4: Cut it out :) i used a 3mm or 1/8inch birch ply. it took about an hour.

Step 5: Once its cut out, glue the edges with wood glue and clamp for at least 30mins (or the time suggested on your wood glue).

Step 6: insert and glue in the electronics. i used velcro on the arduino as i will want to remove it later and the rest was heat glued in.

Just put batteries in it and you are done!

I hope you have enjoyed this! please share any that you make, i'd love to see them.

Box Contest 2017

Participated in the
Box Contest 2017

Audio Contest 2017

Participated in the
Audio Contest 2017