Have you written an awesome song on your DIY music box?
Do you want to digitize and cherish it forever?
I have made a pickup to the DIY music box by ThinkGeek, so that it can be plugged into any computer to record your composition.
Step 1: Get Your Block
To enhance and provide a base for my pickup, I used a large wooden block.
I chose wood because wood is a very good acoustic medium.
Just place your music box on a wood table, and you will hear the sound amplify and come from the table, not just the music box
I'm not sure what kind of wood this is, i tried a couple and this seemed best. Experiment with what you have.
Step 2: Get Your Parts, Make a Circuit
To make my pickup, i used a mono 3.5 mm jack and an electret mic element. That is all i need for my sound card, but that might not be the same for you. Build some of the included circuits on a proto-board and try them out.
For those of you that are very ambitious, try making the stereo circuit. Just drill 2 holes insted of one, as described in the next step.
Circuits courtesy of Hobby-Hour.com
Step 3: Drill Your Hole
Drill a single hole in the side of your block. If you want to try stereo, drill 2.
Find a bit that is the right size for your mic. Be careful, you can never drill smaller again!
Step 4: Carve Out a Square
I used a chisel to carve out the square for my music box. It just so happens that a knot came away in the shape of the crank. Good luck?
Make sure it's snug, but not tight. A good connection will transmit sound better. It will become tight when the paint is added.
FYI the block should be about 1.75 X 1.75 inches, but measure yours.
Step 5: Solder It Up
Now to solder your electronics together. Mine was simple to do, i exposed the lead on my jack and soldered it to the mic. If you need one of the more complex circuits, just follow what you did.
The mic should slide in nicely.
Step 6: Give It Some Paint, and You're Done
I taped over the mic on the side. You can glue over if you want.
I sprayed it with 3 coats of black paint, feel free to be creative.
Now pop your DIY Music Box in, plug in your pickup, and you're ready to record.
Add distortion, make a concerto, who am I to judge?
P.S. if you're looking for some editing software, try Goldwave or Audacity, both are free/have full function trials.
Participated in the
ThinkGeek Hacks Contest