Make Your Own Spy Bug (Arduino Voice Recorder)

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In this project I will show you how I combined an Arduino Pro Mini with a couple of complementary components in order to create a voice recorder which could also be abused as a spy bug. It has a run time of around 9 hours, is small and super easy to use. The recording quality might not be the best, but it should be suitable for many purposes. Let's get started!

Step 1: Watch the Video!

The video gives you all the information you need to create your own Spy Bug. During the next steps though I will present you some additional information.

Step 2: Order Your Parts!

Here you can find a parts list with example sellers for all the components that you will need.

Amazon.com:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://amzn.to/2Eh0YnW

1x LiPo Battery: http://amzn.to/2E30BcU

1x TP4056 LiPo Charge/Protection Board: http://amzn.to/2s77dWo

1x Micro SD Card Adapter: http://amzn.to/2GMEY2G

1x Electret Mic + MAX9814 Amp: http://amzn.to/2GLB5uJ

1x Tactile Switch: http://amzn.to/2Eh15Qo

1x 5mm Red LED: http://amzn.to/2GNotDt

1x 2kΩ Resistor: http://amzn.to/2GNouY3

Ebay:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x LiPo Battery: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x TP4056 LiPo Charge/Protection Board: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x Micro SD Card Adapter: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x Electret Mic + MAX9814 Amp: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x Tactile Switch: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 5mm Red LED: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 2kΩ Resistor: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

Amazon.de:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://amzn.to/2FHf9PY

1x LiPo Battery: http://amzn.to/2DZnbY5

1x TP4056 LiPo Charge/Protection Board: http://amzn.to/2EE8pTT

1x Micro SD Card Adapter: http://amzn.to/2nHrsVd

1x Electret Mic + MAX9814 Amp: http://amzn.to/2FHzW60

1x Tactile Switch: http://amzn.to/2BTCxYg

1x 5mm Red LED: http://amzn.to/2BTCyLO

1x 2kΩ Resistor: http://amzn.to/2nKX5NN

Step 3: Build the Circuit!

Here you can find the schematic and pictures of my finished Spy Bug. Feel free to use them as a reference.

Step 4: Upload the Code!

Here you can download the Arduino code for the project. Use an FTDI breakout to upload it to the Arduino Pro Mini. And don't forget to download/include the TMRpcm library:

https://github.com/TMRh20/TMRpcm

Step 5: Success!

You did it! You just created your own Spy Bug!


Feel free to check out my YouTube channel for more awesome projects:

http://www.youtube.com/user/greatscottlab

You can also follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for news about upcoming projects and behind the scenes information:

https://twitter.com/GreatScottLab
https://www.facebook.com/greatscottlab

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19 Discussions

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AlperD8

Question 4 days ago

Can i use max 4468

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paclevkov

26 days ago

There is config file in the library. Scroll down and find Recorder option, uncomment it to set the library to Recorder mode. Then the code will compile successfully.

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JOSEPHW144NathanR124

Answer 2 months ago

you could always add that functionality yourself..

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sanjay sonkar

4 months ago on Step 4

exit status 1

'class TMRpcm' has no member named 'startRecording'

how to fix this error

pls help Great scott

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SonakulK

Question 4 months ago

i dont have microsdcard, it work?

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arduinonewbie

Question 5 months ago on Introduction

Thanks for the great tutorial. Being a newbie in arduino, I followed the instructions precisely and I'm able to record voice. I use Arduino Uno and the SparkFun Electret Microphone Breakout. I haven't incorporated the batteries yet and the system is powered by my laptop through a usb cable. Unfortunately, there is a continuous popping sound in the recorded wav file. Any ideas why this happens?

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tomik986TM

Question 6 months ago

Can I ask anyone, when I am recorded a .waw file it has 5000kB or length of 9:21:26 and I don't know why. Thanks everyone who answered.

1 more answer
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zonkerharristomik986TM

Answer 6 months ago

Did you maybe "startrecording", but not use "stoprecording" until 9 hours later?

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Bikramghuku05

Question 7 months ago

It is showing error that tmpcm does not have any members named startrecording and stoprecording

1 more answer
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onlun79Bikramghuku05

Answer 7 months ago

You need to edit the header file (pcmConfig.h) to enable the recording function.

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dpcons

Question 8 months ago

Implemented system as described. Works well except audio playback is at a higher rate.

(i.e chipmunk voice). I'm using Windows media player. Do I need to modify something.

Thanks, nice project.

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NathanR124

Question 9 months ago

How did you take that cover picture with the perfect lighting conditions. Usually my bench is lit up with a desk lamp(which is terible for pictures)

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k8e

Question 9 months ago on Step 1

- Why video? Difficult to save. Problematic to play later. Video is great for demos - bad for learning - photos are easy to save, play, etc - and show up in PDFs.

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AARADHYA tjjvg

Question 9 months ago on Step 1

code is showing error that startrecord is not included in TMRpcm library

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Jfieldcapnearboston

Answer 9 months ago

I see no reason it couldn't be, s the Pro Mini is the same chip as the Uno, just in a different form.

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dpeach

9 months ago

As always, a great project from you. I love your videos and projects. I rarely do your projects exactly, but you give such great ideas of what can be done. I find myself going back to them again and again when something comes up that I want to try.