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Anyone with EE knowledge: need you help for one second....

Discussion in 'Other Off Topic Forum' started by jonesn, Jan 14, 2004.

  1. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

    Nov 2, 2003
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    Evan "Trouble" Jones
    First of all, see the two chips on the circuit board? How much do those cost (ballpark estimate)?

    Secondly, how difficult and how much would it cost to make something like this from scratch, like as a prototype?

    Thanks.
     
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  3. BrentC

    BrentC Formula Junior

    Aug 13, 2003
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    PM me if you want some feedback.

    Brent
     
  4. KKSBA

    KKSBA F1 World Champ
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    It's impossible to make out the chips id codes so it's tough to price them but as long as they are not some wierd custom gate array or programmable chip they shouldn't be very expensive. What does this do?

    As a prototype, parts would be >$100 (probably alot less $20)
    Time maybe 5 hours to makeup a proto circuit board and solder the parts.

    You could probably get a proto for around $500 from someone charging market rates. Maybe a bit less.

    As for difficulty, not very. Any experienced electronics hobbyist could make up a pcb like this one and then get the parts, solder them and your done.
     
  5. C. Losito

    C. Losito Formula Junior

    Dec 12, 2003
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    Give me the numbers off those chips and maybe I can help you. Commercial chips are relatively cheap, custom chips can be very expensive (well, for the first one).

    Assembly wise, looks fairly easy to make. You could either get a breadboard and make a (large) prototype, or have a board custom made.
     
  6. BWS550

    BWS550 Wants to be a mod

    Apr 1, 2002
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    SIMPLE CIRCUT BOARD.........

    SOME DIODES, RESISTORS, 2 ICS ( YOU DO NEED THE # THOUGH), PC BOARD, MAYBE $20.00 AT MOST TO COPY.......BUT GEEZ WHIZ,,,,GET RID OF THOSE DURACELL BATTERIES....:)

    BRUCE
     
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  8. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jul 30, 2001
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    Bruce, we bought a 'button' battery the other night for the remote that goes to my wifes truck. She walked up to me at checkout and handed me a Duracell. I sent her back for the correct battery!
     
  9. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    8,013
    My guess is the big chip is an FPGA and the little chip is an Op-AMP. Every thing else is what we generally call popcorn parts (1 cent each in volume).

    If you just want to make 1-10 of these things, you can probably just hack together a board, and try to program an FPGA. Access to FPGA programmer and programming software is going to be a couple of hundred $ (barrow). Parts will be in the $100 each testng is simply measured in time (not $).

    If you want to make 1,000 or more; I suspect the engineering costs will be on the order of $20K, and you can reproduce the product at a cost of $20, and have it tested at $3 per part and you profit line will be close to $43/part.

    If you want to make 1,000,000; engineering will come in at least $50K and you can roll them off a production line at $10 each including testing.
     
  10. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

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    Evan "Trouble" Jones
    Everyone, thank you very much for the replies. All of them help tremendously :)

    Mitch, when you say "engineering will cost $50k" what exactly do you mean by that?
     
  11. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

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    About the device in the pic, it's called a NovaDreamer. This thing slips inside a mask you wear during sleep and sensors on the board pick up your REM so it knows when you're dreaming. Once that is confirmed it flashes a small LED light in each eye and simultaneously makes a sound (small speaker at the top). While in the dream you're suppossed to see something dramatic happen in the dream and therein realize that you are in fact dreaming (lucidity). Only works for me 10% of the time, so I feel robbed of the $300 I payed for it.

    Apparently the only complex part to this device is the algorithm that works with the sensor.
     
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  13. BWS550

    BWS550 Wants to be a mod

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  14. 134282

    134282 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    ROTFLMAO...!
    Shameless plug, Bruce, i love it...
     
  15. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

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    Oh man, Bruce, what was I thinking???...........Oh damn it, I wasnt thinking. I hate when I do that!
     
  16. Horsefly

    Horsefly F1 Veteran

    May 14, 2002
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    Smart money says the 8 pin IC is probably a 741 op amp or an NE555 timer. The bigger IC could be anything. One of them is most certainly a timer operated in the astable mode to make the pulses to fire the LEDs. The smart thing to do is shred the whole thing apart and rewire the op amp into an ultrasonic oscillator to act as a mosquito repeller. Rewire the NE555 into a 15 minute timer and alert yourself when to turn over when sunbathing before you get fried.
     
  17. BWS550

    BWS550 Wants to be a mod

    Apr 1, 2002
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    I AGREE WITH HORSEFLY........ALL THOSE PARTS AND TIMER CHIPS YOU CAN ORDER FROM DALBANI FOR LITTLE $
     
  18. DGS

    DGS Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Pretty much all consumer electronics, these days, are based on custom large scale integrated circuits. The start-up cost is large, but the bulk manufacturing costs are far lower than using discrete "standard" parts, the power consumption is lower, the size is smaller, etc, etc.

    That being said, the Internet has brought back the notion of low volume "specialty" products, which are sometimes still built from discrete components in basement/garage "production facilities". (Cottage industry electronics.)

    But anything made with production quantities above single digits tend to use custom ICs.
     
  19. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

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    Ok, I found the #s for the two chips. Any clue what they are?

    Larger chip (18 pin)
    PIC16LC58B
    04 / P
    0027J42
    It also has some small icon on it, a "M" inside a circle

    Smaller chip (8 pin)
    Texas Instruments
    1CA0FCH
    TLC25L2CP


    By the way, how do you guys look up the ID codes?

    Thanks.
     
  20. DGS

    DGS Four Time F1 World Champ
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    TLC25L2 Dual uPower Low-Voltage Operational Amplifier

    http://focus.ti.com/docs/prod/folders/print/tlc25l2.html

    PIC16C58B Device
    This powerful (100 nanosecond instruction execution) yet easy-to-program (only 33 single word instructions) CMOS OTP-based 8-bit microcontroller packs Microchip?s powerful PIC architecture into an 18-pin package. Easily adapted for automotive, industrial, appliances and consumer entry-level product applications.

    http://www.microchip.com/1010/pline/picmicro/category/digictrl/8kbytes/devices/16c58b/

    Go Go Google Gadget. ;)
     
  21. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

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    Oh sweet. Thank you soooo much.
     
  22. jonesn

    jonesn Formula Junior

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    I can't believe those things only cost about a dollar a piece. I paid $300 for that device! Someone's making a very nice profit.....
     
  23. DGS

    DGS Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Well the processor is made in China ... but it was probably programmed in India. :D In addition to the chips, there's making the PC board, the plastic case, the fee for the case ergonomic "style" advisor, and all the marketing, .. oh, and a couple of dollars for the designer and programmers. ;)

    And yes, low volume products have a pretty hefty mark-up.
     
  24. Robin

    Robin F1 Rookie

    Nov 1, 2003
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    That's odd.. I built one of these for fun back in college (remember, geek is spelled with EE...) I spent about 10 bucks in parts. Bought a bread board so I could just drop everything into it without having to worry about making traces on a real board... then a 555 timing chip, couple wires, couple LEDs, few resisters and a diode I think, a potentiometer to tweak the flash speed, and some cheap $2 sunglasses from the grocery store. It does the exact same thing.. flashes red lights in your eyes, which is supposed to switch your brain over to alpha waves and make you zone out and have lucid dreams. The only thing it doesn't do is detect when you're in REM mode, but no biggie.. the point of the thing is to help knock you out...never did anything for me though.

    -R
     

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