One of the most common way to interface a microcontroler to a computer used to be serial port. But right now, serial port have been replaced with USB on most computers. A common way to fix this issue is to use a USB to TTL converter or a USB to RS232 converter + MAX232. That’s fine but :
Really cheap USB to TTL on Atmega - [Link]
We came across this USB soldering iron over make blog and thought it will be interesting to post about. This soldering iron is plugged in two USB ports because it draws lot of power. After plugged in it heat up in 20sec and maintains enough heat to solder your gadgets. Getlofi sells them for about $25. Main features are:
- Precision Tip, Ultra Portable
- USB Port or 9 Volt Battery power via included cables!
- Heats up in less than 20 Sec
- On-Off Switch
- Bright LED
- Cleaning sponge
USB soldering iron – [Link]
This instructable show us how to build the smallest USB led! It uses a USB plug made with a piece of perfboard, a resistor and of course a led. Basic soldering skills are required to build your own. Follow the instructions on the link below.
The Smallest USB LED - [Link]
This device is a USB port tester that allows you to check any USB port of your computer. To check the operation of USB just plug it and if USB port is working correctly the green led should lit. Also you should receive a “New device detected” message on your operation system. The circuit is very simple to build using a few common components. Check construction details on the instructable link below.
USB tester - [Link]
This project will show you how to build a sound card for your PC using PCM2704 from Texas Instruments. Thanks to this IC in SSOP package is able to make a very small USB sound card.
Make a Sound Card with PCM2704 - [Link]
VIRTINS TECHNOLOGY just launched a new product RTA-168, a PC based real time audio analyzer. It consists of a measurement microphone, an XLR-to-USB converter, and PC virtual instrument software Multi-Instrument. An audio test CD is also included. All the components of RTA-168 can be packed into a small black soft pouch case provided and be carried together with your laptop or netbook. It is a handy tool for audio and acoustic measurements in both field and laboratory. Application examples are frequency response and distortion measurement of a loud speaker, room/car/auditorium equalization, noise monitoring and analyzing, etc. Combined with the computing power of a modern PC and the powerful virtual instrument software “Multi-Instrument”, RTA-168 provides unbeatable performance-to-price ratio compared with any other types of RTA.
VT RTA-168: PC based USB Real Time Analyzer - [Link]
user indestructable @ instructables.com have build this project that is able to flash a led when there is an email on your email server. He writes:
The idea behind the eMail Light project is to indicate the presence of emails that are currently on my email server with a flashing LED. I am often not right at my desk and I would like to know if I have email. Or I am near my desk, but my screen saver has kicked in while I’m working on something that doesn’t involve a constant mouse wiggle. By making a little black box with LEDs that can be controlled by USB through a mail monitoring program, I can be alerted to the presence of email on my server.
eMail Light: LEDs show new email - [Link]
This project details a small & simple, but very powerful USB charger for your mp3 player, camera, cell phone, and any other gadget you can plug into a USB port to charge! The charger circuitry and 2 AA batteries fit into an Altoids gum tin, and will run your iPod for hours: 2.5x more than you’d get from a 9V USB charger! You can use rechargable batteries too. [via]
Minty Boost: Portable USB power - [Link]