I found an old Western Electric rotary phone in my attic. It’s really an amazing piece of hardware. It seems to work fine several decades after its construction despite whatever abuse it took before ending up in my attic. However, I don’t currently need a rotary phone.
So I decided to put a Raspberry Pi inside it. I decided to make it an MP3 player that’s simple and robust for my daughter, but I guess it can actually be a general-purpose (if inconvenient) computer.
The pictures show the finished product. My goal was to leave the phone as intact as possible, so the main sign anything has changed is that the port on the back is now micro USB rather than a modular phone jack. I also added a switch to power down the Pi in the handle below the hook, but I wish I hadn’t — the handle was really comfortable for carrying the phone and the switch gets in the way. So these instructions don’t show that part. Since I wanted to add as little as possible, I put the speakers in the headset.
Each Friday is PiDay here at Adafruit! Be sure to check out our posts, tutorials and new Raspberry Pi related products. Adafruit has the largest and best selection of Raspberry Pi accessories and all the code & tutorials to get you up and running in no time!
8-6-2021 (August 6, 2021) is the Snakiest day of the year and it’s also this year’s CircuitPython Day! The day highlights all things CircuitPython and Python on Hardware. See you there!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.