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200 Button Wall with Light, Sound, and Interactive Effects! (Also a Tour of the Project Interior) | On View at @CarnegieSciCtr

Thanks to Doug for sending this in. This thing looks … and sounds … incredible! If you’re anywhere near Pittsburgh you can find it on display at the Carnegie Science Center. In the video below Doug gives a walkthrough of the button functions and the multitude of Arduinos and some Adafruit tech powering the exhibit. From the birch plywood framing to the electrical strip layout to the use of ribbons throughout, this thing is a stunning use of technology in a learning center.

Watch (and turn on your speakers for audio effects!):

Doug was kind enough to share some work-in-progress photos (below), along with a detailed list of everything that went into the build:

200X Arcade buttons
200X 12V LED lamps, that produce over 72 watts of light and heat!
1X 72″ massive power strip for 12V distribution.
180 Feet of Zip cord for power
1,800 Crimped on spade connectors.
52 interconnected wires.
56 remote terminated wire connections.
TOTAL: 1,908 wire terminations done by hand.
6X Arduino Uno’s
21X Arduino Nano’s
TOTAL: 27 Arduinos.
5X Adafruit Music maker MP3 shields.
203 Mp3 files. ( has a startup sequence sound and other non button related sounds. )
4X sheets of 4X8 Birtch plywood.
2X 4 channel DMX dimmer packs.
8X DMX strobe lights for lightning.
1X 8 Channel Relay bank
1X DMX Arduino shield.
1X Bubble machine.
1X water projector. ( For the sub. )
800 feet of CAT6 cable. ( For remote zones. )
5X Amplifiers.
6X Speakers.
5,400 Watts of power for the entire system. ( Including remote devices and lights. )
270 Screws.
500+ Zip-ties.
96 Feet of Ribbon cable.
The door alone has over 80lbs of electronics buttons, wire and wood in it.


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, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, 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.

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