A theremin is an electronic musical instrument that you can play without even touching it – spooky! The theremin senses the distance from its antennae to the player’s hands, and changes its pitch and volume based on these distances. The theremin was used to make soundtrack music for many iconic spooky movies, like The Day the Earth Stood Still (1958), and is perfect inspiration for a Halloween project!
Here, I’ve turned a pumpkin into a Jack-o-Theremin using an ultrasonic distance sensor and a Circuit Playground Express (CPX). The CPX uses the distance measurement to generate a sound and flash the onboard NeoPixels in various colors. This version of a theremin has a much more digital-bleepy-bloopy sound than a traditional theremin, but you still get to make music by waving your hand around in the air!
HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Every day this month we’ll be bringing you ideas and projects for an Electronic Halloween! Expect wearables, hacks & mods, costumes and more here on the Adafruit blog! Working on a project for Halloween this year? Share it with us on Google+, in the comments below, the Adafruit forums, Facebook, Discord, Instagram or Twitter— we’d love to see what you’re up to and share it with the world (tag your posts #ElectronicHalloween). You can also send us a blog tip! Tune in to our live shows, 3D hangouts with Noe and Pedro and Ask an Engineer, featuring store discount codes, ideas for projects, costumes, decorations, and more!
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.