Weekly Roundup #49 – New Maker Products // News

The last Weekly Roundup of the year and that means it’s Christmas time. If you live up top, then Christmas is all about snow falling, wood fires and generally trying to get warm.

But I’m from down-under, where Christmas time is all about 50 degree heat waves, BBQs and trying to stay cool.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LVin_l2JsCA&w=640&h=360]

Or check out the video on YouTube.


Over at Kickstarter it’s a bit quiet. Everyone must be staying in doors.

Orbit 1

WRNMP49p1I don’t normally cover desktop fabrication, but this is a new one. They could have used “the world’s first” in the title, as it is the first desktop electroplater. The price is steep and I have no idea on the actual results, but seems to be a fully fledged product that would be useful for 3D printer jocks. They claim it can electroplate a variety of metals with the coating as thick as you want. All controlled by mobile app.

The Plug Apprentice

WRNMP49p2This next one is solving a problem that exists… I think… It lets a sparkie know instantly if a GPO is “live” or not using a mobile app. Personally, I prefer the old fashion method that was hammered in to me when I was young and stupid; which is:

  1. Turn off the power yourself.
  2. Remove the circuit breaker and lock the power box.


WRNMP49p3This next one has a great name. The obnoz sounds like you’re trying to say hobnob with a cold, but is actually another IoT board based on the ESP32. It also comes with an OLED and MoSFETs allowing you to drive up to 1A on GPIOs. They offer a cloud based service that allows you to control 12 GPIOs from the ESP via JavaScript and Node.js. Their claim of “world’s first cloud based development board” isn’t true, but it’s a good option if you want to hack around with Internet enabled electronics quickly.

DuinoKit Tiny

WRNMP49p4This next campaign was created by Dan Alich, who’s created a number of successful STEM education kits on Kickstarter, some of which have made it on to other websites. The DuinoKit Tiny is based on an ATTiny85 with USB bridge and on-board 5v regulator allowing it to be powered from 7 to 35v. There’s also a bunch of sensors, buttons and OLED display. If you’re looking for a beginners kit, this one seems to be a goer.

NXI Watch

WRNMP49p5It had to happen… A Nixie Tube watch on Kickstarter. Wonder what the battery life is like… Ohm they claim a month between chargers. OK. Better than most smart watches.

6 Channel USB AMBE Transcoder

WRNMP49p6This is interesting. If you’re in to D-STAR, DMR or Fusion, then this board might be interesting. It’s a 6 channel AMBE vocoder. AMBE stands for Advanced Multi-Band Excitation and a vocoder is a CODEC designed for human voice allowing it to be compressed and transmitted over a digital medium. The price is steep, but if you’re in to this sort of thing and want a multi-channel vocoder, it looks pretty good.


WRNMP49p7StitchKit is another take on AdaFruit’s FLORA and SparkFun’s Lilypad. In fact they contain the same ATmega32U4 MCU as the StitchKit. They claim it can drive 300 RGB LEDs at full blast from a power bank connected via USB Type-C and it seems to be pushing out 9 GPIOs, but it’s not that clear.


WRNMP49p8The urPC is a campaign from someone who lives over the pond who likes to eat fush and chups. It’s a board designed specifically for PC installs or home theaters allowing you to control a 6A RGB LED strip, 5A NeoPixel strip, 4 servos and 4 PWM outputs for fans. There’s also a temperature sensor and rotary dial and you can talk to it over USB serial.


While over at Crowd Supply …


WRNMP49p9… the craze of let’s make everything as small as possible is still with us. Over at Crowd Supply in pre-launch, the Tomu is possibly the smallest USB capable Cortex M0 board. So small that it fits inside the USB connector and because of this it only has two LEDs, and two capacitive touch sensors.

On My Disk Connector

WRNMP49p10Then there’s another NAS box in pre-launch. It’s unclear what SoC they are using, but it’s definitely a custom PCB with a dual-core Cortex-A7, 1G RAM, GbE, SD and eSATA. It’s designed to connect and sync files stored locally to a NextCloud based cloud service that’s been up and running for a while now.