Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Mailbag July 2023

A new mailbag post with some backlog mail.
(I planned to post this July mailbag begin Augustus, however it is already end August and some new interesting products have arrived for my next mailbag blogpost.

USB External soundcard.

As i want to experiment with audio signals i did buy an external to protect the sound chips of my computer

USB External soundcard.

Another sound card.
I was happy to have ordered 2 different cheap soundcards as my first experiments where more successful with this card that with the other one.

USB receiver

QRP Tranceiver
More connectors

Nice storage bag for cables
Cheap bluetooth USB led strip

A review of this product was already published on my blog

Air T split with valves

I want to make a ventilation system in my new shed using the Inline Blower.
This is a T splitter with 2 valves for the ventilation system.
This corner pieces also to use for ventilation system
Some more valves for the ventilation system
Cable binders (black)
Cable binders colored
Heatshrink, always good to use for electronic projects, you can never have enough
More connectors
Connectors with a small cable
Portable antenna
I hope to make a dedicated blogpost about this antenna 
Dupont / crocodile clip cabes

Mosquito killer lamp

And even more connectors

Thursday, August 10, 2023

Bluetooth USB led strip

This is a review of  a cheap Bluetooth USB led strip.

AliExpress advertisement campaign tells you you can buy 3 (or more) items from a selected list for US $1.99 or ~1.84 Euro each. Often interesting products can be found and i already did buy some of them. I stumbled upon a one meter USB Bluetooth RGB ledstrip. For this price it is an an interesting product and perhaps i can use it later in my new shed so i decided to put it on the pick list and ordered it.

Very soon it arrived together with other below 2 euro products in a packed in a separate plastic envelope. Here below a short review of the cheap Bluetooth USB led strip.

Bag with the led ledstrip

When powering the leds on a changing a red - green - blue light sequence started. According to the description it should be possible to control this led strip via Bluetooth. However there was no clear description how to do this.

On the cable is a small QR code. I tried scanning it however i was not very successful. I hoped the QR code would link to some vendor website or an app on the Google playstore for controlling the led strip.  Instead the QR  code linked to some (unrelated ?) TikTok video (i don't have TikTok installed). Perhaps when TikTok is installed a video about the device will be shown, however on my phone some unrelated TikTok movie started and i was asked to install TikTok. However i did not want to re-install TikTok just for this device after i de-installed it for security reasons some time ago,

QR code on led strip

On the vendor's page at Aliexpress was also no clue so i scanned for Bluetooth devices. My Android phone i did find a BlueTooth device named "ELK-BLEDOB". When connecting to it my phone told me i needed a special app for it.

After some quick searches on the internet this device name seemed for LedStrips and i decided to install some 'generic' app for led strips. In the Google App store i found an app called "duoCo Strip" and installed it. After installing i found a new app named "Lotus Lantern" and after a virus scan i started it.

 I did struggle a little to connect the bluetooth device in the app, however finally it worked and i managed to change the colors of the led strip, tested some of the sequences and also tested the color changing using music or sounds received by the smartphone microphone. For details see the help pages of the app. (you can find screenshots of this in this blog posting),

After disconnecting and reconnecting the USB led strip started using the last selected sequence. I did not test the led strip for a long time , sometimes i needed to reconnect it and also in the beginning the led's reacted relative slow to the app, however that improved during the use.

 In summary for this price (less than 2 Euro's) a nice USB powered 1 meter Led strip that can be controlled via Bluetooth.