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# Cheap, simple, low-quality portable audio player

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#### Stephanie

Jan 1, 1970
0
Hi,

I was looking at HitClips to provide a cheap, small, and low-quality
audio player. I need something like HitClips to output some short
music clips, which is interchangeable with different cartridges.
Unfortunately, I looked in the posts from 2000 and 2001 of
comp.sys.wearables and it looks
like most of the circuitry is on the chip itself.

Can anyone point me in the right direction? It doesn't have to be an
mp3 player (too expensive) but it just has to be cheap, small, and
low-quality with an interchangeable storage system (like the hit clips
cartridges). I can't even think of what to look for.

Thanks!

K

#### Ken Smith

Jan 1, 1970
0
Hi,

I was looking at HitClips to provide a cheap, small, and low-quality
audio player. I need something like HitClips to output some short
music clips, which is interchangeable with different cartridges.

What is cheap?
What is small?
How low is low?
How many are you making?

If you are after something that just sounds like it might be music, and
for just a few seconds, there may be many answers.

A PIC micro controller can be programmed to play tunes by toggling one of
its output lines.

They make birthday cards that play "happy birthday to you" well enough
that you know what it is supposed to be.

If cheap isn't all that low, a USB "drive" can be had for under $50US. It could hold enough music to actually sound like a clip from a record. D #### Dingo Jan 1, 1970 0 If it suited your needs, you could also have have an FM trasmitter broadcast the sound and a local radio tuner pick it up and play it back. There are serveral "voice" chips that exist for less than USD$10 that will
record upto 60seconds of audio and play it back all in one chip (can be
recorded 100,000 times before failure - EEPROM).

Depending on needs again a cd player can store up to 99 tracks and 80
minutes of music (or more ) and skip to the track you want.

And finally usb mp3 players are getting cheaper and cheaper and tack little
space and power

S

#### Stephanie

Jan 1, 1970
0
Hi,

Thanks for the replies, they were very helpful to my search.

My requirement is to maximize the amount of seconds I can get with the audio
player. The total cost must be less than $20 -- everything I've looked at seems close but argh! Overall I'd like to design something liek HitClips(#3 below) but with a larger mem capacity. So after reading what you both had to say, I can generalize with 3 solutions: 1. Chipcorder from ISD For just 120 sec, the chip costs more than$6. This is closer to the price
requirements. The quality is ok but is there any way I can bump up the
seconds to much more time? I've been looking at the ISD website and
wondering if they had something where you can store the audio on some other
external chip to maximize the amount of audio stored. This is what I would
rather go with if I could increase the storage.

2. MP3 player
The thought of designing this complex thing (for me, an undergrad) is scary
especially since some kids at Cornell did it for their semester project.
Anyways, I don't think I can keep the cost below $20. Sigmatel offers STMP3400 for$20. I don't even need an LCD or anything fancy. Just audio
processing, storage, and just keep 'on loopin'.

Either way just trying to go w/ a barebones small mp3 player w/ external
storage. The audio can be at a lower bit rate like 64bps

If I can make something like below link but at much much less cost, then
that would be great but I'm not sure if that might be over my head:

3. HitClips
I just ordered this thing on ebay so I can take it apart and see what tech I
can extract from this. Like what chip, etc. They are making it very
low-priced. I'm wondering if they use the ISD chip? They even have a
version where you can record + playback (Yahoo HitClips)

----------

These are the only solutions I can think of -- maybe I haven't found the
right chip? Is a PIC (or something else to program) a good idea and could
possibly meet the price requirements (my blood and sweat don't cost money in
this situation) - if so, any recommendations?

My apologies if I sound way too naive and/or retarded but I'm at my wits
end!

Thanks again folks, I appreciate any info/tips you can send my way.

-Stephanie

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