Here is the current working version of the antique radio. I hooked together the Netduino, Sparkfun MP3 Player and all of the buttons, switches and lights and placed them in the case.
It is now up and running in the living room and seems to be operating with no issues. At some point in the future I need to put in a real speaker, with an amp, and replace the potentiometer to make a working volume knob. But, as with most projects, once it works it sits until I get around to it!
I believe that is everything. My code contains some stuff for a volume control, commented out, and I am sure there better ways to do some of it. Any suggestions are of course welcome! There are ton of resources online and overall it was a fun project and I am looking forward to finding another one soon.
I now have the MP3 player hooked up to the Netduino and all of the switches appear to be working. The potentiometer was shot and the rest of them did not function much better. I will need to look into getting replacements.
Luckily I was able to find some code on the Netduino forums and the heavy lifting of getting the Netduino to communicate with the VS1053b over SPI was already completed. They are a great resource, check them out if you have any questions.
One of the pieces of furniture my wife brought with her when she moved in was an old radio / phonograph player that had been gutted of pretty much all of the working parts. All that was left was the switches, old tubes and an ancient speaker. I thought it would be a good project to try and turn it into a standalone mp3 player using the old buttons as the interface. So after asking for permission, probably the most important step, I proceeded to figure out how to make this work.
The first point I should make is I know nothing about electronics, beyond plugging them in and looking for burnt parts when they do not work anymore. So I knew this was going to be a learning experience. I decided on the Netduino ( http://netduino.com/ ) as the product to try and make this work, which uses C# and Visual Studio to develop in. I also realized the Netduino would need something to decode mp3’s, so I purchased a VS1053b shield from SparkFun. ( https://www.sparkfun.com/products/10628 ) In some of the pictures or videos you may see a Netduino Plus ( it has an Ethernet port ), I was using both boards to develop on and may use the Netduino Plus in the future if I can figure out how to stream mp3’s to the shield. Both products I selected have a ton of online support and information. Luckily I was able to find information I was able to understand and a lot of people asking the same questions I had. Also Netduino and Netduino Plus have a couple of books you can get with them covering all of the basics. They were also very well written and available on their site.
After taking the console apart I realized I had a radio switch with 5 selectors, two potentiometers and a four section switch. There actually may have been more, the radio has two more buttons, but I think one was to set the stations back in the day and the other was to turn it off (I think). I decided to use the selector to turn the mp3 player on when it was switched to phone and the five radio buttons to switch between genres of music. As well as try to use one of the potentiometers for volume.
My first step was to take the parts out, hook them up and try to get electricity flowing through them to see if they worked. I was surprised the radio buttons worked well, phonograph switch worked and the potentiometers seemed to work.
Next to work this all together with the mp3 player shield. I will post some code when I am finished. It is all rather ugly right now.