Hack a Boombot, win a prize!

New contest from leading portable speaker manufacturer has some pretty amazing awards

Have a cool sound making gadget idea?

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Now’s your chance to get it out there for the world to see. Boombotix is sponsoring a kick-ass contest challenging its fans to engineer their own sound making gadget for a chance to win cash and, of course, the company’s Ultraportable Speakers.

Boombotix-BB2-Speaker

The contest has been up for only a little bit now but there are already tons of awesome entries, including home-made speakers and amps to some pretty dope-ass wireless stereo projects.

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Contestants who enter will have access to Boombotix electronics for their platform at a contestant discount. This applies to the full line of speakers, whether it’s Bluetooth or auxiliary. All the folks at Boombotix want is to find the coolest sound blaster the world has to offer (not asking for much here, are we)?

On the fence about entering? Check out this line of prizes:
One Grand Prize winner will receive:
• a $250 Amazon gift card
• a Boombot REX Pitch Black wireless speaker
• and an Instructables prize pack including a robot t-shirt.

Three First Prize winners will receive:
• choice of any 1 Boombot1 wired speaker
• choice of any 1 Boombot2 wireless speaker
• and an Instructables prize pack including a robot t-shirt.

Five Second Prize winners will receive:
• choice of a Boombot1 wired speaker
• Instructables prize pack (includes robot t-shirt)

Multiple entries are accepted, but each entrant can only win one prize. To enter, just go to instructables.com

How to control your car stereo with your smartphone

Simple components plus a Bluetooth portable speaker and a little audio know-how are all it takes modernize your vehicle

While it would be super sweet if Tesla were to drop the price on their ridiculously awesome cars . . .

tesla-s-interior

. . . many of us will never be able to afford a car that has this many technological bells and whistles.

That doesn’t mean you can’t modernize your current car to meet today’s standard of cool. Did you know that you can control your car’s stereo system with your smartphone using basic technology? Here’s how:

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Tech geek creates wearable sound effects machine

Includes laughter, boos, air horn, and more

While tech geek Kenneth Guglielmino doesn’t necessarily have the support staff nor technical know-how to create top-notch wearable portable speakers like ours, we have to give the guy a tip of the hat for his effort here. He took an Arduino, Adafruit Wave Shield, and a mini speaker, and put the components in a suit jacket to give him a wearable sound effects machines that he can take everywhere.

Sound effects jacket

Sound effects include a laugh track, boos, an air horn, and more. They’re all controlled via a small control panel that allows him to activate sounds and switch between options. Nothing is seen as all components are kept in the jacket’s inner pockets.

Guglielmino suit jacket

Will this make Guglielmino the most popular guy at parties? Highly unlikely, but it’s a cool idea by one of our fellow audiophiles nonetheless. See it in action below:

Band made entirely of LEGO figures rocks out hard

Toys programmed to play various electronic instruments sounds good, looks great

LEGO rock band

Not sure if this is inspiring or if it instead speaks more so to the fact that Italian music producer Giuseppe Acito has too much time on his hands.

The one thing that is for sure is that the video accompanying this story is thoroughly entertaining.

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Air Gun Hits Paddle with Ping Pong Balls at Mach 1.2—and it’s as awesome to watch as it sounds

Engineers find fun way to experiment with old technology

Paddle hit by ping pong ball at Mach 1.2

Ping Pong’s fun to play, but it’s not a great game to watch. It’s all a bit, I don’t know, repetitive. But that’s what makes this video so great—it actually makes ping pong interesting. Here’s what went down.

Mark French, a mechanical engineering at Purdue University, along with graduate students Craig Zehrun and Jim Stratton got together and built a contraption called the “de Laval tube”. Basically, it’s a modern-day version of the de Laval nozzle, an hourglass tube used to accelerate a hot, pressurized gas to supersonic speeds. They put a ping pong ball in the tube in front of this gas and found that they could shoot the ball at speeds over 900 miles per hour, or Mach 1.2.

Diagram of de Laval tube

It’s enough to—as you can see in the picture above—put a hole through a ping pong paddle.

Ain’t science grand? Video of the gun in action below (about five minutes worth of explanation prior to the gun shooting – go to 5:50 to see it shoot: