Electronics Repair (sci.electronics.repair) Discussion of repairing electronic equipment. Topics include requests for assistance, where to obtain servicing information and parts, techniques for diagnosis and repair, and annecdotes about success, failures and problems.

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Guy Macon
 
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Default I need a good tinkerer who can help me with a project - Better Explanation


Sam Goldwasser wrote:

That could be fun if there are no electronic types in the audience!


Even if there were, they might not sumble on to the trick.

Everything you want to do is very straightforward as long as you can
find space for the microcassette player inside the boombox. Large boomboxes
are mostly empty space so this shouldn't be a major problem.

The record protect is just a switch that can be removed or jumpered
as needed.

You could rewire any of the user control switches to select the magic
mode as long as your slight of hand is adequate so the audience doesn't
notice.


Yup. This seem pretty easy to do for an electronic technician.

Hint: avoid boom boxes with big buttons that go "clunk." Those are
mechanical and hard to tap into. Get the kind with pushbuttons
that are silent or which have a quit click. They are electronic
and easy to tap into.

Do this right and you could sell them to other magicians.



  #2   Report Post  
Guy Macon
 
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Roger Johansson wrote:

But honestly, don't you understand that we live in a world full of
electronic gadgets, which can perform practically any action at the push
of a button?

Most of your intended viewers will be very un-impressed by this "trick".

It is a typical technical trick, like if you rigged a switch so the light
comes on in the living room when you push the switch in the kitchen.
Might impress a 4-year old child, but not anybody else.

Most people will immediately realize that you have wired the button, or
the boombox, in a less conventional way.


I disagree. Here is how I would do it if I had the time to take on
the project:

The magician stands on the other side of the stage and calls out
instructions.

The boom box looks 100% stock and in the original package.
The magician asks for an audience member who is an "engineer,
repairperson, technician or gadget freak." He selects three
of them and asks them on stage to "watch for any tricks."

One audience member removes the boombox from a shrink wrapped box,
inserts the batteries, opens the box with the tape in it, "plays"
the tape (which actually gets recorded on while "playing." When he
stops the tape, the boom box turns back into a 100% normal boombox.

The engineer/etc. then does whatever tests he pleases to verify that
it's a perfectly normal boombox. It even has a "warrantee void if
this seal is disturbed" sticker over one of the case screws. Each
of the other technician/etc. audience members does his own test.
Give them a blank tape to use because the tape from the box has
the write protect tabs broken out. (the boombox ignores the write
protect. but only in "magic mode."

Optional: another audience member was asked to bring in his own
cassette tape player. He confirms that the tape plays the same
on his machine.

Optional: another audience member was asked to bring in his own
cassette tape. He confirms that the tape plays normally on
the boombox.

To reset the boom box into "magic mode" press play six times,
fast forward three times, rewind twice, and play twice. Or
some other hard-to-guess combination

The boom box goes out of "magic mode" and becomes normal only
after a tape has been played for 90 seconds without stopping
(assuming a two minute long message - adjust according to length.)

All this could be done with a Basic Stamp or BasicX stamp.

--
Guy Macon http://www.guymacon.com/

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Guy Macon
 
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John Woodgate wrote:

It is pretty simple, but for one thing - it's very difficult if not
impossible to get technical information on boom-box circuitry unless
it's an up-market product and you are an authorised dealer, and such
information is almost certainly necessary.


It sounds to me as if you could do it simply by accessing the
microphone, speaker, and switches - no knowledge of the internals
needed.


  #4   Report Post  
Steve
 
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Guy Macon http://www.guymacon.com/ wrote:

SNIP

To reset the boom box into "magic mode" press play six times,
fast forward three times, rewind twice, and play twice. Or
some other hard-to-guess combination

The boom box goes out of "magic mode" and becomes normal only
after a tape has been played for 90 seconds without stopping
(assuming a two minute long message - adjust according to length.)

All this could be done with a Basic Stamp or BasicX stamp.


Or... dispense with using the "click your heels together" methods of
pushing buttons to go into magic mode by using an RF remote controller.
No need to touch the boom box at all. And could easily add the advantage
to repeatedly leave or re-enter magic mode, too.

I agree with other posters to ditch the hidden 2nd micro cassette. With
MP3 playing devices available with no moving parts at reasonable cost,
(e.g. http://www.compgeeks.com/details.asp...-128-N&cat=MP3 )
forget screwing with yet another tape. This particular example records, too.
Should be able to fit this inside a large boom box.

Thanks, Steve





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Guy Macon
 
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Steve wrote:

Or... dispense with using the "click your heels together" methods of
pushing buttons to go into magic mode by using an RF remote controller.
No need to touch the boom box at all. And could easily add the advantage
to repeatedly leave or re-enter magic mode, too.


Even better!

I agree with other posters to ditch the hidden 2nd micro cassette. With
MP3 playing devices available with no moving parts at reasonable cost,
(e.g. http://www.compgeeks.com/details.asp...-128-N&cat=MP3 )
forget screwing with yet another tape. This particular example records, too.
Should be able to fit this inside a large boom box.


Not only that, but it has silent operation and higher reliability.

I have this mental picture of a bunch of fellows who design electronics
for a living examining this perfectly normal (at the moment) boom box
trying to figure out the trick. How did he do it? He was standing 15
feet away! The box with the cassette was mailed to someone we all know
and trust! We opened the box, we played the tape, we tested the tape
and the boombox and verified that they are both normal. I think that
most engineers would be stumped.





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Rich Grise
 
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On Mon, 27 Dec 2004 22:02:20 +0000, Guy Macon wrote:

John Woodgate wrote:

It is pretty simple, but for one thing - it's very difficult if not
impossible to get technical information on boom-box circuitry unless
it's an up-market product and you are an authorised dealer, and such
information is almost certainly necessary.


It sounds to me as if you could do it simply by accessing the
microphone, speaker, and switches - no knowledge of the internals
needed.


Someone else mentioned having engineers and/or tech examine the box
for spoofs - in that case, you'd have to get one with one main processor,
and rewrite the ROM.

Cheers!
Rich



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John Woodgate
 
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I read in sci.electronics.design that Guy Macon
macon.com_ wrote (in ) about 'I
need a good tinkerer who can help me with a project - Better
Explanation', on Mon, 27 Dec 2004:
John Woodgate wrote:

It is pretty simple, but for one thing - it's very difficult if not
impossible to get technical information on boom-box circuitry unless
it's an up-market product and you are an authorised dealer, and such
information is almost certainly necessary.


It sounds to me as if you could do it simply by accessing the
microphone, speaker, and switches - no knowledge of the internals
needed.


You, and anyone of similar opinion, are, of course, very welcome to try.
--
Regards, John Woodgate, OOO - Own Opinions Only.
The good news is that nothing is compulsory.
The bad news is that everything is prohibited.
http://www.jmwa.demon.co.uk Also see http://www.isce.org.uk
  #8   Report Post  
Guy Macon
 
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WilliamP.N.Smith wrote:

Of course, there's always the sleight-of-hand of swapping the
cassette...


That's what they expect. With the modified boombox he can stand
on the other end of the stage and have an audience member do the
magic.

  #9   Report Post  
Guy Macon
 
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Rich Grise wrote:

Guy Macon wrote:

John Woodgate wrote:

It is pretty simple, but for one thing - it's very difficult if not
impossible to get technical information on boom-box circuitry unless
it's an up-market product and you are an authorised dealer, and such
information is almost certainly necessary.


It sounds to me as if you could do it simply by accessing the
microphone, speaker, and switches - no knowledge of the internals
needed.


Someone else mentioned having engineers and/or tech examine the box
for spoofs - in that case, you'd have to get one with one main processor,
and rewrite the ROM.


I disagree, unless the engineers/techs are allowed to dissasemble it.
I was thinking of having them examine it to see that it works like
a normal boombox should.




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Avi Frier
 
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"Guy Macon" wrote in message
...

I have this mental picture of a bunch of fellows who design electronics
for a living examining this perfectly normal (at the moment) boom box
trying to figure out the trick. How did he do it? He was standing 15
feet away! The box with the cassette was mailed to someone we all know
and trust! We opened the box, we played the tape, we tested the tape
and the boombox and verified that they are both normal. I think that
most engineers would be stumped.


That's the plan! :-)




  #11   Report Post  
Guy Macon
 
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Roger Johansson wrote:

When a magician hangs a seemingly empty cage from the ceiling of a
nightclub, covers it in black cloth, and seconds later removes the cloth
and there is a white tiger in the cage.. that is totally boring to me.
Anybody can do that trick, if he can afford to buy the machinery that is
needed.


Go to a Penn and Teller show and try to figure out how they do it..

  #12   Report Post  
NSM
 
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"Avi Frier" wrote in message
...

| I'm not a close-up magcician, I'm a stage magician. My approach is
| different from others. I have done the cages, the sawing-in-half, the
| yada-yada. Now I'm getting into stuff that's a little more edgy: bullet
| catch, Russian roulette-style effects, and mentalism (which consists of
mind
| reading, and seemingly impossible predictions like one with a boom box
that
| I'm working on. I'll tell you about it someday...).

I think Penn and Teller do the best bullet catch I have seen.

| If all of us were making red hankies fly into the woods (or for that
matter
| pulling rabbits out of hats), the profession would have died quicker than
| Betamax.

I'm not sure it would have died even if magicians were limited to the top
100 tricks (or 20 or 10). Even when you see some loser showing how the
linking rings work on TV like Becker did on Povich, a good presentation is
still entertaining and a great one will dazzle.

I think it's the magi who become bored with the stuff they are doing and not
the audiences.

BTW, despite all the howling about the 'masked magician' and his shows I see
no sign of any long term (or short term) damage.

N


  #13   Report Post  
David Gersic
 
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On Tue, 28 Dec 2004 01:48:37 +0000, Guy Macon wrote:
I have this mental picture of a bunch of fellows who design electronics
for a living examining this perfectly normal (at the moment) boom box
trying to figure out the trick. How did he do it?


One guy with a Leatherman is going to ruin the whole thing.

--
| David Gersic |
| IBM: Laying off Thousands and Passing the Savings on to You! |
| Email address is munged to avoid spammers. Remove the underscores. |
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