1. Welcome to TechPowerUp Forums, Guest! Please check out our forum guidelines for info related to our community.

HDD Activity LED Mod

Discussion in 'Cases, Modding & Electronics' started by Ironsoap, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. Ironsoap New Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Messages:
    16 (0.01/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    I have this idea for an HDD activity LED mod.

    Basically, depending on the amount of HDD activity, it would trigger an unknown amount of LEDs to light up, spelling a phrase.

    So let's say the phrase is HDD. With a little activity, H would light up, but with a lot of activity, such as boot, HDD would be lit up.

    I don't know how plausible this would be, however, because from what I've seen, the HDD LED is just triggered by current on the 39th wire in an IDE drive or something. The only way this would be possible is if the amount of current were to vary.

    If this were to be the case, how would this be done? Would I have to program a microchip, or just design and order a PCB? What phrases would you guys suggest (my first Idea: "oh shit!; 7 LEDs").
     
  2. kwchang007

    kwchang007 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2007
    Messages:
    3,979 (1.39/day)
    Thanks Received:
    185
    Location:
    Severn, MD, USA.
    Hmm if it's one wire, I'd think there'd be two states on and off. Do you know if the voltage varies between more than two states?
     
  3. Ironsoap New Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Messages:
    16 (0.01/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    No, that's why I came to this forum. People tend to know a lot about subjects with minute importance.
     
  4. imperialreign

    imperialreign New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Messages:
    7,043 (2.62/day)
    Thanks Received:
    909
    Location:
    Sector ZZ₉ Plural Z Alpha
    in theory . . . if you can use a DVOM and verify that there is a voltage feed to the LED, and that the voltage changes in consistent manner with the intensity of the LED (gets brighter = higher voltage) . . . you could always snag a simple 5V LED from Radioshack or somewhere and a 100o 1/4W resistor and wire it to the (+) lead of the LED.

    I mean, you'll defi have to figure out the electrical specs for the LED circuit, and then decide on a correct resistor. Most LEDs won't even work if you drop the resistance to low. Some will, but the light will be so dim you won't be able to see it. But, in theory, if the voltage supplied to the LED does go higher, the intensity will get brighter as there will be more juice left over after running the resistor.

    If you wanted to tack on more LEDs, wire them in parallel to each other so that they will all be supplied with the same amount of voltage and amperage, and you can then use the resistor only for the ones that you don't want to light up at idle.
     
  5. Zedicus

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2004
    Messages:
    490 (0.13/day)
    Thanks Received:
    41
    hdd led is not on at idle any ways. the voltage out of the hd led circut on the mb maxes out at 3.3v (normal led voltage) and normally it just passes through the signal from the hdd pin on the drive. it does do some extra stuff when using sata drives or multiple drives though. if u wanted it to actually light up in a row like how an audio equalizer looks that would take a fair bit of circutry design. you would hav to pull from like a 5 volt source and use the hd wire as a trigger.
     
  6. t_ski

    t_ski Former Staff

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2006
    Messages:
    11,006 (3.49/day)
    Thanks Received:
    4,565
    There are lots of guides on the net that show you how to do the basic wiring and stuff for thos mod. All you are suggesting is a modified version of this. Here's one mod:

    http://www.bit-tech.net/modding/2002/06/23/hdd_activity_meter/1

    It's all a matter of creating some extra paths for the extra LEDs and stuff, maybe having to change some minor resistances values, etc.
     
    Crunching for Team TPU
  7. Ironsoap New Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Messages:
    16 (0.01/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    YES! this is what I had in mind. any tips or pointers?
     
  8. Fox34

    Fox34 New Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,049 (0.66/day)
    Thanks Received:
    98
    Location:
    Venice
    Ok easy way, get a programmable rom chip EEPROM or Eprom I pretty sure its called. Program it up(bolean/logic algebra)Basically just binary. Use and or and nor gates for the basic of it, and then for your extra like H then DD part use the gate(which I dont know the name right now) It will count basically so when its triggered for long enough it will cause a 1 on the D or DD. Ill try to get some links going here....


    EDIT: here something http://www.play-hookey.com/digital/synchronous_counter.html
    I could actually draw out the circuit in class and give it to you tomorrow then just hit up radio shack for the parts solder up and wa la
     
  9. Kreij

    Kreij Senior Monkey Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Messages:
    13,881 (4.87/day)
    Thanks Received:
    5,616
    Location:
    Cheeseland (Wisconsin, USA)
    Personally, I would do it a little differently.
    The HDD signal is toggled as the disk is accessed.
    Instead of looking at the voltage of the signal, I would look at the frequencey that the signal is toggled and have the digital circuitry respond to that using a frequency counter circuit.
    Then have the FC curcuit output whatever you want based on the input.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
    AsRock says thanks.
  10. Ironsoap New Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Messages:
    16 (0.01/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    This would make me worship you.
     
  11. Fox34

    Fox34 New Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,049 (0.66/day)
    Thanks Received:
    98
    Location:
    Venice
    If my teach lets me Ill do it then send it.
     
  12. keakar

    keakar

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    Messages:
    2,376 (0.85/day)
    Thanks Received:
    292
    Location:
    just outside of new orleans

    so you want something like an equalizer light bar but with letters instead? :cool:
     
  13. Ironsoap New Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Messages:
    16 (0.01/day)
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Another thing I was considering was just wiring LEDs all around my the inside of my case, and wire them to the HDD activity wire, so when the HDD has activity, the whole thing lights up. How many LEDs would I be able to do this to?
     
  14. 3991vhtes

    3991vhtes New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2007
    Messages:
    2,786 (1.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    121
    Location:
    My house.
    IMO, I dont think that is possible.
     
  15. t_ski

    t_ski Former Staff

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2006
    Messages:
    11,006 (3.49/day)
    Thanks Received:
    4,565
    As long as you are using a relay to power the whole thing, you can use as many LEDs as you want. Just use the HDD activity connector to provide a signal to trip the relay and turn it on.

    If you did LEDs around the case, it could get messy with all the wiring. If you did the HDD word/display, the you could probably fit it all on a blank 5.25" bay cover, or better yet, behind a piece of smoked plexi.

    There's some stuff on Cliff Anderson's FanBus page:

    http://www.fanbus.com/

    Talks about wiring LEDs and using resistors, etc...
     
    Crunching for Team TPU

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guest)

Share This Page