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PostPosted: 13 May 2011, 13:13 
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Joined: 03 Jan 2009, 10:44
Posts: 121
This may be way off topic or not. You folks let me know. I am trying to design a water garden fountain that is responsive to different volumes and frequencies of music. I've seen these on a grand scale but nothing for my home garden pond.

You can buy fountain systems that have a water pump control system which is driven via audio input. As sound volume increases, so does the pump speed and the resulting stream of water. With multiple pumps being controlled by different audio frequencies it's possible to create a wonderful water fountain which accompanies music. Here's my challenge:

I want to create a unit much like a speaker crossover that separates an audio signal into six (more or less) electrical outputs. Each output will control a single 12 volt fountain pump. Low frequency sounds activate one pump, mid-range sounds another, and so on. Hopefully this makes sense...

I'm assuming that some sort of speaker crossover system could do the job, but I'm stuck on where to begin. My first hurdle appears to be generation of a variable 12 volt signal for each pump. Can anyone help get me started. please?

I've ordered a fountain system made by CapPumps called SplashDance...it does what I'm hoping to do except the controller responds only to music volume, not frequency. My intention is to reverse-engineer the unit by adding a frequency "splitter" and additional pumps. Here's a video:

mms://64.224.5.139/calpump.com/SPLASHDANCE.WMV

Thanks in advance for any help.


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PostPosted: 17 May 2011, 14:18 
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Joined: 15 Jul 2009, 15:59
Posts: 11
Location: Nashville, Tennessee, USA
There may be a better way than this, but what about a six band equalizer? http://www.generalguitargadgets.com/pdf/ggg_eq6.pdf I found this project of one with a quick google search. Maybe not the best plan, but I would think you might be able to change the circuit up a bit and get six outputs, otherwise it would take one for each of your pumps. With the pots of the EQ you could then "Tune" them to overlap a bit to maybe get a nice effect.

Adam


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PostPosted: 23 May 2011, 15:50 
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Joined: 03 Jan 2009, 10:44
Posts: 121
Thank you for the reply, Adam, and sorry for the delayed acknowledgement. In fact, I did wind up deciding an equalizer would be a good starting point, and intend to pull out the one I bought many years ago before I became an audio "snob" (har, har!).

Meanwhile, I was considering a way to interface the EQ with pumps, and came up with the idea of using opticouplers from Silonex (as in the infamous Lightspeed Attenuator). Output from each band of the EQ would drive the LED in the optocoupler which would control the 12 volt supply to the pump for that channel. Should work...maybe. When my fountain system arrives I'll give it a try.


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PostPosted: 06 Jun 2011, 12:10 
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Joined: 31 May 2011, 17:04
Posts: 3
you should consider a pump that can handle this 4-20mA driven and not an on/off

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