TV made out of a grid of discarded remote controls

Artist Chris Shen made a TV out of 625 discarded remote controls, hacking their LEDs to light up in a grid, creating a low-rez moving image. The Evil Mad Scientists posted his loving documentation of the the technical aspects of the project:

The main change to the Peggy was to solder molex headers instead of LEDs: this is to allow the wires to be easily plugged in and out of the board which is necessary when dismantling and reassembling the piece. Yes, all 625 remotes are numbered so they can be removed from the frame for transportation! The current and voltage was also adjusted fo IR LEDs as opposed to visible LEDs.

While researching, the main thing I was looking for was the ability to play video (live) on a low-res matrix. I looked into various ways of doing this but once I found the Peggy 2 kit it gave me confidence to go ahead with building Infra because of the open-source nature, existing work done by Windell, and Jay Clegg’s video Peggy mod.

I connect all the remote controls via 500 meters of speaker wire to the Peggy, held into the frame by a simple looped elastic band. The circuit is mounted to a sheet of acrylic as the circuit bowed with all the wire attached. Each remote had to be opened to solder the wire directly to the LEDs legs. The wire is then routed out through the back of the remote and closed back up.

The TV is on show in London, at 18 Hewett Street, London, EC2A 3NN, until 3rd February 2013.

Infra, a TV built from remote controls Artist Chris Shen made a TV out of 625 discarded remote controls, hacking their LEDs to light up in a grid, creating a low-rez moving image.

Discuss

5 Responses to “TV made out of a grid of discarded remote controls”

  1. echolocate chocolate says:

    For some reason this makes me feel tremendously depressed.

    I love the idea of transience in art, but hate transience in consumer electronics. Everything is so cheap is easily discarded. Even when stuff works, it’s thrown away. So this piece is thoroughly brilliant and that’s probably why it makes me feel sad.

  2. nixiebunny says:

    Wiring up pixels one by one gives a person an appreciation of the cathode ray tube’s ability to make pixels out of nothing but a phosphor screen. I’ve built a couple LED video screens, so I know all about it. The second one, I only soldered the first thousand prototype LEDs by hand and had robots build the rest.

  3. miasm says:

    needs moar remotes.

  4. Thorzdad says:

    Low-rez is an understatement. This looks lower rez than the first electronic tv images.

  5. Woody Smith says:

    I didn’t see a single recognizable image.  It reminds me of the “color organs” that used to respond to music with flickering lights, back in the 60s….until we all noticed how BORING it was.

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