Floppotron - musical hardware

Bohemian Rhapsody played by … the Floppotron! Bohemian Rhapsody on FLOPPOTRON - YouTube


Yikes they’ve brought a modem into the mix. I was going to say this might be why I have a scanner around somewhere, just in case I need to repurpose it… but perhaps it’s also why I’ve (almost certainly) got a modem or two too…

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The modem lights dont match the actions/sounds… The CD/OH/AA light will never flash at that pace :slight_smile: The DTMF tone section also doesnt match…

To do tones, its ATDTxxxxx - and then you will have the RX light blink, the OH light will go on and then it will tone. The CD light will not be on as there will be no carrier at that point.

The modem sounds/things I would say is edited in.

I would think it’s like it is with the scanner: drive the actual hardware directly. Same with the disks…

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Take all of this with a grain of salt; I’m only generally familiar with the details of this. Corrections are welcome.

I’m pretty sure that the diskette drives can be driven through their standard interface. The Shugart SA/400 interface has a “step” input to move the head that can be toggled at whatever speed you like; different speeds will produce different audio frequencies.

For the scanners using their standard interface seems less likely and you would probably have to wire into the stepper motors to drive them directly.

The modem’s standard interface will not let you have that kind of control over the LEDs and the sounds produced. For the LEDs they probably disconnect them from the original driving hardware and wire into them directly to turn them on and off at will. The sounds definitely would need some serious internal hacking, since some of the sounds seem to be ones that an unmodified modem would produce only in respose to audio signals generated by another modem. This might require a fair amount of reverse-engineering the code and/or hardware within the modem. The more I think about it, the more likely it seems this would be really difficult, and it would certainly be a lot easier simply to make some recordings of a modem in action and play those back.

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Searching for PLC stuff I found these 2 videos on a German PLC forum
Ghostbuster’s Theme on eight floppy drives
Westerland - Die Ärzte on Dot Matrix printer