DIY Efficient Raspberry pi Glasses


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by Dylan.wolf » Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:19 am
I am trying to create these Raspberry Pi glasses. http://geeknizer.com/diy-build-google-glass/
But i do not want to spend almost $100 on the glasses just to cut them in half. Does anyone have any good ideas for going about this with as little money and as simple as possible?
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by Michael Meissner » Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:43 pm
Adafruit.com has several displays that take composite video input for $40-50. I've been thinking of getting the 1.5" display that is the size of 2 US quarters and has a 240x160 display to make a wearable video display. True, you don't get much detail at that size (37.1mm x 32.7mm x 2.6mm), but it should be mountable on glasses. This is what I'm talking about: https://www.adafruit.com/products/910.

My other thought is to have something like a ball cap, and put a car LCD viewer/MP4 player on it with a hinge, so it can be flipped down as needed. I have a JXD mp4 player I got 1-2 years ago, and I need to see how it works on the PI. It is a lot bigger than the google glasses however.

I would expect to see google glasses knock-offs in a year or two.
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by toxibunny » Fri Oct 05, 2012 11:28 pm
If all you want is a simple 'always in view' information display, then there are *tiny* OLEDs around that should do the trick, and could be fairly discreet. Google 'tiny oled'.

If you want a more VR style full-colour LCD jobbie, they're going to be a lot bigger/clumsier
note: I may or may not know what I'm talking about...
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by majassow » Sat Oct 06, 2012 8:03 pm
I'm not so sure that simply mounting two 1.5"LCD screens ata distance about equal to eye-glasses or goggles will be sufficient. It is quite difficult for people with normal eye sight to focus that close, and if they could it would be quite tiring.
You need some sort of optics which creates an image which appears to the eye to be several yards or more away.
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by pooklaroux » Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:56 pm
Oh,. I am so totally into the idea of a wearable Pi. I agree with most of the posters here, you really have to be good with optics to understand how to put together a small monitor for use close up to the eye like glasses. Honestly I think you will end up spending more than just buying a set of MyVu or Vuzix,
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by toxibunny » Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:36 pm
I bet you could homebrew something up by using jeweller's eyeglasses - they magnify and have a really short focus... Cheap enough to try out, too - http://www.jewellersequipment.co.uk/eyeglasses.html
note: I may or may not know what I'm talking about...
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by Dylan.wolf » Fri Oct 19, 2012 1:44 pm
Thank you all for responding. As you can tell I am very new to all this I just bought the pi a few days ago and have some pretty high ambitions as you can tell. All of this really helps. I really just want some form of wearable tech. I thought this would be the best.
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by pooklaroux » Sat Oct 20, 2012 2:32 am
I took the plunge and ordered a set of used myvu shades 301 universal -- I will let you know how they work, and whether they are a god fit for the Pi.

I did notice that Sony HMZ-T1 Wearable HDTV 2D/3D has hdmi input but I just can't justify $799 right now for that. That would be amusing -- a $35 computer hooked up to an $800 (monitor) LOL!
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by Lob0426 » Sat Oct 20, 2012 4:23 am
Throughout the history of wearable computing, the display has been the most expensive single piece of equipment. The MyVu crystal display was what I thought might make a good display.
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by pooklaroux » Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:09 pm
Lob0426, I was looking for a set of the Myvu crystal, but the only pairs I could find were marked "for ipod" and i am not certain about the adapters I would need to use to port it to something I could use for the pi. The set I ordered features a "universal" connection, when I get it I will have a better idea of what exactly that means. Since I didn't really spend a lot for this set, if I find I can overcome the "ipod only" set up, I will probably seek out a pair of the crystal.
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by Lob0426 » Sun Oct 21, 2012 12:53 am
Yeah, there were like three different video connection options. That does make it harder to find the right ones.
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by Johnny002 » Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:33 am
majassow wrote:I'm not so sure that simply mounting two 1.5"LCD screens ata distance about equal to eye-glasses or goggles will be sufficient. It is quite difficult for people with normal eye sight to focus that close, and if they could it would be quite tiring.
You need some sort of optics which creates an image which appears to the eye to be several yards or more away.

The way to correct this is to use a convex lens mounted directly over said screen. The hardest part will be getting a lens to fit it preferably with a flat side. Other than that, the hardest problem I have had with doing this same project is being able to get such a small screen and connecting it over GPIO. Any advice on furthering this way?
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by Johnny002 » Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:37 am
Does anyone know of a small 1.5 - 2 inch LCD screen from a phone or something that can easily be connected to the RPi? I have one screen but it hasn't been cooperating.
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by Michael Meissner » Wed Oct 24, 2012 1:15 pm
I haven't hooked it up to the pi yet, but I just got the 1.5" LCD display from Adafruit, and I was using it with the live view output from my camera. This display takes composite video, and from the r-pi, you would need a male to male composite cable with male RCA jacks on each end.

Now, at 55, I am starting to do the multiple glasses dance, where I need different glasses (or bi/tri-focals) for reading, computer, and distance. With the display about 6"/15cm, I could see the screen clearly if I was wearing my reading/computer bi-focals. At about 8"/20cm, I could see the screen fairly clearly if I was wearing my distance glasses (which is my intended application).

I need to rig up a more permanent platform for the display, as you have to be careful of the cable connecting the electronics to the display. After making a platform, I will need to play with various magnifying glasses to get the appropriate distance from my glasses.

I also need to solder a USB power plug onto the 2 wires, so I can power it remotely. With a power draw of 120mA at 5 volts, I figure I have a run time of about 10-20 hours with a 5000maH cell phone battery charger that I have.

Note, I wouldn't want to read a lot of text on the display, but for viewing pictures from my camera's live view output, it is ok. For text, I would probably use the larger 4" mp4 player that I have that does 320x240 and takes video input.

The Adafruit URL for the display is: http://www.adafruit.com/products/910
:ugeek:
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by ZackFreedman » Fri Oct 26, 2012 5:00 pm
Hey all, I built this wearable computer, which I call the Pi in the Face (aka PiBorg). The entire system, RasPi and monocular included, cost me just over $100. Here's a pic of myself wearing the system at Maker Faire with a KeyGlove:

Image

The display is from a MyVu Crystal. All MyVu Crystal sets, including the "Made for iPod" version, are identical internally and take 640x480 composite video through a 3-channel headphone jack. You can find them used for $40-100 on Craigslist and Ebay.

You're better off salvaging a system from video glasses than trying to make one yourself. The display, collimating optics, video driver, and cables will end up costing more and looking goofier.

If you're on a totally shoestring budget, can live with monochrome, and are OK with high voltage near your face, you can use a CRT viewfinder from an old camcorder, which takes composite video directly.

I build a lot of wearables and accessories. Feel free to AMA.
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by Dylan.wolf » Fri Oct 26, 2012 7:19 pm
@Zach
I initially based this project after your's so this is flattering you commenting on it. The only thing though is i could not see spending $100 on the MyVu to cut them in half. I am trying to do this for relatively cheep because i am only 15 and not trying to spend the small amount of money i make.
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by Johnny002 » Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:55 am
Dylan.wolf wrote:@Zach
I initially based this project after your's so this is flattering you commenting on it. The only thing though is i could not see spending $100 on the MyVu to cut them in half. I am trying to do this for relatively cheep because i am only 15 and not trying to spend the small amount of money i make.


This is part of the reasoning for my project as well. If average cellphone screens can be made compatible with the RPi and laid over a lens allowing for a similar viewing experience, all the better and cheaper.
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by Michael Meissner » Sun Oct 28, 2012 4:20 am
@Zack
I bought a used MyVue with intent to use it for my steampunk camera. I bought an Ipod dock hoping to use it to send composite to the glasses, and I wasn't able to get it to work. Can you point me to a guide on how to mod the Ipod MyVue?
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by ZackFreedman » Wed Oct 31, 2012 10:38 pm
There's been so much interest from this forum, I'm going to assemble an expanded tutorial on how to make the wearable display. Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy has screwed my Internet and put a moat around the MakerBar, so it may take a bit of time!

Dylan, before I built the MyVu version, I made one with a Vuzix iWear 230XL. This is 320x240 and less elegant, but is much cheaper at around $40. I have pics from its construction, and I'll post a tutorial about that too.

Keep an eye on my personal blog, zackfreedman.com, where I'll post and update these.
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by cloudsloth » Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:24 pm
Regarding the cell phone screens, this has been discussed in other threads and is truly a tragedy of the times. There are two nearly insurmountable obstacles:
Dsi output is totally inaccessible without access to the gpu binary blob
Cell phone screens are hard to find specs for their pinouts

There are people working on R.E. the first issue, and it's possible the necessary info will be provided by Broadcom/R.Pi foundation to make *specific* screens functional. The second issue is a tragedy in general, but is probably solvable on specific popular screens, perhaps the iPhone 4 for example.

I'm not an expert, so if anyone thinks my analysis wrong please speak up ;)
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by toxibunny » Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:13 pm
ZackFreedman wrote:...a moat around the MakerBar...


Shipping pallet drawbridge, stat!
note: I may or may not know what I'm talking about...
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by Michael Meissner » Mon Nov 05, 2012 2:10 pm
Michael Meissner wrote:I haven't hooked it up to the pi yet, but I just got the 1.5" LCD display from Adafruit, and I was using it with the live view output from my camera. This display takes composite video, and from the r-pi, you would need a male to male composite cable with male RCA jacks on each end.

Well, it looks like I may have let the magic smoke go out. I was trying to hook it up to my 5 volt cell phone charger battery (with 5 volt, 1 amp output) that I was going to use to power it in the field, and I smelled smoke. I don't know whether there is a fault on the board or I broke the delicate cable connecting the processor to the screen. The screen went black, and various attempts at starting it up again fail. Oh well. As the Adafruit order page, says be careful. It was an interesting size for my steampunk camera video output.
:(
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by Dylan.wolf » Wed Dec 05, 2012 4:26 am
ZackFreedman wrote:There's been so much interest from this forum, I'm going to assemble an expanded tutorial on how to make the wearable display. Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy has screwed my Internet and put a moat around the MakerBar, so it may take a bit of time!

Dylan, before I built the MyVu version, I made one with a Vuzix iWear 230XL. This is 320x240 and less elegant, but is much cheaper at around $40. I have pics from its construction, and I'll post a tutorial about that too.

Keep an eye on my personal blog, zackfreedman.com, where I'll post and update these.

Sorry to resurrect this old thread but i haven't seen an update about it. Has anyone else had any luck lately with screens?
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by Dylan.wolf » Wed Dec 05, 2012 4:30 am
Also since the holidays are coming up does anyone have any suggestions for starter screens to practice with, or some cheep touch screen alternatives?
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by Firestar » Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:19 am
I've been on a mission to try and make a pair of these myself. That said, Myvu Crystals are being super elusive (Only pair on Ebay is $300, and they're already modified for something)
These would be perfect if they would come out: http://www.lumus-optical.com/index.php? ... &Itemid=15

Anyone else have any luck finding a good display?
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