Way back in 2008 I did quite a bit of work with the Pixart camera taken from a Wiimote. There are no official specifications or data sheet available, so everything has been gleaned by reverse-engineering the chip itself.
Over the last couple of years I’ve had a lot of people ask me about the sensor and how they can hook it up for their own applications. So much so that this month I’ve decided to produce the definitive solution as another downloadable set of plans, schematics and source code.
Some of you may remember my original attempts using a piece of veroboard…
Kind of ugly, but it worked, and provided some limited expression control for the laser harp. All the original information on how you hook up a camera is here.
This time I wanted to address everyone’s requests – so I designed three types of PCB:
This is the “all-inclusive” version containing the uController and the Pixart support hardware.
This is the Arduino “shield” version – provides MIDI IN and OUT, along with indicator lights and the support hardware for the Pixart sensor.
Finally this the “simple” version – 5V input and I2C connections – should work with just about any uController.
Additionally, I removed the surface mount components – now the bi-directional level shifting is handled by inexpensive MOSFETS.
The boards are all single-sided and designed to be easy to make at home using “toner transfer”. Alternatively all 3 designs are available for purchase from BatchPCB.
Here’s a preview video of one version of the device: