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Make a CCFL flicker?

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
Hey everyone, I'm working on my Portal case and had a quick question I thought I'd ask outside the work log to see some answers.

In my case, I have 4 orange CCFLs to light up the case. But, because the case is all destroyed, I want the CCFLs to flicker, to give off a cool effect. I've been told to try the sound reactive inverters for the lights and put it near my hard drive or fan, but I'm not sure about that. That would be more of a temp fix. I want it to flicker randomly.

I was thinking about hooking it up to my hard drive light jumper so it would flicker with the hard drive. I figured I'd need a relay because the jumper isn't powerful enough. But, most relays are slow and the effect wouldn't be as good.

Anyone got any good ideas? Preferably ones that don't require a PhD in EE?
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Portal: ATE
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post #2 of 37
Very simple schematic using oscillators... I think it's fairly easy to follow, but then again I've taken a few EE classes at my polytechnic high school (but considering that you know how relays work, I'm assuming you have at least some basic knowledge as well)
Edited by killa_concept - 12/20/08 at 2:20am
post #3 of 37
Thread Starter 
I went to my local electrical store and they suggested 555 switch circuit or a transistor circuit with my hard drive for flickering. I'm tempted to try the transistor circuit.
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post #4 of 37
well if you need fan controllers too, you could get a couple of these.
http://www.overclockersclub.com/revi...fancontroller/
Edited by noobdown - 12/23/08 at 2:00pm
post #5 of 37
as long as the flicker circuitry is past the inverter, before the lamp. but even then I dont know if those lamps are designed for that constant on/off, regardless of how far between the ons
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post #6 of 37
Thread Starter 
Ya, I'm thinking of doing the transistor circuit. It's super simple and it's more responsive than a relay and it's cheaper.

The CCFLs will be behind their inverter the whole time. If my CCFLs die on me, I guess I'll have to blow another $15 and have MountainMods send me some more. Shouldn't be too bad since ground is one day shipping for me.
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post #7 of 37
yeah, as long as your not flickering the voltage to the inverter, you stand a better chance of having last a while, I would think
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post #8 of 37
Thread Starter 
Hmm...Could I take one of those flickering LED candles, part of the circuit, and use it with the CCFLs? Maybe with some modification? I notice the candles use 8v and inverter uses 12v. Would that be a problem?
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post #9 of 37
LEDs would work much better than CCFLs and you wouldnt have to replace your lights ever

and yea the 12v would burn up the LEDs
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post #10 of 37
I think you would need an intermediary device either relays or a solid state device to do it. It's not just the 8V to 12V step...it's the 1 amp that an inverter will draw as it kicks on...I doubt the LED candle circuit is built to handle much amperage.

An inverter will run on as low as 7 volts and dim the lamps. You can test this easily by attaching an inverter/lamp assembly to a fan controller.
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