Category Archives: Hardware development

#oggstreamer – Batch Assembling 40pcs.(3) – Frontpanel assembly

For the OggStreamer frontpanel I needed to come up with a solution to produce light-guides that direct the light from the VU-Meter, Power and On-Air LEDs. The first Idea was to use a 3D Printer and print this light-guides out of transparent PLA. But after trying to imaging how the light-guides would look like, I gave up on this Idea and developed a different process for this. Now I am using the transparent properties of Hot-Glue to act as light-guide and glue the LED-PCB in Place at the same time. The transparent Hot-Glue fills all the space of the CNC-punched holes in the aluminum front-panel. In order to produce a smooth surface I am using a glass plate.

Step 1: You will have to apply a lubricant on the glass plate to form a thin oily film so that the Hot-Glue doesn’t stick to good on the glass – which would make separating the completed assemble from the glass a pain in the a**.  (Notice the broken glass plate from our attempts without lubricant!!) WARNING: You are using a glass plate, which can break and have sharp edges. So be careful and don’t apply excessive force – If your assembly got stuck on the glass plate you can use a Hot-Air-Gun to separate it, clean it and repeat the process.
Step 2: Evenly spread the lubricant – don’t wipe it of the plate, but try to produce a tiny but consistent film on the glass plate, without producing droplets.
Step 3: Fix the aluminum front-panel  with office clips to the glass plate – adjust the office clips in a way so that they will help you aligning the LED-PCB.
Step 4: Wait till your Hot-Glue Gun has reached steady temperature and begin applying the Hot-Glue just over the holes of Power and OnAir LED. Remember to do this and the following steps quickly, because you only have a limited time windows to apply the LED-PCB proper.
Step 5: Do the same for the VU-Meter holes.
Step 6: Once all glue is applied gently push in the LED-PCB – So that the still liquid Hot-Glue is pushed towards the glass plate.
Step 7: The Hot-Glue is still liquid for a few seconds, you can use the time to turn around the glass plate to see if the LED-PCB is properly aligned and if needed adjust its position.
Step 8: Let the assembly cool down – if you are producing more then one unit, you can use this time to prepare the next one.
Step 9: Remove the cooled down assembly gently – you shouldn’t need to much force – as the applied lubricant forms a layer between the HotGlue and the glass.  In any case be careful – you are handeling a glass plate which has the chance to break – The glass plate you see in the picture broke because we were trying to seperate the assembly from the glass plate using a screw driver.
Step 10: Now you can start installing the push button and the potentiometer – We start with the push button first. Take care not to forget about the elastics ring that comes with the push button.
Step 11: Insert the push button from the TOP side.
Step 12: Mount the Pushbutton with plastic Nut – the force of your fingers is enough to mount the plastic nut securly in place
Step 13: Insert the Potentiometer-PCB from the BOTTOM side.
Step 14: Place the washer and the Nut for the Potentiometer from the TOP Side. And gently fix it with the flat wrench.
Step 15: Press the prepared Potentiometer Knob on the the Potentiometer – You might need to use a drill (6mm) to prepare the Knob. Only push the Knob with gentle force.
Step 16: Use the corner of a Table (or something similar) to support the Potentiometer from the backside and apply a bit more force so that the Potentiometer Knob is securely mounted to the Potentiometer.
Step 17: Glue the cable of the push button according to the picture. (optional)
The final result:

Although this process works very well – you need to take into account that gluing the PCB in Place makes it a bit harder to repair or replace. You will need to use a Hot Air-Gun to separate the aluminum front-panel from the LED-PCB, further you will need a little patience to remove the glue residue. But it is definitvly doable.

#oggstreamer – PCB Design Files converted to KiCAD

We proudly announce our KiCad Conversion of the original PCAD2006 Design.

You can download it from the repo here

Note: This version was tested with KiCAD (BZR4213 GOST) – The currently available Windows-Installer from ( KiCad_stable-2013.07.07-BZR4022_Win_full_version.exe ) is known to make Problems parsing the PCB File (Schematics works fine though).

#oggstreamer – Batch Assembling 40pcs.(2) – THT Soldering

We received our PCBs from the manufacturer with all SMT Parts presolderd, but we still had to solder the THT Parts – The following two videos shows this process. Warning: You will see some improvised soldering … 🙂

Part 1:

Part 2:

#oggstreamer – Batch Assembling 40pcs.(1) – LineOut Jack

Today we assembled around 40 front panels – like these ones:


the assembly of the cable to the Jack has been done before. Today we did the following steps:

1. Removing the anodized aluminium at the corners so that the screws make a proper electrical connection to the main body


2. Removing that anodized aluminium at the back of the front panel to ensure a proper grounding of the LineOut Jack


3. Cutting a piece of copper tape (approx. 2,5cm)


4. Making an additional cut to copper tape – this is where we will make the solder joint to the Jack


5. Applying the copper tape to the back of the front panel (be careful with the orientation of the cut for the solider joint)


6. Cutting the hole in the copper tape


7. Inserting the Jack (once again check orientation)


8. Place the plastic washer and the plastic nut on the Jack


9. Mount gently the plastic nut


10.Bend the cutout of the copper tape so it touches the first Pin (GND) of the Jack …


11. … and solder it


12. Solder the first capacitor (10nF 100V)

SONY DSC13. Solder the second capacitor (10nF 100V)


The final result:


Stay tuned for more Batch Assembling 40pcs. photo-series and videos … 🙂

#oggstreamer – EMC compliance Report

With the help of EMV Consulting – we managed to test the OggStreamer for EMC compliance. We tested against EN61000-6-1:2007 and EN61000-6-3:2007 – the report of this measurement can be downloaded here.
Here a picture from the “secrete chamber” of EMC compliance 🙂


And another one from the ESD testing:


#oggstreamer – Lasermarkings Designfiles

The Design of the Laser-Markings was done using Inkscape and GIMP – Many thanks to my sister this way, who made the OggStreamer look proper. The font used in all of the Files is called Xolonium which is licensed under GPL special thanks go to Severin Meyer who designed this great font.

You will notice that only FRONT,BACK and TOP are drawn in Inkscape – thats because of the great number of Logos it was easier to draw the BOTTOM directly with GIMP – and we already new at this moment, that the CorelDraw wouldn’t open our SVGs.

here are the PNG

DPI600_PIXELREWORK  - OggStreamer Graphik-Design BACK DPI600_PIXELREWORK - OggStreamer Graphik-Design FRONT
DPI600_PIXELREWORK - OggStreamer Graphik-Design TOP DPI600_PIXELREWORK - OggStreamer Graphik-Design BOTTOM

The whole process of Laser Marking was not really easy. One main reason for this was that Inkscape always exports Fonts Anti-Aliased … And opening the SVGs in CorelDraw directly didn’t work either. with Fonts Anti-Aliased exported we produced strange effects on the Laser, which apparently only uses Black and White as information … There was some trickery needed in order to get the Design done proper. We also tweaked the Bitmaps on Pixel-by-Pixel to get good results … So your millage may very if you want to use the PNGs from above.

Because the case was already anodized aluminum – and engraving already bright anodized aluminum results in poor contrasted, we needed to use special Transfer-Tape (CerMark LM6018) and Marking Paste (markSolid 904). The Transfer-Tape was used for the non-dense Designs (FRONT,BACK,TOP) – the Marking Paste was applied with an Airbrush for the denser populated BOTTOM.

the SVGs for FRONT, BACK, TOP can downloaded from the mcad-repository

#oggstreamer – EMC compliance test passed

yes – after a 13+ hours day of work – we passed EMC compliance testing :=) Actually it was not peace of cake – but with two minor adjustment we could meet the required performance criteria. Details and the associated report will follow in a few days.

Meanwhile some photographs of the finished Hardware:


I will try to finish a couple of devices during the next two weeks and start shipping 🙂

#oggstreamer – graphics design finished

I just tested the graphics, which will be laser engraved in the final oggstreamers. For the test I used a transparency sheet and laser printed the graphics with 600 dpi.

The result looks quite promising – here it is: (sorry for the bad photo quality)



#oggstreamer – Production costs – a rough estimation

Here I want to give you an Idea – of how much the production of 50 OggStreamers costs.

The following calculation still leaves the following costs:

  • NRE costs for soilder stencils
  • NRE costs for programming of the pick’n’place machine
  • machining of the case
  • laser-engraving the case
  • THT soldering
  • Final assembly

all prices in EUR (without taxes)

PCB 550
Special SMD-Parts 1650
Pick’N’Place + Standard SMD-Parts 2400
THT Parts 1150
Sum 7950

thats roughly 200 Euros per Device (as a conservative Estimation) – a more realistic Estimation would conclude with apprx. 160 Euros per Deivce. – remember these are not the final production costs, because this calculation leaves out the above mentioned points.

The OggStreamer-Device started as a Hobby-project and evolved over time – it is an ongoing Experiment so to say – and it was never cost optimized. All our design decisions were carried out the way that we wanted it to be – we didn’t waste a thought about the economic feasibility of this project. 🙂 So it is kind of miraculous that we have come that far in this process. A pilot run of 12 devices was accomplished with the generous support of many friendly people and our supporters. And there is more to come we recently secured the sponsorship for the production of 50+ devices from the “Internet Foundation Austria” – who acknowledged the value of this Project and OpenHardware in general. The OggStreamer is now part of the “NetIdee 2012” sponsored projects.

#oggstreamer – measuring the input stage (2nd time)

Today I had an in detailed look on the input amplifier of the OggStreamer – i documented the measurement in this report.

If you don’t want to read the full report – I copy’n’pasted the summary here:


The input amplifier stage of the OggStreamer performs in almost all respects as desired. One problem showed up during the measurement: The Inbalance of Gain between Channel A and Channel B. Further investigation proved that the Potentiometer is responsible for this Inbalance. We already took care for a second option for the potentiometer while desing the OggStreamer. The option would be a Vishaytype of Potentiometer – for the next batch of OggStreamer devices this will be an economic decission whether or not to use the Vishay-Poti (12 Euro) or the ALPS-Poti (1,2 Euro). Apart from the Inbalance-Issue the ampilifier works as desired.

Gain Channel Inbalance -3dB cutoff THD+N Crosstalk
Measurement 1 0dB 0.18 dB ~ 30 kHz < 0.2 % < -60 dB
Measurement 2 -15dB 0.57 dB ~ 27 kHz < 0.12 % < -60 dB
Measurement 3 15dB 0.27 dB ~ 25 kHz < 0.6 % < -50 dB


  1. We will specifiy the input stage of the OggStreamer for +/- 15dB Gain – in reality it is a little wider but for the docs we will stick with +/- 15 dB
  2. The ALPS-Potentiometer performs mediocre – We will test an alternative VISHAY-Type (Order Code: 148DXG56S103SP) and evaluate if we can afford using this more expensive Potentiometer