Category: Hardware

Laser power modulation: EOMs and AOMs

Fast laser power modulation in 2p systems is typically done with a Pockels cell. Conoptics sells one that is optimized for common Ti:Sapph systems, and that’s what many people end up using.

Pockels cells are a type…

LabMaker – a retail source for some open source projects

LabMaker sells parts, kits, and assemblies for open source neuroscience tools, including the UCLA MiniScope and Crystal Skull “coverslips”.

Server space – cloud or on-campus?

Cloud storage is not the cure-all it is sometimes proposed to be. On-campus servers have some advantages in transmission speed and cost, especially as storage requirements grow considerably. Talk to your campus IT services before shelling out…

Using NI DAQmx in MATLAB

This post is from Rob Campbell:
As part of TENSS we have created a set of examples showing how to use DAQmx in MATLAB without the Data Acquisition Toolbox. This is achieved using…

OpenMV – Fast and easy machine vision

OpenMV is an open source machine vision system. It’s designed to be easy-to-use, with a gentle learning curve. They want this to be the “Arduino of Machine Vision”. The software IDE is free and…

Moire lenses

Moiré lenses are cool: two patterned diffractive optical elements are rotated relative to each other to vary the power of the “lens”. Just watch the video (below).

Demonstration of focus-tunable diffractive Moiré-lenses
Stefan Bernet, Walter Harm, and…

PMT power supply

I was cleaning house a bit, and among my old files I found this, which might be worth sharing. Years ago I made a centralized power supply for a custom 2-photon imaging system I built. There were two epi…

Driving a green laser pointer with MicroManager

Reminder: green laser pointers have a ton of IR in them. It needs to be filtered out if you don’t want it. See this old (2011!) Labrigger post.

I.e., Paul and Kurt are right (see above)….

Pixy computer vision for tracking mouse behavior

Pixy is an open source computer vision system. Mostafa Nashaat, Robert Sachdev, and colleagues including Matthew Larkum have developed software for use with the Pixy, that can be used to track mouse behavior, including free movement around an enclosure…

Intan CLAMP Patch Clamp Amplifier Systems

Multiple people have asked for a discussion of Intan CLAMP patch clamp amplifiers. For those who are unfamiliar with them, they’re miniaturized patch clamp amplifiers. What looks like a headstage, is actually an entire…

The breadboard you didn’t know you wanted

It’s a microcontroller built into a breadboard. Actually, TWO microcontrollers. Both are Arduino-compatible. ATmega16U2 and ATmega328P.
It comes in both black, white, and pink because style matters.

P.S. The bottom side is filled with Lego…

ReSpeaker – Funded, still-available kickstarter for adding voice control to your project

In an earlier post, we discussed how surprisingly useful well designed voice control can be. There are open source software solutions for voice control, but they aren’t integrated with hardware, and there wasn’t really a kit to help one get started. Now there is.

Here’s an open source…

SpikeGadgets extracellular recording and open source software

SpikeGadgets makes hardware and software for extracellular array recording.

They make nice looking hardware, both for recording from arrays, and for controlling experiments.

Uniqb – construction system

Tibbo, whose microcontrollers were just mentioned here, also sells a construction system called Uniqb. It’s a bit like MakerBeam (it and another system, OpenBeam, are available on Amazon).


Tibbo Project System – modular microcontroller

Tibbo makes modular microcontrollers, with plug-in modules for I/O ports (e.g. DB9), relays, sensors, digitizers, etc. They have different sizes, the largest of which is available as a Linux version.