• Sat. May 14th, 2022

RFID music player offers vintage charm

ByTina R. Wimmer

Mar 29, 2022

By all objective measures, with the possible exception of durability, today’s technology is superior to that of the past. This is certainly true for music players, modern devices with the ability to play almost any song ever recorded and the ability to do so with high fidelity. But old stuff just looks cooler, which is why Redditor flatulentdisaster designed this modern RFID music player that still offers vintage charm.

One could be forgiven for assuming this device is legitimately vintage, as the wooden casing looks like something straight out of the mid-century. If you saw it on your grandmother’s shelf, you’d think it had been there since the 50s. But the electronics and functionality are all modern. Users choose from several RFID cards, each with a cassette label associated with a specific playlist. When the user taps the RFID card on the top of the wooden music player, it starts the related playlist.

Most similar projects use single-board computers, but this one is built around an Arduino Nano instead, showing just how powerful this development board is. It connects to both a DFRobot DFPlayer Mini MP3 player and an MFRC522 RFID reader. Each RFID card has a unique numeric ID, which the Arduino reads through the MFRC522. It then uses this variable to select the appropriate music folder stored on an SD card. The DFPlayer Mini has a built-in DAC (digital-to-analog converter) and amplifier, so it can pump music directly to a set of small speakers.