Proximity sensor/Arduino/Max project: need guidance!

Oct 18, 2013 at 8:19am

Proximity sensor/Arduino/Max project: need guidance!

Hey guys.

I’m in the process of undergoing a college project, within which I hope to utilize Max and Arduino in conjunction with a proximity sensor. I’m deliberately stepping into territory that I’m quite unfamiliar with, as I haven’t been using Max for long, but I have quite a lot of time to put this together and am prepared to put in whatever hours are necessary to fill the gaps in my knowledge: I would be immensely grateful, however, if anyone could give me some feedback on how feasible this project sounds, or even suggest routes I should investigate to achieve it, be it new concepts or specific equipment I should look into, anything would be helpful.

Long story short, the premise is a system that controls the output level of a speaker system based on the listener’s proximity to it. In even simpler terms: it gets louder as you walk away from it, so you’re always perceiving a consistent level. A bit of a simplistic and silly idea, but it arguably has a practical use, and I think putting it together could be interesting and challenging.

I’m thinking of implementing it in between the amplification and speaker stage of one of my conventional home audio systems: an additional stage of A/D/A conversion dictating the final level reaching the speakers. I figured I would use Max to devise a means of creating a relationship between the proximity information and a level increase.

My problem here is harnessing the proximity information and getting it into my system: I’ve been looking into Arduino lately, and it seems like it could be feasible to do this, albeit pretty tricky. Can anyone offer some insight here?

I have a tendency to get carried away with fulfilling a concept, and frequently miss key practical problems. If anyone can point out glaringly obvious points of idiocy here, I wouldn’t take offence. I’m very much a rookie.

To whoever who can make sense of this ramble and help me out, I thank you in advance!


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