Non-Tube Clocks: LED and other random clocks

Peter from clued me in to a software nixie clock that he made.  It is a Windows / Linux piece of software that emulates a six digit nixie clock.  If you don't want to bring your real nixie clock to work, this might just be what you need :)

Update October 2018: It appears that Axiris have transmogified into Elektor, and the software is not available any more. I can't find anything about the clocks any more either. There are some other clocks, which appeared in Elektor magazines. I've updated the links to those.



Okay, tonight we have two new LED clocks to check out.  Sure, they're not nixie clocks but they are pretty cool and I think you'll love them.

First up is yanzeyuan's LED matrix clock.  This gadget is made up of 6 5x7 square led matrix displays.  Below is a quick video of it in use.  You can learn more about it in the forum, on his site, and you can purchase a kit for $99 on eBay.

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Next up is a large 4 digit 7-segment clock by forum member Digitalledclock. He posted a few cool photos in the forum and he will be selling these via eBay soon.  It is a nice clean design that I quite like.  Learn more in the forum and enjoy the photos below.  These sell for $199 on eBay (link coming soon).

LED Clock

LED Clock

$2.99 / iTunes Store

Okay, here is a bit of a departure from my normal reviews.  This is an iOS app for both the iPhone and iPod.  I haven't done a review like this before so hopefully someone finds it helpful.

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About two weeks ago the program creator, Kevin, emailed me and asked me to review his latest creation.  It is a nixie clock app and the reason that I really like this one is his attention to detail.  Below is his description:

From Kevin:

The graphics used for the clock were entirely hand-designed by myself in 3D. The tubes are a mix of features from a National NL-5025 and a RFT Z5660M with a whole bunch of inspiration from just about every other nixie tube I could get good reference images on. Every single component required to create a physically viable nixie tube is present and proper mechanically- the tubes are even accurately wired up, the cathodes are insulated from each other and the anode, etc. There is no reason why they wouldn't work if they were real (part of the reason why I created Numatron 2 was to see just how accurate I could make everything).

Likewise, the lighting effects required a fair bit of research into gas discharge tubes and the theory behind them. Most of my research eventually made its way into a set of 3D shaders that I used to create (what I believe to be) the first accurate 3D simulation of a volumetric discharge glow ever created.

From start to finish, the project took about 3 months. I refused to release the application until all of my (rather excessive) expectations were met. It wasn't good enough to "look like" a nixie tube. Numatron 2 had to be instantly recognizable as a nixie clock to anyone who was previously familiar with them, and in that regard, I believe I succeeded.




Looking for a little Nixie Tube love on your work computer?  Dean sent me a link to his cool Yahoo! widget

From the website:

This is a simple Nixie Tube widget that displays a continuous time update on your desktop. It is based upon a Nixie vacuum tubes that were used as indicators in the 50/60s - 70s. The originals have a character of their own which this widget aims to replicate.

This widget acts as a simple clock upon your desktop and as an extra benefit it is also a moveable bit of eye-candy. It is a fully working widget. This version is beta so please no complaints on functionality - I will be adding more and fixing everything as time progresses.

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