DC DC Step Down Power Module 5-16V To 1.25V/1.5V/1.8V/2.5V/3.3V/5V Universal Adjustable Buck Voltage Converter Board 3A For LCD (WHL #77)

Just a brief service tweet announcement for today, no in-depth review of the thing – these super helpful, small and cheap “CA-1235” DC-DC buck converters, commonly available for 50 cents a pop (plus postage), do use a Monolithic Power MP1495 TSOT-23-8 control chip labelled “IACSE” – or a clone thereof. While that connection is not immediately obvious and not mentioned by MPS (it says chip labelling “ACS”), teh Googles knows about this and leads to a suitable datasheet. Some variants of the chip itself are not recommended for new designs, but of course there’s still a lot of stock and probably clones available out there, even Mouser lists a couple of original parts with hundreds of units available. […]


L40 Mixed Color Cube Various size For Home Or Office Toy Science Learning Cube Easter Prism Desktop Toy Home Ornament (WHL #76)

Electronics-free interlude for today.

That shameless advertising video from Vsauce

kickstarted my interest in those color-mixing (well, subtracting) “CMY” cubes.

A quick check of their website reveals their equally shameless pricing of 20/30/70 USD for 30/50/95mm cubes, ten bucks on top for international shipping, and, outside of their control, the local government slaps on another shameless 19% of VAT. Well, that’s 36, 48 or 95 USD=EUR for a novelty gadget. 1.32/0.38/0.11 € per cubic centimeter, to be precise. OK, cool but a bit steep. […]


The bk Group supercharger lounge revisited (#R15F1)

Well, told ya I’ll be visiting the strange bk world supercharger lounge again. I actually did a month ago, but here we are.
So, the good news first: It’s actually working now. It did require re-registration, but after a couple of minutes of fiddling on the smartphone, I finally got a barcode that unlocked the doors! Let’s just hope this isn’t required ever again, e.g. due to killing inactive accounts or a system migration…

The outside of those two wooden cubes was already featured in the original post #R15, so let’s start inside. […]


Fried Meilhaus ME-8200 Digital I/O card (WHL #75)

I can’t stand throwing away allegedly damaged stuff without proper diagnosis (or even working surplus items) at work. For today, I took home a pretty nice I/O card for final testing before sadly putting it in the bin. It’s a ME-8200B PCIe card from Meilhaus, a German test equipment specialist. It’s red (which makes it faster), and it retails for 680€ plus VAT at the moment, so certainly not something you’d throw away without second thought. However, due to our overpriced fancy standard clients at work, testing PCIe cards is basically impossible – you can’t do that inside those tiny cases, and I’d hate to completely disassemble one of those things (short cables to fit the envelope!), […]



Disqus and their WordPress integration are a joke (#E17F1)

There, I said it. I did use stronger wording in the first revision, though.

In no particular order:

Disabling the plugin and re-enabling breaks the comment integration. The three comments made via Disqus are still available on their page, they can still be exported to an XML file that cannot be imported anywhere, but they don’t show up here. That’s a fundamental no-go. It’s broken if it cannot do that. I will not enter a vendor lock-in when my benefits are ads over which I have no control or paying 132 bucks a year.

The Disqus plugin settings menu is utterly pointless if something goes wrong. […]


Disqus comment system (#E17)

I just pulled the plug on the onboard WordPress comment system in favour of a Disqus plugin. While I’m not entirely sure if that is a good idea and will stay that way, the regular comment system is utterly broken in today’s internet. There’s not too many visitors to the site in general and registering for a comment is a hassle, but leaving the comment system open to any bot out there simply doesn’t cut it. Even with the former regulations in place, the spam-to-comment ratio was around 150:1, and the spam detection isn’t 100% accurate as well. […]


ioBroker adapters and Raspberry Pi hardware pricing (#R14)

A quick service post for this week: RPis are pretty expensive nowadays because of “the chip shortage” (and people cashing in) – and maybe you don’t even need an upgrade when just running a couple of ioBroker things on your 1GB unit.

Well, I’ve upgraded my 3B+ from stretch to buster to bullseye earlier today, broke a few things (php8.0-mysql…not a database upgrade issue on ioBroker despite (null) values everywhere), changed swap size from 512M to 2G, and finally installed a docker image (why…) of teslamate. […]


Flashlight comparison – Dimmable Triple XM-L2 vs USB rechargeable XPL HI (WHL #74)

China gadgets, finally :cool:

Both of these have been laying around for years now. Time for a review – we currently got a little bit of a snowy April, but mosquito season has already started and four of those bastards have made it inside my living room. No survivors :twisted: And of course, those flashlights can also be used for, you know, flashlight stuff. Finding things, not tripping over other things, sitting around with empty batteries and so on…

So, the contenders:

“Roxane X6 XPL HI 1850LM 650m Type-C Rechargeable LED Flashlight IPX7 Waterproof USB Charging 26650 Powerful Searchlight – Cool White”, bought from Banggood almost two years ago at 25,56€ including shipping. […]


AMD Radeon R9 380 to Radeon RX 560 upgrade/downgrade remarks (WHL #73)

Groan, computer hardware again, please spare us… :mad:

Well, in this day and age of mismanagement, “chip shortage” and even war in Europe, you get what you get and you don’t get upset. I scored a graphics card on eBay (aftermath of my Covid quarantine) and I need to get rid of the old one as quickly as possible. As insane as GPU prices are nowadays, I don’t think a card that was released in June 2015 (close to fucking seven years ago) and that has a current market value still equal/higher than what I paid for in 2018 will ever go up in price again, ever. […]