Name that Ware, April 2016

The Ware for April 2016 is shown below.

The ware this month is courtesy Philipp Gühring. I think it should be a bit more challenging that the past couple months’ wares. If readers are struggling to guess this one by the end of this month, I’ve got a couple other photos Philipp sent which should give additional clues.

But, interested to see what people think this is, with just this photo!

43 Responses to “Name that Ware, April 2016”

  1. asdf says:

    The only things using ring-shaped PCBs that immediately spring to mind are light rings for cameras and microscopes.

    • Ingo says:

      Another option would be the internal electronics of a camera lens.

      Lots of details on that board seem to scream “cheap crap thingy” to me though, like the missing solder resist and the very rough internal edges.

    • J. Peterson says:

      My thought as well. Heavier yellow cable is power, black cable is brightness / flash control.

  2. isilmendil says:

    Looks like a smoke detector to me…
    The inner profile seems to be cut so that it fits the cheap bajonet-style mount of a smoke detector. The power cable looks like a classic 9v connector, and then there is a single sensor with a cable just long enough to be fitted some place where it gets some airflow.
    I’m wondering, though, where the buzzer on this thing is located – so maybe I’m totally wrong ;-)

  3. Jeff Epler says:

    I am estimating the outer diameter at around 3 inches, assuming that those through-holes are at .1″ spacing (measuring off the surface mount chip would be a good double-check). That seems to make it big for a lens and small for a smoke detector.

  4. Am I right in guessing that the black and white thing on the end of the black wires in a shock-mounted microphone?

    Here’s my hare-brained guess: This is the board that goes around some noise-cancelling headphone drivers. The magnet sticks up through the center hole, the mic is stuck to the outside. The yellow signal cables go back to some sort of processor somewhere else.

  5. deckard26354 says:

    Looks like a fixed-RPM DC motor controller to me. The single sensor looks like a tachometer input in the form of a discrete FET in a plastic mount that can be placed near a shaft magnet to detect rotation.

    There seem to be several discrete components on the other side of the board – they could be connectors (e.g., for motor windings) or power transistors.

    With taller components on both sides of the board that suggests this was mounted either using standoffs or in some sort of barrel assembly.

    I’m going to guess this is a motor control from an old 5 1/4″ hard drive..

  6. rc says:

    It looks like some sort of six position controller.
    Judging from the burn marks, it looks like it carried a significant current.

    The black element looks like it was attached next to the cap. Perhaps to act as a thermal fuse?

    Another thought was a three speed fan controller. With six electrical magnets, it applies current to two, four, or all six magnets to spin a fan.

    It reminds me of board for an old television magnet controller, but there are six positions and not three. I couldn’t find any images that showed what I was thinking of.

  7. Kristoffer Andersson says:

    Wheel speed sensor for ABS brakes? Lot of corrrosion in that board, indication of moist environment.

  8. Jon C says:

    It’s actually smaller then it appears. One sensor to take measurements, larger rough traces and diodes suggest power control. The circular shape doesn’t give too much away — but its’ machining outline suggests that it fits into a solid mechanical device.
    My guess is a controller in a power drill to do small adjustments or for a locking mechanism.

  9. Carl Smith says:

    Whatever it is, it’s had a hard life. Solder mask is missing off of many traces. With the look of the edges, perhaps it’s removal from whatever assembly it was in was rather traumatic. And what is the white stuff around the IC, between the diodes by where the yellow wires attach, and in some holes? Was it potted in some sort of potting compound? Is the missing solder mask because of removal of the potting compound? Guess I have more questions than answers with this one.

  10. LW says:

    Going to make a blind guess based on four things:
    1. Circular shape with center cutout
    2. 3-pin, 2-pin pairs seem to suggest transistor+LED combination, I think
    3. Water damage from hard water
    4. IC seems to be some high power LED driver based on above assumptions

    So err, dodgy shower head lights that seem to run off some sort of AC power? Quite a long shot though.

    • Jonathan says:

      That assembly off the upper left of the photo connected by yellow leads at the 10 o’clock position to a bridge rectifier arrangement and a zener arrangement looks like a small hydroelectric generator. The six 2+3-pin arrangements could be a 3-pin common-anode red/blue bi-color LED and a green or yellow 2-pin LED, or some other color combination. All six such arrangements appear to be connected in parallel. One of the black leads appears to have broken off of the board, but may connect to the 14-pin chip, which is likely a microcontroller of some flavor, possibly CMOS given the loosely disciplined power source. The little RC arrangement could be a clock oscillator or a reset circuit, depending on which one the micro lacks.

      If the black cylinder on the black leads is a temperature sensor (thermistor, thermocouple, whatever was cheap that day), then the Ware appears to be one of those flow-powered shower heads that gives a visual indication of water temperature.

      • Tilman Baumann says:

        I think you might be spot on.
        First I thought it would be a rotational encoder. But what I thought would be the HAL effect sensor would be missing a lead.

      • @f4grx says:

        I like this guess! Very possible!

      • zebonaut says:

        I guess you’re right. the white plastic device really might be a little turbine (I guess we can see two of its buckets). Also, the yellow wires go to four diodes (bridge rectifier for the dynamo’s AC output).

  11. Thomas Smith says:

    D-111 is the model number of an automobile wheel alignment machine made by Hunter, according to Google. This looks small to be part of that device, but I’ll guess it anyway :)

  12. Brezel says:

    The white stuff does look an awful lot like ceramic compund that we use in some of our products. Afaik it has better heat conductivity than other compunds. Also it doesn’t always come off cleanly. So at least some of the PCB damage could be attributed to that.

    Other than that I don’t really have an idea right now.

    It would be interesting to see the other side, as I can’t really make out any sensing/actuator function that would make such an assembly necessary, besides something rotary.

    Also there’s only two connectors to the outside world, neither of which seem to carry digital signals?

  13. Roy says:

    Wild guess: some sort of light-up gimmicky conference badge

  14. Aleksandar Kuktin says:

    I’d hazard to guess it’s a controller of some kind of a light device. I’ll say it’s for a fluorescent lamp based… lamp. Alternatively, it’s a children’s toy with lots of LEDs that flicker in a cute pattern.

    First, the shape seems like it will fit into a night light of some sort. Next, the circuit looks simple so it probably isn’t something extreme. The circuit appears to mostly be a resistor network with all the resistors being low-value, but some of the components are on the other side of the PCB. Of the SMT devices, there is at least one capacitor, in series with a resistor so we have at least one RC network with could be taken to mean “there be oscillators here”. It could also be a filter or be part of a filter. The left top wires definitely have a connector for a 9-volt battery. The center wire could be a button.

    The white goo is interesting, but maybe the PCB was potted in some kind of foam. The removal of the foam could have damaged the soldermask.

  15. tom says:

    I think it looks like a motor control board from a camera lens

  16. @f4grx says:

    Some people were asking how to remove the solder mask… lol

    My initial guess was a fan controller, but…

    Some googling does not give direct information, but according to google images I will say that this board comes from a dome-shaped camera. It may be the controller that rotates the camera. Yellow wires to the motor, black wires to some kind of index mark detector.

    Something like this

    http://www.avsupply.com/ITM/27336/ADCI610LT-D111.html

  17. Tim says:

    For a headphone?

  18. PiXEL8 says:

    PCB from inside a 110v LED light bulb.

  19. Simi says:

    Hoverboard (lulzname) with LED lights control board for wheel speed and LED lights. My two zens.

  20. Grant B says:

    It looks to be “standing” on about 5 three-legged things that are probably dual-colour LEDs. So maybe some kind of toy or something. I wonder if the white foam implies that it floats. Like some kind of pool or bath toy/gadget. Maybe a remote control pool LED gizmo.

    • zebonaut says:

      Grant B, your idea with the LEDs made me guess something: It’s the PCB assembly for an illuminated shower head (or whatever those warez are called in the hardware store). The black thingy on the black wires is a temperature sensor. The temperature is used to adjust the LEDs’ color, say, blue for cold and red for hot. The yellow wires go to an assembly with the battery and maybe a pressure switch that turns on with the water. I hope I don’t hurt anyone’s feelings, but from an ecological point of view, I prefer showers without electronics, batteries, and all the flame-retardant and whatnot hazmat they contain – it’s really some type of short-lasting throw-away gadget.

  21. marc says:

    first thing that was in my mind is a heater and infrared lighting pcb for a cheap cctv/ip camera…

  22. Steve says:

    Looks like a PCB feedback around an electric bicycle motor.
    So bad I opened some recently, and they really match that…
    A temp + a hall sensor look ok there, plus some connectors on the back.
    @fr4grx: Spotted you here !

  23. tbsbet says:

    ooks like a PCB feedback around an electric bicycle motor.
    So bad I opened some recently, and they really match that…

  24. gclub says:

    Looks like a PCB feedback around an electric bicycle motor.
    So bad I opened some recently, and they really match that…
    A temp + a hall sensor look ok there, plus some connectors on the back.
    @fr4grx: Spotted you here !

  25. Philipp Gühring says:

    Now that Bunnie disclosed it, I want to provide some more information:
    The 2 black wires go to a temperature sensors, which has about 9600 Ohm at room temperature and about 7400 Ohm when I warm it between my hands.
    The shower head was fully functional for perhaps a year, then the LEDs stopped working, I used it for another year I think, and then the connector broke off which rendered it unusable, so I decided to take it apart.
    When I tore/cut/removed the (likely injection molded) plastic (not ceramic) I noticed some deep holes, and the PCB was wet. So one theory I have is that due to problems with the injection molding process there were holes, and then it wasn’t water-tight enough, and the water might have caused shorts.
    But perhaps also the generator was too strong?
    By the way, I can strongly recommend to provide photos for NameTheWare campaings to Bunnie: At first I was afraid that it would be bad since I couldn’t take part in guessing for a whole month myself. But when the comments started pouring in, it was priceless ;-)

  26. dinesh says:

    it is pcb used in hand shower with temp. sensor this shower is having lights and a small generator in the center

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