Deadmau5, pronouced Dead Mouse, is the stage name for Joel Zimmerman, an electronic music producer/artist. He works in the genres of house, trance, and dubstep. He performs all of his shows in his iconic Mau5 head.
I made the mau5 head because I love Deadmau5's music and I wanted a unique halloween constume that would allow me to have a good time being creative and play with some new technology that I hadn't had a chance to use yet.
How did it come out?
It came out great!
Does it do anything cool?
Of course it does! I included a small microcontroller in the top of it, and each of the 2 eyes has 12 5volt LED's in them. Also in the head is a set of speakers and amplifier. All of this is powered by an array of 9v batterys I kept in my back pocket. I split the input source(from my iphone) between the microcontroller and the amplifier. As music played through the speakers, the microcontroller used a specktrum analyser to observe the levels of the bass in the song playing. On every hit of the bass, the LED's in the eyes will flash a color. On every fourth flash the color will change to the next color. If no music is playing or the music has no bass, the eyes will flash at a constant rate of 132 beats per minute.
That sounds cool, What does it look like?
What Microcontroller did you use?
For this project I used the Netduino Microcontroller. This microcontroller is rather small, but still very powerful. It is one of the first microcontrollers to use Microsoft's .Net Micro Framework, which allows it to be programmed and debugged in C# in Visual Studio.
No, it didn't win any awards, I entered it in a costume contest but nobody that was judging knew what it was so I was quickly eliminated. I did, howerver, get it posted on the Make Blog and had it posted on Twitter several times.
How did you make it? What is it made of?
I made it from a 14" acyrlic globe that is generally used as a light fixture. I enlarged the opening in the bottom to allow my head to pass through cleanly. I then used a Dremel cutoff tool to cut out the mouth. I retained this mouth peice to make the inlayed section of mouth, which is supported by bolts at either end allowing it to swing up into the head allowing access into the head and allowing the wearer to breath, eat, and drink. The eyes are made of christmas ordimates that are glued to a compact disk, which is then attached by use of a chase nipple used in electrical junction boxes. The ears are made of 4 layers of foam poster board cut to shape. Each ear has a 9 inch bolt traveling up into it for support, and is attached by a 36" long ziptie wrapped in fabric. The whole head is wrapped in thin purple felt, and the mouth is wrapped in bridal veil to allow visiblity out of the head. For positioning on the head of the wearer, a hard hat was ultilized. This was cut up until only about 30% of it remained(mainly just the straps and plastic conecting the straps) and then it was glued into the top of the head. The speakers are glued to the inside of the head pointing straight out either side, surrounding the speakers, for the sake of sound quality and the hearing of the wearer, are speaker boxes made from foam poster board. There is about a 1/4 inch of clearence between my ears and the speaker boxes.
Is it heavy?
I have not weighed it but I had to wear it for a few days before Halloween in order to get my neck muscles up to strength so I didn't hurt myself on Halloween. I wouldn't call it heavy, but it weighs more than most people are used to wearing on their head.