Star Wars "Imperial March" (as performed by 2 floppy disk drives)

Imperial March

Few songs are more sinister or invoke a deeper geek reaction than Imperial March, the musical interpretation of the domination of the Empire in Star Wars. Thanks to YouTube user sh4dowww90, we now have the song to enjoy in a format most have never heard: floppy disk drive music.

Here’s how it works:

It’s nothing new and it’s very simple. The sound comes from a magnetic head moved by stepper motor. To make a specific sound, head must be moved with appropriate frequency.

FDD has a simple interface – the description may be found for example [ HERE ]. To move the head you need to activate the drive by pulling the DRVSB0 or 1 (depends on the cable you have and the connector – notice the crossover on the FDD ribbon cable) pin low and then falling edge on STEP pin makes the head move one step in direction dependent on DIR pin state.

An ATMega microcontroller is generating those frequencies and it makes the drives play music.

Sounds pretty simple, but that shouldn’t take away from the fact that the results are fairly epic:

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Written by Rocco Penn

A tech blogger, social media analyst, and general promoter of all things positive in the world. "Bring it. I'm ready." Find me on Media Caffeine, Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

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