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New version of the clock forthcoming?
pfish Posted: 23 Nov 2022, 07:05 AM
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On the Automatic LED page, you wrote in early 2021 that you were working on yet another rev of the precision clock. I am considering getting the kit to build one. Is the new version close enough to completion that I should wait for its release, or is it far enough in the future that I should just go for the current one?

Either is fine—I understand how projects come and go—I just want to make sure I don’t buy v2.5 right before you drop the snazzy new v3 (v4?).

Thank you!

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mit Posted: 23 Nov 2022, 06:25 PM
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Hello! Well observed.

The short answer is that I won't be releasing the new version particularly soon.

The new design (which I'm calling Mk IV) is pretty much finished, and has been for well over a year. The problem is that I designed it using STM32 chips, which were perfectly available back when I did the board design, but now are very difficult to get hold of. The global chip shortage has pretty much put a hold on that design.

The sensible thing to do would be to redesign the clock using available parts, but I sank so much time and effort into the Mk IV that I can't bring myself to do it.

Instead, I can get the parts from dodgy sellers in China for about 5 to 10 times their normal price. I have been considering releasing the new clock with a probably ludicrous price tag, that would reflect how much the parts now cost. I'm not sure quite how much it would be, but certainly a lot more than the current kit.

Regardless, I'm not expecting to release it within at least the next three months.

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mit Posted: 18 Dec 2022, 02:55 PM
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An update on this, slightly sooner than I expected. A small number of the exact STM32 parts I need appeared on a distributor recently and I optimistically bought a large handful of them. With any luck, this is a sign that the shortage is drawing to an end, and the new version of the clock might appear as early as February next year.

It'll still cost quite a bit more than the original kit, however (which I'll probably continue to sell).

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d3mz Posted: 21 Jan 2023, 02:48 PM
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If it helps I’m interested in the new version as well - depending on how much more it is / what’s different.

Your website mentioned

Update (May 2022): Current lead time on the clock kit is six to eight weeks.

Is that still the case?

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mit Posted: 22 Jan 2023, 08:30 AM
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I think this won't be for another few months at least, but I am still hoping to make it happen.

QUOTE (d3mz)
Update (May 2022): Current lead time on the clock kit is six to eight weeks.

Is that still the case?
Most kits at the moment ship in under a month, but I left the lead time long so as not to raise expectations. I usually wait until a bunch of orders have come in then ship them together, so the lead time depends on how many orders there are.


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jmarcrum Posted: 23 Jan 2023, 05:58 PM
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Will the new version have a choice between 12 or 24 hour display?

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mit Posted: 27 Jan 2023, 11:31 AM
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QUOTE (jmarcrum)
Will the new version have a choice between 12 or 24 hour display?
The new version has a much more powerful processor, so adding alternative display modes is very easy. I still don't approve of the 12 hour mode that looks like ISO8601, but since it's not much effort I'll probably add it.

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gentlekey Posted: 15 Feb 2023, 08:03 PM
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QUOTE (mit)
An update on this, slightly sooner than I expected. A small number of the exact STM32 parts I need appeared on a distributor recently and I optimistically bought a large handful of them. With any luck, this is a sign that the shortage is drawing to an end, and the new version of the clock might appear as early as February next year.

It'll still cost quite a bit more than the original kit, however (which I'll probably continue to sell).

Any chance there's news on the new version? I was going to order the current version today, but figured I could wait a few weeks if the new one is on the horizon.

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mit Posted: 15 Feb 2023, 10:06 PM
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Realistically it will be another three months. I have most of the parts but there's still a lot to do before I can offer it for sale.

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maczrool Posted: 1 Apr 2023, 11:30 AM
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QUOTE (mit)
I still don't approve of the 12 hour mode that looks like ISO8601, but since it's not much effort I'll probably add it.
ISO8601 as in zero padding? That does look pretty bad with 12 hour if that is what you are referencing.

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mit Posted: 1 Apr 2023, 01:40 PM
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It's more about having something that looks like an ISO timestamp but isn't that I find particularly jarring, much worse than simply displaying a different time/date format.

The Mk4 clock is capable of showing pretty much any date format that will fit into the 10 7-segment digits, so I'll probably add a mm.dd.yyyy mode for people who want it. I've already added things like ISO ordinal date, Modified Julian Date, and unix timestamp (which conveniently is 10 digits in decimal).

One of the most important updates to the new clock is that it's very easy to update the firmware, just drag and drop a file onto the USB device. So adding new modes is very easy to do in future.

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Zman350x Posted: 1 Aug 2023, 10:25 PM
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Back in February, you estimated 3 months until release. Any updated ETA? Obviously these things take time so there's no rush!

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mit Posted: 2 Aug 2023, 09:21 AM
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It could be as soon as next month. I have almost all the bits in stock, all that's left to do is:
- write the documentation and instructions
- film a video about it
- remake my shop website

I have quite a few commitments through August so I don't expect to get much done, but perhaps end of September is reasonable.

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jmarcrum Posted: 18 Aug 2023, 04:05 PM
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In the USA most everyone uses 12 hr clocks.
Thank you
Jean

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mit Posted: 18 Aug 2023, 05:39 PM
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QUOTE (jmarcrum)
In the USA most everyone uses 12 hr clocks.
Thank you
Jean
True, but in the USA most everyone uses the MM/DD/YYYY date format. The UK often uses 12 hour clocks and the date format is DD/MM/YYYY.

The point of IS8601 is that it is an international standard that is unbiased and unambiguous.

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