It was a birthday gift, and it can play anything on a micro SD card.
Do you love tinkering with electronics? Are you a child of the 1980s, or at least, a passionate devotee of music created during the decade of excess? More importantly, are you in a strong, healthy relationship with a significant other who has both a sense of humor and similar tastes in music? If your answer to all of the above is yes, then boy do we have a video for you.
This clip comes from robatron on YouTube, and it stars a 2015 Subaru Impreza. The crux of the story is pretty simple – he wanted to do something special for his wife’s birthday, so he created a little electronics board that plugs into the car’s ignition chime system to play her favorite songs.
Gallery: Subaru Plays Africa By Toto
The board is fitted with a micro SD card reader and a small speaker, and he loaded several of his wife’s favorite songs on a collection of cards. One of them is the Toto classic Africa, and now if the keys are left in the ignition, she hears Africa's telltale percussion and keyboard riff instead of a boring series of bongs. Presumably, if the key is left in the ignition long enough, the entire song will play. How cool is that?
Of course, creating this wizardry of electronics isn’t nearly as simple as the above description makes it out to be. This YouTuber also created a post at Imgur that shows the build process from start to finish, and it’s intense. We barely have the electronic chops to replace a light bulb, but creating this musical Subie involved considerable investigation to simply find a convenient way to power the board without upsetting the natural order of the universe. The simple solution still required disassembly of the speedometer, and then the small electronics board had to be built and modified with a card reader.
Ultimately, the effort was a success. Scratch that – it was an epic success. Not only is the mod neatly hidden in the dash, but it can be easily accessed to swap songs on a whim and there are several songs waiting to be used, as the video shows a case with several micro SD cards identified only by hand-drawn logos.
Africa is obvious with the shape of the continent on it, and we hear Dolly Parton’s classic 9 to 5, which is identified by a purse. We grabbed a screenshot of the various cards shown the video – we’re pretty sure the calendar-looking shape with an M in the middle is Manic Monday by The Bangles. Any guesses on the other songs?
Or, if you’re feeling really ambitious, you can attempt to recreate this project. The Imgur source link below includes gobs of info and photos on this project, and a partial list of tools and materials you need to make it happen. Be warned – it’s not for the faint of heart.