It’s straightforward to see why LEDs largely received out over neon bulbs for pilot mild functions. However for all the sensible utility of LEDs, they’re discovered largely missing in not less than one regard over their older indicator cousins: allure. The place LEDs are chilly and flat, the mild orange glow of a neon lamp brings loads to the aesthetics celebration, particularly in retro builds.
However appears aren’t the one factor these tiny glow lamps have going for them, and [David Lovett] exhibits off some of the surprising alternate uses for neon lamps in his new video. He begins with an exploration of the venerable NE-2 bulb, which has been round ceaselessly, detailing a few of its fascinating electrical properties, just like the distinction between the voltage wanted to begin the neon discharge and the voltage wanted to take care of it. He additionally exhibits off some cool neon lamp methods, like utilizing them for all kinds of multi-vibrator circuits with out something however just a few resistors and capacitors added in. The true enjoyable begins when he breaks out the MTX90 tube, which is actually a chilly cathode thyratron. The addition of a easy management grid makes for some fascinating circuits, like single-tube multi-vibrators.
The upshot of all these experiments is fairly clear to anybody who’s been following [David]’s channel, which is chock filled with non-conventional makes use of for vacuum tubes. His efforts to build a “hollow state” computer could be tremendously aided by neon lamp circuits similar to these — to not point out how cool they’d make every part look.