Wear Your Heartbeat with a Pulse Sensor and Weekend Projects

Arduino Biohacking Technology
Wear Your Heartbeat with a Pulse Sensor and Weekend Projects


The Beatband Sleeve joins a long list of projects attempting to read the human-mechanical heartbeat and visualize it as an electrical signal. Whether using midi controllers or operational amplifiers or infrared technology (and more recently IR in combination with an op-amp), makers love wearing their heartbeats as pendants or simply displaying it numerically on a 3-digit 7 segment display.


This heartbeat project takes its inspiration from the Beating Heart Headband from MAKE Vol. 29 with one slight but novel twist: the entire MintDuino breadboard circuit is ported to perfboard, and designed in such a way that it will fit back inside the minty tin along with a 9V battery. The perfboard provides the few additional connections needed for the Pulse Sensor and jumper wire connected to LEDs which in turn gives us the Beatband Sleeve.

Check out these heartbeat & pulse projects:


That makes this a great project for beginners who want to build a breadboard circuit and compare it to the same working circuit on perfboard, while exploring the inner workings of a homemade microcontroller (ATmega328P) build. After you’ve transferred the MintDuino to perfboard you can use it to power the Beatband Sleeve or any Arduino project that you find on MAKE or any other website for that matter.

Watch the video below to see how simple and fun this project was to build, and if you design your own Beatband Sleeve (or fork the perfboard MintDuino for your own projects) be sure to take pictures along the way and send us an email with your story.

YouTube player

4 thoughts on “Wear Your Heartbeat with a Pulse Sensor and Weekend Projects

  1. Sudheer says:

    Wonderful project. But, is it possible to take the accurate heartbeat reading to note down by extending this project? If it is possible, we may do it in our home itself to check our heart pulse without going to hospitals. Nice attempt.

    1. Nick Normal says:

      Hi Sudheer,
      We don’t recommend you rely on any of these projects as a replacement for your local hospital. That said, the IR Pulse Sensor is probably your best bet for visualizing on a screen/graph your heartbeat, and could be coded to record data also.
      Good luck!

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I'm an artist & maker. A lifelong biblioholic, and advocate for all-things geekathon. Home is Long Island City, Queens, which I consider the greatest place on Earth. 5-year former Resident of Flux Factory, co-organizer for World Maker Faire (NYC), and blogger all over the net. Howdy!

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