Do you have some old hard drives that you no longer use but have no idea what to do with them? Well,  how about making them into an LED HDD Clock?

A Youtube user svofski has done just that, using an old hard drive that was no longer needed – and created a clock out of it using LEDs. This clock is a little unusual due to the fact that it doesn’t have any hands in which to tell the time. It works by spinning the discs, which creates a strobe effect to display the numbers. This method of displaying the time does lead to a bit of noise however (see the video below).

To achieve this effect, the hard drives plate has 10 digits that have been cut into it around the edges. Behind the plates, a group of single colour LEDs have been placed into each character position which can be strobed independently at any time. By careful timing of the strobe effect, an illusion of the numbers standing still is created, allowing you to read what the time is now.

There are a couple of issues with the clock. As we’ve already mentioned, it does produce a little noise (this is because the HDD motor is driven by a custom circuit without feedback which in turn causes the noise). And while it spins, the time shown isn’t perfectly accurate. But it looks really cool, and gives the old HDD a new use instead of being simply thrown away.

Take a look at the clock in action in this video:

Bespoke LED clock mounted in a hard-disc drive unit