In my garage wood shop I have the following power tools: table saw, band saw, disc sander, belt sander, and shop vac. Is there a sound or audio processing library that could differentiate between the running sounds of these tools?

If it is possible how hard is it? Would I need a special microphone or some other custom hardware?

  • look into sound analysis using FFT
    – jsotola
    May 30, 2019 at 23:40
  • Yes,to start with, you need cheapy microphone and cheapy ADC (analog to digital converter) chips/modules (references coming). If you only have less than 10 sound sources, then you can do a manual analysis on sound amplitude, frequency etc. You can use, say 10 seconds of data to differentiate which tool plays which sound. You can use quick and dirty brute force pattern recognition methods, or newbie scary real time FFT (Fast Fourier Transform), or Google cloud/edge hardware / software AI/Neural Net tools such as TPU (Tensor Processing units), or python only Google AI. / to continue, ...
    – tlfong01
    May 31, 2019 at 0:02
  • 1
    For DIY sound newbies - Raspberry Pi Offline Voice Recognition raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/98344/… MCP3008 ADC to Record Sound raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/98201/… Using Microphone Sensor Module and MCP3008 ADC to record sound raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/98908/… Keras- python API for Google TensorFlow raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/98878/…
    – tlfong01
    May 31, 2019 at 0:10

1 Answer 1


There is an example of a working oscilliscope in processing. You need a arduino and a pc i believe. You can use a microphone attached to the arduino somehow through the analog pins to pick up the audio signals. And im sure there is some way in processing to get a physical number in Hz from each sound, the pitch, and amplitude. By combining these you can easily write your own python program to say turn on a led when the saw is going, or make it flash when the vaccume is on, or do what ever you desire to do with the output.

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