I'm currently figuring out the best way to build a custom dock for ipods using scavenged parts from old docks and an Atari 2600. I want the Atari switch to power the unit on and off (as well as to provide power to whatever ends up powering the dock AND the speakers with one external power connection). The other switches I could care less about, but if they could serve some function, that would be cool. I would like the joystick to potentially change the volume or cycle through songs with the red FIRE button to serve as a play/pause button. I've run into problems with making this a reality for a low price.
The docks I have found at thrift stores are not compatible with my iPod Touch (which is probably why people have gotten rid of them) and do not charge or output audio from my ipod. I'd rather not buy a new dock just to cannibalize it. However, I do have some of the parts I need and I am thinking it is possible to rewire the iPod connectors to correctly recognize my iPod.
I have considered using an Arduino to maybe customize this and bypass the idea of this being more than just a casemod. However, I have no prior coding experience and really wouldn't want to embed an arduino for this one project. Would I be able to flash an atmega328 (like Ben does in one of the recent episodes for the Xbox coin-op) to perform all the functions that I'm asking for?
Really, this is all from a beginners standpoint so I apologize if any of these questions are double-dipping from things that I *should* know, but I just want to get a good idea of what I *should* be doing.
Any idea of where I should start, or comments from someone who has created an iPod dock from an Arduino would be helpful, but general interest int his project would be nice =)
UPDATE: I have cannibalized the non-charging dock for components and came away with a dock connector that has the relevant connectons already traced and connection-ready with a header. Score!