In honor of Friday the 13th, today I bring you a bit of At-Home Imagineering that’s helped add a bit more “spooky” to my daily life. With the aid of a programmable iChime doorbell, visitors at my front door no longer signal their arrival with a standard ding-dong but instead the eerie tolling of bells from The Haunted Mansion, gently ringing out to the tune of “Grim Grinning Ghosts.” And it couldn’t have been simpler to install.
The iChime doorbell is available online for a little less than $90 and worth every penny for allowing you to program your own doorbell sounds, recorded from any audio device. It also comes with a number of built-in ringtones, if you will, ranging from happy Christmas tunes to comedic sound effects – something for every occasion.
Here’s a video showing the iChime in action, installed in my house:
In case you want to duplicate the same Haunted Mansion chime, here is the MP3 I played via my computer and recorded onto the iChime: HauntedMansionDoorbell.mp3
Changing the sound effect is as simple as switching the dial to one of several themes. The iChime can alternate through pre-recorded options within that theme or can be set to repeat the same one each time. But the most intriguing part of the product is being able to record audio a standard mini plug, run from a computer, iPod, CD player, or anything else that puts out sound through a headphone jack. The unit itself easily replaces any existing doorbell, with a simple two-wire hookup. Four AA batteries are needed to power its speaker, but since a doorbell is only triggered every once in a while, these batteries should last a very long time. Once installed, it uses the existing doorbell button and wiring to play back whatever audio it’s programmed for. It’s as simple as that to update your ordinary doorbell to play the chimes of the Tomorrowland Transit Authority, the whistle of a Magic Kingdom train, or a few spooky sounds of The Haunted Mansion.