VoiceShield FAQ


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Kits :


FAQ & Troubleshooting

Programming Software:

A. Application VSProgrammerLite does not launch, Windows gives you an error “Windows cannot find ‘javaw.exe’. ...”

Solution: The programmer uses Java, upgrade your Windows and be sure to include Java if given the choice.

B. No serial ports in the list to choose a serial port.

Solution: Install FTDI drivers that came with the Arduino IDE software, and have the Arduino connected to your computer before you launch the VSProgrammerLite.

C. Software freezes when I click on Preview or Program.


SoundScore.txt file is either not in the same directory as the VSProgrammerLite or the file is blank.

SoundBytes folder containing the audio is not in the same directory as the VSProgrammerLite application or has no audio or does not contain the audio listed in the SoundScore.txt file.

D. Software freezes while going through Preview or Program.

Solution: Files name entries in the SoundScore.txt file must match exactly with the real file names contained in the SoundBytes folder. The names are case sensitive and must have extensions. Eg.

In the text file In the SoundBytes folder





dogbark.mp3≠dog bark.mp3

dog bark.mp3≠dog bark.mp3

(Note: this is not an actable file name since it has a space.)

Note: The SoundByte folder may contain many audio clips even if they are not included in the SoundScore.txt file that you are currently using.

D. Why does Preview play faster then Program ?

Reason: When the VSProgrammerLite is actually programming the VoiceShield with audio there is a delay added in the code to allow the VoiceShield’s recording audio sampling circuits time to activate fully.

Hardware & Firmware (Sketch):

A. When I Verify / Compile my sketch I get a red message in the bottom of the Arduino screen:  "Could not determine size ... "

Solution: This is something that the Auduino IDE does sometimes, just re-run the Compile. (This has nothing to do with the VoiceShield code.)

B. Why are there separate Arduino sketches to load the VoiceShield and use it?

Reason: One of the objectives with the VoiceShield was to free the Arduino's memory and processing power to run your own sketch. The VSLoader sketch uses the Arduino's serial library, which takes up space in the Arduino's memory. So by separating the sketches into two, using the VS with your own sketch will take very little extra memory.

Note: You can use the VSLoader as a starting point to build your own sketches (the VoiceShield will still work fine) but if you do not need the serial port, your sketch will be bigger then it needs to be.

C. The VSProgrammerLite runs the programming function until the status area displays "Programming Finished", but no sounds are recorded to the VoiceShield.


1. Is the VSLoader Sketch loaded into the Arduino?

Note: The VSLoader Sketch is in the folder with the example sketches that come with the VoiceShield Arduino library. The VSLoader must be loaded into the Arduino for the VSProgrammerLite software to work with the VoiceShield.

2. Did you choose the Arduino's serial port?

3. Do you have an Audio cable connected from the headphone jack of your PC to AUDIO IN jack on the VoiceShield?

4. Is the output volume on the headphone jack of your PC turned up high enough?

5. Does your computer have a "mute" button that may have been pressed?

6. If you have a kit version of the VoiceShield, check for a cold solder joint. If you are going to re-solder any joints, first remove the ISD4003 chip using an IC puller or gently lifting each edge a little at a time with a flat object. Once removed place the chip in an anti-static bag, it is very sensitive to static, and is easily damaged if mishandled.

Still having a problem?

Try checking the SpikenzieLabs forums .

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