DIY tDCS Start Here


New to DIYtDCS? This is the ‘start here’ collection of articles and posts.

  1. DIYtDCS Feed, last 50 articles
  2. My Twitter feed focuses on breaking tDCS research. @DIYtDCS
  3. My Reddit account, where it’s okay to explore the fringes. DIYtDCS
  4. Recommended device? (29V / 2mA model. Promo code ‘diytdcs’ for discount)
  5. Best instruction video for C3/Motorcortex & F3/DLPFC electrode placement.
  6. Is this (tDCS for depression in pregnancy) the first ‘killer app’?
  7. Cognitive Enhancement with Noninvasive Brain Stimulation (video) Roy Hamilton MD
  8. Simple Montage list with electrode placement and research sources.
  9. Marom Bikson & Peter Toshev ‘Your Electric Pharmacy‘ (pdf excellent overview/intro).
  10. My podcast interviews, deep dives into tDCS with key players (iTunes link)
  11. tDCS SubReddit is where the action is. Now with tDCS FAQ!
  12. Dr. Brent Williams’ DIY device and protocol.
  13. Zap your brain into the zone: Fast track to pure focus
  14. Better Living Through Electrochemistry
  15. Clinical tDCS trials seek volunteers. All. Search. (Example: “tDCS AND Los Angeles”)
  16. Neuroscience: Brain buzz Nature Magazine
  17. DLPFC / F3 Locator (you’ll need a tape measure with Centimeters)
  18. 3d tDCS Placements Guide Model
  19. NEW! Searchable database of tDCS studies
  20. 10–20 international system
  21. Kadosh The Stimulated Brain: Cognitive Enhancement Using NIBS

GoFlow Kickstarter Campaign DENIED!

I’m on the GoFlow mailing list and received this update this morning.

Hello all you beautiful peoples, 

We’ve been silent for a few weeks now, and it’s time to bring you all up to speed on the GoFlow project again. (The diy tDCS kit if you’ve forgotten) We have officially been rejected from Kickstarter, and are delaying the production of our devices for a short while.

However we do have some progress to share with you all, and enough info to get anyone who is interested a decent way along in building your own. See below.

While it’s too bad that we are not able to rock a Kickstarter campaign, we move forward. During the process of getting the project ready for crowd funding we ran into a few legality concerns that probably would have stopped us from launching as quickly as we had planned, even if we were approved for Kickstarter.

We are taking the time to investigate these concerns now before we do something to prematurely sink our metaphorical ship. If any of you have any experience or thoughts that you’d like to share, we would love to hear from you.

Out main obstacles right now are:

  • FDA classification concerns
  • and subsequently approval

We’d love to hear from any of you that have experience with working with, and or around, the FDA. We’re talking to a few specialists and mentors now, but we are interested in leveraging the collective knowledge of you all as well.

We will keep you all updated to our progress as we move forward.


The prototype

This is what we have built so far. Full details available at

Current circuit diagram

Our current circuit design. Feel free to download it!

Go Flo Team’s Funfomercial

Hmm, are these guys out of the same Michigan University that just published the tDCS paper in ‘Headache’?
Their kit will be Open Sourced. Learn more about Go Flow at
I signed up for the mailing list. If they can really build a no-solder kit for $99 I’m getting one!

This video was made to make our friends laugh. Please do not take this video as a serious attempt at promoting our kit. We sure didn’t.

GoFlow | Learn Faster

A kit already!

tDCS kit

tDCS is one of the coolest pieces of health/ self improvement technology available today. The US Army and DARPA both currently use tDCS devices to train snipers and drone pilots, and have recorded 2.5x increases in learning rates. This incredible phenomenon is achieved through a very simple device called a tDCS machine.Today if you want to buy a tDCS machine it’s nearly impossible to find one for less than $600, and you are typically required to have a prescription to order one. We wanted a simpler cheaper option. So we made one. Then, because we’re all egalitarian like, we thought others might want one too.The GoFlow β1 is a full kit of all the parts and plans you need to build your own tDCS device. $99 will get you one of the first β1’s and will help us develop β2!

And some background om the GoFlow from March 2012

“When you look at the brainwave patterns created by these machines, they are very similar to those a pro athlete would experience when they are in that state of flow,” Sornson says.

It should be noted that Sornson studies marketing and not neuroscience, and the rest of his crew specialize in software and website design. “This machine will be designed for people interested in experimental use,” Sornson says.

Go Flow Prototype

Go Flow Prototype

via GoFlow | Learn Faster.

GoFlow: a DIY tDCS brain-boosting kit | ExtremeTech

Again from Sebastian Anthony

Even at $99, the GoFlow kit is fairly expensive. Just so you understand just how simple tDCS is, all you have to do is pass 9V at 2mA through your scalp for 30 minutes. To do this, you need a battery, some electrodes, a resistor, and if you’re feeling snazzy (and safe) a current regulator. To be fair, for your $99, GoFlow will give you a plastic housing and provide a potentiometer — presumably so you can find the right voltage for your brain. You also need to know where to place the electrodes on your scalp, to boost the right area of your brain. Judging by the picture on the right, GoFlow will provide a map of the various regions.

via GoFlow: a DIY tDCS brain-boosting kit | ExtremeTech.

Jonah Lehrer on How to Be Creative –

A man has married 20 women in a small town. All of the women are still alive, and none of them is divorced. The man has broken no laws. Who is the man?

If you solved the question, the solution probably came to you in an incandescent flash: The man is a priest. Research led by Mark Beeman and John Kounios has identified where that flash probably came from. In the seconds before the insight appears, a brain area called the superior anterior temporal gyrus aSTG exhibits a sharp spike in activity. This region, located on the surface of the right hemisphere, excels at drawing together distantly related information, which is precisely what’s needed when working on a hard creative problem.Interestingly, Mr. Beeman and his colleagues have found that certain factors make people much more likely to have an insight, better able to detect the answers generated by the aSTG. For instance, exposing subjects to a short, humorous video—the scientists use a clip of Robin Williams doing stand-up—boosts the average success rate by about 20%.Alcohol also works.

via Jonah Lehrer on How to Be Creative –

MAKE | NEWS FROM THE FUTURE – Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) kits

mrhaineux comments on the blog…

Seriously, if you’re excited to do this, invent an “electrode hat” that requires little to no skill to apply, and does not require finicky salt water or electrode paste. That is the best possible thing to do, and can be parlayed into a multi-million-dollar business.

Then, if you’re still interested in tDCS, find a doctor to help you get a Soterix. It has a current source, but it also measures the actual resistance and current being used as a safety precaution, provides feedback if things aren’t right, and has a micro controller to do stuff like timing, logging, etc. You could build one for a lot less than the asking price, but it’s much more complicated (and better) than a 9V with a current source chip.

via MAKE | NEWS FROM THE FUTURE – Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) kits.

TCT Products | Easy to use, precise and safe transcranial stimulators for tDCS applications

This one can be bought in the U.S. right now! No idea if this is a legit outfit. If you buy one, let us know!

Current settings from 0.5 to 2mA in 0.1mA increments.
Duration up to 30 minutes with countdown clock display.
Continuous monitoring and display of actual current.
Continuous monitoring and display of electrode quality.
Slow ramp up for skin conditioning and comfort.
Automatic abort on excessive resistance to prevent skin irritation.
To learn more about tDCS, visit the how it works or the research section.

via TCT Products | Easy to use, precise and safe transcranial stimulators for tDCS applications.

Brain-O-Matic –

Stuart Gromley sits hunched over a desk in his bedroom, groping along the skin of his forehead, trying to figure out where to glue the electrodes. The wires lead to a Radio Shack Electronics Learning Lab, a toy covered with knobs, switches, and meters. Even though he’s working with a kiddie lab, Gromley, a 39-year-old network administrator in San Francisco, can’t afford to make mistakes: he’s about to send the current from a nine-volt battery into his own brain.

Gromley’s homemade contraption is modeled on the devices used in some of the top research centers around the world. Called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), the technology works on the principle that even the weak electrical signals generated by a small battery can penetrate the skull and affect hot-button areas on the outer surface of the brain. In the past few years, scholarly research papers have touted tDCS as a non-invasive and safe way to rejigger our thoughts and feelings, and possibly to treat a variety of mental disorders. Most provocatively, researchers at the National Institute of Health have shown that running a small jolt of electricity through the forehead can enhance the verbal abilities of healthy people. That is, tDCS might do more than just alleviate symptoms of disease. It might help make its users a little bit smarter.

via Brain-O-Matic – Lifestyle Features.

Zap your brain into the zone: Fast track to pure focus – life – 06 February 2012 – New Scientist

That is why I’m now allowing Michael Weisend, who works at the Mind Research Network in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to hook my brain up to what’s essentially a 9-volt battery. He sticks the anode – the positive pole of the battery – to my temple, and the cathode to my left arm. “You’re going to feel a slight tingle,” he says, and warns me that if I remove an electrode and break the connection, the voltage passing through my brain will blind me for a good few seconds.

Weisend, who is working on a US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency programme to accelerate learning, has been using this form of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to cut the time it takes to train snipers. From the electrodes, a 2-milliamp current will run through the part of my brain associated with object recognition – an important skill when visually combing a scene for assailants.

via Zap your brain into the zone: Fast track to pure focus – life – 06 February 2012 – New Scientist.