Open source driver for accessing raw data from the Emotiv EPOC EEG headset
Python C
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By Cody Brocious

Contributions by

  • Severin Lemaignan (Base C Library and mcrypt functionality)
  • Kyle Machulis (libusb communications in C, C library updates, special epoc key, OS X Compatibility work)


Emokit is a set of language for user space access to the raw stream data from the Emotiv EPOC headset. Note that this will not give you processed data (i.e. anything available in the Emo Suites in the software), just the raw sensor data.

The C library is currently supported on:

  • OS X/Linux - Via libusb-1.0
  • Windows - Coming soon (via good ol' Win32 HID calls)

The Python library is currently supported on:

  • Linux - udev rules and file system access (no special library required)
  • Windows - pywinhid
  • OS X - Coming soon (via pyusb)

Required Libraries




C library

See epocd.c example

Python library

import emotiv
headset = emotiv.Emotiv()
    while True:
        for packet in headset.dequeue():
        print packet.gyroX, packet.gyroY

Tips for aspiring neurohackers

  1. Label each sensor on your headset! If some sensor is acting crazy, you'll know which one it is right away.

  2. The samples/ folder contains recorded segments of the headset's output, so you can develop and test applications that make use of the raw EEG without actually wearing (or owning) the headset. You can use the data like this:

    import emotiv headset = emotiv.Emotiv(simulation = 'samples/generic')

Platform Specifics


You will need to install the EmotivNullDriver.kext on OS X for software to be able to access the EPOC. To do this, copy the osx/EmotivNullDriver.kext directory to /System/Library/Extensions/. Once this is done, from the terminal, run

sudo kextutil /System/Library/Extensions/EmotivNullDriver.kext

Or else just reboot. This will blacklist the emotiv from the HID Manager so it can be read by Emokit. No telling what this will do in conjunction with the Emotiv OS X drivers, I haven't tested that yet.


There are two ways to run Emokit on Linux

  • Copy the udev rules to /etc/udev/rules and restart udev, in which case you'll have access to /dev/hidrawX, where X is probably 0 and 1. You're interested in whatever the higher number is.
  • Use the libusb driver, which will detach from the HID Manager as long as you run whatever you need in sudo. Otherwise, you'll need to blacklist the VID/PID pair out of the kernel


WinHID example in C coming soon. Should work with Python example already.

Credits - Cody

Huge thanks to everyone who donated to the fund drive that got the hardware into my hands to build this. Thanks to Bryan Bishop and the other guys in #hplusroadmap on Freenode for your help and support. And as always, thanks to my friends and family for supporting me and suffering through my obsession of the week.

Credits - Kyle

Kyle would like to thank Cody for doing the hard part. He would also like to thank emotiv for putting emo on the front of everything because it's god damn hilarious. I mean, really, Emo Suites? Saddest hotel EVER.