Make wireless speakers at home – DIY how-to

Today I’ll tell you how you can make your own wireless speakers. Wireless speakers of different sort are available in the market but they are much more expensive as compared to the wired ones. So how do we make a wireless speaker at home? Here we go

Nokia BH-502 bluetooth headset

What do we need to make stereo wireless speakers:

  1. A pair of good old wired speakers, may  be a pair that you already have.
  2. A stereo blue-tooth headset, any cheap one will do.
  3. A basic tool to cut/strip wire
  4. A female 3.5mm stereo connector
  5. A basic wire soldering tool or a tape to hold a twisted wire together

The trick is to use an A2DP based blue-tooth headset, connect it to a wired speaker and you are ready to enjoy wireless music.

Where to get a blue tooth headset

If you have an old Blue tooth headset, you are in luck. If you don’t have one, you are still not out of luck. Stereo blue tooth headsets are not that expensive and you can buy a cheap variant here. Luckily I had a used Nokia BH-502 blue tooth headset that I have used for this tutorial.

How to connect the female jack to the headset

This process depends on which headset you are using. I used a Nokia headset that was easily to open using a screwdriver. I simply removed the foam covering on the earpiece and opened three screws to expose the audio wires. If you have a different headset, all you have to do is to find the wire that connects to the both ear pieces. Warning: You may have to cut the plastic, metal or whatever body parts of your headset and you will eventually render your headset useless as a headset after this.

You need a pair for left ear and one for the right ear. Usually the wiring has a left channel wire, right channel wire and a common that connects to both ears.

Same is the case with the stereo 3.5mm female jack, you have a left, right and a common. You simply have to disconnect the wires from the ear pieces and connect to the 3.5 mm jack, hence the audio received by the blue tooth headset will be redirected ot the wire. Later you can connect a pair of wired speaker to the 3.5mm jack.

In most of the cases, the wiring in the headset is very very thin and handling the wires and soldering them is difficult. You can also leave the wires intact and connect the 3.5mm jack to already connected wires. In this case the audio will get directed to both speaker jack as well as the headset tiny earpieces.

Final Steps

Make sure you pack the headset in a box, casing, cover or something that helps avoiding any unintentional wire pull as the headset will be a bit of a wires mesh now :). All you have to do is pair your blue-tooth headset with your audio transmitter that could be your mobile phone or your blue-tooth enabled PC. All the sound that you play on the blue-tooth A2DP sound output will now be available on 3.5mm jack that you can connect to your favorite wired speaker without any direct connection between audio transmitter and the speaker.

Please do share your experience if you try something similar out. Happy untangled life.

From Megabyte to Terrabyte – A walk down memory lane

It was just like yesterday when I booted a PC using a 1.2 megabyte floppy disk. Things have been moving real fast and I just got my hands onto my 2 terabyte disk a few weeks back. It’s quite a coincidence that both the disks I’m talking about were external disks. A 1.2 megabyte external magnetic disk that could be inserted into a 5.25 inch drive was a removable media and my huge 2 terabyte drive is a USB external drive too.

Taking a glimpse at the past for a moment, I’ve been using every different type of digital storage media including the soft 5.25 inch floppies, 3.5 inch diskets, some tape drives I dont remember the type of, internal hard drives, zip drives, internal hard disks, USB flash disks, memory cards and the optical media of course including CDs, DVDs and Blue Rays. I can guarantee you that the satisfaction of buying a new 5.25 inch floppy was so fulfilling that cannot be matched by buying a multi-terrabyte hard drive today.

Just to keep the count right for some of my readers, one Terrabyte is 1,000,000 Megabytes or a 1000 Gigabytes. Thats a lot of space when it comes to storing data but my 1.2 Megabyte or even my 720 KB (0.72 MB) disk felt as spacious back then. My good old floppies could store thousands of text files, large databases and even a few games and software.

Today’s multi-terabyte hard drives sound huge but they are not that ahead of times. The amount of digital media being produced today is enormous. Multi-mega-pixel digital cameras in everybody’s hands and digital video recorders make a good percentage of digital media producers and we also tend to keep a stored log of most of the photos we take. This smart-phone in my pocket for example records 720p HD video that takes a gigabyte worth space for only 10 minutes’ video recording.

People have been trying to predict the speed of growth and improvement in computing device capabilities. To talk about hard drive capacity, Kryder’s Law has been doing a good job for a while and then it was broken too in 2005.

Kryder’s Law
Kryder’s law states that the hard disk’s areal capacity doubles every year. This law held almost for a decade from 1995 to 2005 and then things started changing. Capacity growth slowed down and the law was broken.

The storage capacity growth depends on how things improve in scientific labs and micro electronic engineering departments of top universities and such scientific growth may not follow any laws. On the other hand, there’s another law named Moore’s law that has been true fore more than 45 years now. Actually Kryder’s Law was drawn from the Moore’s law.

Moore’s Law
This is what I found as a definition on Wikipedia for Moore’s law.

Moore’s law describes a long-term trend in the history of computing hardware. The number of transistors that can be placed inexpensively on an integrated circuit has doubled approximately every two years.The trend has continued for more than half a century and is not expected to stop until 2015 or later.

When will I find a Yottabyte drive?

A look at the growth trends in hard drive space, you can try figuring out when will you hit the Yottabyte mark. If it took me 15 years to move from a gigabyte to a terabyte and we predict the similar trends, it will take us another 60 years to install 1 Yotta-Byte Hard Drives in our desktop computers.

By that time, either we’ll have moved on with another mode of computing and another model of hardware placement, or we might have actually stopped longing for more memory. I have very naïve knowledge to predict the future but wait till 2070 when you’ll find 1 Yottabyte hard drives selling in  your computing supermarkets 😉

In the end, this table from Wikipedia will really help you understand the units with all the flashy names like petabyte, exabyte, zettabyte etc.

As I’ve discussed this earlier the hard drive manufacturers follow the SI standards, not the IEC system.