In the process of hacking the rather cheaply made RS digital voice recorder I bought recently...

Remember the pic of the voice recorder I had in my April Fools entry ? It looked like the first pic below. It uses a cheap speaker for both speaker and mic. The sound from it is less then desirable, but not because of the chip used, but because costs were cut by using the speaker instead of a decent little Electret mic :-( Well, I have started to work on changing this (as it was unusable as it was): I first soldered in a little mic from an old dictation machine (yeah, it used reel tapes) and this helped. But I wanted it to be more under my control, so I added a switch inline to the mic. Now the sound is great, but it is still barely audible, so the next step is to make a 5X or 10X amp for the playback. I might even get ambitious and put a preamp inline with the mic. This I have been working on in my "spare time" and also hope to get a CAKE (torte) entered into the contest on Monday.....busy busy busy :-)

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Hmmm, this reminded me. Do you know how to de-solder an IC chip?
Goodhart (author)  GorillazMiko9 years ago
Ooops, GM, sorry about that, I though I had "replied to you directly" but I must have clicked wrong......A detailed reply is on this page though.
You should get the right tools if you don't already have...a little clippy alligator clip type heatsink to clip on the pin on the other side of the circuit board, a fine tip soldering iron, and a solder-sucker thingy(get the spring loaded metal one, not the rubber turkey baster kind). Be careful and apply heat to melt the solder in the joint, aim the sucker and shoot!, Really!
Goodhart (author) 9 years ago
Caitlinsdad had it pretty much down pat. I would add only a few things, as to how to do it. Remember, if the IC gets overheated it will be destroyed. The Heat sinks are an absolute MUST, but still might not be "enough", if the solder is not melted and removed quickly enough. there are two "main" types of Desolderers AND 2 methods: The first and cheapest is a method. If you don't have a desoldering pump/bulb. If you can't get one, you can use a desoldering wick. This copper mesh will soak up the solder on the side of the board it is pressed against. Through hole soldering will be difficult at best with this method. For ICs this method will probably destroy the IC, but it can be used on less sensitive "parts". If it has been soldered "though hole" you may have difficultly retrieving he ic without damage anyways. Then there are the 2 main "pumps": one is a separate "spring loaded" pump that you set or the more simple tapered tube with a bulb on it. When the solder melts you press the button (pull the trigger, or release compression on the bulb :-) and the mechanism creates a vacuum and sucks up the molten solder. The other pump, the one I invested in, is actually a combination pencil iron and bulb solder sucker. You clamp you piece as you 2 hands with any of these methods, and have the squeeze bulb squeezed, when the solder melts, you let go of the bulb and "shooosh" away goes the solder. One note: desolderers are preferred as the wick takes too long to heat up itself and then melt the solder (the method that must be used for the wick to work); so the whole IC will become very hot. There are "kits" available for SM removals too. I am not acquainted with them at all.
Goodhart (author)  Goodhart9 years ago
Forgot the Chip Clip image....