Add Bluetooth to Any Dock, Stereo, Speaker.





Introduction: Add Bluetooth to Any Dock, Stereo, Speaker.

This is a really simple way to add Bluetooth audio to basically whatever you want, for $8AUD or less!

Step 1: Acquire Bluetooth Audio Adaptor.

I got mine from ebay, it cost $8AUD, but I could have gotten one straight from China for $4, I didn't want to wait. There are plenty of types available, but mine looked like this. It is powered by USB, And has the standard 3.5mm stereo jack on the other end.

Step 2: Wire It Up!

What you'll need;
A stereo, speaker, iPod dock, to which you would like to add Bluetooth to.
Your bluetooth audio adaptor
Soldering iron
Electrical tape
Hot glue gun
A donor female USB plug
A donor 3.5mm stereo male plug (my BT adaptor came with a cord)
Also helpful, wire cutters

Step 3: Wiring - Power

First we need to find power for the adaptor. Opening up the top of the dock I found this small board. Being an iPod dock I suspected there would be a 5v supply at the connector just as USB (and iPod charging) requires. And it was even marked! A quick check with the multimeter confirmed it.

Cutting a spare lead I had laying around I found red, black, green, and white wires, the latter are for data, so they can be removed, or taped aside. I checked the board markings against the plug and found they were the red and black wires, easy! I stripped a little insulation back from each and soldered the wires in, taping each.

Step 4: Wiring - Audio

For the audio input I wanted to keep it all internal, and still have the use of the RCA inputs if needed.

I opened the back cover by 6 screws, and removed the amplifier board to access the RCA inputs. Using the multimeter, I found the left, right and common ground and soldered some spare speaker wire straight to the board, securing it with plenty of hot glue.

I then punched a small hole in the dividing panel inside the dock, and ran the wires through.
Next I soldered the speaker wires to the donor 3.5mm plug that came with my adaptor. When cut, you will see 3 wires, googling "3.5mm pinout" provided the info I needed to get it right first time.
I then taped them all up, and secured it all nicely with a bit of hot glue, including the hole I made for the wires.

Step 5: Reassembly, and Finishing Touches.

I reassembled the amplifier board into the dock, and plugged in the adaptor, that's pretty much it!
I stuck on a NFC sticker to the inside of the lid so I can use it to turn on my phones bluetooth.

Testing it out, it worked first time, there is a little bit of interference, but this dock always had some to start with.
For $8 and about 90 minutes, I'd say I done well!

Step 6: Update

I felt that I wanted the comfort of the blue flashing light on the adaptor. So I decided to mount it on the inside cover with the LED shining through a small hole I drilled. To do this I had to pop it out of the case and remove the USB plug, as it was getting in the way.

At this point I realise just how small this thing is, without the USB and stereo plugs, just 15mm by 30mm and maybe 2-3mm thin. Could be great for some bluetooth headphones.... Maybe a quad copter battery or two..... Feel free to run with that, if it hasn't been done before, I'm sure someone will now.

I also played around with the range, and yes, as someone said below, it is terrible, maybe 3 meters streaming from my phone. I also found after some use that if I'm using my phone, it tends to cut out badly when I am using wifi, which doesn't happen when I stream to other devices. So I suggest finding a better adaptor, I'm sure there's plenty out there.



    • Make it Move Contest

      Make it Move Contest
    • Clocks Contest

      Clocks Contest
    • Woodworking Contest

      Woodworking Contest

    We have a be nice policy.
    Please be positive and constructive.




    What about the auto turn off that these have?

    This from Amazon might be simpler. Works great .

    Himbox HB01 Bluetooth 4.0

    One suggestion I would make is if you have a newer smart phone is to check and see if it supports aptX bluetooth. Its a newer addition to the bluetooth stack that allows much higher quality sound over bluetooth. I know that bestbuys sells a receiver that is aptX for around 40 bucks.

    Why not put outputs on the device so that you can just plug the unit in when necessary? Then you can use it on other devices.

    Thanks! I was wondering how to do this.

    Yes but you will need an amplifier. Generally you can use your car stereo but if you have a spare amp, hook that up, hook a switch and 12v power to the remote wire and hook the bluetooth up and power it all on and it will work.

    Yes, and you could get stereo with a between-speaker wire. The driver outputs on the 'phones should work fine driving the RCA or 3.5 mm input of a powered speaker.

    I only ask because I have an old Bluetooth headset that no longer holds a charge, I hate throwing away working tech, an have been wanting to do something with this.

    I wonder how difficult this would be to do to an American car stereo? Maybe attach the leads to the cassette input, as no one uses that anymore.

    3 replies

    As long as you can find the 5v power, I don't see why not. If I recall correctly, there should be some kind of 5v power behind a head unit, and if nothing else, there's for sure a 12v you could step down to 5v.

    Now if someone could please do an instructable on a 2001 Chevy Suburban CD stereo I could follow. :)

    Yes that should work. And yes I've seen people wire up to the head unit directly similar to those mp3 cassette adaptors only you cut out the middle man.

    I got a China one of these for my garage stereo to stream my phone with a couple weeks ago.I used an 1/8" stereo to RCA,and used an Aux input.I use a 'lil USB brick to power it.It works great,but the range is severely less than "normal".On my Jambox,I get about 20-30yds max before it cuts out.With this unit,I am lucky to get 10yds.

    Can this be done with a car's entire speaker system?

    1 reply


    Yes.If your stereo doesn't have a line-in input,you can still hack the stereo similar to above and piggyback a low level input such as a cassette or CD portion of the unit.

    Does anyone know if these BT devices can run off lower voltage? Either from connector or by tapping into output of regulator inside?

    I want to use one on a portable speaker that runs off two AA. I could use the guts f a two AA USB charger, but would like to avoid that.

    1 reply

    Check out
    Check out this awesome Instructable.

    You'll find a link to the step up board in the comments.

    Very nice guide. I used to use one of these bluetooth adapters in my old car and it was great. Since upgrading to a car with built-in bluetooth, I've had a project like this in mind, to integrate it into the reciever for my old surround sound system.

    That's pretty awesome work. I've never seen a bluetooth adapter like that before, but it seems like it was practically made for a project like this. Hell, I'm surprised it didn't come with the donor female plug as well as the cable.