This is a simple way to use your earbuds from your ipod etc as a backup means playing music for a small group of people. I got the idea when I saw someone cupping ipod headphones in their hand to get a slight boost in volume. This is a simple "what if" project, if you have any suggestions on changes to the design to help increase the volume let me know, that's one the reasons I'm putting this up :-P
Step 1: Stuff You Need
2 identical cardboard squares (mine were 5"x5")
Step 2: Cut Triangle Out
Draw/imagine a line going from one corner of the cardboard square to the opposite corner, follow line approx half way across the square (to the middle). Repeat with an adjacent corner to cut 1/4 of the square out. (Pictures make more sense :P)
Step 3: Fold and Tape
Use the scissors to press into the cardboard and make a line from the 2 complete corners to the center of the square. This makes it easier to fold, once the lines are pressed into the cardboard, just fold the 2 flaps until they touch. Tape the flaps together, congrats you're almost there!
Step 4: Earbud Holder and Other Ideas
So now we need to figure out a way to hold the earbud in position to achieve a little bit of a sound boost. I used a small peice of cardboard from the extra triangle we cut in an earlier step. place the cardboard in the "groove" formed by the two folded flaps that you taped together. Once this peice is in position, it's possible to place an earbud into the "amp" (I use the word amp loosely in this howto :P). The cable will tuck nicely between the flaps where they were taped (if you avoid taping right to the very end of the carboard the cable will fit). The flaps will pinch the cable if you taped them tight enough and the earbud should sit snugly. Try to place it so that there is a little room around the earbud for sound to bounce off the cardboard and reflect.
Now that you have one, make two! or just play around with one, check the pictures for my finished products.
Again I stress that this is not a replacement for even half decent laptop speakers, its simply a trick for when you'd like others to hear what you have on your music player etc in a group setting. Another good use I found was for music at night, I listen to plenty of music and this provided the right volume and I could keep it right next to my bed (where I charge my ipod). Usually I use these at around 70-80% volume.
Enjoy, and please toss up some suggestions if anyone comes up with better working results, after all I posted it here for feedback.