Picture of Portable Speaker
This is one of two portable speaker systems i wanted to build.  I used the LM386 circuit from my previous instructable and incorporated it into this portable speaker system.  It is a single channel (mono) speaker system which lights up blue in the background when you turn it on.  I hope you enjoy this one and feel free to give me suggestions or ask me to clarify anything that may be confusing.
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Step 1: Obtain Parts

Picture of Obtain Parts
All Components (except for Acrylic Sheet) can be found at RadioShack.

Multipurpose PCB with 417 Holes painted black
4.5-9 Volt DC power supply (3 or 4 AA or 9v Battery)
8 Ohm Speaker
Audio Source e.g. iPod
Acrylic Sheet from "Lowe's"
Project box
 2X Blue Square LED's
Mono Audio Jack
8-Pin Retention Contact
IC1      IC                                       LM386 Audio Amp IC
R1      Resistor                            10 Ohm
R2      Resistor                            1K Ohm
R3      Potentiometer                  5K Ohm
R4      Resistor                           10 Ohm
C1      Capacitor                         220 Micro Farad
C2      Capacitor                         10 Micro Farad
C3      Capacitor                         220 Micro Farad

Step 2: Place Components

Arrange components the best you can using the wiring diagram. i placed them as close together as i could, but it may be easier to spread them out a little more or breadboard this circuit first. I highly suggest breadboarding first just to get a feel of the arrangement, prior to soldering.

Step 3: Build Enclosure

I used about a 3 X 4 inch project box from RadioShack that fit the speaker i found appropriately. you can use any size you please, but for me the smaller the better to help with the portability part. I cut and trimmed up an acrylic sheet i got from Lowe's (or possibly Home Depot).  install the standoffs at this point also.  i drilled a small hole (not displayed in any pic) that i fed the battery wires through, the batteries are installed on the outside on the back.

Step 4: Observe Diagram

Look through the wiring diagram to see what components need to be connected to what prior to soldering. This is a modification of my LM386 instructable (
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Hello sir,

i have index subwoofer which is not in use now

so i need to use it as mobile speaker

so what can i need to do for making it mobile speaker

can i need to use power supply for it and

need any extra circuit ?

i have no knowledge about it please give me instruction

mjoneja made it!2 months ago

Great I'ble :D
I did have to add a 0.047uF decoupling capacitor at the output and a 0.01uF capacitor at the input to make the audio much better. Yet to package it though...
Thanks again for the cool instructable :)

rgada13 months ago

can u tell me hws much volts are the capacitor of?? plzz..Thank You

Silvester Jay11 months ago
I've been working on this by following the schematic . . But the only thing is the output is very low . . . like i need to shut off my ears to the surrounding things and get closer to the speaker to hear it . . But when i try to increase the volume its getting distorted . . . Can somebody help me out to fix it . . I haven't used the LED's to save power and running on a 9v battery . .
you should Built in a amp sircuit and i think you can use caps on the output to smoothe the sound
EthanFMLOO6 months ago

Does anyone have any ideas on how to make something like this but much bigger?

Ayush Sharma6 months ago
Can i power it with a 3.7v mobile battery?
dodo911 year ago
thank you! I was looking for how to build a speaker, with the amplification and everything, so I can make a speaker that is nice and loud for my laptop. Most things I found here were just taking old speakers and taking the board out of it, but I do not have any. I will use this, though I will substitute a battery for USB power. the cords will be attached directly, and will be able to roll up and be tucked into the unit and then closed back up, via a latch.
profpat1 year ago
nice project, but i noticed you wired the blue led's directly, i believe they need a resistor to keep the current low!
Ploopy1 year ago
Use USB power!
Mrtorta1 year ago
How much did it cost to make it?
Harrymatic1 year ago
I don't know if you are aware, but somebody seems to have stolen your instructable -
i was gonna say the same thing here........I will post it in the forum...will see if anything comes up
LucasBass1 year ago
Nice tutorial man, I want to make one with 2 speaker, what change will I have to do. What hardware need to be change. can you please update the list for me. and should I use 2 9V cell. and where should I connect the 2nd speaker.. I'm new.
What are the green wires there for? And are the 220uF Eletrolytic Capacitors suppose to be on the bottom of the PCB board or on top?
just curious, will it work without the potentiometer
Yes, it will work, but you'll have no choice for volume. You should put a trim pot or normal 5K resistor in it, then. But why not just buy a potmeter and place it in to make a volume knob.
nt sure if my ic connection is rite
please i just joined the site, but am having problem, after connecting excluding the speaker and audio input, just to ensure continuity, the lights came on, but on puting d others, no sound. help moi, u can reply to my mail..
tutdude982 years ago
really cool but you can remove speaker and make box for it :D but anyway good project
David972 years ago
That looks realy cool.
mar0433 years ago
its so cool...... can i have that...? how many money did you pind that...? did you have a facebook...?
mar0433 years ago
how many money did you spind.....?
apolicarpio3 years ago
How many watts?
386's are half watt amplifiers. but they still put out a lot of juice, even tho it sounds small.
eescobar3 years ago
im new at this can anyone plzzzzz help me with the schematic
Hey these amps are really fun and quite easy to build. Here: is a good circuit for the 386. but be careful to add a 2200uF capacitor across the power and ground if you are going to run it off a wall wart. also the bigger the speaker the better sound you will get out of it. less gain more volume. Good luck, reply if you have any questions
haaglm eescobar3 years ago
same here i have no idea
how big is it?
rhanson2943 years ago
Can I use stereo instead? The person at The Shack said that stereo would be better but it looks different.
mandrews923 years ago
This is going to be my first project like this. The only question I have is, What do i ground everything to? Do I just solder the ground to the pcb board?
nope...but all you have to do is connect all ground arrows(arrows pointing down)and connect it directly to the -neg. side of the battery clip......hope it helped....:))
Oh ok that makes sense. Oh and one more question... On the diagram the negative side of C2 isn't connected to the 8'th pin. Should it be connected, grounded, or just left unconnected from anything? Thanks in advance :)
well as you see its just a small gap......its the pictures problem......anyways you should connect it for bass...
Nvm. Saw your hand sketch that showed it connected to 8. Just finished and it works great. I got the plastic speaker that you showed in one of your other tutorials and was wondering if the one you use here sounds any better because I wouldn't mind it to be a little louder without distorting?
krmartin3 (author)  mandrews923 years ago
The small one i have doesnt sound very good at loud volumes either, what you might want to do is search online for a speaker that is able to handle at least more than one watt. the small one you were using can only handle .25 watts and your amp provides more than it can handle. i bought a small car speaker that is 50 watts and it sounds much better at higher volumes.
elspethdick3 years ago
Hi - I built this today and have carefully checked every connection and solder joint, but all I get is fuzz with no variation to the input music when I turn it on. I have soldered a mono audio cable with 3.5mm jack on the end to the potentiometer rather than a mono connector... maybe this difference is the problem. Is there something you need to do with the inner sleeve within the mono audio cable? I just soldered everything to one terminal of the potentiometer. Thank you sooooo much in advance for any assistance!
Now the speaker is playing the music, but it is so quiet I have to hold it to my ear to make it out. The speaker I am using is only 0.5W, could that be the problem?
It really doesn't seem to be amplifying - any ideas?
as you need to change the speaker..obviously your speakers is only .5watts...change it to 1watt or more as you please.....
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