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Help building slimline portable speaker mod? Answered

I am trying to build a portable slimline speaker set for my Ipod. I have to sets of computer speakers that I can use. One consists of 2 separate speakers with 3.5mm jacks. I worry that they may draw more power than the Ipod can supply. The other set has a USB and a 3.5mm jack for input. Is it possible to build (or buy) a battery pack (or somthing similar) to power the usb?

Please give any and all suggestions on how to build and how to get best results. (I am open to buying parts or new speakers that would work better)
I am doing this for kicks (but i do want to get a good setup out of it) so please don't say: "just go to such and such website and buy such and such portable slimline speakers"



Quercus austrina

8 years ago

There are several ways to go about doing the mod you that want. The very first thing you should do is open up the case that the USB plugs into and find the positive and negative rails of the USB connector. This is easy because they are the outer pins on the plug (type A and mini) or the upper and lower pins on the right (type B). For a good example, look at this instructable: https://www.instructables.com/id/The-Ultimate-ATX-Power-Supply-Mod-With-USB-Chargin/step3/Add-The-USB-Ports/ . Use a multimeter set to measure the next range above 5 volts (mine would be 20V) and test the pins (with a USB cord plugged in and powered). If you have the correct ones, you should get between 4.75 and 5.25 volts. If you get a negative value, switch the test probes around. Take note of which one is positive and negative (ground or gnd).

Now that you have that sorted out, the 2 easiest ways that come to mind are:
1. Solder in a red (for positive) wire and black (for negative/gnd) to the connections tested above. These wires can be connected to a 6 volt battery pack (red to +, black to -).
2.  Get a second USB cord, cut the unused end off and connect the appropriate wires to a 6 volt battery pack (same as above).

Either way should work. The beauty of using just the USB cord is you don't have to hack up the speakers. Truly plug and play. For a cheap source of extra cords, I go to my local Dollar Tree. They have USB (A, B and mini) along with firewire cables. Hard to beat for a buck. Since this is a USB speaker, it should not pull more than 200 mA from the USB cable or it would shut down the port or cause other problems. The 6V shouldn't be a problem with the speakers or circuit  because most amps can handle variation in voltage pretty well. As a matter of fact, I have a cheap set from WM that can be powered either from the USB port or 4 AAA batteries (6 V).

BTW, if you use C or D cells, it'll last a lot longer than AA or AAA's.

Let everyone know how you made out.