LumberJocks

Bluetooth Speakers

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Project by Steve posted 12-23-2017 05:11 PM 1012 views 6 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

It’s gift-building season and I got these done for my sons just in time. My original plan was to use a wireless speaker kit sold by one of the big woodworking supply houses. It would have been a simple project; the kit has a single speaker and a control panel, all pre-wired. Unfortunately, the kits were backordered and not expected to arrive until after the new year.

I found 2 inch speakers and small bluetooth audio boards on Amazon instead and tackled the project from scratch. The box is built from walnut (top and bottom), maple (sides and feet) and swamp ash, of all things (front and back). The ash is supposed to have good acoustic properties.

I cut the box joints on the table saw with a stacked dado set. I gang the sides together and cut two joints at a time. That last photo is me trying to make sure the second set of cuts don’t leave me with some kind of Esher-like unbuildable box.

The front and back are only a quarter inch thick—not enough to screw the speakers to the face. I epoxied them in place before I remembered that hot glue guns exist. The audio board is held in place with hot glue, as is the power cord (for strain relief).

The board has six little buttons for various functions like play/pause, skip, rewind, etc. and one large button for power/bluetooth pairing. I gave up on the little buttons (most of them are duplicated in software anyhow), but needed a way to turn the unit on and off. After a sleepless night, I came up with the turned dowel, which works pretty well.

I finished the units with two coats of tung oil. A third would have been nice, but Christmas is a deadline that just doesn’t move.

The sound quality is pretty good, enough so that I want to build one myself. Next time around, I’d elevate the board inside the unit (to make the power switch shorter), provide for some kind of ventilation and take more care with the speaker wiring. I’d also add a rechargeable battery pack to make the thing portable.

-- ~Steve





6 comments so far

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

3240 posts in 1984 days


#1 posted 12-23-2017 05:26 PM

Nicely done..great gifts.

I built a Bluetooth speaker using a similar board but bought mine from a ebay seller. I got one in a plexiglass case with buttons. It is a pretty good board.

View Tom Regnier's profile

Tom Regnier

174 posts in 2542 days


#2 posted 12-23-2017 05:33 PM

Nice build Steve. I was going to tackle one of these but got overwhelmed with the audio choices and passed.

View kocgolf's profile

kocgolf

309 posts in 2174 days


#3 posted 12-24-2017 03:05 AM

Ha, cool project! I love little gift things but something like this has never been on my radar…until now! Makes me want to enclose my own tv soundbar in wood.

View missouriwood's profile

missouriwood

46 posts in 2063 days


#4 posted 12-25-2017 05:56 PM

Very nice. I see something similar for myself in my future.

-- Eric, Lone Jack, MO

View Underdog's profile

Underdog

1095 posts in 2031 days


#5 posted 12-25-2017 10:42 PM

Nice job on these. I too would have gotten some of those bluetooth speakers but they didn’t have stereo…

So, does your board provide stereo? Or is it just dual speakers on mono?

If stereo, I’d love the model numbers for the board…

-- "woodworker with an asterisk"

View Steve's profile

Steve

66 posts in 1006 days


#6 posted 12-26-2017 05:00 AM

The specs say stereo. The maker is ISMA, model TDA7492P.

https://www.amazon.com/INSMA-TDA7492P-Receiver-Amplifier-Channel/dp/B01BTJZFY6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1514263753&sr=8-1&keywords=B01BTJZFY6

At the time of this writing, they’re selling for about $16. Another member here pm’d me with a link to parts-express.com, which has quite a large selection of dyi amp boards and speakers—more than what I was able to find on Amazon at least.

We had one of these on for a while after opening gifts, and the only downside appears to be a limited bluetooth range, probably because the receiver is encased in wood.

-- ~Steve

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