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Over at the Steampunk Workshop, Jake inaugurates a new Guest Artist Project feature with the wonderful Molly “Porkshanks” Friedrich as the first artist in residence. Molly shows how to update an antique Cannonball Empire headset with modern headphone innards.

Porkshank’s Dieselpunk Headphone Mod – Link


  • The Ambiance Enhancer (retro MP3 player) – Link

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture, including the first book about the web (Mosaic Quick Tour) and the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots. He is currently working on a best-of collection of his writing, called Borg Like Me.



  1. W8FG says:

    It’s a real sin to destroy these high impedance antique’s! Users of vintage radio equipment spend great efforts to preserve their old radio’s and often need to find quality set’s of these old high impedance head sets to get proper enjoyment of these old radios. Don’t destroy antique electronics in the name of something stupid. There’s no good reason to chop up a good old set for the sake of making your $1.00 poor quality toy’s sound better.

  2. Jake von Slatt says:

    Antiques have value for two main reasons; they give us a connection to the culture that created them and they have monetary value in the marketplace. There is no doubt that singular hand crafted works of artists and craftsmen demand preservation as they give us unique information about past cultures. However, vintage mass-manufactured goods hold little unique cultural information, they have value only in the marketplace.

    While modding an antique may destroy it’s monetary value, it also transforms it into an object that now preserves unique cultural information about the present. So it all depends on what you feel is important.

  3. Kaj says:

    I point out that one of the headphones pictured in the website (top left) are a set of WWII US Army headphones. I don’t mind the others nearly as much as the loss of a hard-to-find relic of the past.

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