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Old Broken Guitar Given New Life as Speaker

Old Broken Guitar Given New Life as Speaker

Daniel McGregor of Germany shared with us how he took an old broken guitar and upcycled it into a speaker. The guitar was put to good use during its lifetime as an instrument and therefore bridge plate broke off because of wear and tear. Daniel got the idea to transform the guitar when he was throwing out an old boombox that was also broken. Check out a few more detailed shots of the build below. Nice hack, Daniel!

20 thoughts on “Old Broken Guitar Given New Life as Speaker

  1. Ross Hershberger says:

    Very nice build. I like the idea of repurposing a musical instrument that can’t be repaired. For Makers who don’t have suitable speakers on hand for a conversion like this, good quality ones can be bought very cheaply from sources such as Parts Express and Madisound. Look for drivers labeled ‘fullrange’ for single speakers that will reproduce all sounds from bass through treble.

  2. Old Broken Guitar Given New Life As Speaker says:

    […] Broken Guitar Given New Life As Speaker Link: MAKE | Old Broken Guitar Given New Life as Speaker My broken old guitar was too nice to be scrapped. So I cut out two holes and wired two […]

  3. Upcycle | says:

    […] Saturday, April 28th, 2012 | Cool Stuff, JFI1 Daniel got the idea to transform the guitar when he was throwing out an old boombox that was also broken. It's like recess without […]

  4. joelschultz says:

    Now it needs an iPod docking station connector on the head,

  5. Ross Hershberger says:

    I like the idea of a guitar iPod speaker, but the small power output of a headphone device isn’t enough to drive larger speakers. It would require amplification. The LM386 power amp chip is cheap, runs off of 9V and will produce about half a watt of power. They’re also easy to implement & Radio Shack stocks them. For more power, use a LM1875 power amp chip (up to 10 watts) like I did in the Squelette amplifier project in MAKE #23.

  6. danielmcgregor says:

    I agree that an iPod dock would be a cool idea. Finding the right spot to place it is the real challenge, as you can stand the speaker in whatever angle you please. Or even hang it on the wall by the neck.

    Putting an amp inside the guitar would be neat too.
    However you need to remember if you do it, that the more you place inside the guitar, the less hollow space you have to resonate with the speakers.

    I have them now hooked up to my M-Audio Fast Track Audiointerface and an extra amp would make them better. :)

    Maybe the guts of an old set of pc speakers would do. It uses little space and has all the connections you need. =)

    1. Ross Hershberger says:

      PC speaker amp might work fine. I’ve been working with small amplifiers and powered speakers. I find that the amps in powered speakers often have frequency compensation in them to flatten the response of the driver and enclosure, resulting in good tonal balance. Usually there’s a lot of bass boost. This might or might not be optimal for any other driver/enclosure combo. Personally, I’d try it with a computer speaker pair that had a high/low ‘tone’ control so the frequency balance could be dialed in for the most pleasing result.

  7. DonC64 says:

    I have wanted to do this for a long time. Nice to see someone else had the same thought that an musical instrument with a sound box could make a great speaker. Gotta try this!

    1. danielmcgregor says:

      I posted a little guide on how i did the guitar. I hope it helps. :)

  8. 5 creative ways to recycle your broken guitar says:

    […] course, guitars were really meant to make music, and Makezine once explained how you can turn an old guitar into a lovely set of speakers. It doesn’t come to […]

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Matt Richardson is a San Francisco-based creative technologist and Contributing Editor at MAKE. He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.

View more articles by Matt Richardson
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