How to create your own BOSE speaker system and save a ton of money
Bet you wouldn't believe how easy it is to build your own Hi-Fi home theater speaker system using both BOSE and BOSE-equivalent components. When it comes to home theater, quality sound and good looks don't come cheap. In this article I'll show you how to DIY.You may notice relevant advertizing links on the sides of this article as well as google ads listed in the middle of the page that may help you with your project. Please feel free to check out the great things they have to offer.
Things You'll Need
- Genuine BOSE Acoustimass Bass Module
- BOSE or BOSE-equivalent cube drivers
- "Basswood" craft plywood
- 1/4 & 1/8 inch balsa wood strips
- Screws and screwdriver
- Wood glue
- Sewing pins
- Needle-nose pliers
- Speaker grill fabric and scissors (optional)
- Craft knife (i.e. x-acto)
- Solder and soldering gun
- Speaker wire
- RCA-type female connector
- Paint or veneer and clear-coat for the finish
First, you'll need to get a BOSE bass module. You'll be using your own receiver so you will want to match the module to it. Mine is a 5.1 surround sound receiver so I chose the BOSE Acoustimass 6 bass module. I purchased it on eBay at a steal. Here you can see the front of it and the back with the inputs and outputs.
Now let's talk about the cube drivers you'll need.If you can find enough BOSE cube replacement drivers at a good price them snag-'em-up! I found some BOSE-equivalent drivers on eBay, too, but availability there is a shot in the dark. These speaker drivers are available on the web here at http://simplyspeakers.com/14replacements.htm near the bottom of the page for $24.95 each. Here are the details of the speaker:3" SONY Part #1-505-440-11FULL RANGE8 OhmSize: 2-3/4" SquareHole cut out: 2-1/2"Power: 11WResponse: 100-16KhzMagnet: 5 oz. ShieldedSensitivity: 85 dB
Use basswood plywood for the speaker box. You can find it at your local craft store like Michael's, Hobby Lobby, or HobbyTown USA. A mitre saw will make short work of cutting the different pieces. Carpenter's wood glue creates a sealed bond and sewing needle heads work like tiny nails to tightly secure the bonds. To make the needle heads, snip sewing needles in half using the cutters on your needle-nose pliers. Save the pointed tips for later.Hold the "nail" perpendicular in the pliers and push the pin head in. Use a hammer to finish the job. In the picture here you might notice that I'm using the point and not the head. The point is for the frame, the head is for the box.
Glue scrap pieces in the corners and pre-drill them. Measure and mark carefully as these will be where you insert the screws to hold the speaker firmly in place.Drill a hole in the back of the box and install the RCA female connector. You can find them at Radio Shack or Fry's Electronics. This picture shows good detail of these two steps.Use paint or wood veneer and clear coat to finish the box.Use speaker wire to connect the speaker to the RCA connector (maintain correct polarity + to +, - to -. Use solder to secure these connections.
Now comes the finishing touch - The face frame. This is the most difficult part as the frame is very delicate. It is made of two parts: both an inner and outer frame. The outer frame is 1/4 inch balsa wood - its outer dimensions should match that of the face of the box. The inner frame is 1/8 inch - its outer dimensions should match closely to the inside of the outer frame while leaving room for the fabric thickness because the inner frame is used to "stretch" the grille fabric to cover the front of the speaker. You can choose to not use the fabric. Substitute some "cool-headed" screws for an audiophile look.Assemble the frames with wood glue and pin tips.
Screw the speakers into the boxes.Paint the frames and attach them to the box with pin tips, too.Connect the speakers to your system and ENJOY!Use the links below for more information.
Tips & Warnings
- Use balsa wood strips for the frames. It won't split as easily as basswood.
- Check the impedance of your receiver and choose appropriate speakers.