Sounds good

The Compaq Portable 386 (previous post) I have did not arrive here with much installed. I have added a modem and a Sound Blaster Pro clone- one thing I’d always wanted to do was add some speakers to accompany the soundcard.

Broke down a couple old laptops today and scavenged some parts.


Some very compact speakers from an old Dell. They are quite long travel- checked that they don’t pass out further than the edge of the plastic either.


Found an object that was round and the same size as the speaker aperture. A dime. Traced around it onto double-sided foam tape.

foam tape

Carefully chopped out the holes in the tape and attached them to provide an airtight seal. This does improve the sound.

All attached down

Stuck them to the vent grille. Perfect fit, there’s about 1/16″ clearance between the speaker cases and the cards. Connected up to an old CD-ROM audio cable and put that onto the amplified header on the sound card.

i see you

Very subtle mod. From the outside you have to look carefully to see them.


Then, start up the main PC, find an audio track, convert it to a 22,500 Hz 8-bit .WAV file, chop that up into floppy disc size pieces, transfer piecemeal (6 chunks), reassemble with MS-DOS copy (copy file1 /b + file2 /b + file3 /b …. then unzip the entire thing (9.2 Megabytes, unzip took about 4 minutes) and play the wave file in Media Player!

I did put some audio but it’s from a copyright protected piece of music, so I can’t publish it. However, it now sounds like any modern laptop. Not bad. It’s even properly in stereo.

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