Just got a great e-mail from PG reader Ron Phillips. He suggested a blog post about wacky or extreme uses of gadgetry.
I guess my best example would be the hack I did on the couch in my manroom back in 2003. After reading a tip in Make magazine (get their step-by-step PDF here), I decided to wire bass shaker speakers (otherwise known as “tactile transducers”) to the underside of my couch. Why the heck would I want to do that? Turns out that the bass shakers, which don’t actually emit sound, can greatly enhance the effect of your subwoofer.
So I picked up a pair of speakers from PartsExpress for $29 (see photo), an Onkyo stereo receiver for $89 and a few random items like speaker wire and banana plugs.
In terms of installation, you simply split the subwoofer signal coming from your AV receiver and send one cable to the sub and the other to a second receiver’s audio input. Next, wire the bass shakers to the second receiver’s speaker terminals. Finally, you attach the bass shakers to the frame of the couch (the longest piece of wood in the frame of the couch works best).
The whole project took around an hour to complete; however, the results are amazing. Everyone that tries them out loves the effect. The project adds a whole new dimension to gaming, listening to music, and watching movies.
So that’s my example. Ron actually has several great examples which I don’t want to spoil, so check out the discussion below to see how far he was willing to go. He’s got me beat.
Done something wacky in the name of gadgetry? Post a comment and tell us about it.