Not everyone quite understands what an old computer hard drive is capable of. Most are convinced that the only function of this device is to write and read information. And if he is not able to fulfill these functions, then he is no longer good for anything. However, below is an algorithm by which anyone can turn an old hard drive into a working speaker for playing music or other sounds.
Materials and tools needed
To bring the idea to life, you will need:
- Hard disk. It is better to use a non-functional or frankly outdated hard drive, which no longer makes sense to use for its intended purpose. Any model will do, both 2.5 and 3.5 inches.
- Sheet of A4 paper.
- PVA glue or tape.
- A small piece of modeling clay.
- Soldering iron with solder.
- Accumulator or battery. It is desirable to have a battery of type AA or AAA (finger or little finger).
- Small power amplifier. A part of old audio speakers or a purchased version with a power of about 2 watts is suitable.
- Hex screwdriver.
- A set of wires for connecting elements.
- “Crocodile” to ensure reliable contact.
How to DIY
You have to start transforming a hard drive into a loudspeaker by directly dismantling the first one. It is necessary to unscrew the board and remove the top cover. It is important to understand that if a working hard drive was taken for experiments, after opening the case it will not be.
Fastening of disk elements is most often carried out with hexagonal screws, which must be unscrewed with a special screwdriver. Moreover, in addition to the main screw, there may also be an additional one covered with a label. And if there are any difficulties when removing the cover, you need to check the product for such hidden fasteners.
Almost all hard drives look the same on the inside. They have a disc that spins with a special motor. Above is the playback head, which rises above the disk as it spins. This head moves thanks to the interaction of a permanent magnet and an electromagnet located nearby. There must be a limiter that does not allow the playhead to go beyond the frame of the disc’s working area.
This limiter must be unscrewed or completely broken off, as it will not allow the disk to be removed from the motor. Inside is another neodymium magnet, comparable in size to a match head.
The fixing screws are unscrewed, after which the playback head is moved back and the disc itself is removed from the seat.
Next, you need to find the coil contacts on the connector that connects the HDA hard drive and the internal electronics board. At this stage, it is advisable to use a multimeter to measure the resistance on the contacts. The resistance of the desired resistor is always between 4 and 40 ohms.
In practice, in most hard drives, the coil contacts face each other. However, in order to avoid errors, it is always best to check resistance values with a multimeter.
Using a soldering iron, solder two wires to the found contacts. Now you can check the correctness of the circuit again by connecting a battery or accumulator to the wires. First, the read head must contract in one direction and, when changing polarity, in the other. If this reaction is absent, it is necessary to recheck the contacts with a multimeter and, most likely, resolder the wiring.
Once the structure is assembled, the audio signal from the amplifier can be routed to the wiring. By default, the hard drive produces a fairly quiet sound that you should listen to. To increase the volume, you can make a simple amplifier, which is a paper cone. It is attached to the disc with simple modeling clay and glue.
A simple speaker from an old hard drive is ready. It can hardly boast of sounding at the level of professional equipment, but it is quite comparable to cheap Chinese speakers.