Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Steampunk Headphones

Here is a project that I have seen done before, but wanted to try it out myself. Early audio and communication equpiment is quite fascinating to me; the over all cosmetics, the 'mystique' of magnets, the robustness of construction. However, one is lucky to fine an old pair of headphones that still functions. Wanting the cosmetics of the old and the function of the new, I put together the following set of headphones.

The base for this project is an old pair of 'Scientific' headphones I found at an antique store. The chord was shot, the magnets were cracked, and one of the diaphragms was badly bent. Bus since I only had eyes for the metal case and headband, they were perfect. The new headphone speakers were from a set of 'Aer Lingus' free-bies from a trip several years ago.

The finished headphones look very nice, and quite unique. I'm not going to go into great detail on how to make a set like these, I know there are instructions out there, and I didn't document the process.

The sound is also quite nice. Audiophiles will likely turn up their nose at these, as it is less than pristiene, and has rather poor bass response. However, I think that it works quite well with the design of the headphones themselves. And as a steampunk project, the roughness and crackling sound is a neat effect, and quite fun to use to listen to modern music or brign your iPod back in time.

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