My pimped out lazy boy

By Zen
Aug 26, 2011
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  1. Well I don't know what got into me when I woke up this morning, but I got rather miffed with an old set of 2.1 stereo computer speakers, that were connected to my Dell Dimension 3000. A friend sent me a music file via e-mail and it sounded like crap. So not wanting to spend any extra money that I didn't have to, I pondered. Then it came to me, since I got my Playstation 2 I was able to integrate it with a Harmon Kardon 2.1 surround sound system. Why can't I do the same with a computer, so I grabbed a spare Panasonic 5.1 Dolby Pro Logic home theater system that I was keeping in storage, and went to work.

    I took off to Ace Hardware and bought all the fixings I would need to build home made speaker stands, got a couple cans of black spray paint, "got to match my living room colors"! Went to Radio Shack and bought all the required RCA to 3.5mm jack cables. Got home, opened up the Dell 3000 and upgraded the hell out of it. I installed a old Nvidia GeForce 6200(A) 256MB DDR2 video card, so when I watch things it will look better than watching it off the motherboards video adapter, which was only 64MB's. Next I installed a sweet Creative XF-I Titanium Fatality 7.1 capable sound card. Confirmed that Ubuntu would allow these new devices to work, talk about flawless, not one darn problem, it all worked.

    Went to work on building those speaker stands, with a power drill both prefab and build only took about 30 minutes. Got them outside and painted them black, gave them a while to dry to the touch. Went to an audio web site that dealt with custom setup's like mine, printed out the positioning chart and used that as my base.

    Oh my God, talk about an audio sweet spot right where my head is! Sounds like the music band is singing and playing to me around my recliner.

    Here is the setup, take a look, I am so fricking proud of myself, all smiles here!

    There's one of the front main speakers on it's newly made stand!

    There's the PC and Home Theater system side by side, 1000 watts of pure sound!

    There's the Sub resting and pumping out the bass behind my chair.

    There's the monitor, got the web radio thing going!

    And lastly..........the whole darn package!


    I love this, I also love the fact that the home built speaker stands from start to finish only cost me $12.75, where Walmart wanted $39.99 for only two matching aluminum speaker stands. I made mine out of soft pine wood, brass wood screws, a little dab of wood glue and paint, $12.75, I like that.

    Sorry to be rambling on about all of this, but using an older home theater system meant I didn't have to buy a computer sound solution, I already had that covered. And I always get a little gitty about do it yourself home projects, I'm happy.

    Time to bust out Star Trek 2009, grab a beer and pop some pop corn and see what this new setup will do for a movie.
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,689   +395

    Nice job.

    I think TS needs more DIY type progress reports.
  3. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    Neat ;)

    Now, the money you've saved can be spent on a wireless KB ? Just an idea nothing more.
  4. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +45

    Well it's a interesting thought, a thought I've had several times, just didn't get around to making it happen. But seeing that your bringing up an old idea of mine, I will let you research it for me! Find me a decent wireless keyboard and wireless mouse combo deal, an all in one package, and post back some links to what you find. "Budget", say low end maybe like $20.00, high end I'd be willing to spend is like $50.00, you or anyone else find me a sweet deal and I will jump on it.
  5. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    Okay, well here is one deal, its an MS wireless KB with Mouse, and with free shipping it costs about 39$ (the egg seems to be bit pricey for no apparent reason)

    However, the same package can be purchased for 18$ at starworth.
  6. Benny26

    Benny26 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,533   +48

    Doesn't everybody dream of a setup where everything is at your fingertips?...I know i do :D

    Nice job Zen :)
  7. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +45

    Well after a slightly exhaustive search this morning, I finally found the last component of my hooked to computer home theater system. It was that darn "center speaker", I've misplaced that thing more than once. But now it's hooked up to the system, I might need to go back to Ace Hardware and buy the same items that made up my four currently in use, newly made speaker stands, for currently the center speaker is resting on the floor, just at the lip of my swing out portion of my chair.

    Here it is, not a very good setup right now, but I'll make a new stand for that as well real soon.

    There's the little sucker, just hiding, almost non detectable.

    And there's my chair with it's mouth wide open, you can see the center speaker now for sure!

    And in regards to that wireless keyboard and mouse combo deal thing, I've been plunking a little bit on that this morning. Archean's presentation of that combo deal was nice, but the mouse was lacking one feature that is an absolute for me, a must have, that is a "forward" and "backwards" buttons. So far I think I'm getting kind of hot for the following deal...

    The Logitech Wireless Wave MK550 Combo Deal

    I know it's slightly over my $50.00 max budget price, but Archean had a good point, I saved money on this "do it myself" project, also saving money by not having to buy a new sound solution, so the savings can go into buying a nice keyboard + mouse deal.

    I think I'm going to go for it, I will keep you posted, unless some try's to trip me up by presenting something better!
  8. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +45

    Just following up, for anyone who might be interested. About 10 minutes ago I finalized my order with Amazon for a new wireless keyboard + mouse. I got the one that I was talking about above, but purchased it from Amazon, not that web site. That other web site was going to charge me a lot more money. So I saved some coin, all the while getting what I wanted.

    Here it is...

    The combo deal will be hitting my mail box within the next 7-10 days! Plus this will be nice, not having to drag my older Microsoft Reclusa keyboard off the floor, drag the USB cord over a chair and make sure is doesn't interfere with a speaker stand. Now I can just keep it tucked by my side on the chair. :)
  9. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    Very nice :)

    Lets hope the batteries will last as long as they are claiming.
  10. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +45

    No kidding! To be on the safe side, before this package hit's my mail box, I'm going to jet out to Costco and buy a flat of their Kirkland AA batteries. That claim of "virtually no charging ever needed" that stuff sounded a little to good to be true!

    I'm going to play it safe, and have a crap load of batteries laying around, you know "peace of mind" stuff! :)
  11. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    I hear you ;)

    I briefly used logitech wireless mice with desktop and notebook, and batteries at best would last for 4 weeks. Eventually I gave up the idea until they come up with more 'power efficient' wireless solutions.
  12. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 861   +45

    Just to let you know buddy, that when I was out and about tonight, doing some shopping I stopped off at one of my local Walmart's and purchased two little deals...

    The charger.....

    And the Battery's

    I figured why keep dumping money into my soon to be keyboard + mouse, why not just have a "in home solution" to all this, no need to go out, just stay home and recharge and reuse batteries. Plus a flat of Kirkland AA batteries at Costco would have cost me $21.99, this new charger and battery system at Walmart only ran me little over $16.00. So as far as a power solution for all these items, I think I've got it covered...........I hope!
  13. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    Not a bad idea. :)
  14. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,689   +395

    I am not familiar with that mouse, but I have an LX7 I believe (hard to find now) and it has battery life of longer than a year with rechargeables, and I got it years ago. With rechargeables the mouse won't last as long as with alkalines. I see you got low self discharge batteries, good move.
  15. Powah

    Powah TS Rookie Posts: 16

    Im really impressed by the amount of DYI and self initiative to get this project done. I hope it was worth the trouble and paid off with a film test!

    Well done sir!

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