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Logan L. Johnson

Indoor Speaker Outdoors

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I am going to be playing music with my display this year (and hopefully have it synced in 2-3 years) and I purchased a kenwood (indoor) stereo speaker with the red and black speaker wire. I got it wired to an AUX and my chromebook and laptop will play music through it, but it's really quiet (on full volume). I will be sitting it outside on my front porch (which is covered) and running the wire into my front door, to one of my laptops. I thought I could wrap it in wrapping paper and make it look like a gift, and it would be ok. We don't usually get heavy rain here in november and december, but if we do there usually isn't wind. What do you think? 

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PCs and Laptops do not have enuf umph to power external speakers.  You'll have to run the output to an amp.  Your best bet, if you have a radio station is use a boombox or sort.

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Push it through a VSX pioneer or AH series pioneer. The AH series has HDMI....we use an old VSX454 Pioneer...you could here it for a mile easily...or you could use a 1019AH-K, it has HDMI, the 454 doesnt

Edited by Big J Illinois

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A 'powered' speaker will do what you want. Think of it as a speaker with an amp built inside.  Sometimes you can find a used computer speaker system at a thrift shop for little money.  Just make sure all the cables and power adapters are with it.

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A lot of it depends also on your use.  Are you using it for the public to hear or for you.  If for the public, then definitely a powered speaker.  Just google for your price range.

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Sorry it has taken me so long to reply, I haven't been on my computer much in the past 3 days. So I figured out a way to wire it, but it has problems. The songs either echo, the music is overpowering the singer, or you can't hear it at all. So I guess I'll look for an amp. Maybe I'll find a used one somewhere. Also, instead of an amp, could I hook it up maybe to a dvd player? I can put my music on a CD if necessary, although I would like it to be on my computer. 

To clarify: I don't have a radio station. It's just too expensive. None of my computers have HDMI ports, and I don't feel like shelling out $500-$1500 on another computer (I already have 6). The speaker says that it takes 60 watts, but it works when hooked up to my computers. 

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8 hours ago, Logan L. Johnson said:

Sorry it has taken me so long to reply, I haven't been on my computer much in the past 3 days. So I figured out a way to wire it, but it has problems. The songs either echo, the music is overpowering the singer, or you can't hear it at all. So I guess I'll look for an amp. Maybe I'll find a used one somewhere. Also, instead of an amp, could I hook it up maybe to a dvd player? I can put my music on a CD if necessary, although I would like it to be on my computer. 

To clarify: I don't have a radio station. It's just too expensive. None of my computers have HDMI ports, and I don't feel like shelling out $500-$1500 on another computer (I already have 6). The speaker says that it takes 60 watts, but it works when hooked up to my computers. 

Yes, you can hook it up to a DVD player if it has speaker ports, usually they don't because they use you're TV speakers for sound. If you had a stereo system that would be you're best bet. The speaker says 60 watts because that's probably either the max it can handle or it's the recommended working wattage. They will work with less watts but as in you're case will be very quiet. A laptop or desktop just don't have enough power for the speaker to work properly, like others said, you need an amplifier or a powered speaker. 

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I wired the speaker to the red, white, and yellow TV cables and used an adapter to connect them to my laptop via AUX.  can hook them up directly to the dvd player. I'm going to go try that now before I spend any money.

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On 3/5/2017 at 10:37 PM, Logan L. Johnson said:

. The speaker says that it takes 60 watts, but it works when hooked up to my computers. 

I'm confused.  Is it working with some computers but not others, or what?

On 3/5/2017 at 10:37 PM, Logan L. Johnson said:

 I figured out a way to wire it, but it has problems. The songs either echo, the music is overpowering the singer, or you can't hear it at all.

In  order to figure this out you're going to have to provide some more details. 

Is this a single speaker, a pair of speakers ei L and R, or a single box with left and right speakers?  What exactly are the connectors on the back?

What adapters are you trying to use?

Normally, the AUX jack uses a 1/8" miniplug with three conductors, the tip, the ring just below the tip, and the barrel.  The tip and the ring are for L and R (don't remember which is which) and the barrel is the common or ground which would go to both speakers.

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The DVD player worked, but was still quiet and echoed. It is only one speaker (it was originally a pair but I only bought one). I wired it from the red and black wires to the RCA cables (red and white). 

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Well you are hooking a stereo speaker up mono, so than can be you're problem.

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On 3/6/2017 at 2:37 PM, Logan L. Johnson said:

To clarify: I don't have a radio station. It's just too expensive. 

Radio station can cost you less than $10 if you can do a bit of DIY. Do a search on ebay for "DSP PLL Digital Wireless Microphone Stereo FM Transmitter". Then install Zara Radio Free Edition there's a few quirks to get it going properly but I got some good tips from this forum thread 

When you do sync your lights to music the FM transmitter can be used to play that also. I have my Zara radio station playing non-stop christmas songs, then it plays an audio file announcing the light show just before the lights come on. The radio station then shuts down whilst the light show is playing, then comes back on once it finishes. 

Then all you need is an FM Radio, I bought something like this PA Speaker with FM Radio and covered it with a box made from coro (corflute) for weather protection and decorated it with a ribbon to make it look like a christmas present (I also chained it to something solid so it didn't get stolen).

If you still want to use the speaker you already have then just get a FM stereo unit or FM Radio Power Amplifier for less than $20 you can hook the speakers up to. 

 

Just some ideas

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Thanks, I will research that. I'm a software developer and web designer on the side, so I can work with software or anything else of the sort. I am not good at wiring, and if it requires wiring (especially small wires) I will look for a cheap used amp or some computer speakers.

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Going back to the original issue with bad/weak sound, have you set your audio software properly in the computer?  Turn off any sound effects, set to mono, increase AUX volume, etc.

 

This FM transmitter works very well if you have a radio or boombox. http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=FM2&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cse&utm_term=fm2&gclid=CMj5zuzF0dICFYi6wAodecUI3A

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Volume was at 100%. I was on a chromebook so there aren't any detailed audio settings. I can however hook it up to a windows pc and change those settings if it will make a difference.

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 A direct connection to your speaker can be made with one of these... http://www.mcmelectronics.com/browse/3.5mm-to-Leads/0000002963.

It will at least tell you whether you have enough power for the speaker to produce the sound you want.  Connect the ground wire (bare) to one terminal and either the red or white to the other terminal.  You probably can twist the red and white together to combine the stereo signal to mono, but no guarantee it won't cause an issue with your sound card.  If it works, just extend the length with more wire or lamp cord.  If not, then you'll need one of the other solutions offered.

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Oh, I didn't mention that it doesn't have a ground. I knew it was odd, but didn't think it to be worth mentioning. I *think* I may have found a way to fix it using VLC media player. I just have to change the audio effects around with each song and save it to the configuration. It has worked ok with the first two songs I have done. If it will stop raining outside I'll take it out there and see what it sounds like. 

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It seems that what you are describing and what I'm picturing from your description are world's apart, so I'm going to bow out of this.  Sounds like you've found an alternate solution.

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