View Full Version : Boomboxes - disposable?

Osborne Russel
02-20-2006, 12:50 PM
I had a Phillips in the garage for at least three years until the CD player quit. The new Magnavox is already starting to skip and sometimes refuses altogether.

I keep the things covered with a clean towel all the time. I suspect that fine (visible only in quantity) western red cedar dust is doing them in.

1. Is it repairable or destined for the gallery of industrial art (the landfill)?

2. Is any CD player capable in the garage environment?

02-20-2006, 12:53 PM
1. Is it repairable or destined for the gallery of industrial art (the landfill)?

Anything is probably repairable...but taking into account the US as a throw away society...it will end up cheaper to buy a new one...

02-20-2006, 01:01 PM
When the last CD player quit, I fell back on the iPod, equipped with the iTrip FM-broadcasting attachment. The radio's weak antenna can pick up the iTrip's signal from anywhere in the shed.

Incredible range of music aside, the bonus is that I keep the iPod in the front pocket of my overalls, so I have instant access if I want to skip or repeat a song, pump up the volume to compensate for a powertool, or kill the volume entirely to answer the phone.
It's a whole new world.

I'd bet that some of the early-model iPods are showing up on eBay by now at good prices as addicts upgrade to the newer models.

Osborne Russel
02-20-2006, 01:16 PM
Doesn't the Ipod interfere with hearing protection? I like having the earplugs on a hoop around my neck.

02-20-2006, 01:25 PM
No headphones or earbuds involved. The iPod is broadcasting a radio signal that is picked up by a boombox in the corner of the shed. The boombox makes the sound.

The iPod has the ability to control the volume of the signal it broadcasts, and therefore control the volume of what the boombox produces.

02-20-2006, 01:27 PM
Yeah, that's right. I'm suggesting that you re-use a boombox that could be replaced for $75 by spending $150 on an ipod and itrip. :D

(really though, it's the way to go.)

02-20-2006, 01:34 PM
Going back to the...or one of the...original questions...is the boombox worth repairing...I stated no....that was my response...I was not talking or writing about alternatives as I was attempting to answer the question....

So...throw the damn'd thing away....cheaper to buy a new one...or...look at other alternativers.

Osborne Russel
02-20-2006, 02:08 PM
You can tell by my questions I don't know what you're talking about.

02-20-2006, 03:43 PM
Well, I haven't done a good thread-hijack in a while! :D

The short version: It's like I'm walking around with a remote control for the boombox.

You get the basic concept of the mp3 player (iPod), right? It's a pocketsized harddrive that can store and playback oodles and oodles of music. Potentially your entire CD collection in the palm of your hand.


The thing on the left is called an "iTrip". It plugs into the ipod's headphone jack, and broadcasts (at low power) an FM signal. This iTrip thingy was developed as a way to use the iPod in your car without any special wiring... just tune the car's radio to the iTrip's frequency, and you get the iPod's music coming out of your car speakers.

Applying this cool roadtrip technology to a workshop:
I walk around the shed with the iPod in my pocket. The attached iTrip broadcasts the FM signal. The radio in the corner of the shed does what radios do.... it converts that signal into sound.

From anywhere in the shed, up on deck, down in the bilge, laying under the keel, I can change the music, I can change the volume, I can stop or start, etc.

It's one of those "How did I ever live without this?" kinda things.

Charlie Santi
02-21-2006, 07:17 AM
I like my Sirius boom box in the shop wide variety of music. Unit can be moved to the truck or into the house with no trouble.

02-21-2006, 07:24 AM
I've got a new boom box in the shop to replace the old one. The old one was over 10 years old and cost less than $100, so I reckon we got our money's worth out of it.

The best set up I had was on that old boom box. It didn't have a CD player, so I bought a portable CD player and used the external input. This worked better than the current system. That way I was able to get a good CD player with good skip protection and more features.


02-21-2006, 07:29 AM
I wonder how hypochondriacs and old farts with pacemakers feel about a low power FM transmitter right next to their heart.

But there's another issue here. I once, in my youth, was told that stereo choice was related to age and sociology. At that time, really old folk preferred a piece of audio equipment that looked like a piece of furnature. It hid. Middle aged folks, the age my dad was at the time and near the age I am now, liked big speakers with good sound, and a glass component cabinet that displayed their fine audio components with the turntable on top and all the winky-blinkies flashing. The younger crowd, at the time, liked boom boxes for their portability.

But now that I'm pushing forty, looking at a divorce, and trying to figure what furnature I want in my house (talking living room rather than shop here) I think I want something that hides and looks like just another piece of furnature.

What does this mean?


02-21-2006, 08:16 AM
Now I have no answer there....I think I bought a stereo in 1979.....only one...oh...I did buy a dvd...but...
Anyway, when my father died...got all of his stuff...and it is not well hidden.the second category you mentioned...although sometimes I think it would be good to hide it...as steroes etc are the first..or one of the first things stolen.....
I guess I really am not much of an electronic pack rat...come to think of it...my stuff is too old and no one would steal it....
I look at how utilitarian the stuff is and how much I use it....a good sofa/couch....a few comfortable chairs....yes, guess I'll keep the stereo system...why buy a new one...it still works....a coffee table....

Osborne Russel
02-21-2006, 11:47 AM
Thanks for bringing me out of my cave, Figment. Keeping abreast of Technology seems less important once you pass 90. redface.gif

How long have you been operating this way with your I pod?

02-21-2006, 03:12 PM
A little over a year now, I guess.

Oh, believe me, I'm the last one to try to keep up with technology! The wifey is the technophile of the family. I get her hand-me-downs.

Osborne Russel
02-21-2006, 04:49 PM
1. Lots of fine sawdust in your workshop?
2. How do you get the CD's into the little box?

02-21-2006, 07:32 PM
Well, it's confession time. My boat ain't wood. I'd guess fiberglass dust to be just as bad as wood dust, though, and I've certainly had plenty of that. Put it this way.... it's dusty enough that I wear a full-face respirator at least 40% of the time.
I don't suppose that the ipod is completely dustproof, but it's certainly holding up better than any cd player I've had in there.

If you have the computer skills to search the internet for boaty stuff, you can manage the iTunes software. It is an Apple product, after all.

Other ipod users please chime in if you think I'm oversimplifying things.

02-22-2006, 12:52 PM
As JTA said, a 'Q tip' with a bit of alchohol to carefully clean the lense has changed a non-working / skipping CD player into one that works fine for me. The biggest part of the job is taking the case apart so you can get to the optic lense. For me its usually been about a 20 - 30 minute job start to finish.

[ 02-22-2006, 12:53 PM: Message edited by: nedL ]