The opener of the first Back To The Future movie is a fairly memorable one: Marty McFly connects his guitar up to Doc Brown’s eight-foot-tall amplifier, and proceeds to be blow everything away with just one small strum. For Dan Ludois and friends, this served as a challenge to recreate the enormous speaker.
Dan and 10 friends built the Giant Speaker as part of an Engineering Expo in 2011. It’s pretty much the same as your typical speaker, except it's huge.
The most important part of the speaker is the voice coil, which is a giant coil of wire wrapped around a fiberglass frame. The speaker itself uses a 20kW PWNM voltage sourced inverter (this converts DC input into AC output) that's powered by a 400V DC power supply. Meanwhile, the speaker’s cabinet is particle board, and the cone is made out of polycarbonate that's attached to the main frame with foam insulation.
The result? A speaker in that lets you feel epic vibrations throughout your body. The team notes that it sounds best with audio frequencies ranging between 5Hz to 50Hz. Because of the resonant frequency in their building, the team found that anything above 7Hz lead to complaints of headaches and giddiness in the rest of the building. Seriously, imagine how dubstep must sound on that thing…
You can follow the team’s build, complete with schematics, on Dan’s blog.
This story, "Giant 'Back to the Future'-style amp would be great for dubstep" was originally published by TechHive.