Sylvie Barak created a custom pair of earmuff headphones to keep her ears warm while she listens to her music. She bought a pair of cheap headphones and hacked into them to cut out the speaker. Once the speakers were out, the speaker wires were soldered to the plug connections and the jack. She sewed the speaker into a faux fur muff, and a PCB board was added for support. The speaker muff was attached to a headband wrapped in fabric to complete her funky stereo earmuffs. Sylvie says the headphones can be customized in many ways and is even considering incorporating them into a hoodie.
I think the Ear Muff Headphones are Gadget Freak worthy because of the construction build process Sylvie outlined in article. Also, gadgets are cool devices individuals create to solve problems. The ear muffs allow warmth in winter season while the headphones allow listening to your favorite music. This product has a wearable electronics theme which is Gadget Freak content!
Tim, I agree. The ear muff headphones concept is pretty cool. The next product evolution would be incorporating a radio with internet capability so you can listen to Pandora during those cold winter months!
Good point. The process makes it Gadget Freak worthy. But, the concept has been done before--commercially and DIY. From my reading, Gadget Freak items have that "Why doesn't that exist yet" quality to them. There are a lot of better moustraps here.
I think this is a cute gadget, especially for young women, but why do you need to hack up a headset? Why not add the faux fur and the decorative (headband) ribbon to an existing, unmodified headset? I think it would be more comfortable than having your ears pressed up against the perfboard disks (what she calls PCB boards). Also, no soldering would be required. Also, while rewiring the headset, one must maintain the polarity of the speakers, or the sound will be messed up.
Eleven years ago one of those rare, brilliant moments emerged from the crack staff of Design News: Let’s put the tinkerers among our audience community to work in designing and building some truly wacky devices. And Gadget Freak was born.
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