Tech Tear Down: CD/Radio/Cassette Boombox

It’s been a good long while since I’ve really dissected a bit of electronics. But I finally got another chance after uncovering an old broken CD/radio/cassette player in the basement! After some tests, I determined that the CD player part of it didn’t work. Since no one uses archaic cassette tapes anymore, and a radio that weighs ten pounds is pretty impractical,Ā  I naturally snapped it up to tear it apart. šŸ™‚

boombox before teardown
The boombox before dissection; note that it’s quite dusty. It was manufactured in 1997 so it was about 20 years old.

Disassembling it was pretty trivial. There was only a few screws which held the casing together, and each internal part also held in place with screws. The most challenging part was removing the large speakers. Each was both glued and screwed, so it took a little extra prying to get them off.

The boombox can be powered from both batteries and the house current, so there’s both a transformer and a large compartment to hold eight D cells. There’s one large PCB that combines the circuits for the CD player, cassette player, and radio player, with a few offshoot PCBs to connect the controls.

I was able to salvage some good parts:

  • x1 2-digit 7 segment display
  • x2 DC motors (they’re rather weak)
  • x2 8Ī© 3W speakers
  • x1 microswitch
  • x1 large potentiometer
  • x1 fancy radio-tuning gear
  • a few plastic casings for switches and knobs
  • various wires and connectors

Check out the following images of the torn-apart boombox.

Major parts of the boombox.

plastic casing of boombox

tape player part of boombox

closeup of cd player_boombox ttd

bottom half of main pcb_whole radio

closeup of cd player controls

This is one of the large speakers I salvaged.

main pcb of boombox

closeup of radio tuning pcb


Tech Tear Down – Toy Cellphone

toy story phone diagramReceiving the throw-aways Ā from my sister’s toy phone collection for use in my electrical endeavors, I opened up an old Disney store Toy Story fakeĀ cell phone to see what I would find. Basically it hasĀ  17 buttons, which create assorted noises and blink LEDs on the ‘screen’ and in the antenna. Or at least it used to, because the batteries are long dead.

Taking apart the back first near the batteries, revealed the capacitive printed circuit board for the rubber buttons. On the back side of it, there’s a couple 5% tolerance resistors. Under that, there’s an 8Ī© speaker commonly found in many electronics, and you can also see the coin cell holders and the LED connections. The date on the PCB said it was made in June 2003. Other than the screws holding the toy phone together from the outside, the plastic snaps together and keeps the LEDs and PCB in place.

Being a throw-away item, IĀ was able to obtain a few parts for my own use. The resistorsĀ are unusable, because the leads are to short, and I have not yet obtained a soldering iron. I always keep all screws from electronics, because I know they’ll come in handy someday.

100_3833parts salvaged from toy story cell phonetoy cell phone capacitive PCB