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Old 11th September 2012, 12:23 PM   #1
cthart is offline cthart  Sweden
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Frösön, Sweden
Question Lowering volume on a child's toy?


Strange topic? :-)

Our 2 1/2 y/o received a mini-keyboard for his 2nd birthday, but it has been relegated to the cupboard almost since them because it is much too LOUD! The volume can be controlled using a couple of push buttons, but after turning it off and on again it comes on at the very loud volume. Not wanting to damage his and our hearing it's been consigned to the cupboard.

Now I was thinking of opening it up to see if it could be altered in any (easy) way to reduce the volume? Is it possible to put a resistor in series with each speaker (it seems to have 2 speakers)? If so, what spec resistor (power rating or some such) should I use and how can I calculate what "resistance" of resistor to use? I presume the device uses 8-ohm mini speakers, but I'll have to open it up to see.

If you can suggest a better place to post this query please do so :-)

Thanks for any assistance!


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Old 11th September 2012, 01:02 PM   #2
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Canandaigua, NY USA
If you just cut the wire to each speaker that will solve the problem nicely...

IMO, anything that works is fair game here. A resistor in series with each speaker will do the trick, as will a resistive divider earlier in the circuit or a resistor on the top side of the volume pot/divider or whatever it uses, providing it's analog. Modern stuff might not have any analog and be all digital, so the speaker might be the best place. Start with something around 10-20 ohms and maybe 2W or so- I'm assuming as a toy this is low powered.

Something else you might do is add a capacitor across the speaker, only after installing the series resistor, to knock down the annoying high frequencies a bit.
I may be barking up the wrong tree, but at least I'm barking!
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Old 11th September 2012, 04:44 PM   #3
marce is offline marce  United Kingdom
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Blackburn, Lancs
Petrol and a match
Daughter has a keyboard and its deafening, lost the power supply (?) so can only run it off 4 d batteries, which we can never seem to afford.
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Old 11th September 2012, 06:09 PM   #4
macboy is offline macboy  Canada
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Ottawa, Canada
I put a piece of clear plastic "packing tape" over the speaker holes on almost every toy my kids have. They are all far too loud. The tape really helps.
A resistor inline with the speaker would do also. For 10 dB attenuation, you need roughly 1/3 of the voltage. So if the speaker is 8 ohm, then a 16 ohm resistor will do it. A simple 1/4 W size (often rated 0.6 W these days) will do.

Last edited by macboy; 11th September 2012 at 06:11 PM.
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Old 11th September 2012, 06:27 PM   #5
Enzo is offline Enzo  United States
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Lansing, Michigan
I agree, a series resistor is the simplest thing.
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Old 11th September 2012, 06:31 PM   #6
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Sep 2012
I had a musical door bell(very loud), single 22R 1/4 watt in series with spk did the trick. BTW putting a plastic on spk. is also good idea. No soldering required ;-)
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Old 11th September 2012, 08:40 PM   #7
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: New Zealand
+1 for the clear plastic tape. You can poke a few holes in it if it cuts the sound level too much. This also works for those small toys with piezo disc "speakers".
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