P157SM heavily modded speakersystem

Discussion in 'Sager and Clevo' started by Danishblunt, Jan 9, 2018.

  1. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    Alright boys, after a lot of tinkering, months of work I finally finished my own modded notebook speakers version and am very satisfied with the result.

    For those who want to achieve the same, I will tell you already now, it's WAY easier to buy an external speakersystem rather than working on your notebook, it really isn't as simple as just shoving some different speakers into your system, there are far more factors to a decent sound. You can easily expect months of work despite have a good idea on how to work on your own speakersystem.

    I will be making a video in a couple of days explaining what I did and how this project came to be for those who like me really hate having external speaker.

    Here are the results after a couple of months after starting working on the sound system:

    First months of working and main problems:
    On the comparison video you can hear that on stock the sound was extremely tinny and downright terrible. When making the volume really high it would be really irritating for the ears. The main issue with Clevo notebooks are that the speakers are unfinished (more on that on the video when explaining how I worked on that) and the subwoofer was really small. The subwoofer was barely bigger than the speakers and didn't really do anything due to driver issues, ironicly the actual build was decent, unlinke the unfinished speakers.

    After months of work and tinkering, I build myself a new subwoofer, I also had to mod the sound drivers due to the drivers not sending the correct singals. Yes, the sound drivers are also a huge problem, for reasons unknown to me the drivers seem to not bother sending low frequencies to the subwoofer, which made titles with bass sound weird when previously listening to a better sounding notebook, radio etc, due to the bass entirely missing.

    More months until the finished product:
    After months and months of research, tinkering, configuration and rebuilding, I finally got the final version done. It was a huge load of work, when looking back I am happy that I got it to where it stands. Right after I started this whole project, I never imagined I could get this kind of sound out of my notebook.

    Compared to earlier versions:
    Compared to the earlier version above, the sound is much more full and richer, the bass is truly there and even on high volume the system won't start "screetching". The maximum volume is also in a different league compared to the previous version. The subwoofer is also capable of playing really deep bass which I didn't expect it to be able to, I didn't to a subwoofer test just yet, but I will do that as well to see how low the frequencies can actually go. The final version is not even compariable to my first earlier versions.

    So here it is:

    Some information on how I recorded this:
    Basicially I put the notebook on my bed, recorded the video with my phone, due to the problem that my phone has a ****ty microphone I connected my podcast microphone to another notebook and had it on my lap. Then i started recording. The image must have looked hilarious if someone would have seen it.

    Funfact:
    Due to the rather powerful vibrations of the subwoofer, I sometimes listen to loud music while putting my feet next to my notebook to massage my feet.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
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  2. Arrrrbol

    Arrrrbol Notebook Evangelist

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    Nice work. I wish more manufacturers would put decent speakers in their notebooks out of the factory, its way easier using the integrated speakers than lugging some external ones around. My old Dell XPS L502X had some of the best speakers i've heard on a stock laptop (at least at the time), perhaps I will try and shoehorn them into something else one day when the GPU finally dies.
     
  3. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    You would be right, the subwoofer of the L502x / L702x are really strong ones and so are the speakers. The problem here is once you went through the whole process you will realize how much time and effort it takes to get the right sound out of your system, it's painful and mostly requires a lot of patience and tinkering, I'm not suprised that a lot of manufacturers do not invest the time and effort into the sound due to the fact that it's barely a selling point since most are using headsets or external solutions.

    Not to mention the design complications you will have since both speakers and subwoofer do need quite some space, which is almost impossible given the "thin trend" which is going on.
     
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  4. Arrrrbol

    Arrrrbol Notebook Evangelist

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    True, there is no way i'd get them in my M17X without blinding myself cutting through the magnesium palm rest plate - and without losing the expresscard slot, SD reader and Blu Ray drive.

    Then again actually if I only ran it with 1 GPU I could remove the second GPU fan and stick a subwoofer in there. It would probably be an acoustic nightmare though, but perhaps i'll give it a go when i've sorted everything else out.
     
  5. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    Unless you plan on building an amp into it then it's a no win situation. In my case I already have an amp from stock, in your case you need to not only build a subwoofer but also an amp that won't blow the speaker or get blown by the speaker. I'll cover it in my video when talking about it.
     
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  6. kothletino

    kothletino Notebook Consultant

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    Well done, congrats!

    Does modifying the audio driver require specialist knowledge? I wonder if I could do something in my p170em with the analog jack output(headphones 2.0) in which the term "bass" does not exist at all...
     
  7. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    You have the same speakers as I do, So I can pretty much tell you already that you'll have to replace / work pretty much on everything. The speakers are unfinished and the subwoofer is pretty small. If you want decent sound out from your system you'll also need to make custom drivers and fiddle with a lot of settings to make everything work, every speaker has a specific frequency & load they can handle and start distorting if you go past it for instance.

    If you would install my drivers for instance and run on max volume you would blow your subwoofer in a matter of seconds and your speakers would distort pretty heavily but still be fine.

    I can try and see if I can find a solution to improve your sound quality, it won't be anything near a good sounding system but it will be a noticable improvement.
     
  8. Chastity

    Chastity Company Representative

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    I like the concept of doing what you did, but for me, it was far easier to get an external speaker. (a BEM mini cube for portable situations) Or just use headphones/IEMs.
     
  9. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    Jep, as I mentioned, only if you for some reason really really dislike carying external speakers around as I do this would be an option. It's so much easier buying some bluetooth speakers rather than working hard on your own speakerset.
     
  10. TheDantee

    TheDantee Notebook Evangelist

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    Any tutorial or something to show what speakers you swapped to if not using software mods?
     
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