Would it be possible to hack and integrate MBP's speakers in the Framework?

Title. I can see that those speakers are quite available when looking after replacement parts on Google. As the sound is really laud and deep on MacBook Pro (even on ipads) I was wondering if it would be feasible to replace the original one by Apple’s one. I’m no electronic expert and not really able to understand schematics (yet) so …
Any thoughts on this ?

It is possible electrically. If it would fit mechanically I don’t know.

But be aware that the design of loudspeakers is more than just the speaker itself. The housing around it has a huge influence on the result. Actually, you need to develop both tightly together for a satisfactory result. That’s what Apple is doing (plus some psychoacoustic tricks).
So if you transfer the speakers from a MBP to a FW and it fits mechanically it will sound much different.

tl;dr: possible? Probably yes. Reasonable? No.


Reasonable is boring XD.

Can’t we stick speacers to the side of the screen that double as port covers when closed?

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Well I don’t have my laptop yet so I can’t tinker around but I’ll take a look for sure. I might be able to get my hands on some speakers of an old MBP so …
For the curious one, here are the references for the MBP speakers : 923-0557, 923-00509.
They seems to be smaller than the one of the framework when I look at the kit : Framework | Speaker Kit

I also remember seeing an article somewhere describing how at least on modern Macs, Apple uses a system that runs the speakers above a consistently safe power (for the speakers), along with a model for how the speakers will heat, which gives dynamic limits for power that the system then enforces. This apparently allows significantly better quality and louder sound. Unfortunately, I can’t find that article now.

The other side of this is that run in unusual ways, some audio can quickly destroy the speakers, and I did find some discussion of that with Asahi Linux.

Using the MBP speakers in the Framework would likely not have this.

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I think this is the article: Hector Martin: "For those wondering why the hell we need all this…" - Treehouse Mastodon

For Linux, there is this alternative, but I haven’t tested it: GitHub - chadmed/speakersafetyd: Rust speaker safety daemon for Asahi Linux


That’s it, thank you!

As written now, that seems specific to hardware for Asahi Linux. But the technique seems like it could be more generally applied. Interestingly, it also appears that while the Mac amplifier hardware has specific sensing features for this purpose, speakersafetyd doesn’t use them yet. That raises some interesting questions:

  • Could the amplifier in the FW13 be set to a higher/unsafe level like this, and used along with a similar model and daemon (which would need its own calibration parameters for the model, not ones copied from Apple).
  • Could Framework do this, or are there patent problems that would mean it would have to be a community project?
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Relatable :laughing:

Regarding the techniques for “maximum loudness while not destroying speakers”: that’s what manufacturers of big loudspeakers (for concerts etc.) do all day. They use DSPs for equalizing, compressing, limiting,… their speakers. There exist standalone devices but also integrated systems (amplification and DSP in one device). You can do everything in software too but you may run into latency issues.
It’s not all about maximum physical loudness but also maintaining good sound quality on a wide range from quiet to very loud. Especially with full power you get much unwanted distortions and failures.

I’m not aware of any patents since these techniques are used by “every” manufacturer. Maybe some detail technology is patented but not the whole concept of loudspeaker management. But I’ll ask some friends who are developing this kind of stuff for such companies.

I’ll probably just remove the speakers anyway to make space for some other stuff

If you have the same sound as a Macbookpro, trust me, you do NOT want to take it away ! :wink:

If I was using speakers at all I’d want good ones but I am straight up never using laptop speakers intentionally, and with pipewire I have also not used them unintentionally jet XD.