What is Stereophone?
Stereophone is a novel application of audio cable adapters that turns a home’s phone line or Ethernet wiring into a multi-room sound system. While some of these cables may exist for use in other applications, Stereophone brings them together to create an effective, affordable multi-room sound system. Use a Stereophone cable to connect the audio source to a phone or Ethernet jack, then use Stereophone cables to connect each stereo to a nearby phone or Ethernet jack. Please note that Stereophone cannot be used in conjunction with a land-line telephone, fax system, or phone-line internet like DSL.
Why is Stereophone Awesome?
If you're not sold yet, here's what Stereophone will enable you to do.
1. Play music from one audio source in multiple rooms of your home at the same time. Perfect for internet radio or house-wide jam sessions.
2. If you're playing music from a computer, control your music from anywhere in your house using a smart-phone with apps like "Retune" or "Remote".
3. Avoid expensive built-in or wireless sound systems and listen to music on stereo systems of your own choosing.
Haven't I Seen Cables Like This Before?
While you may have come across similar cables being used in other applications, Stereophone brings together in one project all of the cables you need to create a multi-room sound system. Also, Stereophone cables are unique in that the two outside pins of the phone jack are electrically connected so that the cables will work in three-wire phone systems regardless of which outside pin is wired.
Which Cables Do You Need?
Cables A, B, C, and D are for analog systems used by most DVD players, MP3 players, headphones, and stereos and can be used in any combination. Cables A, B, and C are for phone lines and cable D is for Ethernet lines. Order one cable for each type of stereo you have and one for your audio source. Cable E is for digital systems (i.e. Dolby Digital) over phone lines and can not be used with the analog cables A, B, C, and D.
My family and I are here on Kickstarter because we love music. We listen to music as we cook in the kitchen, as we eat in the dining room, as we work in the office and the garage, even in our bedrooms. We use internet radio services like Pandora and Spotify to keep our music fresh. We needed a way to use a single computer, laptop, or MP3 player to play music throughout the house. This would allow us to listen to internet radio as we move throughout the house without the need for a computer in every room.
A few weeks later, Stereophone was born. Stereophone is a novel application of audio cables that connect an audio source to stereo receivers using your existing phone land line. It’s simple, effective, cheap, and easy to use. Alternatives like built in speaker wiring and wireless transmission networks can cost thousands of dollars and can be complicated to use.
Please note that to use Stereophone, your home must be wired with phone line or Ethernet wiring that you are not using for a telephone, fax, internet, or anything else. For the growing percentage of the population that uses cell phones instead of a land line, this won’t be problem.
Is Stereophone right for you?
Here are a few guidelines that will help you know whether Stereophone is right for you.
- Stereophone is for you if your home is wired for a land line and you're not already using it for anything (Phone, Fax, DSL, etc.).
- Stereophone is for you if you want to play music on self powered speakers like computer speakers or stereo systems. The speakers need to have their own volume control so that volume can be balanced in each room.
- Stereophone is for you if your land line wiring has at least two connections (most have four). If you're using an analog audio system and you only have two connections, you'll only be getting the left or right speaker input. Put both the audio source and receivers in "mono" mode in order to get sound out of both speakers, or switch to a digital audio system.
Risks and challenges
The prototypes you see here have been tested in the homes of my friends and family and I am happy with their performance. I have designed the Stereophone to work flexibly with a variety of phone wiring configurations. Because every house is different, I am fully prepared to assist anyone who has difficulty using the product.
The manufacturer of this product has been timely in their communications and production time throughout the process of creating prototypes. They are ready for production and simply waiting for me to give them a green light. Because this is my first time in the driver's seat of a production project, I have added considerable cushion into the delivery date just in case demand for this product far exceeds my expectations. I am confident that I will be able to meet the deadlines I have set.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Yes, I'd be happy to ship outside the U.S. so I've set up a pledge just for that purpose. Please note that Stereophone uses an RJ-11 phone jack. If you're not sure which kind of phone jack you have, you can check what the standard for your country is at the website below. However, international customers should double check that their phone jack is in fact an RJ-11 style jack.
Find the box where the main phone line comes to your house from the street or alley. Open the box. Inside will be a set of wires from the utility that come in and meet a set of wires from your house. Unscrew the terminal blocks where each pair of wires meet and physically separate the wires.
Once my Kickstarter supporters have received their Stereophone orders, I will post a website where Stereophone cables can be purchased in bulk.
The easiest way to know how many connections you have is to install the Stereophone cables, play music, and listen to the left and right speakers. If both speakers play, you have at least three connections. If one speaker plays, you may only have two connections and you will want to put your audio source and receivers in "mono" mode.
Stereophone does not work in conjunction with a land phone line, fax machine, DSL, or anything else that uses the phone line. Sorry!
If your speakers emit a buzzing sound even when music is not playing, try turning the volume on the speakers down and the volume of the audio source to the maximum. In most cases, this will fix the problem. If a set of speakers does not have it's own volume control, it is not a good choice for use with a Stereophone system.
Absolutely! If you're not happy with your Stereophone purchase, send it back and we will refund your pledge amount.
Official Response: No, Stereophone won't work with DSL.
Hacker's Workaround: Technically, you could still use a phone, DSL, or fax machine so long as you separate the phone line network used for the phone, fax machine, or DSL from the phone line network that Stereophone is connected to. For example, you could go out to your phone utility box, disconnect your home's wiring from the box, and connect it directly to a wireless DSL modem/router and make use of both DSL and Stereophone. Thanks to Nate Eklund for asking!
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