Logitech Z-2300 Remote Control Pod Disassembly

Back in October I purchased a standalone Z-2300 subwoofer on eBay, knowing I could build a DIY remote control pod based on my working Z-2300 set. I disassembled my original remote and deciphered the pinout in a matter of hours. A board was sent off to BatchPCB the next day; two weeks later, I posted this video on YouTube:

Since then, I’ve received dozens of messages from fellow Z-2300 owners, all asking for more information.

Here’s the deal: It would be unethical of me to release the schematic and/or circuit board for public usage, and quite possibly a breach of Logitech’s intellectual property. There are no copyright, trademark, or patent markings on the Z-2300 speaker set or the control pod’s circuit board. However, a Logitech Product Team member at the Logitech message board writes:

The wiring diagram is not a public document.

This is understandable—no company publicly releases schematics for their products, and definitely does not allow for others to profit from the company’s products/services. As an engineer, I wholeheartedly respect that.

What is bothersome is Logitech’s backwards policy on replacement parts. I’ve owned my Z-2300 set since late 2005. The volume control has always exhibited terrible channel balance at low volumes. This is caused by differences in the left and right potentiometer gangs, which are pronounced at the lower and upper thresholds of rotation. Such tolerance errors are common amongst dual-ganged pots. There are two fixes: 1) Replace the potentiometer and hope for less error, or 2) Implement attenuation circuitry at the audio input (series resistors), such that the maximum counter-clockwise position of the potentiometer is avoided. I could’ve fixed this imbalance myself. Instead, it was easier to raise the volume on the pod and decrease volume at the PC. Anyway, I called Logitech’s support line one day to see about the prospect of purchasing a replacement remote control. After explaining the annoyance, I was kindly told that Logitech could send me a completely new Z-2300 set for free. Not even a shipping charge. What?! I was willing to shell out cash for a replacement part, and here they were offering to send me a $200 speaker set on their bill.

It turns out this is how Logitech’s warranty works. Rather than repair a faulty device or send out (or sell) replacement parts, they prefer to give away brand new products. I can see how the cost of labor for repairs could be less than profitable, but surely it would be cheaper to send out small replacement parts rather than entire product sets. The Z-2300’s remote control cannot be worth more than $10 in parts—probably much less considering they’re mass produced. Although fantastic for customer service, this approach to repairs is incredibly wasteful. Logitech is a fantastic company, and I was appreciative of their offer, but I declined. I did not need or want a second Z-2300 set (at the time). I was just nitpicking…

Logitech’s wasteful policy affects products besides their Z-2300. A few eBay sellers offer hand-made audio interface cables for the Z-5500, which bypass its digital remote control. These $5-$10 contraptions sell for ridiculous prices ($45-$80). Considering that there are no replacement parts to be sold, this is a clear case of demand outweighing supply. So, the question is, why on Earth doesn’t Logitech sell replacement parts? It would be profitable!

With all of that said, I would very much like to release the information I have unearthed. From the messages I’ve received, it is clear that plenty of people with out-of-warranty Z-2300’s are interested in purchasing Logitech replacement parts. Several people have lost their control pods during moves; some have dropped or otherwise broken them; some want to tap into the circuitry for unique modifications (often multiple subwoofers…); some, like me, just wanted a better performing volume control.

Since I cannot publicly release my replacement Z-2300 control pod PCB, or even the schematic or pinout, below are pictures taken during the disassembly of the pod:

The PCB silkscreen provides wiring labels for all 9 wires (plus 1 shield “wire”). Of course, you’d have to open the pod up yourself and use a continuity checker to find out which pins of the High Density 15-pin D-Sub connector these wires go to. Lastly, I can verify Logitech’s claim that standard VGA extension cables should not be used with Z-2300’s. The center row of pins for a VGA extension cable are all tied to ground. Logitech uses a single pin in this row for an audio signal. Anyone attempting to extend the interface cable should make sure to use a pin wired 1:1 (that is, pin 1 is wired to pin 1, pin to goes to pin 2, etc., and no pins are tied together).


DISCLAIMER: This design is for personal use only. Information is provided without warranty, either expressed or implied. Schematic and information below may contain intellectual property of Logitech.

Someone by the name of “HxCxK” independently uncovered and released a rendition of the Z-2300 schematic last month. Since he has let the cat out of the bag, below is what I originally found:

Miscellaneous schematic notes:

  • Resistor R108 omitted (serves to buffer supply rail into standby pin; not critical)
  • Potentiometers not measured (10k parts are common and work well in this circuit)
  • Capacitors C100, C101 are optional. Someone with more free time may wish to investigate the frequency response with and without these parts.

Principles of Operation:

  1. A stereo audio signal comes in through the green 3.5mm connector.
  2. Signal passes through the remote’s main volume potentiometer for attenuation.
  3. Signal is then fed down to the subwoofer enclosure for pre-amplification.
  4. The pre-amplifier(s) distribute the audio into two places:
    a) To the left and right satellite amplifier (and subsequently to the 2 speakers)
    b) Back up to the remote.
  5. Inside the remote, the signal is split again:
    a) To the headphone jack
    b) To the subwoofer potentiometer (where it is combined to mono at this point)
  6. Output from the subwoofer potentiometer finally gets fed back into the enclosure and last, into the subwoofer amplifier.

D-15 Connector Pinout:

Pin PCB Name Description
1 SLINE Subwoofer Line Input
2 (unused)
3 SGND Signal/Audio Ground
4 PGND Power Ground
5 STDBY Standby, Active Low
6 RL Right Line Input
7 (unused)
8 (unused)
9 (unused)
10 (unused)
11 RHP Right Headphone Output
12 LL Left Line Input
13 LHP Left Headphone Output
14 (unused)
15 VREG 15V Supply Rail

See images above for connector numbering. Those who wish to quickly test their Z-2300 can ignore most of this. The Z-2300 switches on when Pin 5 is connected to Pin 15. Then, apply audio signals as follows:

Pin 12: Left Input
Pin 6: Right Input
Pin 1: Subwoofer Input
Pin 3: Audio Ground

Printed Circuit Board:

The board can be purchased from BatchPCB in unassembled form. This is entirely non-profit. As such, NO SUPPORT IS PROVIDED. You are on your own.

Top View of Board

Top Copper Layer

Bottom Copper Layer

Parts List:

Reference Part Description Part # Qty
J1 STX-3100-3C 806-STX-3100-3C 1
J2 STX-3100-9N 806-STX-3100-9C 1
R102, R103 2.85k resistor 271-2.87K-RC 2
R105 3.62k resistor 271-3.6K-RC 1
R104 4k resistor 271-4.02K-RC 1
R107 10.2k resistor 271-10.2K-RC 1
R100, R101 33 resistor 271-33-RC 2
R106 591 resistor 271-590-RC 1
U2 Alps RK0971221Z0 (10k, Volume) 688-RK0971221Z05 1
J3 ICD15S13E6GV00LF ICD15S13E6GV00LF 1
U3 Alps RK09712200MC (10k, 15mm) 688-RK09712200MC 1
LED1 3mm LED 1
C100, C101 0.01uF Multilayer Ceramic Capacitor C324C103K5R5TA 2
[Cable] Male to Female, HD, 15-pin D-Sub AE1380-ND 1

Edit (12/18/2010):

iNeedFixin.com” href=”http://www.ineedfixin.com”>purchased from an independent builder.

166 thoughts on “Logitech Z-2300 Remote Control Pod Disassembly”

  1. Hi!
    Thanks for sharing diagram for z2300.
    I have a question.
    Is it possible to use this unit with no volume control, just turning on, and apply audio signal for subwoofer.
    I just want to use it with my Onkyo receiver.

    See images above for connector numbering. Those who wish to quickly test their Z-2300 can ignore most of this. The Z-2300 switches on when Pin 5 is connected to Pin 15. Then, apply audio signals as follows:

    Pin 12: Left Input
    Pin 6: Right Input
    Pin 1: Subwoofer Input
    Pin 3: Audio Ground

    Thanks in advance.

      1. Just to make sure I am understanding this correctly… We can plug directly into those 4 pins and skip past the circuit board/volume control pod/board and any/all of the resistor, etc..? This won’t blow the speaker?

          1. I would like to know if is posible to skip the whole unit simply using a Jack or RCA to VGA wire, and use a receiver and its software to control the volume. Is that what you did?
            (I have no idea about what I am talking about).

            Thanks in advance

          2. Yes, bridge over the potentiometer gangs, then hardwire the device to be constantly powered on. Noise performance will be poor and bass boost might be ridiculous. I recommend experimenting with resistors in place of the bass potentiometer. You’ll want to at least fix bass to a reasonable level.

  2. I’d like to thank you for the efforts you have put in penning this blog.
    I’m hoping to see the same high-grade blog posts from you later on
    as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my own, personal site now ;)

  3. Hello

    I also own the Z2300 speakers and it seems that my volume-control potentiometer, is at its last days. Sound from one of the speakers disappears, and it is not controlling the volume as it should be.

    After looking at the pictures and reading the article i decided to replace the potentiometer it self, without making a complete new control-unit.

    Can you please help me with the details on the potentiometer??
    I’m looking for a 8-pin, 10K, Linear pot??

    Thanks a lot !

  4. Thank you very much. Which kind of resistors would fit my needs? I also thought using software to equalise the sound instead, but I suppose that noise levels would be higher.

    1. Any 1% metal film, 1/8 or 1/4W size will work. You’ll have to experiment with values. Start in the 1k-10k range. No higher than 100k.

      1. Looks like you had a great mother’s day! You tolltay don’t look pregnant. It seems like you ate a lot and need to burp. Lol.This Cookn’ Mom recently posted..

    1. About the AuthorEmpower Network EN-WWSJoin the business revuootiln that is captivating the Internet marketing industry, Empower Network EN-WWS. Earn 100% commissions on all your sales, gain insight, top training and valuable information that will help you succeed and all in a TEAM environment that offers support, guidance and knowledge.Today is where you STOP dreaming and START living your dreams with us, Empower Network EN-WWS Join right now, take action with us….TODAY. There is no TRY…only DO!Sincerely,- Empower Network EN-WWS

  5. I have two z-2300s. One powers the left spkr, the other, the right. I have the volume control on both cranked to max. and control the overall volume with a Mission preamp. The question I have is, does the preamp in the Z2300s negate the higher quality preamp of the Mission since they (the Z2300s) are down stream of the Mission?
    thanks for all your great information,

    1. @Bill: Yes, gain of the Z2300 preamp is high and adds audible noise, so I image it’s defeating the quality of your external preamp.

  6. Thanks for the fast reply. You had to have known this was coming at you next …. is there a way to disable (not even sure if that is advisable) the pre-amp in the z2300s? Also, is it possible to bridge the amp in the Z2300?

    See what you’ve started by initiating this blog?

    best regards,

    1. The satellites and sub use TDA7295/TDA7296. It’s electrically acceptable to bridge the chip. The datasheet discusses 4 ohm loads, and even shows a 2.7 ohm example load (approx. bridged 6 ohm speakers): http://www.st.com/web/en/resource/technical/document/datasheet/CD00000198.pdf

      Keep an eye on temperatures. Logitech uses a massive heatsink, which I suspect is overkill and will probably handle a bridged load. But I could be wrong.

      Yes, you could bypass the preamp and wire input signals directly to the chipamps. Hacking required, of course.

      1. Hi can you tell me how to bypass or the pinout of a bose companion 3 serie 1. The person that give It to me lost the control pod and i am working on how to turn It on so if you have someting that can help mi i whill apresiate It. thanks you for your time.

  7. I’ve always considered the ‘Audio community’ to be an amiable one and you’ve just reinforced those sentiments. Thanks, who ever you are. I for sure won’t be able to perform the instruction set you’ve laid out to achieve my desired result but now I have something that I can take to a professional and commission him to implement the hacks.

    So very grateful,

    thanks again,

  8. Wow that was unusual. I just wrote an incredibly long comment but after I
    clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that
    over again. Anyways, just wanted to say wonderful blog!

    1. It gives it a larger look all done in the same floirong but not always good if you don’t want it to be like a big gymnasium but prefer a cozy home atmosphere. Where you step up, definetely needs not be the same; the kitchen and dining room being one level, still doesn’t need to be the same. A really classy way to separate those rooms is tile one then with a line or curve, go right into carpet or wood or whatever but keep it in the same color scheme. The continuous color flow will keep it from being chopped up looking but you’ll have the different textures that designate one room being a different room from the other.

  9. Thanks jseaber.
    I have a problem that I first thought was coming from the Bass Unit of the Z 2300 system. I was intermittently loosing the Audio from the left speaker & the Bass Speaker… After much fiddling I have narrowed the problem down to a broken wire in the remote control unit where the cable enters the remote…. Since reading your blog I will be able to fix this problem for good…. Thanks for doing such a great job in producing your information and sharing it with others who could have problems in the future……. Regards, & thanks…. Billy

  10. Would you perhaps be able to write a diagram on how to make a bypass cable so you can just control the sound level via your computer? I really don’t want to pay 40$ for a replacement pod or 25$ for a wire, which is a simple d sub cable.

    1. I love the three shades of lpitsick! ) plus lip balm and gloss. Rosary, eco bag, alcohol, moleskine, black pen, pencil, pink pen, crackers and tea 4-5kgs. every single day! hahaha

  11. I used to work at the bux (US) and saw a couple amtttpes at sugar free mocha syrups come and go, also never saw a SF peppermint so I’m not sure the Skinny peppermint mocha calories are correct. It might be available only in certain markets. If you order this make sure it is sugar free, nonfat and no whip rather than just nonfat/no whip or you might be getting an additional 100 cal or so. Everything else seems about right tho, just trying to look out for my fellow Berries!

  12. Hi can you tell me how to bypass or the pinout of a bose companion 3 serie 1. The person that give It to me lost the control pod and i am working on how to turn It on so if you have someting that can help mi i whill apresiate It thanks you for your time

  13. Thanks for the great info. My system stopped putting out any bass (very low volume). I borrowed another sub thinking it was my sub and the same thing. I think my remote is to blame.

    Any update on where we can get the PCB? The link is dead.

    Thanks again.

  14. I use my Logitech z2300 for amplified TV audio. During normal video viewing
    I feel the bass is too strong. I have the base control to minimum.
    With all this knowledge of wiring . Could I install an additional potentiometer to Subwoofer on input wire and further limit the bass output?
    in simple terms, what type and value of potentiometer do I need and how would I wire it. I would like to physically mount potentiometer on subwoofer. Plan on drilling hole on back panel to mount pot. Would I interrupt the wire on pin 1 with potentiometer?

  15. Buenas, gracias por la informacion , me ha sido de
    gran utilidad, la compartire !!!Besos!!!!.

    Hola, buenísimo el artículo, muy util, lo compartire.

    Abrazos a todos

    Buenas, gracias por la informacion , me ha sido de enorme utilidad, la compartire !!!Abrazos!!!!.

    Muchas gracias por entregar a todos una fantástica posibilidad como para leer los comentarios críticos de
    este weblog.

    Siempre es muy fantástico y también rellena con un montón de diversión para mí y mis
    compañeros de oficina los trabajadores a visitar el blog más de
    tres veces a la r
    semana para leer mediante los nuevos consejos que has conseguido.
    Y, de hecho, estoy tan a menudo satisfechas con sus ideas creativas atractivas que usted sirve.

    Algunas áreas dos de este artículo son sin duda el más eficiente todo cuanto hemos

    Super-Duper weblog Soy cariñoso !! Volveremos después a leer un tanto más.

    Empleo los feeds Asimismo

    Yo simplemente no podía salir de su lugar ya antes de sugerir que me agradó mucho la información habitual una persona proporcione para sus visitantes?

    Hmm es cualquier otra persona teniendo problemas con las imágenes en este
    weblog carga? Trato de averiguar si es un problema en mi final o bien si es el weblog.

    Cualquier respuesta sería valoradísima.

    Como novato, estoy navegando de forma permanente online para los artículos que me puede ayudar.

    Temas maravillosos en total, que acaba de ganar un nuevo lector.
    ¿Qué podría sugerir sobre su publican que termina de crear un puñado de días
    en el pasado?

  16. Thanks for sharing that with us!
    I bought a Z-2300 without remote for 35€ (~40$) and with your shematic I made a Remote for 15€ (~17$)

    Here a pic, the quality of the pic is not the best.

    Thanks, great job man!

    1. Hello, I recently bought a z2300 off ebay.It appears to be in really good condition. Control pod works good no noticeable problems with volume pot. I have it connected to my TV. My problem is the bass is overpowering even with the bass to minimum. I installed a simple toggle switch in the sub box to turn off the subwoofer when family is around. How can I get more adjustment out of the bass control on the pod? Would a 10k pot in series with that #1 wire for the sub input give me more adjustability? I wonder if these replacement pods on ebay go from no bass to max bass similar to a regular amplifier Thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

You can add images to your comment by clicking here.