I've seen a few answers that propose the OP gets their hands dirty and build a thing to solve their problem. I can't seem to find the others right now, but a recent answer is this:

What I'm proposing is a hack, involving two-sided scotch tape and splicing wires: DELL AS501 or AX510. They can be bough for as little as 5€ used or 10€ new. They're simple, one-piece analog devices with 3.5mm jack audio input and 5.5mm barrel plug 12V input.

Power supply can be a slight problem without compatible Dell monitor, but it's still relatively simple to either match a 12V/1A power supply (just watch the polarity) or to splice the cable and power it directly from some 12V source you already have (like your desktop PSU).

My issue with this answer is that the OP asked for a piece of hardware and nicely listed out requirements for such hardware. The answer provided may (or may not) work, but it isn't a product recommendation. Instead it suggests scotch tape and splicing wires.

Is such a DIY answer appropriate, when the OP is not asking for a DIY solution?

This is not a duplicate of Are DIY hardware recommendations allowed?. That question was about whether DIY Hardware questions are allowed. This question is about whether an answer for a DIY solution is appropriate, when the user has not requested such a solution.

1 Answer 1


I think it's a matter of degree. This site is supposed to be about seeking hardware solutions for your problem, but this site isn't really meant to be a how-to makerspace technical forum.

If a user were to ask for a hardware component with a bevy of features, a one-stop solution may simply not exist. So it's certainly okay to piece together several components, some assembly required. I wouldn't want to have blanket rule forbidding that.

But if someone were to ask for a product that does not exist at all, I'm not sure this is the place to break out the wire-wrapping tools and injection molding kits because "I'm going to teach you how to build one." I think that is outside the purpose and core expertise of this site.

  • in your opinion, would my answer to the following question be allowed? Answer in Question As stated in the question itself: "What is the most popular video game console that is legal to be modded" The answer given would seem to fit the question perfectly. Commented Oct 27, 2016 at 20:18

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