Here's our PIC-based wav audio player with a cheap 15p speaker from Farnell. The difference between this and the speaker on the alarm clock is amazing! We've tried all kinds of different ways of amplifying the output but the best/loudest to date is this 16 ohm, 700hz, 90dB piezeo speaker with a humble BS170 FET transistor.
The audio in this example is much clearer than with the earlier speaker (and louder too).
Perhaps this is because rather than put the speaker in a box, we're holding it to create a cavity behind the speaker cone. You can definitely hear the speaker gain more definition between hanging loosely and being "encased in flesh"!
Interestingly, the best sound came when we created a tube effect rather than a closed box shape with the hand holding the speaker. Whether this only applies to hands, or to enclosures in general, we've yet to see.....