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bob123 2nd January 2011 04:54 PM

Germanium transistors for a preamplifier
 
Hi,

I plan to design and build a microphone pre-amplifier using germanium transistors. Devices that I feel would be suitable are looking very difficult to track down.

I need the transistors to be able to withstand VCE of over 24v and can be found in relatively large numbers or still be being manufactured today. Does anyone know of devices that could be suitable?

Cheers

DF96 4th January 2011 01:07 PM

Why germanium? Very few Ge devices are still made, possible none at all?

What can Ge do, which can't also be done by silicon or vacuum devices?

indianajo 4th January 2011 05:03 PM

I did a search for a guy that had a Farfisa organ where the Ge transistors had rusted the steel leads and cases off. All the results for Ge came back as germanium doped silicon RF transistors, not germanium transistors as such. You would do better cruising the flea market and buying early sixties battery am radios and record players, or very early non-tube organs. Germanium was horribly temperature sensitive, very unstable.

Mooly 4th January 2011 05:29 PM

Germanium has it's charms :)
RS Components | Electronic and Electrical Components Your search for germanium

Bobby Dipole 5th January 2011 01:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DF96 (Post 2420955)
Why germanium? Very few Ge devices are still made, possible none at all?

What can Ge do, which can't also be done by silicon or vacuum devices?

I agree, Si is better in every respect. Ge transistors have horrible leakage which makes for horrible thermal run-away. :eek: IMHO, the only Ge device that should be manufactured is the 1N34 diode, but only for use in crystal radio sets. :)

Bobby Dipole

DF96 5th January 2011 10:56 AM

Yes, Ge diodes still have their uses although in most cases a silicon Schottky diode can substitute OK.

bob123 6th January 2011 08:28 PM

It's the germanium sound that I am after. I have heard that it could be possible to create the effect of germanium using a ge diode with a si transistor. How would this be done? By putting it in series with the base or emmitter? Or is a different technique used?

DF96 6th January 2011 09:08 PM

What is germanium sound? Temperature-dependent noise from leakage currents? Spikes from tin whiskers?

wakibaki 7th January 2011 12:34 AM

A preamp from a company called Chandler is currently getting rave reviews in some quarters. Some are claiming that it gives 'digital' recordings an 'analog tape' sound. It apparently makes use of germanium transistors. Chandler produce a range of recording ancillaries such as compressors and preamps, some based on legacy designs.

w

Mooly 7th January 2011 06:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DF96 (Post 2423913)
What is germanium sound? Temperature-dependent noise from leakage currents? Spikes from tin whiskers?

Not at all :)

http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/headp...phone-amp.html

A physical property of Ge is that it has much higher electron mobility than Si. Whether that plays a part in "subjectivity" I don't know. You can't fiddle that effect in any way by adding Ge diodes to Si. Whether that plays a part in "subjectivity" I don't know.


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