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Old 6th August 2012, 10:32 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by PlasticIsGood View Post
Just that the introductions to audio amplifier design that I've seen are written for readers who may not have prior understanding of electronics.
This isn't always the case.

If your recommendation is that Horowitz & Hill is to be avoided as a purchase, what is your recommended alternative?

Unless you have a specific recommendation to make, you're just adding to the noise.
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Old 7th August 2012, 01:20 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by counter culture View Post
This isn't always the case.

If your recommendation is that Horowitz & Hill is to be avoided as a purchase, what is your recommended alternative?

Unless you have a specific recommendation to make, you're just adding to the noise.
Maybe not, no, no, and maybe. I don't think you've followed what I wrote, but I'll hold back from recommending a textbook on reading
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Old 7th August 2012, 01:40 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Cassiel View Post
You don't really need to understand amplifiers (supposing anyone understands what's REALLY going on) to build and enjoy one; likewise you don't really need to understand your wife to be happy with your marriage (best if you don't understand her at all).

You must understand what your boss says though.

Best way to learn is to build lots of amps (assuming your mind is able to spot the differences among them) and listen, listen and listen. Every writer is more or less biased. DIY audio is a personal thing. Schematics, you need schematics and a soldering iron.
Indeed, that's also a valid approach. Wouldn't work for me, though. I'd fill up the house with rejected prototypes. The first amps I made are still in daily use.
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Old 7th August 2012, 03:41 AM   #24
benb is offline benb  United States
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For starting at ground zero in electronics I've mentioned the ARRL Radio Amateur Handbook or whatever more recent editions are called. More recently I've discovered MAKE: Electronics that's aimed at the current maker/DIY movement. I got a copy to use in teaching electronics at the local hackerspace (this will be an interesting experience). I haven't gone all the way through the book but It's quite experiential and interesting:

Amazon.com: Make: Electronics (Learning by Discovery) (9780596153748): Charles Platt: Books

And of course, for variable quality of the "who knows?" variety but where you're bound to learn something, there's online stuff:
https://www.google.com/search?q=free+electronics+course
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Old 7th August 2012, 03:44 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by PlasticIsGood View Post
Maybe not, no, no, and maybe. I don't think you've followed what I wrote, but I'll hold back from recommending a textbook on reading
No, I understood perfectly what you wrote. You disagreed with the recommendation of Horowitz and Hill and went on to recommend a book recommended two posts previous to your own.
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Old 7th August 2012, 03:50 AM   #26
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Trying to think back long ago when I was first learning audio electronics and electronics in general, building some of the circuits in the back of the RCA transistor manual brought me a long ways. I think it was a few (10?) watt ac coupled power amp. After that I built some amps from Motorola application notes. Once you've built a few low power things where the cost of failure (in terms of both parts and sparks) is low, confidence is boosted and you can go on to more involved circuits. I built some Heathkits and didn't learn much. I built some Dynakits and maybe learned a bit more, but not nearly so much as scratch building from a schematic.
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Old 7th August 2012, 04:23 AM   #27
benb is offline benb  United States
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I learned a good bit at a young age from the combination of schematic and "Circuit Description" portions from many Heathkit manuals.
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Old 7th August 2012, 01:34 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by counter culture View Post
No, I understood perfectly what you wrote. You disagreed with the recommendation of Horowitz and Hill and went on to recommend a book recommended two posts previous to your own.
No. I suggested that a general textbook might not be the best place to start. It's a straightforward point about the learning process: it's often better to begin at the application end, and work back to the fundamentals on demand.

As for the repetition, it's no great crime. It was overlap, due to writing between Olympic events, if you really need to know. Great minds think alike...and I added a particular reason why the JLH book is useful, and suggested it as supplementary reading. All that for free, and all you can do is grump.

Surely you have something better to do? I have.
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Old 7th August 2012, 05:04 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by PlasticIsGood View Post
No. I suggested that a general textbook might not be the best place to start. It's a straightforward point about the learning process: it's often better to begin at the application end, and work back to the fundamentals on demand.
And to do that you need a source for the basics. Looking at the 5 (2 Douglas Self's, a Bob Cordell and 2 Morgan Jones') audio manuals within easy reach, they're a good starting point for a beginner only insofar as they immediately introduce concepts impenetrable to a beginner without a further reference. You won't make your way through any of these without a grasp of the fundamentals. You could buy all 5 and still end up needing a book on basics.

There's a great deal that has to be absorbed by anyone wanting to do electronics design. It starts with simple 'light-bulb' circuits leading to an appreciation of resistance, voltage and current and expands through Kirchoff's laws to Norton's and Thevenin's theorems followed by electro-magnetics and capacitance before a real-world amplifier can really be appreciated. Some exposure to logarithms, trigonometry, Fourier analysis, real and apparent power and complex numbers helps. Semiconductors, thermionic valves, noise and feedback must also be dealt with along with AC and DC, transformers, rectification and power supplies.

It's difficult to recommend a single book covering all these subjects, a single textbook is barely sufficient to cover magnetics alone.

Different students quite naturally bring varied levels of knowledge and competence of the precursors to the table.

Anyone trying to make a recommendation of a single book as an introduction to audio amplifier design faces an invidious task.

Consequently, when making a recommendation with respect to books to buy when learning about audio amplifiers, it must be said that more than one book will be required. For those already conversant with basic circuit theory a book like Horowitz and Hill offers a path from circuit theory to practical modular design of power supplies, amplifier stages and ancillaries.

At the same time, anyone finding themselves lost when reading this book must come to the realisation that further study of even more basic issues is required.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PlasticIsGood View Post
As for the repetition, it's no great crime. It was overlap, due to writing between Olympic events, if you really need to know.
Pay more attention in future. I don't think it leaves you in a very good position to be making implied criticism of my reading skills.

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...all you can do is grump.
Ever a sign of a failing argument when one of the protagonists resorts to the ad hominem.

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Surely you have something better to do? I have.
Evidently not.
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Old 12th August 2012, 11:37 PM   #30
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Looked over The Art of Electronics TOC. Well, I am sure it has more detail, but I think I have most of that covered. I did find a book on FET applications for $ .01
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