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Old 4th February 2012, 12:36 PM   #1
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Default Amps... where to start?

Hi guys,

I'm new around here, new to electronics and a lover of guitars (not really a guitarist yet).
I didn't know where to post so... here it goes...

As I said i'm a newbie on electronics, done some stuff, tried to read some schematics, some I've been successful eheh.
I'm thinking of moving to the guitar amp stuff. Where should I start? I don't want kits because they're kind of expensive (from Portugal). Unless I buy the components and use the schematics... Anyway... Where should I start? What amp should I build? I guess tubes is too much for my knowledge now no?
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Old 4th February 2012, 12:56 PM   #2
GloBug is offline GloBug  Canada
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I would recommend something based off this amplifier.
LM3886 Schematics + PCB
You will have to add a preamp section for guitar bla bla blah but looks like a good project.
Have a read.
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Old 4th February 2012, 01:13 PM   #3
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Thanks... checking it... It seems pretty easy (by the photo, the schematics kind of wtf's me)

But what o you mean by having to add a preamp? Doesn't this LM3886 do that already?
Isn't that the all point? (newbie questions sorry)

What about speaker columns for the guitar amp? Is there any "guide"?
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Old 4th February 2012, 02:38 PM   #4
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You need to think a small tube amp for guitar work....They are "easy" to build.........Using Solid State for a Guitar amp is .....well...Blasphemy.
Speaker cabinets are usually use super-high efficient drivers......say one 10" driver in a 36" high by 18" wide, by 12" deep, open back.
Just throwing out ideas here.

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Old 4th February 2012, 03:27 PM   #5
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Is this schematic easy to make? "Easy" since an amp like this won't never be easy. Of course that the idea is to do tube amps but since i've no experience... You tell me! Since you're more experienced.

What kind of driver / speaker should I be looking for? Since i'm interested in making a cabinet for guitar use.

Thanks by the way.
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Old 4th February 2012, 10:53 PM   #6
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Best place to start is...

...what kind of music do you want to play? Just starting out, will you be interested in a practice amp for at home? I would suggest...

Professor Tweed


http://www.runoffgroove.com/professor1.mp3
http://www.runoffgroove.com/professor2.mp3

... and then a IC amp of 4-12 watts running into a 8" speaker.

Tube amps are nice to have but that can be for the next amp, right?
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Old 4th February 2012, 11:09 PM   #7
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hi mate... I am the same as you.. I know nothing about electronics or amplifiers. I turned up here one day when i was looking for something to do.

I liked the idea of having a go at building a amp, and as my old trusty Sony was no longer trusty and blew itself up... I went for it.

I chose a LM4870 kit from Audiosector... I have no reason or logic in choosing this kit, it was just the spare of the minute and it was ordered.

I had never soldered before and have almost zero knowledge of electronics, the kit however was pretty easy to put together. Any help I needed was always here, and replies to posts are pretty quick usualy. After building the kit up I got an enclosure and all the plugs sockets and speaker connects and got it all fitted in. After fitting all together and testing I connected the speakers...... I gotta say, its the best sounding amp i have ever owned. It cost me around 200 to build and was worth every penny.

So my advice is... bite the bullet, get a kit and have a go. Take your time and work to your own budget, you will not be dissapointed. Good luck!
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Old 5th February 2012, 03:11 AM   #8
GloBug is offline GloBug  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sendoushi View Post
Thanks... checking it... It seems pretty easy (by the photo, the schematics kind of wtf's me)

But what o you mean by having to add a preamp? Doesn't this LM3886 do that already?
Isn't that the all point? (newbie questions sorry)

What about speaker columns for the guitar amp? Is there any "guide"?
The preamp may be needed to amplify the guitar enough to be used by the main amp. It can/will also have tone controls.

While tube amps are nicer, like the other poster said you can save it for the next project.
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Old 5th February 2012, 03:33 AM   #9
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Also guitar pickups want to see a high input impedance. Normal circuits are not that high.
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Old 5th February 2012, 08:34 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sendoushi View Post
Is this schematic easy to make? "Easy" since an amp like this won't never be easy. Of course that the idea is to do tube amps but since i've no experience... You tell me! Since you're more experienced.
Valve amps are easy to build - but they are very EXPENSIVE to build - solid state amps are a fraction of the price for much higher powers.

It really depends what you're looking for and what style of music you play, but many guitarists prefer the lower quality of valve amps, the limited frequency response and high distortion are effects many seek.
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