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Old 19th February 2006, 05:45 PM   #1
AutoAudio is offline AutoAudio  United States
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Default DIY Guitar amp

I know absolutely nothing about guitar amps, and i've never even played a guitar. A buddy of mine said he wanted to build one though and I was like well if it involves an amp, a driver and a box, i'm always in. So I though't I'd just ask and see if anyone has ever done it or knows good sites about it. Thanks.

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Old 19th February 2006, 07:13 PM   #2
Nigel Goodwin is offline Nigel Goodwin  England
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Have a look at Elliott Sound Products which should be of help, and he even sells PCB's for it!.
Nigel Goodwin
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Old 1st March 2006, 02:54 PM   #3
bubbamc119 is offline bubbamc119  Australia
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Check out www.ax84.com for various tube guitar amp designs. I'm about to build the P1 extreme.
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Old 2nd March 2006, 02:06 PM   #4
amperex is offline amperex  United States
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Most musicians prefer tube type designs (bass players are an exception).

Stay with tubes. Careful of the high voltages required for tubes.
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Old 2nd March 2006, 02:53 PM   #5
Nigel Goodwin is offline Nigel Goodwin  England
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Originally posted by amperex
Most musicians prefer tube type designs (bass players are an exception).
A lot depends what you want, valve/tube amplifiers give the type of distortion some guitarists want - in particular lead guitarists playing heavy metal.

If you want a clean sound, transistor amps are far better.

Valve/tube amps are generally louder though, distorted sound appears louder than a clean sound - and a distorted 30W valve amplifier will appear as loud as a clean 100W transistor amplifier (if not louder?).

Most bass players don't want a distorted sound, so they tend not to use valve amps! - although some still prefer it?.
Nigel Goodwin
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Old 2nd March 2006, 03:12 PM   #6
BobEllis is offline BobEllis  United States
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Another reason bassists tend to prefer solid state amps is we need a lot more power than a guitarist for the same apparent volume down low. A 100W tube amp is heavy enough. Can you imagine the weight of the iron required to hit 500-1,000W? Lugging our cabs around is tough enough.

Many bassists like tube preamps for a little soft edge distortion, but most go for solid state power.

there are many sites offering guitar amp projects. Google is your friend. Duncan amps comes to mind.

For a quick and dirty project, string a couple of opamp gain stages together followed by the straight amplifier of your choice. Use one variable gain stage say 1-10V/v, as your "drive" control with another gain of 5 V/v following. this ought to give enough drive for most amps.

You can add a tone stack of your choice. IIRC, Duncan has a calculator (Google tone+stack+calculator) to offer more flexibility.

Have fun!
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Old 4th March 2006, 08:45 PM   #7
Peter M. is offline Peter M.  Norway
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Some links:
Note to myself: Never again use fingers to check if there still is voltage left in a capacitor...
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Old 5th March 2006, 06:22 PM   #8
Ahmad_tbp is offline Ahmad_tbp  United States
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who said bassists don like tube sound ?! lol , anyone will love tube sound , but ofcourse solidstate for power amp :P
i think it s a very big mistake if u don go for a atleast a tube preamp , i suggest the REAL McTUBE preamp , it s a very simple tube preamp with one 12ax7 ( u can find it in www.tonepad.com ) ,and u can use marshall or fender tone control circuit w a buffer w it , and for driver JUST go for a real guitar driver not any PA driver , check celestion and eminence site for guitar drivers
Marge, don't discourage the boy! Weaseling out of things is important to learn. It's what separates us from the animals! Except the weasel.
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Old 22nd March 2006, 07:36 AM   #9
gtrmac is offline gtrmac  Japan
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Check out these websites:

Mojo Musical Supply

Ted Weber

They have kits for the popular tube guitar amps.
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Old 22nd March 2006, 08:29 AM   #10
Nordic is offline Nordic  South Africa
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I think its just a sign of the times, concerts and venues these days are larger. My dad was a drummer for 25 years, so you can say I grew up between pieces of band equipment. And the best bass amps to my ears are the Peavey valve amps. If memeory serves right they are good for a solid 100W. Which coupled with the high sensitivity drivers they used produced oodles of clean bass, the only distortion, was the silly hum much of the old equipment made...
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