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Old 12th September 2013, 07:09 PM   #21
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Guess what, Ebay links now die as soon as you post them. i.e. we can only guess what you refer to.
It's usually OK to use the very basic Chinese kits offered for peanuts everywhere on Ebay, so long as you remember you'll need a Power supply board and some quality fat caps like Panasonic THSA type as well as the power amplifier board(s).
Mounting hardware like suitable heatsinks of about 1-1.5 degrees/W rating for each amp. Then bolts, nuts, washers, lockwashers and spacers of at least 6mm length would be useful too, as would heatsink paste - the insulating variety. To get very good quality sound, it's likely you'll need a little more circuitry to drive a volume pot (preamp) and keep the match to amplifier buffered with a good low impedance source of perhaps 200 - 2,000R. This is not often catered to or discussed in simple designs where you are left to your knowledge and skill to get the best from your basic device. They still need to be connected to input signals so best to get this right.

Much of the Ebay cost is in postage, so don't waste money skimping with cheapest possible junk designs. a litte more to have some more flexibility and possibly enhancements too.
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Last edited by Ian Finch; 12th September 2013 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 13th September 2013, 06:31 AM   #22
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Is it really worth the $27 extra for those PCB's?
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Old 13th September 2013, 06:39 AM   #23
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Just saw your Post Ian,

Below is what i was planning on buying for $9 delivered:

Click the image to open in full size.

Its my understanding that PCBs, are simply metal and board, so there cant be a huge difference between PCB's right? But i understand capacitors and other components are a different story.

Where should i buy the other more quality components from?
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Old 13th September 2013, 08:08 AM   #24
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the layout on the PCB's can make or brake the amp. so yes. there is huge differences
if you want to source the parts yourself, mouser or digikey is the place to look.

Last edited by AudioSan; 13th September 2013 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 13th September 2013, 01:57 PM   #25
billyk is offline billyk  United States
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One thing to consider... While the China/eBay stuff may be less expensive and you may or may not get a good quality product with a good layout, purchasing from folks like ChipAmp supports those that support us and our hobby. There are a whole bunch of folks that take the time to help people and contribute to the forums and it would behoove us to support them and their businesses when we can.
Just my $0.02 for your consideration

Last edited by billyk; 13th September 2013 at 01:58 PM. Reason: clarity and speeling
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Old 13th September 2013, 02:03 PM   #26
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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There's a Thread (XY amp?) that discusses recognising PCB errors and how to properly modify to get better performance.
google DIYaudio + XY + PCB
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Old 13th September 2013, 03:01 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billyk View Post
One thing to consider... While the China/eBay stuff may be less expensive and you may or may not get a good quality product with a good layout, purchasing from folks like ChipAmp supports those that support us and our hobby. There are a whole bunch of folks that take the time to help people and contribute to the forums and it would behoove us to support them and their businesses when we can.
Just my $0.02 for your consideration
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Old 14th September 2013, 03:14 AM   #28
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I understand that it is a very niche hobby and supporting the cause is a good thing to do, but paying 39AUD compared to 9AUD is simply a huge difference, and I cant seem to justify four times the cost for something that is very similar.

AndrewT I have looked at the post you mentioned and this is what of got out of it. In a simplified way:

When you build onto a standard ebay PCB you are getting a base model, just like a car, if you want options to make it more driveable such as cup holders or tinted windows you either need a new PCB or to modify the ebay one with suitable components.

If I do this, will the amp have all the compnents that the chipamp board can feature?

Cheers and sorry if I am frustrating you guys, please bear with me.
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Old 14th September 2013, 04:18 PM   #29
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I guess you'll pay your $9 plus post and you'll get $9 worth of basic boards to the basic app. notes. A circuit that works and one that works well is like the comparison of MP3 and Flac or 24bit /96kHz digital resolution. If you just want to make some noise for cheap then sure, go for cheapest. You will soon be replacing it as you discover the facts of audio amplification and the need to use better circuits and layouts to get the best quality sound from chipamps. The idea that there are just more bells & whilstles with better boards is seldom true with Chipamp DIY. Most designs will do much the same; some only just, others with excellence and that can be due to several factors, not the least of which is the layout of what is a very closely packed and highly noise sensitive arrangement of IC pins. Optimising that part of the PCB and leadin into an adequately spaced or grouped connection array is half the battle of successful Chipamp implementation and jamming it all together on a tiny PCB may be cheap but seldom makes a good start. Some Ebay designs are not far removed from just autorouted tracks, ensuring minimal board and copper use, and this is unlikely to wind up good.

As you ask if you can add full features by "adding onto" a basic board, that's an open ended question. We don't know the precise circuit or features you consider yet but to discuss this fully, the chipamp forum is the place to post. However, the circuit complexity is usually geared to quality expectations so if you want a full featured design, then start that way, with recognised quality boards and features. Patching parts onto a PCB is a sure fire way to introduce noise so I suggest not messing with them. Build as the PCB was intended unless you know a lot more than the designer about his work.

Still, its your choice and its not wrong to start out basic but may I suggest you make allowances in your preparations for a more sophisticated affair when your interest is piqued by the basic attempt.
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Last edited by Ian Finch; 14th September 2013 at 04:36 PM.
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Old 14th September 2013, 04:36 PM   #30
hongrn is offline hongrn  United States
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Also, the Chinese kits tend to leave out the optional components that make the amp more stable, so you'd have to be able to read the LM3886 datasheet and add them yourself.
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