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Old 15th April 2009, 02:46 PM   #1
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Default Nubie first build Tubelab simple SE

OK I starter in joining this forum wanting to build a tube buffer.
Newbie tube buffer kit


From this things morphed into the thinking that a tube amp would be a better idea. John ( Victoria Guy) was kind enough to put me onto tubelab simple SE.
http://www.tubeaudio.8m.com/RH84/rh84.html
So my questions are, if you could be so kind to help me:
This is a power amp, my reading other threads suggests this build would cost in the ball park of $500, maybe less if you are a good hunter of parts.
When finished is this amp better than say the Bottlehead kit coming in at the same price, parts hunting not needed? Enclosure included
http://www.bottlehead.com/et/adobes...3/foreplay3.htm
Also Transcendent preamp is a kit in the same price range parts included, and enclosure. It is a pre amp. Would a tube pre amp run with a parasound power amp give me a tube sound vs a Se simple power amp.
http://www.transcendentsound.com/preampkit.htm
If I built this simple SE can I use my Nad pre amp with it or is it not needed if the SE amp has a volume control?
Cheers Ron.
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Old 15th April 2009, 03:19 PM   #2
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Amp is the last influential component for the signal before reaching the speakers (I know, speaker cable is there too but good speaker cable should be transparent and not influence the sound) so the tube amp will give you more tube sound than tube preamp used with SS amp.
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Old 15th April 2009, 04:40 PM   #3
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I got the wrong link to to tubelab:
http://www.tubelab.com/SimpleSE.htm

Evenharmonics, thanks for that, that narrows it down already for the questions. Cheers Ron.
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Old 15th April 2009, 04:53 PM   #4
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Well, Simple SE is a power amp, not a pre amp like the foreplay. So you are still looking for a preamp?

EDIT: OK, read your post more carefully. If you add a volume control, you probably don't need a preamp per se. Not sure how to compare Foreplay to SimpleSE, though.
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Old 15th April 2009, 05:32 PM   #5
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OK so that rules out the foreplay, I was thinking it was a power amp.
Do you think it is possible for a Nubie to build this amp? The directions are very good from what I can see. It is more of ordering the parts(not knowing a lot about them) and those little tweaks needed to get all the parts to play together.
I am reading a thread like this one
Starting a Simple SE build...

Simple SE and 6BG6GA's

And they are way over my head to be honest with you.
Cheers Ron. ( thanks for your help so far)
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Old 15th April 2009, 06:35 PM   #6
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By newbie do you mean never having worked with electronics? This amp is pretty easy to build. The PCB has huge solder pads, so it is actually a good board to learn on. There are a few spots where excess solder can cause problems (tube sockets), but if you are careful you should be fine.

George's instructions are quite detailed for the Simple SE and they cover all of the common build variations well I think. There are choices to be made up front (chassis mounting, power tube type, etc), so it is helpful to read all the way through them once before clicking "order" on Mouser/Digikey/AES/wherever. The parts list for the PCB itself is quite complete with part numbers and everything. The wild cards are the transformers and the tubes, but there are some good choices for these. Then the chassis, switches, pots, etc are up to you.
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Old 15th April 2009, 07:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mungo Park

Do you think it is possible for a Nubie to build this amp? The directions are very good from what I can see. It is more of ordering the parts(not knowing a lot about them) and those little tweaks needed to get all the parts to play together.
I am reading a thread like this one
Starting a Simple SE build...

Simple SE and 6BG6GA's

And they are way over my head to be honest with you.
Cheers Ron. ( thanks for your help so far)
Have you built anything else electronic before? Do you have soldering/de-soldering experience? Can you knock together a decent chassis? Are you comfortable working around high voltage (400-500V)?

This board is a straightforward build with lots of step-by-step instructions by Tubelab George on his website and George also has a fairly comprehensive parts list along with transformer/tube/etc recommendations but you will still have to source the parts, build a chassis, solder everything up, and possibly have to do some troubleshooting.

A couple of nice newbie features of this board is that there are no adjustments that need to be made while the board is powered up, and tubes are inexpensive and readily available. It can also be easily tweaked to run a handful of common output tubes so you can learn a bit and figure out if a 6L6GC, EL34, KT88, etc suits your tastes.

There are lots of posts here about this project so lots of info is available, and George regularly answers the posts.

There is lots of info on the tubelab site also; navigate to the simple SE assembly instructions page, then click and read the topics on the left pane. He covers everything from transformer recommendations to assembly techniques, etc. I think if you spend some time reading that material you will determine if the project scope is something that you can tackle.

You can also ask questions over here for further clarification before you pull the trigger.
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Old 15th April 2009, 07:52 PM   #8
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The only thing I upgraded was C11 and C21 coupling caps. I mail ordered everything and I've spent $700CDN. 3/8ths of that was shipping cost/customs. I still need to buy the wood and mounting nuts/bolts.

You can build this. Read everything until you understand it. Tuns of help on this forum.
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Old 15th April 2009, 09:58 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by HEADinaJAR
The only thing I upgraded was C11 and C21 coupling caps. I mail ordered everything and I've spent $700CDN.
Hi-
What tubes/transformers are you using (I assume the $700 includes tubes?)
I've got a SimpleSE board here that I will be building at some point, so I have a deep interest in the costs!
Thanks
John
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Old 15th April 2009, 09:59 PM   #10
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OK I have soldered some, I don't think it is the problem, I have zero electronics knowledge, waiting for some books though. I did build a small robot kit with my son, all the parts were their and it was not hard getting them soldered in the board, and it worked so I must have got them in the right spots.
I will be OK building a chassis and enclosure.
So the part is having to source the parts could be tough, not knowing anything I would not know if I got the right one or not.
Any options is also potential trouble as I can not understand them. So I guess if I stick to the directions and do not change anything I should be fine, I guess.
I have been reading Georges instructions and they are very good, to his credit.
So I think I am slowly inching towards thinking I can do this.
Cheers Ron. Thank you all for your help/input.
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