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Old 6th July 2009, 02:04 PM   #1
avt is offline avt  Canada
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Default Low/Mid-Watt Amps

Hello all, I am new to this forum of diyAudio. I am looking to build a low/mid watt tube amp head (for guitar), hopefully something similar to an Orange Tiny Terror. Basically something simple, has around 10 watts. I am new to the world of audio electronics, but, I have experience in other electronics like robotics. If I could get suggestions about some existing projects that could yield something usable, while being moderately challenging to put together, it would be very much appreciated.

Thanks,
AVT
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Old 6th July 2009, 03:00 PM   #2
ChrisA is offline ChrisA  United States
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Default Re: Low/Mid-Watt Amps

Quote:
Originally posted by avt
Hello all, I am new to this forum of diyAudio. I am looking to build a low/mid watt tube amp head (for guitar), hopefully something similar to an Orange Tiny Terror. Basically something simple, has around 10 watts. I am new to the world of audio electronics, but, I have experience in other electronics like robotics. If I could get suggestions about some existing projects that could yield something usable, while being moderately challenging to put together, it would be very much appreciated.

Thanks,
AVT
What kind of music? Do you need a clean sound or a high gain amp. Is this for practice at home? Either way take a look at http://ax84.com/ They have a few designs posted there with links to an outfit that sells kits for them. You can go with that kit or not. Lots of people will sell you the parts.

You can build the ax84.com "P1" which will give a clean sound then later add a tube rebuild it into an "HO" that has more gain. Both the P1 and HO have a higher powered verion so there are four in all.

It you decided you need 10W because you have a solid state 10W amp and want your new tube amp to be as loud then back off. 10w of tubes driving a couple 12" speakers will blow the windows out of a small bedroom. 4 or 5W is more likely what you need to match a 10W Fender practice amp.

Don't build it to big if you like running in "overdrive". Getting a big amp to run that way means turning it up . If you plan on running with the amp set on "9" indoors at home you have better build a way-small amp. But if you like a clean sound them you can go bigger and keep the knob turned down to 2 or 3

I just bought a Fender Champ 600. They sell now for $150 new. I can't buy the parts to build a Champ for $200. One idea is to buy a CHamp or Valve Jr head then modify it into what you really want.
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Old 6th July 2009, 10:20 PM   #3
avt is offline avt  Canada
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Thanks for the reply. Yeah, Im looking for an amp with a cleaner sound. I was browsing the web and stumbled upon the Vox AC4TVH, a small 4 watt head, and it is the perfect example of what I wanted to make. But then again, after checking out the ax84 P1 and estimating the cost, although im not sure how it compares to other diy amp designs cost-wise, it will probably be cheaper to mod an existing amp to my taste. Besides it will be a good learning experience before I try to make something from scratch.

Thanks,
AVT
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Old 6th July 2009, 11:08 PM   #4
ChrisA is offline ChrisA  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by avt
Thanks for the reply. Yeah, Im looking for an amp with a cleaner sound. I was browsing the web and stumbled upon the Vox AC4TVH, a small 4 watt head, and it is the perfect example of what I wanted to make. But then again, after checking out the ax84 P1 and estimating the cost, although im not sure how it compares to other diy amp designs cost-wise, it will probably be cheaper to mod an existing amp to my taste. Besides it will be a good learning experience before I try to make something from scratch.

Thanks,
AVT
The Fender Champ 600 has a good clean sound. Don't need to modify it. But of course you can.

Study the schematics. The Champ, Vox, Valve Jr AX84 P1 are all very much alike and would cost about the same to build. There are not many parts in a two tube single ended amp. Not a lot of room for design variation either. So that all look a lot alike.

My thinking now is that if I'm going to build something it will have to be something I can't buy. I think my next project will be a "customized" AX84 HO.

I'm currently building a "real McTube". It is a distortion "peddle" although I'm building it in a non-peddle enclosure. It is a great very low cost first tube project. It can be built easy for $50. Less if you can scrounge parts from old computer junk.

The other way to reduce the cost of building is to hunt for broken amps. For example an old tube based console stereo unit. I just bought a broken amp from a Hammond organ. I got five transformers, many tubes, chassis and so on for the price of shipping.

The "Real McTube" is built from 100% re-cycled parts.
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Old 7th July 2009, 09:29 PM   #5
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There is someone selling hybrid valve amps on ebay.
However I think the least power they sell is 300 watts.
But at 60 its a bargain.

A hybrid is much cheaper than a pure valve amp.
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