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Old 26th February 2005, 08:10 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Texas
Default Beginner , tube kit suggestions please

Hello everyone,

As you can tell this is my first post and with it comes the knowledge of a noob. Sorry.

I've recently stumbled upon an article on a minimalist tube amp in my free issue of Audio xpress (came with my latest parts express order).
From what little I understood about it seems that this amp or one very similar to it would be a great intro to tube amps. I've been looking for affordable amp kits (meaning $300 or less) but have had very little luck. My only requirements for the kit is that its affordable, the instructions that come with it are easy to follow and make sense of, and the sound quality is exceptional (or at least as exceptional as it can be within the given price range. I'm aware a 300 dollar amp won't be likely to match the SQ of a 1000 dollar amp, but I would rather not have mud coming from the amp.

Can someone please define what Push pull power means while you're at it?

Thanks a whole bunch I hope these questions aren't terribly redundant.

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Old 26th February 2005, 08:22 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Melbourne, Victoria

Don't worry about newbie questions, we all had to start somewhere!

If you're looking for affordable kits, you may be interested in this active thread. I don't have any experience with that particular kit, but people seem to be pleased by it.

Push-pull amps are where there are two (or four or six...) output valves working in opposing phase such that when one set increases conduction, the other set decreases conduction. I'm not sure if my explanation here is particularly helpful, if you don't get it - feel free to ask and I'll try to be clearer.
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Old 26th February 2005, 06:54 PM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Monroe Township, NJ
Read this thread. S-5 Electronics K-12M (11MS8) 8 wpc PP Tube Amp Kit ($139)

The 11MS8 amp will get you started under budget and it will sound OK.

To make a superior sounding amp, HIGH quality O/P transformers are a must. A pair of really good O/P trafos would consume (and then some) the budget. You can't get around TANSTAFL. :~|
Eli D.
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Old 26th February 2005, 07:18 PM   #4
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: wyoming
Buy the best transfor that you can get, just rember that it is the base from where you start and as you up grade the amp you are not going to be buy a new transforer. There is a James on E-Bay right now that would work very well, they have a good clean sound.
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Old 27th February 2005, 02:29 AM   #5
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Lexington
:: another noob subscribing to thread ::

i know how annoying noob questions are but will you guys instead give me some good topic searches to get my feet wet in the transition from car audio to home audio? i'm starting small at the moment (purely financial reasons), i'm thinking of just using a 3.5mm to rca plug out of my desktop to power some bookshelves... it seems to me that on my budget, making one of these tube amp kits is in order but i'm completely new to anything like this. can someone briefly explain function of the different components and what makes one higher quality than another? i'll keep reading and keep coming up with dumb questions

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Old 28th February 2005, 04:33 AM   #6
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Hartford
Another good project for those of us new to tubes is the Pete Millett headphone amp. It is inexpensive (it can be built as cheap as about $75, or can go up to about $200), it is low voltage diminishing the danger, and it sounds remarkably good.

There is a reprint of the article descriming it at There is also a PCB for sale.

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