TubeTalk

The People’s Amp Story, Part II

Continued from last week’s episode of TubeTalk… I built another amp based on Ace’s design, but I was much smarter about the layout of the chassis. I also simplified the circuit to ditch the presence and bass-boost controls. I used this amp to experiment with, and switched out a bunch of different components to see … Continue reading The People’s Amp Story, Part II

The People’s Amp Story, part I

When I was a kid, I tinkered around with electronics projects. I remember building a simple motor from nails and wire, a crystal radio, and a shortwave radio. I had a Radio Shack project kit that used wires and springs to connect components together, and I remember dreaming about making a Heathkit television set. I … Continue reading The People’s Amp Story, part I

What’s All the Fuss About Bias?

Tube amps can sometimes seem to be mysterious beasts. Matching output pairs, ECC83 or 12AX7, “death caps,” carbon comp resistors, standby switches, whether you can touch the glass with your bare fingers (you can, really. It’s ok, so long as they’re not too hot). There is an incredible amount of lore, some mythology, and a … Continue reading What’s All the Fuss About Bias?

So Many Tubes, Such Little Time…

  The most commonly used tube for pre-amp and phase inverter positions is the warhorse 12AX7 (also known as the ECC83). The People’s Amplifier uses two of these little guys: one in the pre-amp, one in the phase inverter. It’s a high-gain amplifier tube. Other similar dual-triode (two tubes in one, with three elements in … Continue reading So Many Tubes, Such Little Time…

From Glowing Wires to Amplifiers…

As early as 1761, it was known that heating a wire, or filament, could create a glow, called “incandescence.” By the middle of the 19th century, there were several scientists working on the problem of creating a sustainable electric lightbulb. One of the discoveries made was that a filament burns up in the presence of … Continue reading From Glowing Wires to Amplifiers…