#1
I guess this is the best place of all the forums I have at my disposal. Although not guitar related, I suppose it's guitar inspired.

I plugged my 15 Watt Handsome Devil into my laptop while watching a movie (Gamer is a much better movie than I expected.)

Regardless, the sound quality was absolutely AMAZING. Not wanting to waste my precious guitar tube's life, I have been trying to come up with a solution for stereo amplification.

I expect to use two relatively cheap 12" speakers in open back cabinets (essentially, 4 pieces of high quality vinyl covered plywood with a stained hardwood front.) I'm unsure, but it seems the dimensions aren't extremely important with an open back, and I do wish for room-filling, non directional sound, especially with the amp I have in mind.

I want to keep the tube count to a minimum. I wish to stay single ended class A as well.

Of course 5751/el84's come to mind.

I'm considering two Epiphone Valve Junior head guts with Russian NOS 6p14p which are known for clarity, volume, and extremely long life. I'm unsure about the preamp tubes. I want to amplify the sound, not taint it, so perhaps a 5751 would be a good step?

I want to build a case for the amp with the valves and power do-dads visible on the top, and made from the same hardwood as the faces of the speaker boxes. I'll also replace the two inputs, volume, and power switches with a single stereo input (probably 1/16"), a single power switch, and left/right volume knobs so I can balance the output manually. The computer will handle any EQing I need to do.

Thoughts? Input? Flames or links? If all goes as planned, I will update here with pics/status.

I've considered a vintage tube hifi setup, but they tend to be expensive and many come in need of repair. The only repair man I have around here is expensive.
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#2
Not really sure what your getting at here, at one point you mention using the guts from 2 Epi Jrs. to get a stereo setup, then you mention hi-fi. There is a very big difference between a tube amp designed for guitar, and a hi-fi tube amp.

A hi-fi amp is designed to amplify the signal as cleanly and clearly as possible, while a guitar amp is designed to push the tubes beyond their limit. Thats how a guitar amp creates distortion. By pushing the tubes well beyond their limits, which will cause the signal to clip.

So just to clarify, are you looking to build a stereo tube amp, or are you looking to find a way to run your existing amp through some sort of stereo setup?

Edit: Also, the Blackheart BH15 has no line-out, so I'm interested to know how you plugged it into your laptop?
Last edited by Matt420740 at Nov 26, 2009,
#3
...i think he means he plugged his laptop into the amp.

Don't waste your time and money trying to build a hi-fi. those are fairly complicated. i'd go with using 2 valve jrs hooked to a single stereo input jack. that'll serve its purpose.

you could mod them to lower the gain a bit. idk how much headroom they have but i doubt you'll be cranking it anyway.

also a speaker change would be in order. some quality speakers (that are designed for something other than guitar) would make a huge difference in sound quality.
#4
Quote by Invader Jim
...i think he means he plugged his laptop into the amp.


Thanks for clarifying that Jim. I get what he's asking now.

The 2 Valve Jrs would work as Jim said, you could lower the gain a bit by using a lower gain tube, and you could also cold bias the tube to get even less gain. Something like a 10k cathode resistor should work.

I can't really say I would recommend a guitar tube amp for this purpose though, as there are many stereo power amps on the market that would work just fine, but if your just wanting to do some DIY work, then go for it.
#6
I really wouldn't be looking at guitar amps for what you want to do. I'd also look at a set of speakers designed for home audio, a set of 2 or 3 way bookshelf's or towers. A pair of 12" speakers isn't really the best for audio definition. There's tons of home audio/audiophile forums out there. I'd ask around there for ideas for a cheap starter amp project.
#7
My blackheart sounds amazing plugged into the computer. I wouldn't be using the combo amps, just 2 of the head guts and a custom 12" speaker with a flat frequency response.

I will look further into hifi systems, but I don't see any new budget hifi systems on the market, and while building one wouldn't be an issue (I am quite competent with a soldering iron), I can't read some of the schematics. Primarily the ballast and the dual triodes.

Will do more reading.
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#8
One thing i would say is that open back cabinets aren't really a great idea for a hifi situation because you lose bass respone out of the back. For a hi-fi i would suggest smaller speakers and a closed cab.
EH


"Show me war; show me pestilence; show me the blood-red hands of retribution..."
#9
Quote by eddiehimself
One thing i would say is that open back cabinets aren't really a great idea for a hifi situation because you lose bass respone out of the back. For a hi-fi i would suggest smaller speakers and a closed cab.


My BH is a semi closed back so maybe you are right about this.

From the looks of it, I would be better off with a filter. I've been considering a filter setup with below 120hz to a 50watt solid state amp into a 12" bass driver and above 100hz to the tube amp into twin 8" closed back cabs.

Hrms. I think I need to noodle out the amp first, then worry with speakers and such.
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#10
Finally found this:

http://store.tubedepot.com/diy-k12g.html

Looks like exactly what I need!

My only concern is the power tube type 10GV8. I would much prefer something different, but *shrug*
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#11
Quote by Invader Jim

Don't waste your time and money trying to build a hi-fi. those are fairly complicated. i'd go with using 2 valve jrs hooked to a single stereo input jack. that'll serve its purpose.


This is incorrect. Its quite simple to build a HiFi amp out of very few components. I've got a two channel amp that uses 2 preamp tubes and 4 power amp tubes for 60W channels. Power tubes can act as a phase inverter if you do it right. It will require two transistors or a voltage regulator for each pair of power tubes in order to properly balance.

The cost largely depends on how loud you want the amps to be too. You can use EL84s for 18watts, a 12au7 for 1w or go larger for more watts. The higher wattage obviously the more expensive your transformers are gonna be.

For the price of two valve juniors you could probably make something with higher wattage or a cleaner amplification.
#12
Quote by PimpSmurf
My BH is a semi closed back so maybe you are right about this.

From the looks of it, I would be better off with a filter. I've been considering a filter setup with below 120hz to a 50watt solid state amp into a 12" bass driver and above 100hz to the tube amp into twin 8" closed back cabs.

Hrms. I think I need to noodle out the amp first, then worry with speakers and such.


You mean like a crossover then? Yeah, obviously your PC speakers and TV sound system might have a sub, but i reccomend you try starting out with just the 8" closed back cabs (you won't want it completely enclosed though, look up a tutorial for porting online) and see if there is enough bass for you because my speakers are 2x 6.5 and it's plenty of bass for me. If not, then you can build the sub.
EH


"Show me war; show me pestilence; show me the blood-red hands of retribution..."
#13
Quote by eddiehimself
You mean like a crossover then? Yeah, obviously your PC speakers and TV sound system might have a sub, but i reccomend you try starting out with just the 8" closed back cabs (you won't want it completely enclosed though, look up a tutorial for porting online) and see if there is enough bass for you because my speakers are 2x 6.5 and it's plenty of bass for me. If not, then you can build the sub.


Yeah, I'm looking for the bass sound, not the bass-shake-the-house, if you know what I mean. I just want things to sound really good, and I want to see some tubes feintly glowing. haha

I would really dig a twin single-ended design with 1 12ax7 and 1 el84, like the valve junior, but for the price the kit I found looks like the way to go unless I can get my hands on 2 EVJ guts on ebay.
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#14
Not to jack your thread or anything but how'd you do this? Line out using a headphone jack to an instrument cable jack? and plugged it into the amps input?
Guitars:
Ibanez UV777P
Ibanez RGD2127FX
Ibanez RG3120TW
Ibanez RGD7321
Ibanez RG6003FM
Ibanez SA160
Jackson Slatxmg3-7
Amps:
Baron Custom Amps K88
Rivera Knucklehead TRE
Fryette Sig: X
Randall RM4 /w Modded modules
Cabs:
Mesa 4x12
Bogner 4x12
Peavey 4x12(K85s)
#15
Quote by kylendm
Not to jack your thread or anything but how'd you do this? Line out using a headphone jack to an instrument cable jack? and plugged it into the amps input?


To break it down to a single word, yes. haha

Works great for movies since the speakers built into my monitor are garbage and I don't have room for more speakers on my desk.

(Invalid img)

old picture. less room now

I'm thinking that DIY amp is going to be the absolute shiznit!

On the speaker front, it looks like it will be MUCH cheaper to go with something premade and cheap for the time being, then work on something better later on.
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#16
My cousin's husband was big into building tube hi-fi systems for a while and he really dug it. He made a ton of them and got some connections where he could get lots of tubes for cheap because of the frequency of his purchases at some places I'd like to hear him plug some of them up, as he has tons of NOS tubes (ORIGINAL 70's Mullard pres O.O) in them. Which of course, if you're building it, means you'd spend as much on one tube as you would for a VJ
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
#17
Quote by Shinozoku
My cousin's husband was big into building tube hi-fi systems for a while and he really dug it. He made a ton of them and got some connections where he could get lots of tubes for cheap because of the frequency of his purchases at some places I'd like to hear him plug some of them up, as he has tons of NOS tubes (ORIGINAL 70's Mullard pres O.O) in them. Which of course, if you're building it, means you'd spend as much on one tube as you would for a VJ


Yeah, no joke. I've got a small collection of Sylvania long plates and an RCA black plate that I absolutely love. Waiting on the NOS USSR el84-compatable power tubes now. Stupid shitty company I ordered it from like 2 weeks ago still hasn't shipped apparently.

I plan to use cheap tubes with my hifi setup, maybe el84's, but probably this kit:
http://store.tubedepot.com/diy-k12g.html

NOS 10GV8 tubes are like $4ea
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#18
OK, so I've decided on this amp:
http://store.tubedepot.com/diy-k12g.html

I think I'm going to use OTS speakers because speaker box building is way way out of my attention span. I can't find easy to follow directions and there is a LOT more than internal measurements involved in box making. ports, sizes, locations, baffles and geometry = not fun for me.

I think I'm going to use two of these speakers:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16882290013

Now for the fun part.

I need to build an amp enclosure for the amp guts of my BlackHeart Handsome Devil combo in order to put it on top my new sexy Blackheart 412 slant cab!

I also need to build an amp enclosure for the hi-fi kit linked above.

I want to use some sort of stained hardwood. I was considering red to black stained Redwood, or something along those lines. Can someone recommend a nice looking, and low-medium cost wood? Not looking for insane cost.

I may even build the guitar amp cab out of MDF and paint it black, but I want hardwood for the hi-fi amp at least.

Thanks!
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5
#19
I see you are in South Carolina; maple, oak, cherry, or walnut might be good choices. If you have a lumberyard nearby, check them out, they may be able to get you some mahogany, seaple or other imported wood for a good deal. Though not a hardwood, some people like the look of pine, and it does stain well.

Also, I'd go with plywood over MDF. MDF just blows. It deteriorates when wet, edges don't rout well, it doesn't hold screws well, weaker than plywood....

Sounds like a great project! Looking forward to how it turns out!
Last edited by cedricsmods at Nov 27, 2009,
#20
You could probably just run some JJ EL84's and JAN 5751's (fairly cheap NOS tubes that are nice and clean but still have some gain to them) if you want cheap and effective.

Pine might be interesting for some added warmth. Not sure on what effect material makes on tone of hifi speaker cabs, from what I've heard people just use plywood (void free baltic birch ply ). But I might personally go with walnut or pine for two totally contrasting sounds and looks (maybe edge the walnut with pine or something )
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
Last edited by Shinozoku at Nov 27, 2009,
#21
If hi-fi is the goal, it would be best to soundproof the speaker enclosures, so the wood shouldn't really affect the sound. It'd be mostly about looks and price. Many enclosures are actually MDF, but if I am going to put the effort in to building something, it would at least be made of plywood.
#22
Quote by cedricsmods
I see you are in South Carolina; maple, oak, cherry, or walnut might be good choices. If you have a lumberyard nearby, check them out, they may be able to get you some mahogany, seaple or other imported wood for a good deal. Though not a hardwood, some people like the look of pine, and it does stain well.

Also, I'd go with plywood over MDF. MDF just blows. It deteriorates when wet, edges don't rout well, it doesn't hold screws well, weaker than plywood....

Sounds like a great project! Looking forward to how it turns out!


Me too! haha.

I will check around, but I believe the best we have is a Lowes. I'll go hunting tomorrow.

You are right about the plywood. Definately will go that route if I decide to paint, but I think I might go ahead and stain some solid wood. I should have said solid, not hardwood. Actually, working with Oak and such is silly hard, so pine might be a much better idea. haha

I think I'm going to paint the Guitar amp housing black and use a nice metal mesh front and build the home stereo amp housing out of stained wood.

Thanks for the input!

For the other two posters, I'm building an electronics enclosure, not a speaker box. And the home stereo enclosure uses special tubes (10GV8 is like half a 12AY7 and the power pentode is similar to a 6AQ5 / 6005 and it uses a filament voltage of 11.6v so tube conversion is a silly idea.)

Sorry for the confusion. When I started the thread I was pretty confused myself.
Agile 2800 Baritone (Crunchy Rail bridge/Fat Pat Neck) or Douglas WRL 590 -> MXR Super Comp -> -> MXR M108 EQ -> Peavey 5150 212 (Eminence Redcoat Gov) or Bugera V5