#1
I'm a 17 year old kid who will be a freshman at UW-Madison next fall and I'm looking at different career paths/major.Anyway, music and science are the only two things that I truly have a passion for. I believe a music degree would be a dead-end degree for me so I thought,why not learn how amps/electrical circuits work among other things and make that into a career. I've heard that it's a difficult field to get into even if I got a BS in Electrical Engineering so right now I'm leaning towards reconsidering becoming an amp tech. I live near Chicago but I have not heard of any major guitar companies that operate here.
#2
Hi Fj785

I dont know if my comment helps you really but i'm studying electrical engineering in Austria so i think i know a little bit about this topic. In fact you will learn how to build an amp etc. but i dont think you will hear only one word about tube amps especially guitar amps, if your degree course is similar to mine. I mainly learn about microcontrollers, sensors, chipdesign, digital circuit design etc. and there is much you have to learn by yourself to understand it really and completely.
Your skills in math should be really good otherwise it could be really difficult. Laplace transformations, differntial equations, complex numbers are quite common in analog circuit design.
I cant tell you how to get a job in that branche of industry but i think it could get really difficult to get one in the guitar amplifier branche.

but its quite fun to drive your girlfriend crazy with a selfmade alarm system XD
#3
and something i wanted to add... i will try to build a 20 watt tube amplifier completely designed by myself in the next months
#4
Quote by thanadas
Hi Fj785

I dont know if my comment helps you really but i'm studying electrical engineering in Austria so i think i know a little bit about this topic. In fact you will learn how to build an amp etc. but i dont think you will hear only one word about tube amps especially guitar amps, if your degree course is similar to mine. I mainly learn about microcontrollers, sensors, chipdesign, digital circuit design etc. and there is much you have to learn by yourself to understand it really and completely.
Your skills in math should be really good otherwise it could be really difficult. Laplace transformations, differntial equations, complex numbers are quite common in analog circuit design.
I cant tell you how to get a job in that branche of industry but i think it could get really difficult to get one in the guitar amplifier branche.

but its quite fun to drive your girlfriend crazy with a selfmade alarm system XD


This is exactly what Im studying, just finishing off my hnc. If you can't do maths then don't do it.

As said it is mainly digital amps you learn, and no tube amps, so learn these on your own
Running through:

Engl Fireball
Engl Slanted Cab
Ibanez Xiphos
Schecter C-1 FR Black
Ibanez GRG (on its way)

Pedals:
Boss Noise Gate, Zakk Wylde Overdrive, Boss Tuner, Zakk Wylde Wah.
#5
There's a demand for amps, not for people who design them. What that means is that unless you get very, very lucky and land a job at Line 6 or Mesa (where you will probably not be paid well), you're going to have to create your own amp company. Lots of people have done that, though very few are successful enough for it to be their full-time job.

I think at this point, you'll be lucky to get a job when you're done with a degree. You've not started college yet, so choosing your career path is perhaps not useful. You don't have enough information to make that decision yet. You might change your major, find an internship at Fender, get hired for six figures at Google, discover that amp techs generally don't have degrees (and get paid very poorly), or any number of things that would change the way you would view your goals right now.

The solution I'd suggest is to not think about expectations for the end result right now. College is going to be a huge experience, and your experiences and goals are going to change drastically in the next four years.

Good luck. Message me if you need some inside information on the UW.
#7
I've always fancied pedal design.
Never enough pedals on the market , well for me anyway
Guitars & Gear:
Parker Nitefly M
Sumer Metal Driver
Ibanez RGD2120Z
AMT SS-11B
Two Notes Torpedo CAB
#8
Don't go to college with the idea that your going to do a specific thing with your degree when you graduate. Chances are you won't, and chances are you may never do that specific job.

There are a lot of jobs out there that are "far less glorious". I graduated and applied to many places. I'm designing control circuits for batteries and power tools. I know someone else who worked on washing machine electronics. The field is so large that you never know what your going to do, and you won't learn much useful information about any kind of audio design as it is.
#9
Yeah, audio is only really covered by one of many modules on my course. Theres physics, maths, digital electonics and even programming
Guitars & Gear:
Parker Nitefly M
Sumer Metal Driver
Ibanez RGD2120Z
AMT SS-11B
Two Notes Torpedo CAB
Last edited by Emperor's Child at Jun 21, 2011,
#10
I laughed when i read the first few lines because you pretty much described me. =P
#11
Thanks, I got a lot of good advice in this thread, especially Roc8995.