#1
This has been a strange journey for me.

I'm interested in these little buggers. Before I go any further with my questions I should say that I'm gonna build it myself. I've started researching the circuits and I've been googling up the best sources for output transformers and whatnot. That stuff shouldn't be a problem.


But I'm interested in general trivia, anecdotes, opinions, etc... I'm trying to cast a wide net before I start to purchase the parts.
I've seen a few common diy circuits:
Lite IIb
Superlite
36 watt
etc...
and there's also some differing opinions about the tone stack, master volume, and best speaker. Standard "imho" stuff, but that's what I'm here for. I want opinions most of all.
For example, why the hell does Marshall want so much money for this? 3600$? What the hell?

I'm leaning toward the Lite IIb. It has two different inputs - serial and parallel - but I've heard a lot of people find that they don't use the serial input. Thoughts about that?
I'm also considering making it a PPIMV and adding a VVR circuit to the phase inverter and the power amp. I realize that I just got technical and I apologize to anyone who doesn't know what the fudge I'm talking about. My concern there is that some people say that they like the 18w Marshall BECAUSE it's not a master volume amp.
And I don't really think that I need 36 watts but I can't shake this greedy feeling, like a need for MORE POWER! If someone can talk me out of that it'd be great. I don't think I need the volume.
#2
I've built several of them. PPIMV's are ok but it means that the phase inverter is distorting, which isn't really optimal.
To add a TMB tone stack, you need an extra tube and that detracts from it's salty 18W goodness. The tone control is all it needs.
Serial can be a good thing but I don't bother with it, parallel is good.

Btw, look at triodeelctronics.com for transformers. That's where I get mine from. And look on ebay for Russian military signal capacitors.


Here's a clip of one of mine.:
http://cathbard.com/files/sibly.mp3
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#4
Yeah, headroom is the last thing you want.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#7
Dang Cathbard. Sounds good. Every time I hear someone playing one of these I get more convinced that it's what I need.

I am going to skip the tmb tone stack and I'm going to simplify the inputs. I don't want to have an extra serial jack that I don't use.
But I still have a strong need for bedroom levels so the vvr is gonna happen. I guess the alternative is to do a whole amp vvr? Let me put it this way - if you had to choose between ppimv + pipa vvr, or just a full amp vvr, which would you recommend?

Bigger picture - it took me more than 2 years to figure out that this is the amp I need.
This is one of the videos that sold me on it.
https://youtu.be/1I8rYgMCd8s

And I'm not suggesting it's the amp of all amps or anything like that, but it's a really simple circuit, supposedly takes pedals well and it seems to live in that middle realm of rock sounds that most new players probably dream of. It should be one of the standard recommendations for an entry-level tube amp, not priced at 2-3,000$.
#8
Build an attenuator. **** VVR bs.

Here's my circuit. It's basically like a lite. ie. no tremelo. The only real difference is the filter caps. They are as big as you can go with that rectifier.
http://i1242.photobucket.com/albums/gg534/cathbard/cathbard-marshall-18W_zpsvzqqaesx.jpg
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#10
**** solid state rectifiers, you want the sag. That's what makes the 18W'er so much more popular than the 20W'ers.

VVR is dumb. You bias your tubes to a plate voltage - and then you're gonna change it? EL84's are cheap. Always have spares and you're cookin'.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#11
The attenuator circuit is cheap and easy. I'll take your advice about that for sure. No VVR, no PPIMV. I think I'll be able to fit an attenuator inside the amp housing too so that'll be convenient for me.

I'm guessing you're right about the rectifier too, but I'm so much more comfortable with these solid state bridges. We use them at work.
Is there a sound-clip that you know of where I can A-B the difference in sound?
#12
Not that I know of. It's no harder to use a tube. If you use a SS rectifier you'll have to recalculate all the bias resistors because the plate voltages will be higher. Just use a tube, otherwise you aren't actually building a 1974X. The tube rectifier is a big part of the amp's charms.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#13
motherf#######.......

Not directed at you Cath. I mean I'll take your advice but I can't use the PT I was hoping to use. I'm just venting. I mean I've done it the cheap way before and I always ended up wishing that I hadn't. I did some reading and it seems that the 2061 circuit is pretty much the solid state version? I listened to a few demos of that and it doesn't seem like I would like it as much.

Well this is why I asked. I accept your wisdom.
#14
This is the one I use:

http://triodeelectronics.com/potrfor18wam.html


Edit: Yes, 2061 is one. Here's a list of all of them:
http://drtube.com/library/schematics/69-marshall-schemas#JMP20W
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Jun 9, 2015,
#15
Quote by paul.housley.7

I'm leaning toward the Lite IIb. It has two different inputs - serial and parallel - but I've heard a lot of people find that they don't use the serial input. Thoughts about that?


I still haven't worked out to my satisfaction which is which
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#16
Definitely document your progress. I was asking about this a few months ago and I'm still interested in doing it so I would like to see how it goes
Quote by zgr0826
My culture is worthless and absolutely inferior to the almighty Leaf.


Quote by JustRooster
I incurred the wrath of the Association of White Knights. Specifically the Parent's Basement branch of service.
#17
I will try to remember to take photos more often.

Word of warning though. I'm not doing it the easiest way. Sensible people build on standard chassis and use established layouts. But not me. I can't function unless I indulge in some stupid creative impulses.

So it's going to be packaged inside a space heater. It'll be called "The Space Heater". If nothing else works out at least it'll have a killer name.
#18
I build mine into odd chassis too. Look at the "Cathbard Amplification" link in my sig.
Look at the gut shots. Separating the preamp from the power amp resulted in far less noise than when I had them both on the same turret board.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Jun 10, 2015,
#19
Those are awesome. A lot cooler than a regular kit.
I'm trying to learn more about limiting noise. The split turret-boards seems like a good idea. Of course I was getting ready to order the PCB.

The PCB is an important part of the look that I'm trying to achieve. I stripped out the chassis of my first circuit and I'm going to try to refine it. For reference:
http://i.imgur.com/Zi4Wiu0.jpg

Did you ever make a shoebox diorama? I want this to be something that you can look into. I want there to be secret details, little lights (purely decorative) and a progression of planes of detail. I figured I'd put the tubes in the foreground, then I was thinking I could cut out a 2d silhouette of Saturn and backlight it. Then add at least another plane or two, and if you look deep enough I want to be able to see the pcb. I want it to be like you found the "guts" of the amp.
#20
If you have a drill press, turret boards are easy to make. And you can make them customised to the enclosure. I'm partway through building a Deluxe in a round tin so it needed curves. Gives it that vintage look too. PCB's look too modern.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#21
Quote by Cathbard
If you have a drill press, turret boards are easy to make. And you can make them customised to the enclosure. I'm partway through building a Deluxe in a round tin so it needed curves. Gives it that vintage look too. PCB's look too modern.


Agreed, that 1940's technology is just too damn new!!
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#22
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#23
Cath,

I was looking at this for another 5E3, but I'm not convinced that it might not actually be harder to gin up than simply PTP / Turreting one. Thoughts?

http://www.tubeface.com/pcb/universal-pcb
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#25
Quote by paul.housley.7
If you haven't been trained in soldering then I'd stick with turrets.
My opinion.


Thanks, I appreciate your input.

I was US Navy 2M miniature / microminiature soldering certified many years ago so I'm not too worried about that part.

I'm not worried about any of it TBH, it just appears to me that the PCB might actually be MORE work than the PTP / Turret design and since Cath has a goodly amount of experience wiring small amps up I wanted him to weigh in.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#26
Quote by Arby911
Thanks, I appreciate your input.

I was US Navy 2M miniature / microminiature soldering certified many years ago so I'm not too worried about that part.

I'm not worried about any of it TBH, it just appears to me that the PCB might actually be MORE work than the PTP / Turret design and since Cath has a goodly amount of experience wiring small amps up I wanted him to weigh in.



I need you to help me!

I was a navy nuke. I was an Electronics Technician and I eventually got into ETMS - Electronics Technician Maintenance School. The bulk of the program (A little over a month iirc) was soldering.

I passed but I don't remember anything about the levels of certification. Can you help me figure that out? I've been asked about how my training relates to civilian certifications and I've got no idea.
#27
Quote by paul.housley.7

I need you to help me!

I was a navy nuke. I was an Electronics Technician and I eventually got into ETMS - Electronics Technician Maintenance School. The bulk of the program (A little over a month iirc) was soldering.

I passed but I don't remember anything about the levels of certification. Can you help me figure that out? I've been asked about how my training relates to civilian certifications and I've got no idea.


That course is F-191-0010, 3 weeks soldering, 3 weeks troubleshooting. What year did you take it?

There isn't a specific civilian "certification" that I'm aware of, but it does cross to college credit.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
Last edited by Arby911 at Jun 11, 2015,
#28
That sounds like it's probably right. It was 2004 I think.

Two years later I got a civilian job doing surface mount components and they were hiring entry-level, so the first week on that job included a civilian certification of some sort. I don't remember what that was called either, but it wasn't very difficult. It was hot air and it was a hell of a lot easier than what I was trained to do in ETMS.

It just never occurred to me at the time when I was learning to do all of this that I might want to know the name of the certifications.
#30
I use a combination of turret and PTP. The main guts of the power amp is PTP, so is the power supply but there are just a few too many parts to do the whole amp that way without it looking dodgey. With my Champ, the only thing on a board was the power supply filter. I treat them case by case. My enclosures demand a certain degree of creativity.
I can't stress enough how easy it is to knock up a turret board if you own a press.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Jun 11, 2015,
#31
Quote by paul.housley.7
http://imgur.com/gallery/bZ0THFZ

I found 8 of these. That's a lotta micro fahrads. Am I making amplifiers or railguns. I don't know.


"Railgun" would actually be a good name for an amp. Or a band!

"Flatter than Kansas" isn't bad either.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin