#1
Right, I have an A2 electronics project to be doing, and I have enough basic knowledge to put together a simple SS practice amp with a few built in effects.

So far, the effects I'm thinking of are:

- Distortion/Overdrive x2
- Tremolo
- Vibrato
- Treble Boost/Bright Switch
- EQ Control
- Bar Graph output display

I would like a noise gate, but I'm not sure of how these work, and I'm pretty sure they use nasty hard to do fancy digital stuff.

Basically, I'm trying to make an amp similar to the microcube, but with analogue effects.

Please help me out with some suggestions for effects, schematics, anything really!


Cheers!


EDIT: Might try and put an AM or FM radio out on it, just for lulz
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Last edited by mcw00t at Nov 7, 2007,
#3
It has to be original, otherwise I get shot for plagiarism.
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#5
Quote by kurtlives91
How would your teacher ever know?

How would the examiner ever know? This is for moderated coursework, and is kinda my shot for getting into uni, so I don't really wanna screw it up. Plus you know, designing and building your own amp...
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#6
don't really know what/how you could do any of that, but i'm doing A2 electronics atm too, how do you find the course? whatcha gonna do at uni? oh, n good luck with it!

EDIT: for the distortion/OD, you could basicly make a distortion pedal such as the RAT and an OD like a tubescreamer or something and put them in the amp and make the footswitchable.
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Last edited by hairball at Nov 7, 2007,
#7
uf u make it based on a Ruby, and add your own effects on it, then it's not plagiarism. if you don't copy the perfboard layout from runoffgroove, then it will not be infringement of copyright or anything.
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#8
EC: I'd still rather design it myself if you get what I mean, from scratch. However, if I find it tricky to do, I'll take a look at the Ruby's

Hairball: I'm finding the course pretty easy to be honest. I messed up the coursework for AS but aced the 2 exams, so I have a solid A for AS (I tried to make a guitar tuner for AS, it's harder than it seems...) and that's the idea behind the effects. I'll have them all off of one common line, making them all true bypass with switches to break the line and push the signal through the effect and back up onto the line.
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#9
And how exactly are you planning on designing your own amp/effects? How much do you know about electronics?
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#10
Quote by mcw00t
Right, I have an A2 electronics project to be doing, and I have enough basic knowledge to put together a simple SS practice amp with a few built in effects.

So far, the effects I'm thinking of are:

- Distortion/Overdrive x2
- Compressor
- Treble Boost/Bright Switch
- Parametric EQ (the normal Bass, Mids, Treble)
- Possibly a volume display (just so I can include some digital electronics)

I would like a noise gate, but I'm not sure of how these work, and I'm pretty sure they use nasty hard to do fancy digital stuff.

Basically, I'm trying to make an amp similar to the microcube, but with analogue effects.

Please help me out with some suggestions for effects, schematics, anything really!


Cheers!


EDIT: Might try and put an AM or FM radio out on it, just for lulz
Quote by mcw00t
It has to be original, otherwise I get shot for plagiarism.
No. Just NO.

Keep
It
Simple,
Stupid.

Take a look at the Ruby. It's a good place to start for the output section. Simple.

If you want to go a bit more complex, use 2 of those 386's and bridge the outputs. Run one in inverting mode, the other non-inverting. The bridged output will increase the output impedance, and decrease the damping factor, but you'll still be able to get more power out, and get rid of that nasty coupling cap on the output. A little more complex but still basically simple.

For distortion, make this thing with 2 channels and channel switching. Get some jFETs and breadboard some simple common source amplifiers. Chain several of them together. You should be able to get some tube-ish sounds.

Your clean channel should use jFets as well. Have a single stage on the input feed both channels each with an independent volume control. The distortion channel will have a gain control early in it's chain as well. You might be able to implement the switching by biasing the channel you don't want into cutoff. Or it might just be easier to shunt the signal to ground. Figure out what works best.

Bass, Mids, Treble sounds like you're describing a typical tonestack. This is NOT the same as parametric equalization. a parametric has 3 controls.
1 - Center frequency
2 - Bandwidth
3 - Amplitude (boost/cut)

You can have multiple equalizers in a chain, but this is still nothing like a tonestack. IMHO a tonestack is fairly limited, anyway. The "middle" control changes the shape of the curve, but is nothing like a midrange control. A bax is a much more versatile tone control even without a "middle" control.

To see how tone controls work go to duncan amps and download the calculator. They have Pspice models of several different types of tone controls.

http://www.duncanamps.com/tsc/

If you listen to nothing else I say, at least download that program.
I promise it will help you immensely.

Adding a compressor and noise gate seem like nice ideas, but you're trying to fly before you can even walk. Don't bite off more than you can chew.

You could use a tandem pot for the Master Volume and use half of the pot to control a bargraph display. That would be simple and add a bit of flash. Simple.

Or you could use a D/A converter as your volume control. An 8-bit register would hold the data for the digital word for the volume setting. The register would be incremented/decremented by a rotary encoder. Those 8 bits would also be translated into a code to drive a 3 digit decimal display. 0 indicating minimum, 256 indicating maximum. Not so simple, but still reasonable.

I don't recommend the radio out, but if you're so inclined to clutter things up, it wouldn't need to be a detriment to the heart of your project.

Something done well but simply, beats the hell out of throwing a bunch of fancy crap in a big pile.


Good luck,
SYK
Meadows
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#11
^ I was going to say something, but... I think whatever I do will basically be taken up by your post.

McWoot- The one thing I can say is this: If you are serious about designing and building this yourself, the best place to get ideas and knowledge is other people's work. Look at schematics of every single thing you can find that's related to guitar electronics. Nearly everything I know about this stuff has been from looking at electronics websites, stores, and schematics for everything I can think of. The best way to originality is to take the basic building blocks that everyone uses (like a plate follower gain stage for the preamp of a tube amp, or a voltage divider in front of it for a gain control) and put those together in different ways that nobody's done before.
#13
SYK, I totally agree with you. However, I can't just 'keep it simple' I have to include as many of the circuits, or variations upon them as I can in this project, therefore the AM or FM radio output.

There are also many AS circuits I could use, I mean, something like a tremolo and vibrato effect I could do.

The compressor, I would imagine is slightly out of my knowledge range to actually design myself, but I'm in no doubt I could learn about these things in a matter of minutes (not meaning to sound arrogant).

The AM/FM radio transmitter is a VERY easy addition, and is basically 1/2 of one of the modules we're doing for the exam, so I'd get big kudos from examiners for that.

The idea of this project is to show off the different things we've learned during the full A-Level course and therefore needs to be a little OTT.

I very much like the idea of the bar graph volume, but instead, it'd be easier to do it on the preamp output, and have the max the saturation point of the power amp (parallel out, buffered by an FET follower) then find the quiescent voltage/current of the transistors and see how much is needed to drive them to saturation, and have this as my topmost bar.

I am most definitely not a noob when it comes to this electronics stuff, and have studied amp/pedal schematics to death, and along with my current knowledge, believe I can design the system outlined in my (soon to be edited) initial post.

Thanks for your help and suggestions, and please, keep them coming

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#14
bumpage
OMG!!! They're playing One!!!!!11fade to black11one11

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Electronics God of the Laney Cult

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Ibanez RG370DX
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