I apologize for the low-light iPhone photos in the previous reply!
I thought I should introduce myself to you fellas. I did just jump right in here.
First off, I am NOT an engineer in the sense that I have an electrical or mechanical engineering degree. I was trained as a "sound tech" for theater sound in college way back in the seventies. I have always been fascinated by music and the devices that either captured or reproduced music. I made a few abortive attempts at becoming a musician over the years, finally accepting the fact that I have zero talent for that discipline. However, I found I have good hands, I am logical, and although math has never been something I've excelled at, applied math I can deal with. I discovered, too, that I really enjoy making things - not crafts, but things that do something. I have done woodworking, some mechanics, some construction, some home wiring, and a lot of "electronic projects". My first DIY build was a Southwest Technical Products Universal Tiger pair that I put together as a class project in college. That was followed closely by a Dynaco 410 and PAS-3. Other kits followed them. Many speakers also have come out of my efforts, ranging from live sound floor wedge monitors to the pair of Scan Speak two ways I use today. I built several control panels and the power supply for a large HO model railroad, and helped wire the layout itself as well as install the DCC control system. I've also put decoders in locomotives - that's tiny work! I have a very small, almost casual, location recording service, and for it I have built and modded all sorts of stuff - cables, snakes, mic mods, mic preamps, mods to power supplies in compact mixers, etc, etc, et ceter rah! The most fun builds I have done in recent years were Tim Ryan's excellent Seventh Circle Audio mic preamps - I built three T-15 preamps for me, and built four T-15's and a pair of C-84's for a friend. Then there was the Mini3, and most recently the Project Sunrise tube amp.
The Gold A-1 (I really don't like that name very much...) is my first foray into true DIY. Although I didn't design the circuit or etch the board (design I can't do, board etching - well, maybe!), the layout of the case, the selection of various components and the point to point wiring is DIY, in my estimation. It's fun to do, and I'd rather do that than play a board game or sew!
I'm pondering the idea of, down the road, building a truly high end headphone amp - one with enough power to drive about any respected headphone, also containing a very good to excellent 96kHz capable USB DAC (something my Mytek doesn't have). At the moment I am intrigued by the AMB M3, and the Panda headphone amp, which gets a lot of love and attention over on Rock Grotto. For the DAC portion, I just don't know, although the Twisted Pear OPUS seems pretty nice.
So - that's me. Builder, mostly; reader who is fascinated by what you fellas do; admirer of the designs, workmanship, ideas, and capabilities displayed in this forum.
Edited by sarals - 10/29/11 at 6:16pm