I'm looking at getting into DIY...what cost for amps?
Oct 1, 2003 at 3:57 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 17

Zemo

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How much should I expect to spend on parts and the like if I DIY my own amp?http://tangentsoft.net/audio/ looks like a good reference....how much should I expect to spend on the various amps there? the meta42? the mint? the ppa? Thank you! I'm basically looking to build a portable amp that will power my AKG K501s to a nice HIGH level (my airhead isn't cutting it!), any suggestions there? Thanks!
 
Oct 1, 2003 at 4:34 PM Post #2 of 17

phaedrus

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I've lost track of the exact number, but the one cmoy amp I wanted to build has now cost all of my money and looks something like a PPA.

All of my cash are belong to digikey, mouser, tangentsoft, newark, arrow, radio shack and ra-el-co...

Joking, er, crying aside, I've got to add up the cost of a canonical meta42 for a buddy and will post my results shortly.
 
Oct 1, 2003 at 4:38 PM Post #3 of 17

meat01

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My Mint was around $50 for parts. My Meta was around $120 with an A/C power supply in a Hammond case. Cmoys are around $20-$25 (in a mint tin)
 
Oct 1, 2003 at 5:05 PM Post #4 of 17

ChewToy

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Aside from actual expenses on soldering irons and other misc. electronics kit necessities (which usually run around $60 for a solid intro kit), My CMOY cost me around $40, with cases, caps, and op amps, etc...
 
Oct 2, 2003 at 12:38 AM Post #6 of 17

grahamndodder

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You could use one of those used-up margerine tupperware-style containers you would normally throw away, instead of the mint tin. Seriously, scrounge a mint tin from someone.

That'd save you two bucks.

The Burr-Brown 2132 opamp may be available as a sample. I dunno. That'd save you a few bux.

Get 5% resistors in 5-packs from digikey and hand match the pairs. You'll get well inside the 1% tolerances.

Money saved: ~50 cents, but think of the satisfaction from the frugality!

Scrounge wire from an old, dead cat5 cable. Wire is actually not too cheap, as you have to buy 25 ft per color. Alternately, and a better idea, buy some cable that contains 3 or four colors of 22awg wire at Home Depot, where you can buy it for a few cents a foot. Buy a couple of feet. Relish the "cheapskate" look the HD guy gives you as he cuts it.

Money saved: Potentially a few dollars.

Or, if you are really tight, you could always donate a unit or two of plasma. If a DIY'd CMoy sounds "better" than a store-bought amp, just imagine how good it would sound if you paid for it with your own blood!

If it makes you feel better, I built my first GainClone (a clone of a $2,000.00+ loudspeaker amp) for about $50. That is part of the fun.

GnD

Frugalphile: noun. froo-gul-file. An audiophile with no money. See also: Student.
 
Oct 2, 2003 at 2:12 AM Post #7 of 17

eric343

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Quote:

Originally posted by grahamndodder
Or, if you are really tight, you could always donate a unit or two of plasma. If a DIY'd CMoy sounds "better" than a store-bought amp, just imagine how good it would sound if you paid for it with your own blood!

If it makes you feel better, I built my first GainClone (a clone of a $2,000.00+ loudspeaker amp) for about $50. That is part of the fun.

GnD

Frugalphile: noun. froo-gul-file. An audiophile with no money. See also: Student.


OK, seriously, I think you just came up with the world's best way to pay for DIY
wink.gif
(now, this assumes you get paid to donate blood)

Oh, and not all students are poor. Look at Zzz, he's got HP-1, Omega2, Gilmore hybrid, Cary... (though, it's possible his situation is like mine and the purchase of that gear turned him *INTO* a frugalphile...)
 
Oct 2, 2003 at 2:58 AM Post #8 of 17

Voodoochile

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zzz would be so anemic if he paid for his stuff with blood.

I love it also, grahamndodder! The best solution to the worst case of DIY illness.
 
Oct 2, 2003 at 4:17 AM Post #9 of 17

tophu

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Here are some pics of my first amp. This is a basic cmoy except for the 18V supply to run my AKG501s.

Parts from Digikey and Ratshack, enclosure from kitchen cabinet, wire/solder swiped from work.

cmoy_top.jpg


cmoy_front.jpg
 
Oct 3, 2003 at 10:46 PM Post #13 of 17

Zemo

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So I thought that maybe one of the upper devision Electronical engineering professors here might be of some help to me, so I emailed them about DIY amps. Now, almost everything he said seemed more like gibberish than anything else, so I'll post his reply here to see if it makes more sense to yous guys. Here it is!

Quote:

Tyler, I have been looking at the information about the amp and it seems to be directed towards someone who is fairly proficient in electronics. I really don't have the time to sort through parts catalogs and try and meet the performance requirements you may have. To be frank, I find it hard to believe that anyone could really tell the difference between reasonably good op amps and between most capacitors. Why not just try and built it as shown in the schematic. See if you like the way it sounds. If not alter it. I suspect we could spend 10hr trying to pick the "perfect" parts for it.

My advice: I would keep the EL2001 amp within the feedback loop and use the multiloop feedback topology. Let R10 be about 470. Keep C1 in the circuit for safety sake. The author did not mention the transistors Q1 and Q2. Try J310's or MFP102's. D2 can be 1n4004. Absolutely include C5, don't omit it. Make it a ceramic, 0.1uF. Let R7 be 47 ohm. Use his ideas for opamps if you wish. I think you would be really pleased with NE5532's. They are cheap and low distortion. Hope that helps. Good luck with the amp. Let me know how it goes. I'd love to give a listen to it when you get done. Best wishes, Roger Traylor


What sense do you experienced chaps make of this? thanks!
 
Oct 4, 2003 at 12:46 AM Post #15 of 17

eric343

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He's an EE prof, not an audionut, that's for sure. Most of his advice is very good, but...

Use AD8620 opamps from Tangent's site. You CAN tell the difference, I've heard it. Use good capacitors (Panasonic FC, or even better Elna Cerafines). C5 can probably be ceramic but even better are the Wima caps Tangent sells. Use the matched JFETs from - guess who - Tangent.
 

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