Which $100-$200 headphone amp?
Mar 17, 2008 at 2:03 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 4


Dec 18, 2006
I'm looking for a $100-$200 DIY headphone amplifier as a bit of practice before I begin putting a B22 together. I'm in the UK and I don't want to pay shipping on parts from more than 1 overseas supplier (since most of the BOMs list everything from a number of American suppliers), nor do I really want to spend a lot of time sourcing parts in the UK, so I'd ideally be looking for a complete kit with everything I need to get it up and running.

It's been a few years since I've used a soldering iron (in my 1st year Electronic Engineering course!) but I should be fairly competent with through-hole stuff, so I'd rather not sit and waste my time making something as basic as a CMOY.

I was thinking that I could possibly make either a SOHA, Millet Hybrid Max or possibly a Bijou (probably not. too expensive, perhaps?), any of which would give me a nice tube amp to keep alongside my future B22 (solid-state). I'd be concerned about making a Bijou as it looks particularly dangerous. How do the SOHA and Millet Hybrid Max rate in terms of dangerousness?

I realize that a kit for the "Level 1 SOHA kit" (with a Hammond case) is available from Glass Jar Audio. Am I right in thinking that the kit contains everything I need to get it up and running?

How about the Millet Hybrid Max. Is there a similar kit available for that? I'm sure Glass Jar Audio used to do a kit for that but I don't see one listed.

Also, what's the best way to get these kits to work on UK voltage (230/240V)?

Feel free to post any other information that you feel might be helpful.

Mar 17, 2008 at 2:14 PM Post #2 of 4

I'm in the UK too. I was in a similar position to you before I built my B22. I went for a CKKIII as a warm-up. I chose that mainly because of the ease of getting parts over here. There was just a couple of caps and resistors that were a problem, but they can be easily worked around.

I can recommend getting your stuff from Jeff at GJA, he was very helpful to me, when I was building the Beta22.

I can understand you wanting to build a valve (tube) amp, but I decided to wait a bit and build a 'proper one' later, rather than cut corners on it.

Have fun.
Mar 17, 2008 at 2:23 PM Post #3 of 4

The MAX is listed on Jeff's other website above. Neither the MAX or the SOHA have on-board voltages that are dangerous, although the SOHA does require you to work with line voltage wiring. Like the CKKIII, it requires a line-voltage-side transformer that is not available in a walwart. The MAX uses commercial-grade 24VAC walwarts.

That said, you'll have to find one at that rating that will plug into 240V. However, there are walwarts available in the UK that meet that spec. Convertors are also available in the UK that will convert a 110V walwart to 240V. That's my understanding, anyway.
Mar 17, 2008 at 2:54 PM Post #4 of 4
Cheers guys, that was a speedy response!

Nice - $152.00 inc. enclosure for the MAX seems like a bargain and I like the simplicity of just having to buy a 240V walwart to make it work over here.

Anyone know if Jeff is still offering these kits? I've sent him an e-mail and I'm sure I'll find out soon.

Users who are viewing this thread