music, guitars & other obsessions

Re-Organizing The Lab

After more than a month of fussing around, I finally decided to get the proper tools and test gear for the lab, so in addition to Spice simulations, bread-boarding, I can actually test and verify the active components instead of relying on just the spec sheets, which could be way off, especially for tubes.

Tube-rolling and transistor substitutions might be fun, but one should really know exactly why some sound better than the others… At least that is what I think the proper way to approach this topic. There are just so many opinions online without any actual data to back them up, how do the designers if their tubes/transistors are properly biased for example, if they had no idea about the actual devices in use? Reading the manufacturers’ spec is just a starting point, to get you in the right ball park hopefully, but for actually tweaking the design, I think one must know exactly what is in the circuit.

I ordered a transistor curve tracer, and I already have a transistor tester, so for the silicon stuff, it is pretty much sorted. Now I need to build the RAT tube tester, and the jumper board for the curve tracer, which can share many of the same components.

I also order a Kenwood Automatic Distortion Meter, which can double as a signal generator when no input is connected. So I am pretty much ready to fully test the amps and stompboxes once they are built.

Slooowly making progress…

Update, as of October 4, still waiting for the transistor curve tracer to get here, hopefully the seller can get whatever problems with it sorted out soon.


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