Do any of you regularly take on large DIY projects? I enjoy working on electronics projects when I can, even though my electronics knowledge is limited. If am able to find a well documented design for something I need online, I derive a lot of enjoyment from using those designs instead of dropping money on something prefabricated.
Recently I wanted to build a vacuum tube headphone amplifier, and found a very easy to assemble design for a hybrid amplifier using the Korg NuTube, by Peter Millet. He is one of the few people selling individual NuTubes outside of Japan, and sells the PCB for an amplifier using it for one cent. The entire parts list is available as a Mouser project, so there's no extra work towards gathering parts.
The info page for it is at http://pmillett.com/nuhybrid.html
It took me about two hours to put together, my solder job is solid, although the alignment of the capacitors is messy because I didn't properly secure them before flipping the board over. I'm really happy with it, using equipment you built yourself is far more satisfying than anything else.
I'm wanting to build my own DAC now as well, currently planning on building the AMB Labs y1. It's looking to be a significantly more difficult project, but I'm confident that it's something I'll have no major troubles with.https://www.amb.org/audio/gamma1/
I spent a while today assembling a Mouser project for the parts, and finding alternatives for the components that have reached end of life. There is some surface mount soldering I'll have to do, but only the ICs are surface mounted, every other component is through hole. The ICs that I will have to solder either have few pins, so won't be very time consuming, or have pretty wide pitch, so will be very forgiving.
When I'm finished, I want to manufacture my own enclosure to mount both the amp and DAC together in, with a plexiglass window on top to show off the boards.
I'd really like to be able to start designing my own electronics projects of this level soon, but I need to start taking some electrical engineering classes. I'm going to start taking some at one of the nearby community colleges next semester.
What are some things you've built or designed?