Book Review: Solid-State Guitar Amplifiers
- Mar 22, 2011
- in Guitar Kit Builder - Amplifiers
Vacuum tube guitar amplifiers get the majority of attention from kit builders and tone purists, and with good reason. Tube amps definitely set the bar for the most highly sought after and classic guitar tones. The much maligned and often misunderstood solid state guitar amplifier has, over the years, become the "ugly stepsister" to its older sibling, the tube amp. But the best of the solid state designs do a much better job of creating great tone than they are generally given credit, and for this reason there are many great sounding solid state amps to be had, at a much better price, that will please all but the pickiest of tone hounds.
And with the assistance of author Teemu Kyattala and his book, "Solid State Guitar Amplifiers," a far greater understanding of these amps is available to anyone who will invest the time to dive in to this substantial book. And perhaps best of all, it is available as a free download. At a high level, "Solid State Guitar Amplifiers" is a 419-page tome with chapters on:
- Introduction to Power Amplifiers
- Detailed Examination of Power Amplifiers
- Heat Sinking
- Power Supplies
- Preamplifier Circuitry
- Miscellaneous Circuitry
- Earthing and Common Circuits
- Practical Component Choices and Design Aspects
- Cabinet Design
- Chassis Construction
- Tone Vocabulary - a definitive recitation of tone descriptors from "authoritative" to "woman tone," a new one on us.
- History of Transistorized Guitar Amplifiers - from Germanium designs of the mid-1950s thorough Vox's 2005 Valvetronix technology.
- Examples of Tube Emulation Circuits - covering Peavey's TransTube, Carvin's SX Series, Crate's FlexWave, Korg's Valve Reactor, Marshall's Valvestate and Tech 21's SansAmp.
- Speakers - covering everything from power ratings, efficiency, impedance, frequency response, directivity, diffraction, dispersion, physical structures and how speakers "die."