Keala

Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« on: February 06, 2018, 03:15:53 AM »
Hey. I've been producing music for about 5 years now, and have been mixing itb and otb. Yesterday i got an idea (most likely not original) on how to warm up the audio path


        X=Gain   Y=Output
                   level

          +------------+
audio in  |            | audio out
+--------^+   X    Y   +--------->
          |            |
          +------------+

Kind of a retarded way to draw it out, but bear with me

So.. input goes to gain, gain goes into a vintage transformer, then into a volume controller, then out.
This might be a stupid idea, but i'm just a stupid music guy with not much knowledge about electronics.

If you have any idea on how to make it "warmer" or less idiotic, then please let me hear.

I'm in europe, so it would probably be best if you're in europe too so the shipping fees won't be through the roof.

 // Keala


Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2018, 03:09:59 PM »
https://tapeop.com/tutorials/76/transformers/

But I think with practice and financial investment you could do a bit better than that

ruffrecords

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2018, 02:49:14 AM »
I built a 'tube tone' box for a guy in London last year. It is basically what you have drawn. Input transformer followed by a stepped attenuator feeding a fixed gain tube stage. This feeds an output transformer which has stepped attenuator on its output. To use it you set maximum attenuation on the input (about 26dB) and 0dB on the output. This is arranged to give about unity gain overall. To get more tone you turn up the input which drives the tube and the transformer harder, and compensate the level by turning down the output.  He loves it. Uses it mostly for Reggae.

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

Keala

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2018, 07:43:50 AM »
I built a 'tube tone' box for a guy in London last year. It is basically what you have drawn. Input transformer followed by a stepped attenuator feeding a fixed gain tube stage. This feeds an output transformer which has stepped attenuator on its output. To use it you set maximum attenuation on the input (about 26dB) and 0dB on the output. This is arranged to give about unity gain overall. To get more tone you turn up the input which drives the tube and the transformer harder, and compensate the level by turning down the output.  He loves it. Uses it mostly for Reggae.

Cheers

Ian

Hey Ian!
Glad that you chimed in.

How difficult would it be to make this? I really don't have much experience with electronics, other than recapping. I also played with the idea of modding a cheap tube amp to do this.

peterc

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2018, 08:45:56 AM »
https://www.diyrecordingequipment.com/

Have you seen the stuff at the above website? Some nice colour options there.

Peter
If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door.

Keala

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2018, 09:41:07 AM »
https://www.diyrecordingequipment.com/

Have you seen the stuff at the above website? Some nice colour options there.

Peter

Yes, i'm aware of the 500 series color format. But since i'm a poor student, i don't even have money for a 500 series rack..

Script

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2018, 11:36:19 AM »
Search for tape saturator (or tapesat) on this forum. Can easily build on breadboard for testing first. Just needs an opamp and a few germanium diodes (low forward voltage drop). It's a (mild) fuzz. Sure not as fancy as -- but also less expansive than -- (driving) a decent TX.

peterc

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2018, 11:56:27 AM »
Well, you could just buy the PCBs and mount them in a different chassis. You dont have to use a 500 series rack.

Most of the PCBs I design can be used in a 500 series rack or in a rack chassis.

Regards Peter
If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door.

ruffrecords

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2018, 02:28:50 PM »
Hey Ian!
Glad that you chimed in.

How difficult would it be to make this? I really don't have much experience with electronics, other than recapping. I also played with the idea of modding a cheap tube amp to do this.

The one I made for this guy was based on my Classic Solo tube mic preamp project. Quite a few 'beginners' have built this. The Classic Solo has two identical gain stages. For the tube tone version you just modify each one a little to produce more distortion and add input and output controls. The one I did had stepped controls but you can just as easily use regular pots. It is a single PCB project and as well as the PCB I have a specially made mains transformer you can use as well.

Obviously being tube based there are some lethally high voltages involved but with reasonable care anyone should be able to build it.  (A few years back I had a 16 year old build my headphones amp design for a birthday present for his older brother).

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

Keala

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2018, 03:38:20 PM »
The one I made for this guy was based on my Classic Solo tube mic preamp project. Quite a few 'beginners' have built this. The Classic Solo has two identical gain stages. For the tube tone version you just modify each one a little to produce more distortion and add input and output controls. The one I did had stepped controls but you can just as easily use regular pots. It is a single PCB project and as well as the PCB I have a specially made mains transformer you can use as well.

Obviously being tube based there are some lethally high voltages involved but with reasonable care anyone should be able to build it.  (A few years back I had a 16 year old build my headphones amp design for a birthday present for his older brother).

Cheers

Ian

Looks like i have something to spend my time on. Do you know any books on diy audio gear? And how would you go about modifying it to produce more harmonic distortion?


ruffrecords

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2018, 03:56:35 AM »
Looks like i have something to spend my time on. Do you know any books on diy audio gear? And how would you go about modifying it to produce more harmonic distortion?

The classic tube DIY books are by Morgan Jones; "Valve Amplifiers" followed by "Building Valve Amplifiers". More recently Merlin Blencoe  (who posts here occasionally) released a book called "Designing High Fidelity Valve Preamps"

It is easy to modify the Classic Solo for more distortion. Each stage is arranged as a mu-follower which gives good gain at low distortion and modest drive capability. To produce more distortion you change it to an SRPP stage which has slightly less gain, about 15dB more distortion and a lot better drive capability. The mods are very simple. No cutting tracks is required. All you do is build it with some component values altered, some not fitted and others replaced by wire links. If you decide to go this route I can give you the details.

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

korneev

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2018, 08:27:09 AM »
Good afternoon! I did similar devices for the studio. Three valve stages, drive and output controls, input / output transformers- permalloy of the 70th years , external power supply. If interested, PM me.

ruffrecords

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2018, 07:18:08 PM »
There is also a project here that does much the same thing - the Rude Tube?

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

scott2000

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2018, 02:50:12 AM »
I'm always amazed how much a simple attenuator properly placed can make things fuzzy. Inside or outside the box.....

Heck, even my hair gets fuzzy when I attenuate it....lol

Thank You IAN !!!!
« Last Edit: February 10, 2018, 02:53:38 AM by scott2000 »

korneev

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #14 on: February 11, 2018, 09:49:43 AM »
 :)
« Last Edit: February 11, 2018, 11:13:34 AM by korneev »

ruffrecords

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #15 on: February 11, 2018, 11:01:46 AM »
No, it's not Rude Tube, it's another thing.

?????? I was not referring to your project. I just said there is another project called Rude Tube that does what the OP wants.

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

korneev

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #16 on: February 11, 2018, 11:12:36 AM »
Sorry, Ian, I have misunderstood you.

ruffrecords

Re: Looking for someone to make a simple saturation thingy
« Reply #17 on: February 11, 2018, 01:11:18 PM »
Sorry, Ian, I have misunderstood you.

No problem.

Cheers

ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'