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High-Power Audio Amplifier Construction Manual Paperback – May 1 1999

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 476 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill/TAB Electronics; 1 edition (May 1 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071341196
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071341196
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 26.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 998 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #252,658 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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All types of audio information recorded for playback began as very low level electrical signals. Read the first page
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Eric Boyer on Oct. 9 2010
Format: Paperback
This book is an excellent resource for building high-quality transistor amplifiers. After reading this book the reader should be able to build (and possibly design) amplifiers that exceed the performance of even the best amplifiers available, but for a much lower cost. Pretty much every aspect of audio amplifiers is covered: the psychoacoustics of sound, myths in the audiophile world, all portions of amplifiers, power supplies, distortion and other performance metrics, loudspeaker protection circuits, several complete amplifier schematics, construction techniques, and troubleshooting techniques. Only class A, AB, and B amplifiers are covered (both BJT and MOS), so those interested in more exotic amplifier designs, such as class D, should look elsewhere.

The audience for this book is people with a fairly strong understanding of electronics. At a minimum, the reader should know the basics of transistor operation, but a strong knowledge of transistors is recommended. Basically, 2nd-year university electronics engineering or equivalent is required, but 3rd-year would be recommended. This book does contain complete amplifier schematics, so of course pretty much anyone would be able to build an amplifier with the help of this book, but you'll need a good understanding of electronics to be able to troubleshoot or modify the amplifiers in this book.

Chapter 1 covers the basics of amplifiers, such as what exactly an amplifier is, how they are used, and what can be expected from a home-made amplifier.

Chapter 2 is an excellent rebuttal of many myths in the audio world. Slone uses objective, scientific evidence to back up his claims, which makes them almost indisputable.
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Format: Paperback
I have all of Randy's books and have read through them many times to really get the information through my head. I disagree with the negative reviews that Randy sometimes gets. The difference between Randy and Doug's book (I also have) is that Randy took a broad approach to the design of an amplifier in contrast the Self's book where he takes one design and works through over the entire book. I think that both books are great reference material and both have their draw backs. Every design engineer takes an opinion on a certain way to do things and some people don't like that. I have seen Randy in particular get reviews saying he comes across being "opinionated". In his defense you have to read all books with a certain amount of objectivism. The writer has to put a book together a certain way. If you have been to collage and written thesis papers you'll know what I'm talking about. To write a good paper you need stick within the confines of your paper or risk it being too long or too disjointed for the professor to read and give a good mark. All authors do this to some extent and usually the author has more experience and know how then most of the people reading the books. Over the years Slone and Self have come to some conclusions on what they have found to work best. The reader then needs to read it with a "grain of salt" and pick out the important information that pertains to what you hope to get from the book.

I think that all of Slone's and Self's books are wonderfully done but I am biased more toward Slone because if it was not for his books I would still be in the dark on much of what I now know about electronics. Both authors have done their best to give the reader as much information as they can fit in their books; well done because I suck at thesis papers! If you don't know what one to pick buy both!
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Format: Paperback
This is my 2nd book by Randy and just like his other book "Understanding Electricity and Electronics" Randy does a great job of breaking down a complicated subject so anyone can understand it. I'm not saying this book is only for beginners because this book can be enjoyed by anyone who wants to learn audiophile grade, solid state amp design. There have been a few reviews that rate this book poorly because Randy knocks tube design. If you want to learn tube design this book is not for you but if you want to learn solid state design this book, by far, is the best I've read.
Randy I thank you for writing these books. Too many times when I started this jounery of learning electronics I became frustrated and overwhelmed until I came across your books. I would not understand near as much without them.
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Format: Paperback
As a DIY guide for building class-B solid state audio power amps, this book has some merit. However, the author takes a great deal of space to attack the high-end audio business, denigrate vacuum tubes, and denounce "audio subjectivism". There are those who will consider these worthy goals, but even they wil be disappointed in his eighth-grade forensics as he sets up strawmen with little facility.
His foreword clearly brings to mind William Burroughs' famous comment on which people, should one elect to do business with them, you should get any statements they make in writing!
If for some reason you want to etch circuit boards and fabricate heatsink assemblies to build a type of amp you can buy from Crown or Peavey for less than the parts would cost a hobbyist, Slone's book is somewhat useful. His presentation of the theory is less comprehensible than that of Douglas Self, and assumes a reasonable amount of solid-state theory and the basics of feedback and stability, which many project-oriented hobbyists will lack.
However, there are numerous better works on the theory and practice of solid-state amplification,should one wish to repair them or actually design one, and any discussion of the respective merits of solid-state versus tube amplifiers in audio service still starts with Russell O. Hamm's definitive JAES paper, "Tubes versus Transistors: Is There a Difference?". It's interesting that Slone does not cite or acknowledge this document anywhere in this book, or in any other.
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