Jerry Springer, input amp revisited

One of those small things I’ve been planning to do something about for a good while: the input amp of Jerry Springer, my DIY spring reverb unit.

Say hello to Jerry :)

Say hello to Jerry.

It wasn’t long after I completed the build, that the amp board blew up on me. Since the original build also included a “Direct In” that bypasses the amp (via switching jack), I simply continued using the tank by feeding it directly from one of the outputs of my AD/DA converter (the Behringer ADA8000). Sure, the signal levels weren’t anything good but the setup worked..

Test setup for Jerry Springer

The first amp, a hacked Labtec computer speaker.

Recently though, I came across these cheap LM386 amplifier boards on DealExtreme and immediately connected it with reworking Jerry’s input amp. Things happened and so, we now get to this post :)

The output of Jerry’s existing PSU was within the required voltage range (5 – 12V), and thus hooking up the new amp didn’t require much modding. The input on the LM386 board has a 10K trimmer for dampening the signal, this I replaced with Jerry’s existing Input Gain potentiometer (conveniently 10K too). The part doubles up as the board mounting solution too.

The new LM386 board in its stock configuration.

The new LM386 board in its stock configuration.

I also removed the on-board SMD LED, and connected the existing power indicator LED (on front panel) to its solder pads (yellow cable on pic below)..

And that’s all there was to it! I did order a second board for amplifying / buffering the output stage too, but since the signal levels improved enough with the input amp alone I didn’ t bother with it.

New amp all connected.

New amp good to go.

The LM386 board seems just too convenient a solution for wherever a small amp PCB is needed. Definitely getting more of them for those insta-kludging moments. In no way is making your own PCBs or breadboard circuit worth it, when you have this kind of cheap sub-modules around :)

Missed out on the original build posts of Jerry? Check them here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

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  1. Wrapping up 2013 | My Diy Blog - 31/12/2013

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