PDA

View Full Version : Theoretical Cigar Box Mini-amp project



Futurethink
06-26-2015, 04:16 PM
I found a kit on Amazon to assemble an amplifier in a cigar box. It was a simple 2.5 Watt amp with one control knob and a small speaker. It made me wonder about a similar project.

Suppose you had a... Danelectro DH-1 Hodad Mini-amp, a cigar box, and an old boom-box/stereo gathering dust. Could you mount the internals from the Hodad into the cigar box--substituting the larger speakers from the stereo--and realize any sound or volume improvement?

Benefits aside, is it technically possible? Can larger speakers (of the same ohm rating) be substituted for smaller speakers? Would any additional resistors/capacitors/etc. be needed? Could you also add a headphone jack for late-night 'ukulele practice?

This is just a flight-of-whimsy. I don't own a DH-1, nor any other mini-amp. I'm just curious about the concept of "hot-rodding" such a device. I only named the Hodad as an example. I don't claim any electronics engineering expertise, so please forgive me if this is a dumb question.

kohanmike
06-26-2015, 09:23 PM
I've read about people who take those small 1 or 2 or 3 watt amps, wire them to a large speaker and get very good results. Why not give it a try and post your results.

k0k0peli
06-26-2015, 10:51 PM
Sure, add a bigger speaker. But don't dissect a Hodad -- its nifty package and two speakers seem quite enough.

Check the ratings on whatever amp you use but don't worry about a minor impedence mismatch. A big 4-ohm speaker hooked to an 8-ohm amp can be loud. Just be sure the speaker's impedence (ohms) times power (watts) ratings exceed the amp's, else the speaker could be driven to distortion or even damage. To minimize distortion, use a speaker of the same or greater than the amp's output impedence. Hook a 16-ohm speaker to an 8-ohm amp for smooth sound. If you do hook a 4-ohm speaker to an 8-ohm amp, add a 4- or 8-ohm resistor (rated for more than the amp's power) in series. This will drop the current enough to avoid damage and distortion. Have fun!

PhilUSAFRet
06-27-2015, 12:40 AM
I'd also check CigarboxNation.com for more information. They have a special forum for such projects.

http://www.cigarboxnation.com/group/home-made-guitar-amps

UncleMoon
06-27-2015, 01:55 AM
I made an "amp" out of an old battery operated cassette player. I opened it up, disconnected the two wires leading to the tape head, and soldered them to leads I connected to a 1/4 jack, and mounted the jack thru a hole in the side of the case. I disconnected the motor to preserve battery life. I plug in with a normal amp cord, and press "PLAY" for power. The tape player's internals handle all the amplification, and I have a volume & tone switch.

Futurethink
06-29-2015, 12:59 PM
Thank you, everyone, for these replies. I really appreciate the education.


Sure, add a bigger speaker. But don't dissect a Hodad -- its nifty package and two speakers seem quite enough.
No disrespect was intended toward the Hodad. I only mentioned it because it's one of only two micro-amps I know about with Tremelo/Reverb. I was only wondering whether larger speakers could make it even better.


I'd also check CigarboxNation.com for more information. They have a special forum for such projects.
http://www.cigarboxnation.com/group/home-made-guitar-amps

What a terrific forum this is! I knew of the site, but had not discovered that forum. Thank you.