A DIY Resource Site for Musicians and Audiophiles!

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Modified: February 22, 2017

Sound, Music, and Audio

Audio DIY
Audiophile DIY Links
Audio Fundamentals
Electronics DIY
Guitar Index
Guitar DIY
iPods, iTunes, and MP3s
Main Music Index
Multimedia Articles
Musicians Health and Exercises
Recording DIY
Recording Links
Science of Music
Sheet Music Index
Synthesizers DIY

Instrument Maint

Guitar Setup Tips

Build Your Own Humidifier
Setting Up A Guitar
The Brass Instrument Factory Tour HTM
The Brass Instrument Factory Tour PDF

Links Only

Main Links Index
DIY Audiophile Links
General Brass Links
Saxophone Links
Music Theory & Education
Music General
Music Equipment Manufacturers
Multimedia White Papers (PDF)
Multimedia Articles
World Music
The Brass Connection

Modern Dance

What is Just Cool

An Open Letter to the American People 1945


For those who love audio, making music, recording music, and/or hearing music reproduced optimallTube Dampery then this is where you want to be.

DIY C7 AC Cord for Macmini
DIY Teflon Tube Dampers: Build them for about $5 each (Image on right)
Bottlehead Foreplay III and Goldpoint Selector Switch and Atenuator Connection Diagrams
Improve Your Existing Audio System with These Free Tips
Optimize an Existing PC for Audio
Build an Audio HDD Server

Eros Ground WireEros Phono Pre-amp by Bottlehead

Well it took awhile, but I have finally finished building my Eros and have the results posted. Actually, I finished the preamp some time ago but taking the images and editing them did slow me down a bit. Along with the images there are a few tips on building what turned out to be a great piece of equipment. Eros Phono Preamp Images

Improve Your Existing Audio System With These Free Tips
Learn how to increase the accuracy of your listening, eliminate AC Noise, improve genric and high-end cables and interconnects, make computers, laptops, servers and iPods sound better, get better sound from your speakers with a better room set-up, get cleaner bass and seamless integration from your subwoofer, new found punch/transparency/detail from your speakers, get the most out of tubes, making good turntables much better, and far better mounting for your components. All of this can be found on the Improve Your Existing Audio System with These Free Tips page.

Using a Hard Drive as Your Primary Audio Source
Transition to HDD based system is no longer a question of if, but a question of when and how. For everybody. (Lukasz Fikus) With the evolution of digital audio, the low costs of components, and the superior sound quality of audio played back using a computer hard drive as the medium then it is easy to rationalize moving to a non-CD system audio system. Some reasons are:

  1. One hard disk we can store approximately 3000 albums using the FLAC codec or 2000 AIFF
  2. The sound quality from properly configured HDD (Hard Disk Drive) system (HDD as a transport, compared to a CD transport) is better in every aspect. CDs produce jitter, are more prone to read errors, and provide less "bit transparency," etc.
  3. HDD can play high-resolution audio (24-bit/192 KHz) where as a CD plays only 16-bit/44.1 KHz audio
  4. HDD music storage can easily be backed up and protected from theft, fire, damage, etc.
  5. At the heart of each music system is a great DAC - which is independent from music formats, frequencies, resolutions, and problems associated with mechanical CD readers. The DAC makes MUSIC. HDD only serves the data and amplifiers only amplify the sound.
  6. HDD system offers tens of  major advantages over CD disc storage, like fast track access, fast album find, advanced search for meta-tags, shuffle function, internet radio, various playlists, quick burn of playlists to the “car system”, music sharing with family members, instant MP3 ripping, serving audio to other computers in the home via wireless, to name just a few.
  7. HDD music servers are not demanding in terms of computing speed or networking. We can recycle old computers and network elements, except the drives themselves. Our oldest laptop in the house can have a second life as our GUI and server. Therefore, a HDD system need not be expensive compared to even mid-priced CD transport.

Monarchy Audio Music Server

Building an Audio Server
You have several ways to pursue building your own audio server. We put OS X at the center of our systems for reasons that we will not go into here. One way of putting together a HDD audio system is to build all of the components yourself. A more commone approach is topurchase pre-manufactured audio components. (We will adress both options with the goal of providing you the greatest audio quality at the lowest price.) Once your components are in place then we will show you how to optimize your computer for audio playback. In the end, you will find that for the money you spend you will have an audio system that will blow away comparable systems that cost up to ten times as much, and that CD based systems will not even be in the running. We will begin by building a Monarchy Audio HDD system (using NM24 tube DAC, and a SM-70 MkII monoblock.) We will also build a DIY tube based Bottleand system. For this projec/experiment Monarchy Audio has put together a specially priced package deal (a NM24 tube DAC and a DIP Combo.).

Browse This Page

-The Audio and Electronics section is for the DIY computer audiophile, the analog audiophile, those interested in home recording, and/or the science of audio. New Pages are being added almost daily/weekly, and then there are the Vacuum Tube pages or pages of interest. I have just added numerous pages on the Fundamentals of Audio...these are must read pages for any audiophile or DIYer. It may just be easier to scroll down the page and see what there is.
-The Guitar: Anything and everything pertaining to the guitar, but mostly DIY guitar.
-Music: Let the various indexes guide you.
-Musicians Health: Maintain optimal physical health.
-Problem Solving: Whether DIY, learning to read music, etc., it all involves good problem solving skills and here is one of the best places to start.

It started out as "The Bottlehead Crack Headphone Amp"
Bottlehead LogoThe folks at Bottlehead have been producing some excellent kits for the DIYer for years now. The kits come with everything you need except for the solder. Included are detailed instructions on CD (some of the bestout there), a support forum, and customer support. As with all projects, patience is key and you need to take your time. The kit below includes the Crack Headphone Amp, with a Speedball Upgrade Kit. One important component about these kits are the wood cases.

Metal cases create a resonant chamber which will haphazardly redistribute the high frequencies within the enclosure, thus creating nodes that are arbitrary in both nature and location. These nodes not only intermodulate amongst other nodes, but they also reflect off the metal case itself and are induced back into the filter. In a word: noise. The use of a wood enclosure is remarkably advantageous to audio performance. Wood enclosures do not reflect; instead, wood tends to naturally absorb a spectrum of this noisiness which the ear easily appreciates. Contrary to common belief, it's not an acoustical resonance issue as much as it is a high frequency absorption spectrum issue. (Lessloss)

...and has transformed into... a second Crack OTL Amplifier Kit with the Speedball Upgrade Kit (the wife wants one now,) a Foreplay III Line Stage Kit with the Extended Foreplay III Upgrade Kit, and a pair of Paramount 300B monoblocks with Softstart.

Update: I built some interconnects using some ETI Silver Bullets with aluminum housings (silver interconnect build instructions.) VH Audio provides some excellent service and support.

Crack DIY Kit

Crack Headphone Amp

Crack Headphone Amp

Top left: Crack OTL Amplifier Kit with Speedball Upgrade Kit--case has been put together, and metal top finished. Top and left: images of finished amp. Mods: Sovtek 6080, JJ Electronics 12AX7, RCA jacks, Goldpoint knob and attenuator (not visible.) Finished with StewMac Cherry stain (Gibson ES-335 finish) with a bit of ebony stain added. and a lacquer finish. Images have been optimized. The Bottlehead Logo is a trademark of Bottlehead Corp.


Audio and Electronics

DIY Indexes

  • DIY Electronics is for the beginner as well as the advanced DIYer. Here is where you will learn how to solder not only basic circuits, but also SMD's and IC's. Almost all aspects of DIY electronics are covered, as well as audiophile passive components and audiophile component construction.
  • DIY Audio Here we address only audio. Almost all pages here are original TEWM pages. For info on audiophile components and certain "How-To's" visit DIY Electronics.
  • DIY Guitar A lot of links and some original TEWM pages.
    Fundamentals of Audio The nuts-and-bolts of audio. A total of 38 pages, with a lot of great illustrations.
  • DIY Audiophile Links This is the most comprehensive link index for DIY audiophile kits, instructions, schematics, computer audiophiles, and more.
  • DIY Synthesizers A lot of links and some original TEWM pages.
    DIY Recording To help keep things organized I had to break the recording from the audio index.
  • Links Home Recording
  • Multimedia Articles a list of PDFs that will familiarize you on codecs for audio and video, XML, multimedia coding standards, etc.
  • Acoustics, Music, and Science an extensive list of PDFs that address the research on modern acoustics, music, or the physics of music.
  • iPod, iTunes, and MP3 Music All you need to know to maintain your iPod!
  • Fundamentals of Audio 38 pages of audio fundamentals, theory, and science of.

DIY Pages
Improve Your Existing Audio System with These Free Tips
Optimize an Existing PC for Audio
Build an Audio HDD Server
Putting the Stomp Box Together
From Schematic to Reality
Practice Soldering
Soldering Practice Kit Both general soldering and SMD. It is best to get a little practice before you attempt to install that $29 chip you just bought.
How To Test A Capacitor
Design and Construction of Vacuum Tube Amplifiers
Replacing Passive Components to Improve Sound Quality
Replacing a SMD Electrolytic Capacitor
Strategies for Replacing Old Electrolytic Capacitors
Working With Electrolytic Capacitors
Power Supplies and Voltage Regulators
Working With Electrolytic Capacitors
SMD (Surface Mount Device) Soldering Guide
Through-Hole Soldering General Requirements
How to Pick an Audio Capacitor
Mac OS X

DIY Pages of Interest
Putting the Stomp Box Together
From Schematic to Reality
Practice Soldering
Soldering Practice Kits Begin by building your own, and then use the links to gain more advanced skills.
How To Test A Capacitor
Getting Started With Audio and Electronic DIY Projects
Improve Your Existing Audio System with These Free Tips
Optimize an Existing PC for Audio
Build an Audio HDD Server An Introduction to Modifying Hi-Fi Components
Intro to Modifying Hi-fi Devices
Hi-Fi Modifications
Links: DIY Kits for the Audiophile Kits, instructions, schematics, and more.

The Fundamentals of Audio
Fundamentals of Audio The nuts-and-bolts of audio. A total of 38 pages, with a lot of great illustrations. September 22, 2010

Vacuum Tube Pages
How Vacuum Tubes Work
Theory of and Types of Vacuum Tubes
How Vacuum Tubes in Linears Work
Vaccum Tube Amplifiers
Vacuum Tubes Vs. Transistors
Vacuum Tubes Vs Transistors in Electric Guitar Amplifiers
Vacuum Tubes: Buying
Audio Tube Maintenance
Amplification Primer: The Sound of Vacuum Tubes

Audio Components
Links: DIY Kits for the Audiophile DIY kits, instructions, schematics, and more.
High-End Capacitors, Inductors, and Resistors
Capacitor Distortion Mechanisms
Power Amplifier Set-up Tips
Everything You Wanted To Know About Speakers
A Guide to Optimizing Speaker Performance
Audio Cables
What is a Digital Analog Converter (DAC)?
ADC and DAC Glossary
Wire Specifications
Converting Analog into Digital (IIR) Filter

Creating and Maintaining a Music Library
MP3 vs AAC vs FLAC vs CD
Audio Interchange File Format (AIFF)
An Introduction to DVD Recordable (DVD-R)
Digital Audiophile: Defining Audio Quality in iTunes
Digital Audiophile: Importing a CD Using iTunes
Digital Audiophile: Moving Your iTunes Library Between Computers

Using Poetry as a Method of Creating Musical Vocals
Improve Your Mixes With This Critical Listening Exercise
Critical Listening - Basic Exercises

Vinyl to Digital Conversions
Converting Vinyl to Digital: Interface Turntable to Computer via USB
Converting Vinyl to Digital: Connect Turntable to Computer via Existing Preamp
Converting Vinyl to Digital: Various Configurations Used to Connect a Turntable to a Computer
Converting Vinyl to Digital: All About The Phono Preamp
Converting Vinyl to Digital: All About Turntables and Cartridges
Converting Vinyl to Digital: Tune-up a Turntable
Converting Vinyl to Digital: How to Clean Your Vinyl

Links: DIY Kits for the Audiophile DIY kits, instructions, schematics, and more.
Audio and Home Recording Links
Multimedia Articles
Acoustics, Music, and Science
Technology of Modern Recording Studio
Music Equipment Manufacturers

Using Poetry as a Method of Creating Musical Vocals
Using Voice Filters in Studio Logic
Improve Your Mixes With This Critical Listening Exercise
Critical Listening - Basic Exercises
Using Voice Filters in Studio Logic


The Electronic Century: A Historical Perspective



The Guitar
Amplifier Basics
Guitar Effects - What They Do
Guitar Effects-Digital
How Guitar Amplifiers Are Used
Guitar Pickups - Different Positions
Guitar Amplifiers - Valves vs Solid State
DIY Guitar Books
DIY Guitar Electronics Books
DIY for Guitar
Effects Descriptions
The Technology of Auto-Wahs / Envelope-Controlled Filters
DIY Guitar Electronics Books
Build Your Own Humidifier
Simple Guitar Physics
Health for Guitarists

Maintaining and Setting-up Your Instrument
Guitar Setup Tips


Music Indexes

The Main Music Index

Secondary Indexes
Sheet Music Index
Guitar Index
Musicians Health and Exercises
Health for Guitarists
Musician Exercises is an extensive listing of PDFs that teach you how.
The Science of Music Index
Music Equipment Manufacturers Index
Music Related Links Index
Music Theory and Education Index

Maintaining and Setting-up Your Instrument


Problem Solving

Creative Problem Solving
Truth Tables
Binary Numeral System Your brain is the ultimate binary computer.
Meditation Handbook Another freebie.
Writing for Mathematics Great problem solving method.

Problem Solving
A Working Definition of Problem Solving
Human Information Processing Systems
Problem Space and Goals
Searching the Problem Space
Biological Aspects of Problem Solving
Developmental Factors in Problem Solving
Characteristics of Problem Solvers
Blocks (Cultural, Perceptual, Emotional) to Creative Problem Solving
Memory: Simple Tools to Improve It
Change Attitudes in Problem Solving Via Affirmations
Writing Logically

C7 and Desmond (test page)

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