Does This Timber Have The Right Timbre?

A hi-fi amplifier used to be a rite of passage for the home electronic constructor, back in the days when consumer electronics was still dominated by analogue entertainment. It’s unusual then to see [carbono.silício]’s stereo amplifier project, constructed in an open-wire circuit sculpture form on a log. You didn’t read that incorrectly, it’s built not on a breadboard but on a piece of Olea Maderensis, or Madiera Olive wood, complete with bark. This endangered tree was not felled, instead it was a piece blown down after a storm.

The circuit is slightly unusual for a project such as this, in that it uses a pair of LM386 audio amplifier chips. This isn’t an unusual component, but it’s one more commonly seen providing the amplification for a small speaker project than in a stereo hi-fi amplifier. But the construction is beautifully done, with very neatly routed wires, a single central volume knob, and a blue LED power light. A particularly nice touch are the aluminium electrolytic capacitors, we suspect having had their plastic sleeving removed.

We’ve had our share of stereo amp projects here, and some of them are surprisingly simple. We have even been known to partake of them ourselves.

20 thoughts on “Does This Timber Have The Right Timbre?

  1. #1: Surely the potentiometer is log, not linear.

    #2: This is a good example of a high grain amplifier.

    #3: Do I know how to make one? I wood knot.

    #4: Planar transistors would make this plainer, so he used a planer.

    #5: This is the first amp whose power is measured in BTUs, not watts.

    #6: Perhaps his next project would be to build a ham radio in a similar style: a true trunked radio system.

    1. This seems to be a very poplar comment! I agree that he should branch out, but what next? I’m stumped! (I’m concerned that there might be a problem with ringing in that circuit, but I’m sure that it wouldn’t be hard to get to the root of the problem.) Personally, I would have added a rope boarder with decorative knots, but that would necessitate peeling it, first, as its bark is worse than its bight.

  2. First time I’ve seen this for an amp, but building on a piece of wood is fairly common for very high end cross-overs, just usally a little more finished than a flattened log. As in, where your caps cost $200 to $2,400 each, solid carbon resistors, etc., and a pair of XOs can run over $8,000.

    I bet they don’t listen to their music off of youtube…

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.