So, i have a couple of guitars, a crappy acoustic, and a fender squire electric.
I have a couple of guitar amps, My Squire came with a little 10 Watt amp, and I also have a massive 40 watt cabinet, which is WAAAAAY overkill for my “playing”.
I usually find, even with the little 10 Watt amp, I’m never even close to cranking it. I only go the 40 watt amp because it didn’t cost me anything (well, it cost me a couple of bucks for a new IEC socket).
I have noticed lately a few places selling mini guitar amplifiers including local store JB Hifi, however, they seemed fairly expensive, for what looked to me to be a fairly basic chinese made plastic cabinet, and what i’m assuming to be, a fairly cheap speaker and internal amplifier.
So, as one does, I got thinking, and I thought I probably have enough stuff around the shed to make something equally as good.
The cabinet was made of 12mm MDF, and was held together with PVA glue. Measurements were made up on the go pretty much. below you can see a couple of shots of the enclosure being build.
When it comes to the electronics, i had a couple of options.
- Computer Speaker Amp
- Kit amp from Jaycar or other electronics kit
- Build an amp from scratch
Each option had its pros and cons. The computer speaker amp would be the cheapest, and easiest, as i have a selection of them kicking around my house already. The problem comes with the limited output of these. The Jaycar kits are probably the more expensive option, however, i can get more power from them. Building from scratch is will take the most effort, but if I need to buy parts, should still come in under the Jaycar kits
In the end, I kinda went with option 2, and used a small kit. I Actually used a small kit I had kicking about already, which was for a different project, which wasn’t suitable for. The kit is a small 2 watt amplifer, which I think came from Jaycar, but I couldn’t find it on their website now. The image above is of the amplifier wired up ready to put into the enclosure.
Also from my “junk box” was the speaker driver. I tested a lot of speaker drivers I have accumulated over the years(pictured above), most of which were fairly useless, and i’m not entirely sure why I keep. In the end, the driver I chose to use was actually a brand new 4 inch Sony xplod speaker, which I initially purchased to put in my previous car, which has been gone for some time.
Had I went looking for speaker drivers before I started the enclosure, I might have been tempted to simply covert the speaker box in which I had the red Xplod speaker in, adding an amp, and leaving it at that. Making the box for the enclosure was at least half the fun of the project though, so I’m glad I had a go at making my own box.
In the end, the completed project worked, but I wasn’t entirely happy with the way it sounds. I’m happy how the enclosure turned out though, so I will likely do some further experimentation with drivers and amplifiers, as well as possibly adding headphone output, Volume control, and if I go nuts, Tone control and maybe even some effects, so stay tuned to find out what happens from here.
Take a look at the gallery below for larger pictures of the build process