Uncle Doug and Tube Amp Education

For a few years now, I've been scouring the Internet, looking for snippets, and bits and pieces of information - and putting them together in order to try and build a reasonable educational curriculum on how to master the building of, and the repair of, tube amplifiers. I've wanted to do it whether the amps built are for Guitar, Bass, Vocals, or public address (PA). I've bought Merlin Blencowe's books on building tube amps. I even have his out-of-print "Designing Power Supplies for Tube Amplifiers".

Sears, of all places, had for sale a book of old Mullard-designed tube amplifiers. So of course, I got it. Before that, I'd had a search out on eBay, looking for the "Holy Grail", a 1954 printing of the "RCA Radiotron Designer's Handbook" by F. Langford-Smith. I passed it up many times as people were selling their copies for $150. I found one that was in excellent shape that no one else happened to be bidding on. I got it for $50.00.

And before all of that, I bought a book on "How to Read Electronic Schematics". It's been two to three years, and while I've only spent casual time and effort, it's only now that am I starting to feel comfortable reading electronics schematics.

I copied the entire contents of The Tone Lizard's Tone Lounge before it went down. I have it on the hard drive of a different computer that suffered a power spike from the L.A. Department of Water and Power. I have to rescue that hard drive and retrieve that information.

I've watched many YouTube videos, some of them were complete wastes of time, many were marginal, others were good. One of my favorite sets of videos is by a man named Greg Perrine and his company "Recycled Sound". Those are pretty good videos, but when it comes to learning about and understanding how to build and troubleshoot tube amps, they really are, for the most part, peripheral to meeting this desire. He made them peripheral, because he's selling DVDs of his most hard-won information. It's information I've yet to invest in.

And then I found a YouTuber named Uncle Doug. Uncle Doug is the man. Uncle Doug is, hands-down, the single best tube amp educator out there.. Uncle Doug takes Schematics, Tube Amp Components, Architecture, and breaks it all down and in clear and easy language describes how everything works. His work really creates the basis of a practical primer of how tube amps work. If you want to learn the theory, this is how to do it. In the next few days, I will be taking Uncle Doug's videos and creating an orderly curriculum from them. I don't know how to copy videos to save them, but I'm going to try. They're that good and I want to make sure they get saved for the future.

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