A volume control is nothing more than a potentiometer with a knob. So no problem there. Typically the volume knob goes between the other circuitry and the speaker. The thought is that the amp is actually always running at "full volume". The pot, rather than increasing volume, is actually used to decrease it.
As far as gain... that's a separate circuit, with a secondary amplifier. That's a little more work. In a way, a preamp is basically a "gain module".
You can wire in volume for sure, and if you have specs you can surely wire in a gain pot, at the least just a tone pot. For that rig, you cut the wires between the board and speaker, and wire volume and tone in between. Cool circuit you found Mark, I might try one
As a note: a good source for amp circuit boards is often Thrift store cheapie amps (even toys). Sometimes the amp circuit is far better than the cheap speaker... and if you rip out the circuit board and hook it up to a larger, better speaker within the same ohm and wattage range, you can get some incredible sound for cheap money.
Oh, scavenger isn't even the word. We commonly use "dumpster diver". If you've ever found yourself waist-balanced and feet in the air head-first into a dumpster to grab a prime piece of wood or discarded speaker... you're part of the "club". :D
But yeah, thrift stores and rummage sales are where we live.
On another forum we have a thread, "You know you're addicted when..."
My favorite thus far: "You think of Home Depot as a music store."
Geeminy Scott. I envy you that level of knowledge. I keep trying to learn electronics... but then something else gets in the way. I am impressed.
Thanks Wayfinder. Lots of info on the Internet about the little LM386 amps. Amazing sounds from such a simple circuit. I've built and sold many of them, including two I sent off this morning. Decided to step things up a bit, and am currently building tube amplifiers. One from an old Hammond organ reverb driver shown here...
Right now I am working on three other tube amps...a Fender 5F1 Champ clone, a Fender Princeton Tweed 5F2-a, and a Kalamazoo Model 1.
Yeah, crazy to think I started with a stick in a box, and wound up making these. Thanks Ted.
Ted Crocker said: