Retro geekery

Sometimes modern digital electronics don't have the right feel.  There are quite a lot of folks out there building valve (tube) based hi-fi and some have even rebuilt early valve based computers.  Mostly I just tinker with stuff.


 Retro video game - Resurrecting Tennis for Two, a video game from 1958  I wonder what I could build using magic-eye tubes rather than a CRT?  Or maybe I could build a video game for a 405 line TV.
Step 1.  Find a suitable 'scope.   How about this?  A Soviet C1-5. 

Valve (tube) amplifiers

For a classic triode push-pull design see 
Early valve amplifier designs can use a lot of valves for very little output power, so they're not very economical.
For later, cheaper,  (including single-ended) designs see 

Some of my amplifier projects 

Push-pull Mazda Pen 45 -  Building a Quality Amplifier

Restoring a Mullard five-ten -  Mullard five-ten, 5-10, 510

Rebuilding a Mullard 3-3 - Mullard three-three

A push-pull KT44 triode amplifier 

Cheap valve (tube) amplifier - bluetube

Stereo amp using metal valves - 6F6 stereo

Mini stereo amp using EL821 - EL821 stereo


Thyratron projects

I've not tried any of these yet, but I've got a box of NOS EN32 type thyratrons, so here are links to things I might try.

Audio VCO -


There are all sorts of interesting items to collect.  Rather than build a huge collection of wireless sets, or valves, or test meters, or whatever; I've decided to simply keep a variety of things because each of them pleases me in some way.   I'm particularly fond of items that have been built by, or used by, past enthusiasts (a.k.a. makers).

 Early digital clock 
 Metal valves 
 Home-made rotary switch 
 Test equipment 
 Wireless World 

Examples of  commercial products from my collection

Some of my vintage domestic and pro gear.  I don't have a huge collection, and it is changing quite a bit at present.  
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Michael Saunby,
26 Jul 2009, 12:56