BS in Electrical Engineering
Electrical Engineering Department
This project demonstrates the viability of vacuum tube replacements made from solid state technology and programmable logic. A collection of operational amplifiers, digital converters and a field programmable gate array (FPGA) achieve this goal. The project emulates a 12AX7 vacuum tube triode as it would operate in a Fender Champ guitar amplifier. While the prototype works specifically with the Fender Champ, minor modifications could provide the versatility for operation in different amplifiers, including high end vintage hi-fi equipment. The addition of a micro controller into these amplifiers allows for the use of digital filtering and effects while not requiring modifications that could effect the value of rare equipment. Most vintage amplifiers have user serviceable tube sockets. The hardware added operates at the pin-out to simulate the vacuum tube triode.