AE-237 Basic Electronics / Studio Maintenance
Instructor: Eddie Ciletti
updated 6th October 2014


  • Studio Maintenance will familiarize the recording and live sound engineer with how stuff works. 
  • Electronic Fundamentals will introduce you to the language, components and the relationship between the math and the circuitry - in a word, fluency
  • Be able to "converse" and comprehend at the most basic technical level
  • Differentiate between a block diagram and a schematic, recognize parts on a schematic and find them on a circuit board. 
  • You will develop the fine motor skills required for soldering and desoldering components as well as be able to repair and make your own cables. 
  • Most importantly - even while it may not seem obvious - the added technical depth will improve your troubleshooting skills.
The links below include the an overview of your responsibilities - the Grades Agreement.  Please visit, download, print (if necessary) and refer to the Reading Assignments / Syllabus so you can stay on top of the work and not fall behind.  We only have eleven weeks, so let's make the most of it. 

Please note that this class evolves every quarter and so some of what is posted may or may not be covered ro current.  Also know that your feedback is essential - class size is small enough that I can recalibrate the class for you specific needs and interests.  Even when we work side-by-side together, your reflects outside fo class are particularly useful.  Oh yeah, TWO emails are required per week.

Please Read, Print and Sign the Grades Agreement

Reading Assignments and Syllabus

The Three Levels of "Studio Maintenance"

In the first half of the quarter we will make a heavy investment on the technical side.  Each day will be broken into two parts - lecture and lab - so we can become acquainted with the conceptual (formula and circuit basics) and the tangible (components and equipment).  We will tackle the scientific with hands-on lab projects that I hope will familiarize you with the fundamentals.

The mid term will be a week earlier than most of the school - week-5 - after which the balance of our class time will shift to the construction of our instrument preamp (that can be expanded into a mic preamp), starting with the power supply.  This class project  will teach you where gain and 'circuit color' comes from - you will find the preamp to be very musical and quite different from everything else you own.  You will learn the entire schematic by drawing each subsection multiple times until you have a full understanding of how it works.  This will be the beginning of the schematic library you will build. 

Once past the mid-term, we will be spending more time building our preamp.

Staying on top of your home work activites will give us more time to explore options during class time.  Feel free to bring in your broken cables and gear.

Eddie is available via e-mail (preferred) or by phone at 651-245-0153.

Below is the weekly index...

Intro to Electronics, Schematics and Ohm's Law ( Math Review )
Power Formula, Series and Parallel Circuits and Resistance Color Code
Series Parallel LAB, plus Rectification and Power Supplies
Voltage Regulation and Power Supplies
Homework and Test Schedule plus links
Introduction to JFET Preamp
Explanation of the differential JFET amplifier.
week- 8, 9 & 10: LED Bargrapgh VU and Limit LED board
Loose Ends: Reference Levels, Power and Ground Distribution and Semiconductors
Operational Amplifiers
Tool Kit
LINKS: Where to buy stuff and what to buy