2.5W Audio Amplifier with Transistors

Published on July 25, 2015 . Updated on: -
This amplifier is easy to build using common discrete parts. A channel uses only four general purpose transistors (3 NPN like BC547, 2N2222, 2N3904 and 1 PNP like BC557, 2N2907, 2N3906) and two medium power complementary transistors like BD135/137/139 with BD 136/138/140 or MJE200 with MJE210. Almost any pair of complementary transistors will do as long as hFE is greater than 60, maximum collector current at least 1 A and dissipation at least 10 W.

The power transistors must be fitted on a heatsink! They have their collectors electrically connected so you don't have to isolate each other. The heatsink should have an area of at least 40 square centimeters. Note that the heatsink voltage is neither ground or supply voltage so do not connect it with anything else besides transistors. Be careful not to connect it with chassis ground. If you build the other channel for stereo use, do not electrically connect the heatsinks of both left and right channels.

2.5W Audio Amplifier with Transistors

2.5 W audio amplifier with transistors schematic circuit
Single channel schematic
After building the amplifier you must adjust the DC operating point. In order to do this, connect IN to GND with shortest possible wire and connect a 4 ohms speaker to the output. Using a voltmeter, measure voltage on the collector of the power transistors (or heatsink) and adjust R5 trimmer until you read 6 V (half of supply voltage).

The maximum output power is delivered without distortion with a 5 mVp-p input signal. A LTspice simulation proves ~ 2.5 W medium output power.

Amplifier simulation in LTspice - screenshot
Amplifier simulation in LTspice
Below is the component outline on PCB. You will have to build two of those PCBs for a stereo amplifier.
Component outline
Component outline
Here are the two PCBs with heatsinks for a stereo amplifier.

Stereo 2.5 W Audio Amplifier - Photo
Built stereo amplifier
Source: Romeo Boariu's article from Romanian electronics magazine Tehnium, 1985 Almanac, pages 68-69.
Downloads: LTspice and ExpressPCB files | PCB as PDF.

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