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Issue 260 << Issue 259 | Issue 261 >>
Publisher's Letter

1 May, 2010

Slash Your Factory/Office Lighting Bills

2 May, 2010

Most offices, factories and shops waste a lot of money in power for lighting. How would you like to save up to 50% of your lighting power bill . . . and get even more light into the bargain? We show you how - and have the measurements to back it up!

A Solar-Powered Lighting System

4 May, 2010

Need lighting away from a power source? Try this one: it's ideal for your garden, shed or even a camp site. With a 5W solar panel, a 12V SLA battery and a smart controller, it has 3-stage charging for the battery and Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) for the solar panel.

A Look At The TDA 7377 Quad 12V Amplifier IC

6 May, 2010

The TDA7377 IC from ST Microelectronics is the main component of this month's 12V Mini Stereo Amplifier. It's not a new chip ? they've been making them since at least 1998 - but it is the first time we've used it so it deserves some elaboration. It comes in a 15-pin "Multiwatt" package similar to TO-218 and is available in both horizontal and vertical mounting packages.

Circuit Notebook

8 May, 2010

Interesting circuit ideas which we have checked but not built and tested. Contributions from readers are welcome and will be paid for at standard rates.

Build A Compact 12V 20W Stereo Amplifier

10 May, 2010

Amplifiers which run from 12V DC generally don?t put out much power and they are usually not hifi as well. But this little stereo amplifier ticks the power and low distortion boxes. With a 14.4V supply, it will deliver 20 watts per channel into 4-ohm loads at clipping while harmonic distortion at lower power levels is typically less than 0.03%.


12 May, 2010

Letters and emails should contain complete name, address and daytime phone number. Letters to the Editor are submitted on the condition that Silicon Chip Publications Pty Ltd may edit and has the right to reproduce in electronic form and communicate these letters. This also applies to submissions to "Ask SILICON CHIP" and "Circuit Notebook".

Review: Tektronix DMM4050 61/2-Digit Multimeter

14 May, 2010

This bench-top multimeter features 6? digit readings, a graphic LCD and a number of advanced features such as trend plot, histogram and dual measurement mode. With front and rear panel inputs, its short term and 1-year accuracy figures are outstanding.

Ask Silicon Chip

16 May, 2010

Got a technical problem? Can't understand a piece of jargon or some technical principle? Drop us a line and we'll answer your question. Write to: Ask Silicon Chip, PO Box 139, Collaroy Beach, NSW 2097 or send an email to

Low-Power Car/Bike USB Charger

18 May, 2010

Looking for an efficient USB charger that can operate from a 12V car battery? This unit functions at up to 89% efficiency and can charge USB devices at currents up to 525mA. Best of all, it won?t flatten the battery if it's left permanently connected, as long as you remember to unplug the USB device.

Vintage Radio

22 May, 2010

The development of AGC (automatic gain control) circuits in the late 1920s and early 1930s was an important milestone in domestic radio receiver design. It allowed stations to be received at the same volume when tuning across the band, regardless of signal strength.

Digital Audio Signal Generator, Pt.3

22 May, 2010

In the March and April 2010 issues, we described the design and construction of our new Digital Audio Signal Generator. The final article this month has the driving instructions.

Serviceman's Log  - 20 May, 2010

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