Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post Reply
User avatar
StarkNebula
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:58 am
Location: Oakville, Canada

Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by StarkNebula » Sat Mar 15, 2014 3:27 am

I've got a nice 25+ year old The Art of Electronics by Horowitz and Hill, a Cambridge University "bible" made back in the late 80's. I heard someone say it's a great resource, but I always get stuck in the first (and most difficult) chapter. I've tried going back to it about 4 times. I can't "break the ice" with it. I wanted to know if anyone had a good resource to kick me off. The book will become useful later when I go to mod GBs, as the book covers the Z80 processor. But for a modern day "here's how you start", I need something up-to-date. Sort of a LearnCodeTheHardWay but for hardware. Whether it be in book, PDF or HTML format, I don't care. Good information that teaches is all I need.
Last edited by StarkNebula on Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Everything you need to know about F-Zero GX (WIP)
Join the battle! Defeat the Staff Ghost!
User avatar
47iscool
Posts: 140
Joined: Thu Mar 07, 2013 8:50 am
Location: Blast Processing
Contact:

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by 47iscool » Sat Mar 15, 2014 9:21 am

The people over at assembler games might be able to help you out.
Stormcloak Soldier
User avatar
emu_kidid
Site Admin
Posts: 4372
Joined: Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:06 am
Location: Australia
Contact:

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by emu_kidid » Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:09 pm

Go through the videos that this guy posts: http://www.youtube.com/user/EEVblog/videos

He has a way of explaining complicated electronics things in a way that most people can understand.
Image
User avatar
megalomaniac
Posts: 2480
Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2011 5:33 am
Location: Drunk in Texas
Contact:

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by megalomaniac » Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:25 am

spend the extra money to get a good digital multimeter...
it will be the most important tool to help you learn...and get familiar with how it works...


make yourself a simple LED circuit with pushbutton tact switch activation...
start with measuring voltage at the battery, then measure forward voltage of the LED
then learn how continuity works and its behavior when the tact switch is pressed and released
also check the milliamp draw of the LED.

once you have done that record all the data...
then add a resistor into the circuit and perform all the tests again and also learn how to read resistance...
change the resistor to whatever value and test everything again...add multiple resistors (series and/or parallel) then test everything again

add a diode in there somewhere and see what happens, then reverse the direction of the diode and see what happens...read voltage across the diode, check continuity across the diode to other areas of the circuit...


also dedicate some time to learn transistors as soon as possible and dont stop until you understand whats going on...
start with a simple LED transistor switch. then move on to voltage sensing transistor switching...then maybe even simple transistor amplification....
buy about 50 PNP and 50 NPN on ebay for about 10$
you will need a lot of transistors because you will kill a lot while trying to understand how to make em work...



learning a lot of these basics really go a long way in understanding basic hardware and learning to test hardware....maybe learning some of these electronics basics by doing simple exercises will go a long way with helping to understand whats in those books and get you past chapter 1 :)


as emu_kidid said, i agree, those eevblog videos are great...fun to watch
emu_kidid wrote: beer is like WD40 for megalomaniac's brain, gets the gears moving
>>> BadAssConsoles.com <<<

Image Image Image
User avatar
StarkNebula
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:58 am
Location: Oakville, Canada

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by StarkNebula » Fri Mar 21, 2014 4:51 pm

Any recommendations on a good multimeter?
Likewise, where do you all get your components from? I know a you might get a few things off ebay if you only need a particular thing, and would probably batch order off a larger site (like mouser or digikey, for instance) if you know what you need (so as to make up for the shipping fees.)

Also, that's a good idea. Though I'll try to wrap my head around more of the basics before jumping in on that idea. I'm not sure if this website is good or not, but allaboutcircuits has a from-scratch approach. It helped solidify a few concepts. http://www.allaboutcircuits.com/vol_1/
Everything you need to know about F-Zero GX (WIP)
Join the battle! Defeat the Staff Ghost!
User avatar
iamdablasta
Posts: 327
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 9:24 pm

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by iamdablasta » Fri Mar 21, 2014 11:36 pm

StarkNebula wrote:Any recommendations on a good multimeter?
Likewise, where do you all get your components from? I know a you might get a few things off ebay if you only need a particular thing, and would probably batch order off a larger site (like mouser or digikey, for instance) if you know what you need (so as to make up for the shipping fees.)

Also, that's a good idea. Though I'll try to wrap my head around more of the basics before jumping in on that idea. I'm not sure if this website is good or not, but allaboutcircuits has a from-scratch approach. It helped solidify a few concepts. http://www.allaboutcircuits.com/vol_1/
Don't go too cheap, but don't pay a thousand0 dollars either.
Find an okay brand and model and look at reviews. You'll find an okay one.

Personally I have THIS(different store though). Does it's job, not cheap or expensive.
the game
User avatar
megalomaniac
Posts: 2480
Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2011 5:33 am
Location: Drunk in Texas
Contact:

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by megalomaniac » Sat Mar 22, 2014 1:02 am

iamdablasta posted a link to a great example of what you DONT want to use...
those types of multimeter are such a pain in the ass in comparison to "current technology" of most other multimeters which have auto ranging...
iamdablasta's multimeter requires you to set a specified range for testing, but what if you dont know the range and are not sure? thats a common issue with beginners and the learning process...sometimes you really dont know what you are suppose to be measuring and need to rely on the instrument to tell you...

avoid those types of non-auto ranging multimeters, you will understand why later on...



the very best multimeter you can buy and trust your life with is a Fluke...any Fluke
there are some good fluke 113 or 115 (something like that) that are about 100$ compared to buying other Fluke models at 500$++
but for starting out, the last thing you want is to somehow accidentally kill it by some odd means while you are trying to learn how to use a multimeter....



ive been wanting to buy a Vichy VC99 to test it out but instead i decided to try a Amprobe PM51A.
I really love the little amprobe but i also think the test leads could have had a better design...nothing major that cant be modded and fixed later down the road..i did a comparison test of the amprobe PM51A against my Fluke 179...it was pretty spot on in all areas and i feel 100% confident in using the Amprobe without concern of false readings. It is a little slower than a Fluke, but for ~20$ you really dont have room to complain.



My recommendation is you should look for an Amprobe PM51A as a starter multimeter...
feature wise, i still want to test a Vichy VC99 to see how it performs because i have a feeling that is also a great cheap multimeter...but from the review in the video down below, maybe its not so great afterall...also, the little amprobe has every "basic" function you need to get started..

im happy with my little Amprobe as a backup for my Fluke...
actually, even bought another little Amprobe to keep in my jeep....just in case...thats how much i trust it..
i would never recommend anything other than a Fluke multimeter but in this case for a first time learning, i know the little amprobe will fit your needs just fine during this initial learning stage...then you can use decide if you need to move up to a Fluke later on or just continue using the little amprobe...




lots of great information here...
listen to this man...great videos



emu_kidid wrote: beer is like WD40 for megalomaniac's brain, gets the gears moving
>>> BadAssConsoles.com <<<

Image Image Image
User avatar
iamdablasta
Posts: 327
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 9:24 pm

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by iamdablasta » Sat Mar 22, 2014 10:19 am

Didn't even know they had auto adjusting multimeters haha, but I've been using the one I have a long time and it's never failed me.
Well, if it's so horrible as mega says don't buy it.
the game
User avatar
StarkNebula
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:58 am
Location: Oakville, Canada

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by StarkNebula » Sat Mar 22, 2014 5:48 pm

megalomaniac wrote:...for ~20$ you really dont have room to complain.
Should I get this one?
lol But I honestly can't find it anywhere for under 80$. I'll have to look around harder. I still need to watch your 2nd video post megalmaniac, which covers the "cheapies." The amprobe PM51A does definitely have great review though.
Everything you need to know about F-Zero GX (WIP)
Join the battle! Defeat the Staff Ghost!
User avatar
megalomaniac
Posts: 2480
Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2011 5:33 am
Location: Drunk in Texas
Contact:

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by megalomaniac » Sat Mar 22, 2014 9:13 pm

wow...i just looked at my ebay history. I paid 18$ + 5$ shipping about seven months ago...
searching now, that multimeter went up 2x in price



well, i guess you are better off now with the vichy vc97 / vc99 since its only 25$ - 30$
...and it still has auto-ranging


emu_kidid wrote: beer is like WD40 for megalomaniac's brain, gets the gears moving
>>> BadAssConsoles.com <<<

Image Image Image
dilav
Posts: 92
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:54 am
Location: USA

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by dilav » Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:26 pm

ut61e has been quite popular going for around $60, true rms, auto range, 22000 count. Standard cheap leads, uses 250V ceramic fuse, no auto off due to a hardwired always on RS232 communication.
User avatar
Streetwalker
Posts: 1646
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2013 7:50 am
Location: Israel

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by Streetwalker » Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:30 pm

Wow rs232 ? Nice. :)
User avatar
manic.blood
Posts: 69
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:33 am
Location: The North usually

Re: Resources to learn Hardware Engineering (Circuitry)

Post by manic.blood » Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:45 am

Wow I only just stumbled upon this thread. Some really interesting ideas here.
Thanks everyone for the heads up on getting into HW
Post Reply