Basic of Electronics

Hand Out

BASIC OF ELECTRONICS FOR MECHATRONICS STUDENTS

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Basic of Electronics

Chapter 1: Basic Concepts
Topics
• • • • • •

Atoms and Electrical Charge Current. Voltage. Power Resistance Ohm's Law

1.1. Atoms and Electrical Charge - Discusses the structure of atoms.

Figure 1-1. Model of an Atom Atoms are the building blocks of all matter. They are made up of protons, neutrons, and electrons. Every electron has a small negative (-) charge. The proton has the same amount of charge except that it is the opposite, positive (+) charge. Neutrons are electrically neutral and have no charge. The protons and neutrons are located in the center of atoms forming what is called the nucleus and the electrons revolve around them. It is very important to know that particles of like charges will repel and unlike charges will attract. For example, two protons or two electrons will repel each other. However, a proton and a electron will attract. That is how the electrons are held inside the atom. The attraction between the electrons and protons keeps the electrons in orbit much like the gravitational attraction between the sun and its planets.

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Basic of Electronics

Figure 1-2. Interaction between electrons and protons Electricity is the flow of electrons so it is necessary to measure the charge. The basic unit for measuring charge is the coulomb or the letter C. 1 coulomb is equal to the charge of 6,250,000,000,000,000,000 electrons!!! 1C = 6.25x10^18 electrons 1.2. Current - Introduces current and ampere. Electric current is the amount of electrons, or charge, moving past a point every second. It is basically the speed of electron flow. The faster the electrons flow, the higher the current.

Figure 1-3. Electron Flow Current is represented by the letter I. The basic unit for measuring current is ampere. Ampere can be abbreviated to amp or just A. 1 amp = 1 coulomb/sec Meaning for every amp, there are 6.25x10^18 electrons moving past a point every second. 1.3. Voltage - Potential difference and voltage To make sense of voltage, we will need to make an analogy. Lets imagine that electrons are represented by a marble on a flat plane. At this point, the plane is level and the marble does not move. If the plane is lifted at one side, the marble will roll down to the lower point.

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Basic of Electronics Figure 1-4. Analogy electron with a marble In electricity, the high point is a point with lots of electrons and the low point is a point with a lack of electrons. The high point is called the high potential and the low point is the low potential. The difference between these two points is called the potential difference. The larger the potential difference, the larger the voltage.

Figure 1-5. Energy potential Voltage can be thought of as the measure of the pressure pushing the electrons. The higher the pressure, the higher the voltage. Voltage is represented by the letter E. The basic unit of measure is volts or the letter V. One volt will push 1 amp of current through 1 ohm of resistance. Resistance will be discussed in a later section.

1.4. Power - Discusses power or the amount of work a circuit is doing. Power is simply the amount of energy used or the amount of "work" a circuit is doing. Power is represented by the letter P. The basic unit for measuring power is watts or the letter W. To find power, all you need is a simple equation: P=EI or Power equals voltage times current. For example, if E = 9V I = 0.5A then P = 9 * 0.5 P = 4.5W

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Basic of Electronics 1.5. Resistance - Discusses electron flow, materials, and the ohm unit. To better understand what resistance is, you must first get an idea of how electrons flow. When an electron is knocked out of an atom, it will fly off and hit another atom. If the electron strikes the atom with enough force, it will knock off another electron. The atom that was just knocked off will hit another atom and so forth.

Figure 1-6. Two electrons Note that every time an electron strikes another, it is transferring its energy. Some of the energy is converted into heat every time it is transferred. The voltage will drop as the energy is transferred over long distances. Thus a long wire has a higher resistance than a short wire. Some materials - such as copper and silver - does not hold on to its electrons very tightly. Therefore it doesn't require much energy to knock off an electron. These materials are called conductors and has a very low resistance to electron flow. Materials such as clay and plastics hold on to their electrons more tightly than conductors. It takes more energy to knock off an electron from these materials. These materials are called insulators and has a high resistance to electron flow. Now, you must understand that this is NOT how electrons really flow; It serves only as something for you to work with. To really know how electrons flow, which we will not get into, you will need to study quantum physics. Resistance is represented by the letter R. The basic unit of measure is ohm or the symbol (Greek omega). In the next section (Ohm's Law), we will show you the relationship between Current, Voltage, and Resistance. Resistance will also be further discussed as we introduce the resistor.

1.6. Ohm's Law - The relationship between Current, Voltage, and Resistance. The German physicist, George Simon Ohm, established that voltage in volt, electrical resistance in ohms, and ampereres flowing through any circuit are all related. Ohms’s law states:

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Basic of Electronics It requires 1 volt to push 1 ampere through 1 ohm of resistance. Ohm law camn also be sated as asimple formula to calculate one value of an electrical circuit if the other two are known. I=E/R Where: I= Current in ampere (A) E= Voltage in volt (V) R= Resistance in ohms (Ω) -6- .

the triangle in a circle. Note the "R1" next to the resistor symbol and "R1 470 ohm" below the diagram. the 4 horizontal lines. Each type of component has a unique symbol and a name (usually 1-2 letters). It is a simple and easy to read outline of the circuit. All relevant values and component specific information are usually included. this diagram has 3 components: the thing with 4 horizontal lines. It's not that tough right? -7- .Basic of Electronics Chapter 2: Schematic Diagram A schematic diagram shows how each component connect with another. and the thing with the wavy lines.both of which will be discussed in the components section. This tells you what value to use for that component. The triangle in the circle represents the light emitting diode and the wavy lines represent the resistor -. Can you guess which is the battery? Yes. If there was a second resistor. That's all it is to schematic diagrams. Below is an example of a schematic diagram: Figure 2-1 A simple schematic diagram As you can see. the second resistor will be called R2.

Resistors are one of the most commonly used components in electronics. The tolerance bands indicates the accuracy of the values. Integrated circuits . resistors resist the flow of electrons.A component that resist the flow of electrons. a resistor within 5% tolerance should be sufficient.Basic of Electronics Chapter 3: Electronics Component • • • • • • Resistors . The first two color bands from the left are the significant figures .A component used for switching and amplifying.An overview of integrated circuits Switches . Put them all together and you have the value. To get the value of a resistor. Capacitors . For most applications. hold the resistor so that the tolerance band is on the right.it tells you how many zeros to put after the significant figures.1.A "one way street" for electrons. -8- . Resistors . indicates that the resistor will be within 5% of its value.Discusses the different configurations of switches.A component that resist the flow of electrons. The third band is the multiplier .A mini recharable battery.simply write down the numbers represented by the colors. The color bands around the resistors are color codes that tell you its resistance value. As its name implies. Recall that resistance is measured in ohms. A 5% tolerance (gold band) for example. They are used to add resistance to a circuit. Diodes . 3. Transistors .

For example. One last important note about resistors is their wattage rating. However. You should not use a 1/4 watt resistor in a circuit that has more than 1/4 watt of power flowing. -9- . Other types are carbon film which is a thin layer of carbon on a ceramic rod.0 1. Figure 3-1 Schematic and Symbol of Resistor The simplest resistors are made from carbon rod with end caps and wire leads. 12 ohm.2 1.8 2. The higher this rating the more heat they can dissipate. Most resistors are color coded to indicate their value and tolerance. 1000.2 2. Resistors generate heat.3M etc. 3. Faulty resistors have gone open circuit or changed in value.7 3.8 8. Wire wound resistors are used where the resistor has to dissipate a lot of heat. To limit the range of resistor values to a manageable number a preferred range only is available. it is okay to use a 1/2 watt resistor in a 1/4 watt circuit. 4 band resistors(the ones discussed here) are the most common and should work for most projects. Some resistors are designed to change in value when heated. They are called LIGHT DEPENDANT RESISTORS. Wire wound resistors have their value written on them. High stability resistors (marked with a fifth pink band) do not change value easily.000 ohms is 3.3 3. 3. These are 1. They never go short circuit.2 This mean that 1 ohm. and metal oxide and metal glaze on glass rods. (color would change with heat).7 5. Some resistors change in value when exposed to light. 180 ohm. it is NOT okay to use a 1/4 watt resistor in a 1/2 watt circuit.6 6.8k as 1K8 etc. However.300.000 ohms is 1M.9 4. 2200 ohm resistors etc are available. They are called THERMISTORS and are used in temperature measuring circuits.Basic of Electronics NOTE: There are resistors with more bands and other types for specific applications.3M would be written as 3M3 and 1. Resistors have a wattage rating. Decimal points are not used on circuit diagrams (they may be confused with fly specks). 1000 ohms is 1k.

they are never touched again. Capacitors are basically two parallel metal plates separated by an insulator.22 ohm 20% 4R7K= 4. -10- .Basic of Electronics On circuit diagrams tolerance is indicated by the following letters. 3.A mini rechargeable battery. Once adjusted.2. Capacitors . These can be operated by means of a knob on the control panel. Examples are volume and brightness controls. Preset variable resistors are internal controls which are adjusted in value by means of a screwdriver.7 ohm 10% 68RJ=68 ohm 5% Variable resistors are available. F=1% G=2% J=5% K=10% M=20% R22M= 0. Figure 3-4 a pair plate of Capacitor This insulator is called the dielectric.

The value of the resistor as well as the negative side is clearly printed on the capacitor. meaning that you can connect them in any way.000pF = 0. However.Capacitors can be charged and discharged. These capacitors are nonpolarized. These capacitors are measured in µF. This can be a hazard if they are charged up to high voltages. The coding is just like the resistor color codes except that they used numbers instead of colors. paper air capacitors etc.000 and pico = 1/1. micro = 1/1. Capacitors can be charged up and store electricity.000. These capacitors are polarized so you must connect the negative side in the right place.000. 1F is too large for capacitors. The first 2 digit are the significant figures and the third digit is the multiplier.000. capacitors with large charges should be discharged via a resistor to limit the discharge current.1µF = 0. you simply decode the 3 digit number on the surface of the capacitor. similar to a car battery. We will only be discussing two types of the most commonly used capacitors: Ceramic and Electrolytic. These capacitors are measured in pF. • Ceramic capacitors are brown and has a disc shape. The amount of charge that a capacitor can hold is measured in Farads or the letter F.Basic of Electronics Capacitor types are named after the dielectric. Figure 3-2 Ceramic Capacitor • Electrolytic Capacitors has a cylinder shape. so microfarads(µF) and picofarads(pF) are used. Capacitors come in all shapes and sizes and are usually marked with their value. mica. Thus we have ceramic. -11- . polyester.000.000 So 100. Capacitors are the second most commonly used component in electronics. To find the value. They can be thought of as tiny rechargeable batteries -. If it is necessary.0000001F DC current cannot flow through a capacitor since the dielectric forms an open circuit.

They are marked to indicate polarity. To find the total value if they are in series (that is in line with each other) then the following formula is used. For example.1 uF. There is a type of diode called the Varicap diode which similar characteristics. This means that they must be fitted the correct way round. It is OK to use a voltage below the maximum value. -12- . The voltage across the terminals must not exceed this value. Some values are indicated with a colour code similar to resistors. Some capacitors such as electrolytic and tantalums are polarised.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-3 Electrolytic Capacitor They are often marked with their maximum working voltage.000 pF = 100 nF = 0. To find the total value of capacitors in parallel (that is connected across each other) their values are added. 1/C total =1/C1 + 1/C2 + 1/C3 etc Variable capacitors are available in which the value can be adjusted by controlling the amount of overlap of the plates or the distance between them. Figure 3-4 Color band on Capacitor Some values are marked in picofarads using three digit numbers. There can be some confusion. A 2200pf capacitor would have three red bands. These merge into one wide red band. 102 is 1000 pF and 104 is 100. The first two digits are the base number and the third digit is a multiplier.

When a voltage exceeds the voltage rating going the opposite direction (from anode to cathode). The longer pin is the anode. However. and Light Emitting Diodes.A "one way street" for electrons. Diodes flow from cathode to anode. Zener Diodes. the diode allows the electrons flow. Figure 3-7 Symbol of LED -13- .3 Diodes . the positive side. Note: there aren't any bands to identify which pin is anode and which is cathode. Diodes let electrons flow through them only in one direction. Figure 3-6 Diodes and its symbol There are basically three different types of diodes: Diodes. Light Emitting Diodes (LED for short) are just like the regular diodes except that it lights up when electrons are flowing through. The cathode side of the diode is marked with a band around it. one pin is longer then the other. Zener diodes have a set voltage rating.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-5 Symbol of fix and variable capacitor 3.

Diodes have two connections. They are often marked with a type number. or be part of trendy jewelry etc. ring or some other mark. There are specialised types of diode available such as the zener and light emitting diode (LED). act as a warning indicator. The cathode is always identified by a dot. Detailed characteristics of a diode can be found by looking up the type number in a data book.Basic of Electronics Diodes are polarised. Figure 3-9 Some diode circuit symbols LED The light emitting diode (LED) is commonly used as an indicator. This is because an electric current will only flow through them in one direction (like air will only flow one way through a type valve). which means that they must be inserted into the PCB the correct way round. If you know how to measure resistance with a meter then test some diodes. Diodes come in all shapes and sizes. an anode and a cathode. -14- . A good one has low resistance in one direction and high in the other. It can show when the power is on. Figure 3-8 Mark indicator in Diodes The pcb is often marked with a + sign for the cathode end.

02 =500 ohms. To calculate the value of the series resistor we need to know the diode forward voltage and current and its connections. Transistors -A component used for switching and amplifying. Since this is not a standard value we can use a 470 or 560 ohm resistor as this application is not critical of values. The cathode lead is the one nearest a "flat" on the body.4. The diode is in series with the resistor. then the voltage across the resistor is 12-2 = 10 volts. so be sure to check the packaging when purchasing. From Ohm's Law we can now calculate the value of the resistor. signal modulation and many other functions. The transistor is a three terminal solid state semiconductor device that can be used for amplification. Figure 3-10 Transistors -15- . Resistance = Volts divided by Amps = V/I = 10/0. Transistors are used as switches and amplifiers. voltage stabilization. The necessary data can be obtained from a catalogue or data book. switching. In our example it is 2 volts and 20mA (0. We will discuss two types of transistors: PNP and NPN transistors. 0.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-9 LED circuit It needs to be fed from a DC supply. Both of these transistors has 3 pins: emitter. 3. collector. base. so the current through then both is the same. and the current through the resistor. as shown in the diagram. Since the voltage across the diode is 2 volts and the battery voltage is 12 volts. We now know the voltage across. There aren't any standards for where and what order the physical pins are on the transistors.02 amps.02 amps). with the anode positive and the cathode negative.

If it is not flat then reflow the solder on the two pins pushing the IC flat. When soldering.An overview of integrated circuits Integrated circuits (IC) are usually referred to as chips. Inside them is a tiny piece of semiconductor(usually silicon) with large circuits built in. ensure that the IC (or the socket) is the correct way round and that no pins have been bent underneath the body. Most common are 8. Integrated circuits (IC) . 14. such as a radiator. Solder two diagonally opposite pins (say pin 1 and pin 5 in the diagram below) and check that the IC is flat on the board before soldering the rest. When fitting new IC's it is often necessary to bend the pins in slightly. solder the remaining pins.5. discharge yourself periodically by touching some metalwork which is earthed. Some IC's are damaged by the static electricity which most people carry on their bodies. the following must apply: The emitter is more positive than the base and the collector leads to the negative. or 16 pin dual in line (dil) chips. or may plug into sockets which have already been soldered into the board. IC's can be soldered directly into printed circuit boards. -16- . They should be stored in conductive foam or wrapped in tin foil. When satisfied. Figure 3-11 Symbol of PNP Transistors The NPN transistor is the opposite: The collector must be more positive than the base and the emitter leads to the negative. When handling them. Figure 3-12 Symbol of NPN Transistors 3. in order to fit it into the board (or socket).Basic of Electronics To allow electrons to flow through the collector and emitter of a PNP transistor.

most contain logic gate circuits. If not. Switches Switching IC's are also very much like the switching circuits of transistors. Most IC's come with pinout information and how to use it. connected in series. Cells may be either PRIMARY or SECONDARY types. (logic gates will be discussed in a later section). Works very much like transistor amplifier circuits. • • • • • • 3.Basic of Electronics There are millions of different integrated circuits. Audio amplifiers These are used to amplify audio. Timers These are counting IC's used for circuits that counts or needs to keep track of time. Comparators These IC's compare inputs and gives an output. Other There are thousands of other types. to increase the voltage available. you'll need one of those large reference books that have info on most of the IC's. Operational Amplifiers These are amplifiers. The general types of integrated circuits include: Figure 3-12 Symbol of IC • Logic circuits These IC's are basically decision makers. Batteries Batteries are assembled from cells.6. A lot of IC's are made for a special purpose like digital sound recording. In a cell chemical energy is converted into electrical energy. A primary cell is discarded when its chemical -17- .

Internal resistance increases as the cell ages. A secondary cell can be recharged. Figure 3-13 Symbol of Battery The zinc and carbon react with the ammonium chloride ELECTROLYTE to produce electricity. Figure 3-14 Internal Resistance of Battery When current is taken from a battery. portable radios etc. Nicads must be charged with a constant current charger. All cells have INTERNAL RESISTANCE. The diagram shows that as the current taken increases the terminal voltage decreases. voltage is dropped across this internal resistance and the voltage at the battery terminals falls.Basic of Electronics energy is exhausted. Lead acid batteries need a constant voltage charger. The most common secondary cells are the lead/acid and nickel/cadmium (nicad). The manganese dioxide absorbs hydrogen gas produced around the carbon rod which would insulate it from the electrolyte and stop the cell working. -18- . This is not an actual resistor but a characteristic of the cell. The most common primary cell is the zinc/carbon (Leclanche) as used in torches.

3.e. the secondary will have half the primary voltage. Battery voltages must therefore always be measured ON LOAD. If the current is reduced. If another coil is placed adjacent to the first coil then. the lines of force move inwards. the output coil is the SECONDARY WINDING. The input coil is called the PRIMARY WINDING. It occurs in any type of power supply.-----------------------Number of secondary turns For example. a voltage is induced in the second coil. -19- . then the primary must supply 24 watts. If a 24 watt lamp is connected across a 24 volt secondary. The voltage induced in the secondary is determined by the TURNS RATIO. if the secondary has half the primary turns.7. (Watts = volts x amps).Basic of Electronics Figure 3-15 Voltage-Current characteristics of Battery This is called POOR REGULATION. Transformer If you have read the page on ELECTROMAGNETISM then you will know that when a current is passed through a coil. If the current is increased. If it is a 240 volt primary then the current in it must be 0. Primary voltage --------------------Secondary voltage Number of primary turns = ----------. then the turns ratio is 10:1. the moving lines of force will "cut" the turns of the second coil. With the 50 Hz AC mains supply . Assuming a perfect transformer. the power provided by the primary must equal the power taken by a load on the secondary. the lines of force move outwards from the coil. This field is made up from lines of force and has the same shape as a bar magnet. this will happen 50 times a second. This is called MUTUAL INDUCTION and forms the basis of the transformer.1 amp. with the radio etc switched on and drawing current. As it does this. If the primary voltage is 240 volts then the secondary voltage will be x 10 smaller = 24 volts. the coil becomes surrounded by a magnetic field. as the field moves out or in. i. Another example is if the primary has 5000 turns and the secondary has 500 turns.

DC has a steady current and therefore a steady field and there would be no induction. or in the other direction. the core is LAMINATED. into this core. Some transformers have an electrostatic screen between primary and secondary. This is to prevent some types of interference being fed from the equipment down into the mains supply. This means that it is made up from metal sheets insulated from each other.Basic of Electronics To aid magnetic coupling between primary and secondary. Transformers are sometimes used for IMPEDANCE MATCHING. or no core at all. Transformers to work at higher frequencies have an iron dust core. Since the primary would induce power. Figure 3-15 Diagram of Transformers -20- . Note that the transformer only works on AC which has a constantly changing current and moving field. called EDDY CURRENTS. the coils are wound on a metal CORE.

Switches really don't need any introduction. Single Throw This is a two terminal switch that opens and closes a circuit. Inductor values of INDUCTANCE are measured in HENRIES. It simply connects and disconnect a circuit. Switches Discusses the different configurations of switches. The former may contain a metallic core up its centre. Reactance increases with frequency and as the value of the inductance increases. Inductors oppose the flow of ac current. Above 100Mhz the core is usually air and the coil is self supporting. Double Throw This is a three terminal switch that connects one terminal to either of the other two. They may be wound on tubular FORMERS or may be self supporting. SPDT.8 Inductor Inductors are coils of wire. -21- . and DPDT. At low frequencies the inductor may have hundreds of turns.9. SPDT = Single Pole. Ferrite cores are used for frequencies up to say. This section gives an overview of the contact configurations. This opposition is called INDUCTIVE REACTANCE.Basic of Electronics 3. There are 3 commonly used configurations: SPST. above 1 Mhz only a few turns. Most inductors have a low DC resistance since they are wound from copper wire. Iron cores are used for frequencies below about 100 kHz. Figure 3-16 Diagrams of Inductors 3. 10 Mhz. SPST = Single Pole.

-22- . Fig. This may be important if it is a high voltage supply. Double Throw This is a six terminal switch that connects a pair of terminals to either of the other two pairs. 1 Switches are used to open/close a circuit. 3 This is a "2 pole on/off" switch which completely isolates the lamp from the supply in the off position. The dotted line indicates that S1a and S1b are part of the same switch "ganged" together and operate simultaneously. 2 S1 is a "single pole on/off" switch in the off position.Basic of Electronics DPDT = Double Pole. Fig. Fig.

You can have 2p 5w. The fuse must be able to carry slightly more than the normal operating current of the equipment to allow for tolerances and small current surges. 5 This is a "2 pole changeover" switch. The unlit lamp is completely isolated from the supply. Figure 3-17 Fuse Configuration in circuit -23- .10. (2) a "normally open. 7 This shows (1) a "normally closed. The Fuse The fuse is a piece of wire which can carry a stated current. 3p 4w etc. If the fuse melts (blows) then there is an open circuit and no current can then flow thus protecting the equipment by isolating it from the power supply. 8 This is a "changeover" slide switch. If the surge lasts longer than this the fuse will blow. Fig. If a fuse is fitted to withstand this large current there would be no protection against faults which cause the current to rise slightly above the normal value. Here are assorted switch types.Basic of Electronics Fig. With some equipment there is a very large surge of current for a short time at switch on. push to make". Fig. Always find out why the fuse blew before replacing it. When operated a-b opens and b-c closes. push to break". If the current rises above this value it will melt. Occasionly they grow tired and fail. Fig. Fig. It can select 1 of 5 circuits. If the fuse is black and silvery then it is likely that there is a dead short (very low resistance) somewhere. Again S1a and S1b are part of the same switch. Either lamp 1 or lamp 2 is on. These can stand 10 times the rated current for 10 milliseconds. 4 This is a "single pole changeover" switch. Panel-Toggle-Make before break-Pneumatic-WaferProximity-Light activated-Toggle-Rotary Reed-Pull-Locking-Vane-Interlocking-RockerDimmer-Mercury-Tilt-Microswitch Thumbwheel-Key-Wafer-Slide-Float-Optical-FootThermal-Hall effect 3. 6 This is a "single pole 5 way" switch. (3) both used together to make a "changeover" switch. Therefore special antisurge fuses are fitted.

one or more of its inputs must be at a value of 0. Gates Gates are logic circuits. This section describes the different types of gates and their symbols: • AND gate To get an output of 1. This gate only has one input. It is also known as an inverter circuit. one or more inputs must be at a value of 1. its input must be at a value of 0. Logic IC's contain these and other types of gates. • NAND gate To get an output of 1. both inputs must be at a value of 1. • OR gate To get an output of 1. • NOT gate To get an output of 1.Basic of Electronics 3.11. -24- . They take binary inputs and and gives out a binary result. 1(one) is represented by a positive electrical value and 0(zero) is represented by no electricity at all. • NOR gate To get an output of 1. all inputs must be at a value of 0.

Basic of Electronics 3. they must be in phase. Speakers can be connected in series and parallel but the total impedance must match the amplifier impedance. When using two speakers together. When a speech current is passed through the coil a varying magnetic field is generated by the coil. C2 and L2 are a high pass filter. C1 and L1 are a low pass filter. This means that they move out and in together. This happens if the speaker leads are connected correctly. and a small one (a Tweeter) for high frequencies. Large speakers cannot reproduce high frequencies and small ones cannot reproduce low frequencies. The design of enclosures is very complicated. (there is a page on FILTERS). This must be matched to the output impedance of the amplifier (see the page on REACTANCE and IMPEDANCE). as in stereo systems. Loudspeakers have Impedance. This compresses and decompresses the air thereby generating sound waves. which is attached to the coil.11. Using a lower impedance than the correct one can blow up your amplifier. where a coil of wire is suspended in the magnetic field of a circular magnet. a large one (a Woofer) for low frequencies. to move back and forth. Loudspeakers are mounted in enclosures (boxes). To ensure that the correct frequencies go to the desired speaker. Figure 3-18 Diagrams of Speaker The two magnetic fields interact causing movement of the coil. Loudspeaker The most common type of loudspeaker is the MOVING COIL speaker. -25- . typically 4 or 8 ohms. The loudspeaker is a TRANSDUCER converting one form of energy to another. a Crossover Unit is used. In the diagram. The movement of the coil causes a cone. Therefore two speakers are used.

-26- . Figure 3-20 Electromagnetic Relay The magnetised core attracts the iron armature.12. When the coil is energised.Basic of Electronics Figure 3-19 Woofer and Tweeter configuration 3. The armature is pivoted which causes it to operate one or more sets of contacts. by passing current through it. When the coil is de-energised the armature and contacts are released. the core becomes temporarily magnetised. wound on an iron core. Electromagnetic relay The electromagnetic relay consists of a multi-turn coil. to form an electromagnet.

001 pico p 0. There are 1.000 kilo K 1. Relays can generate a very high voltage across the coil when switched off.000. The actual contact points on the springsets are available for high current and low current operation.001 nano n 0. The relay can also be situated remotely from the control source.000.000. 3.Basic of Electronics The coil can be energised from a low power source such as a transistor while the contacts can switch high powers such as the mains supply.o n.000. The REED RELAY has a much faster operation than the relays described above.000.c and c.000. This can damage other components in the circuit. Various coil operating voltages (ac and dc) are available. To prevent this a diode is connected across the coil.000.000. and 0. Figure 3-20 Relay position The springsets (contacts) can be a mixture of n.o.001 Ohms is the same as 1 picohm PREFIX SYMBOL MULTIPLICATION FACTOR -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------tera T 1.13.000.000.000 Hertz can be labelled 1 Terahertz. For example 1000.000. -27- .000.000 milli m 0.000 mega M 1. Value Multiplier In Electronics we use some very large and some very small values.000. Practice converting one to another.000. The cathode of the diode is connected to the most positive end of the coil.000 picofarad in 1 nanofarad.001 micro u 0.001 See that 1 microfarad is 1000 nanofarad. To make them easier to deal with we use MULTIPLIERS.000 giga G 1.000.000.000.

Basic of Electronics CIRCUIT SYMBOLS -28- .

Basic of Electronics -29- .

Discusses Parallel circuits and the result of putting resistors in parallel. Resistors in Parallel .Discusses series circuits and the result of putting resistors in series. in a parallel circuit? The result is the total resistance being lower than the lowest resistor. you must use this equation: Rt = (R1 * R2) / (R1 + R2) 4. So what is a series circuit? A series circuit means connecting components one after the other. 4.Discusses series circuits and the result of putting resistors in series. So when we say "Resistors in series".Discusses Parallel circuits and the result of putting resistors in parallel.2.1. Resistors in Parallel . What happens when resistors are placed side by side -.Basic of Electronics Chapter 4 Circuit Concepts • • • • Resistors in Series . Capacitors in Series .Discusses the result of putting capacitors in parallel 4.Discusses the result of putting capacitors in series. we mean connecting one resistor after the other: To find the TOTAL resistance. To calculate what the total resistance is. Resistors in Series . simply add up the resistance of the resistors in the series circuit. Capacitors in Parallel .in other words. Capacitors in Series -30- .3.

To find the total capacitance. use the following equation: Ct = (C1 * C2) / (C1 + C2) Notice that it's the same equation as resistors in parallel Capacitors in Parallel . Unlike resistors in series. 3pF.Discusses the result of putting capacitors in series.Basic of Electronics . 4pF.Discusses the result of putting capacitors in parallel Now if capacitors in series uses the same equation as resistors in parallel. and 5pF The total value is 2pF + 3pF + 4pF + 5pF = 14pF -31- . The total capacitance in a capacitor series circuit is less than the lowest capacitor in the circuit. how do you find the total capacitance of capactors in parallel? Right! You just add it up! So if there are 4 capacitors in parallel and their values are: 2pF. capacitors in series lowers the total capacitance.

there are many holes for plugging in components: The bread board has many strips of metal which run underneath the board that connects the component. They are very convenient since all you have to do is plug in the components. The blue strips shown in the illustration are usually used for connecting the batteries and the green strips are for the components. Soldering . The metal strips are laid out as shown below: Each strip is a connection. Breadboards are used for testing and experimenting with electronic circuits.1. Oh the surface of a breadboard. Using Breadboards . So whichever components connected to a certain strip are connected to eachother.Introduces the breadboard. 5.Discusses how to solder -32- .Basic of Electronics Chapter 5 Skills in Electronics 5.2.

Simply wait for the soldering iron to heat up. you can start soldering. you must tin the tip. even for a moment! Work in a well-ventilated area. The smoke formed as you melt solder is mostly from the flux and quite irritating. to solder the components onto the board. your work. Always return the soldering iron to its stand when not in use. The iron should have a heatproof flex for extra protection. Let the joint cool by itself. Now. Note that you'll probably want one unless you're the careful type and you're sure you won't burn up anything. Never put it down on your workbench. Stick the component's leads through the proper holes and bend it so that it'll stay still. what you need: • • • Soldering iron (around 25W) 60/40 solder and optionally a soldering iron holder. Avoid breathing it by keeping you head to the side of. Then apply the solder on the lead (not on the tip of the soldering iron). -33- . Now that you have your circuit boards. Take great care to avoid touching the mains flex with the tip of the iron. Solder contains lead which is a poisonous metal. Wash your hands after using solder. apply a coat of solder on the tip. and wipe it with a wet sponge. not above. Before you solder. They are very hot (about 400°C) and will give you a nasty burn. Put the soldering iron tip so that it's touching the lead and the copper at the same time. cut the leads at the proper length. An ordinary plastic flex will melt immediately if touched by a hot iron and there is a serious risk of burns and electric shock.Basic of Electronics First a few safety precautions: Never touch the element or tip of the soldering iron.

Basic of Electronics -34- .

If the joint has moved during soldering it will be dull and crinkly. A good joint is smooth and shiny. which should normally clean the joint. A dry joint is a poorly soldered one. The shape of the wire should be visible through the solder.The process should take only 2-3 seconds. It makes them difficult to remove. If you have taken too long it will have have solder spikes. The smoke you see is evaporating flux. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT !!! -35- . Spring component leads out just slightly. Reflow soldering is tinning two pieces of wire separately and then reheating to join them together. Heat the biggest part of the joint for 2-3 seconds. Tin the bit for good heat conduction.(This means putting a small blob of solder on the tip of the bit). Do not carry solder on the bit to the joint. Avoid overheating.This means a minimum of lead wrapping. Mount components so that value markings are visible. When using printed circuit boards avoid bending wires flat on the board. Tinning the bit. Apply solder to the joint not to the iron. to prevent them falling out during soldering. to keep the bit clean. Rest your hands on the workbench to steady them. Remove the solder.Basic of Electronics Cleaning the bit with a damp sponge. Remove the iron. Hold the iron like a pen. All soldered joints should be easily removable. Allow the solder to run over the joint without moving the iron. (use a small vice or sticky tape). Take precautions against the work moving. Heating the joint and applying the solder Use a damp sponge. frequently.

1 -36- . Many must be placed the correct way round and a few are easily damaged by the heat from soldering. dull and crinkly in appearance.(c) If there are spikes on the joint. (b) A bad joint is unevenly shaped. together with other advice which may be useful when soldering. Make the blobs all the same size and shape. A good joint is smooth and shiny.Basic of Electronics Don't allow the blobs to run into each other. Components Chip Holders (DIL sockets) Pictures Reminders and Warnings Connect the correct way round by making sure the notch is at the correct end. See (a). then you are taking too long to make the joint. Some components require special care when soldering. Appropriate warnings are given in the table below. When you can produce good results proceed to the next part of the exercise. Do NOT put the ICs (chips) in yet. not stand on it like a bead. The solder must run along the copper track.

The diagram may be labelled a or + for anode and k or . Transistors have 3 'legs' (leads) so extra care is needed to ensure the connections are correct. Connect the correct way round.for cathode.Basic of Electronics No special precautions are needed with resistors. These may be connected either way round. They will be marked with a + or . Take care with polystyrene capacitors because they are easily damaged by heat. yes. Connect the correct way round. Take care with germanium diodes (e. OA91) because they are easily damaged by heat. Connect the correct way round. this is one solid wire which is plastic-coated. Easily damaged by heat. Connect the correct way round. not c. buzzers 9 and other parts with their own wires -37- . it really is k. If there is no danger of touching other parts you can use tinned copper wire.g.near one lead. Use single core wire. this has no plastic coating and looks just like solder but it is stiffer. for cathode! The cathode is the short lead and there may be a slight flat on the body of round LEDs. Connect the correct way round. 2 Resistors 3 Small value capacitors (usually less than 1µF) 4 Electrolytic capacitors (1µF and greater) 5 Diodes 6 LEDs 7 Transistors Wire Links between 8 points on the circuit board. single core wire Battery clips.

soldering iron and solder sucker (desoldering tool). Leave ICs in their antistatic packaging until you need them. relays. Heat up the joint to be desoldered until the solder runs. stranded wire 11 ICs (chips) DESOLDERING COMPONENTS Tools required . It is often safer to cut the component leads and discard the component. Apply the solder sucker and remove the solder. an assembled printed circuit board may be worth several hundred pounds. Components cost a few pence. This should only take two or three seconds.pliers. At some stage you will probably need to desolder a joint to remove or re-position a wire or component. Ensure the iron is tinned. Ensure the joint is completely desoldered by wriggling the wire with a pair of pliers to check for freeness. then earth your hands by touching a metal water pipe or window frame before touching the ICs. In some cases desoldering braid is useful. Do not use single core wire because this will break when it is repeatedly flexed. Ensure the iron bit is well tinned. Take great care to avoid damage. Wires to parts off the circuit board. then desolder the leads individually.Check that all pins are loose on an integrated circuit. Many ICs are static sensitive. Place the iron on top of the braid and allow the solder from the joint to run up the braid. Place the braid on top of the joint. Working on a double-sided PCB (where copper tracks are on both sides of the PCB) is more difficult and requires more care. There are two ways to remove the solder: -38- .Basic of Electronics You should use stranded wire which is flexible and plasticcoated. variable resistors and loudspeakers. cutters. Carefully insert ICs in their holders: make sure all the pins are lined up with the socket then push down firmly with your thumb. Connect the correct way round. including 10 switches. If the operation is unsuccessful resolder the joint and then try again.

Cut off and discard the end of the wick coated with solder.Basic of Electronics 1. As the solder melts most of it will flow onto the wick. Wait a second or two for the solder to melt. If the joint will not come apart easily apply your soldering iron to melt the remaining traces of solder at the same time as pulling the joint apart. With solder remover wick (copper braid) Apply both the end of the wick and the tip of your soldering iron to the joint. then the soldering iron. Repeat if necessary to remove as much solder as possible. The pump will need emptying occasionally by unscrewing the nozzle. -39- . away from the joint. After removing most of the solder from the joint(s) you may be able to remove the wire or component lead straight away (allow a few seconds for it to cool). With a desoldering pump (solder sucker) Set the pump by pushing the spring-loaded plunger down until it locks. Apply both the pump nozzle and the tip of your soldering iron to the joint. Remove the wick first. Then press the button on the pump to release the plunger and suck the molten solder into the tool. 2. taking care to avoid burning yourself.

It can be daunting at first to use a meter. Multimeters are so named because they have the ability to measure a multiple of variables: voltage. The most common piece of electrical test equipment is a meter called the multimeter. and it is always best to proceed cautiously when using meters. This concern is not unfounded. knowing that you are connecting it to live circuits which may harbor life-threatening levels of voltage and current. however. the multimeter may become a source of danger when connected to a "live" circuit.Basic of Electronics Chapter 6 Safe Meter Usage Using an electrical meter safely and efficiently is perhaps the most valuable skill an electronics technician can master. and often many others. current. -40- . Carelessness more than any other factor is what causes experienced technicians to have electrical accidents. both for the sake of their own personal safety and for proficiency at their trade. resistance. In the hands of someone ignorant and/or careless.

There are three different sockets on the multimeter face into which we can plug our test leads.Basic of Electronics You will notice that the display of this meter is of the "digital" type: showing numerical values using four digits in a manner similar to a digital clock. The parallel lines represent "DC" while the squiggly curve represents "AC. Of the two "V" settings and two "A" settings." The "horseshoe" symbol is the Greek letter "Omega" (Ω). to measure DC than it uses to measure AC. or a dashed line with a squiggly curve over it. and the tips of the probes are sharp. one dashed). you will notice that each pair is divided into unique markers with either a pair of horizontal lines (one solid. two "A" settings. Test leads are nothing more than specially-prepared wires used to connect the meter to the circuit under test. The rotary selector switch (now set in the Off position) has five different measurement positions it can be set in: two "V" settings." The "V" of course stands for "voltage" while the "A" stands for "amperage" (current). and one setting in the middle with a funny-looking "horseshoe" symbol on it representing "resistance. which is the common symbol for the electrical unit of ohms. The wires are coated in a color-coded (either black or red) flexible insulation to prevent the user's hands from contacting the bare conductors. The meter uses different techniques. internally. stiff pieces of wire: -41- . and so it requires the user to select which type of voltage (V) or current (A) is to be measured. Although we haven't discussed alternating current (AC) in any technical detail. this distinction in meter settings is an important one to bear in mind.

" The red test lead plugs into either the red socket marked for voltage and resistance. First. depending on which quantity you intend to measure with the multimeter.Basic of Electronics The black test lead always plugs into the black socket on the multimeter: the one marked "COM" for "common. or the red socket marked for current. To see how this works. we'll set up the meter to measure DC voltage from a battery: -42- . let's look at a couple of examples showing the meter in use.

it is imperative that you not let the probe tips come in contact with one another while they are both in contact with their respective points on the circuit. In both of these examples. we'll take a look at an example of using the multimeter to measure AC voltage from a household electrical power receptacle (wall socket): The only difference in the setup of the meter is the placement of the selector switch: it is now turned to AC "V".Basic of Electronics Note that the two test leads are plugged into the appropriate sockets on the meter for voltage. If this happens. Since we're still measuring voltage. Now. creating a spark and perhaps even a ball of flame if the voltage source is capable of supplying enough current! The following image illustrates the potential for hazard: -43- . the test leads will remain plugged in the same sockets. a short-circuit will be formed. and the selector switch has been set for DC "V".

both AC and DC voltages and currents can be deadly. as they are set for one or the other when checking for voltage or current. As we have seen earlier. even if you're not expecting to find both! Also. Also. Using a multimeter to check for resistance is a much simpler task. The test leads will be kept plugged in the same sockets as for the voltage checks. you should be sure to check all pairs of points in question. but the selector switch will need to be turned until it points to the "horseshoe" resistance symbol. so when using a multimeter as a safety check device you should always check for the presence of both AC and DC. when checking for the presence of hazardous voltage. it must be remembered that digital multimeters usually do a good job of discriminating between AC and DC measurements.Basic of Electronics This is just one of the ways that a meter can become a source of hazard if used improperly. the meter should properly display the resistance in ohms: -44- . Touching the probes across the device whose resistance is to be measured.

the meter may even be damaged by the external voltage. If the test leads had no resistance in them. The "resistance" mode of a multimeter is very useful in determining wire continuity as well as making precise measurements of resistance. it uses a small internal battery to generate a tiny current through the component to be measured. By sensing how difficult it is to move this current through the component. the resistance of that component can be determined and displayed. When there is a good. faulty readings will result.Basic of Electronics One very important thing to remember about measuring resistance is that it must only be done on de-energized components! When the meter is in "resistance" mode. it would read exactly zero: -45- . In a worse-case situation. If there is any additional source of voltage in the meter-lead-component-lead-meter loop to either aid or oppose the resistance-measuring current produced by the meter. the meter shows almost zero Ω. solid connection between the probe tips (simulated by touching them together).

Basic of Electronics If the leads are not in contact with each other. the meter will indicate infinite resistance (usually by displaying dashed lines or the abbreviation "O. Thus. it is best to have the meter offer little or no resistance against the flow of electrons. or touching opposite ends of a broken wire.L. there are many mega-ohms of resistance -46- ." which stands for "open loop"): Another potential hazard of using a multimeter in its current-measuring ("ammeter") mode is failure to properly put it back into a voltage-measuring configuration before measuring voltage with it. In the voltage-measuring mode (red lead plugged into the red "V" socket). The reasons for this are specific to ammeter design and operation. any additional resistance offered by the meter would impede the electron flow and alter the circuit's operation. the multimeter is designed to have practically zero ohms of resistance between the test probe tips when the red probe has been plugged into the red "A" (current-measuring) socket. Otherwise. When measuring circuit current by placing the meter directly in the path of current.

Basic of Electronics between the test probe tips. the meter itself) from excessive damage. most multimeters have a warning feature by which they beep if ever there's a lead plugged in the "A" socket and the selector switch is set to "V". these fuses are primarily designed to protect the equipment (in this case. A multimeter can be used to check its own current fuse by setting the selector switch to the resistance position and creating a connection between the two red sockets like this: -47- .to voltage-measuring mode. and only secondarily to protect the user from harm. Like all overcurrent protection devices. though. All good-quality multimeters contain fuses inside that are engineered to "blow" in the even of excessive current through them.if the meter is then connected across a source of substantial voltage -. it's easy to spin the selector switch from the "A" to the "V" position and forget to correspondingly switch the position of the red test lead plug from "A" to "V". they are still no substitute for clear thinking and caution when using a multimeter. because voltmeters are designed to have close to infinite resistance (so that they don't draw any appreciable current from the circuit under test). The result -. When switching a multimeter from current. As convenient as features like these are. such as in the case illustrated in the last image.will be a short-circuit through the meter! To help prevent this.

what more is there to know? Plenty! The value and capabilities of this versatile test instrument will become more evident as you gain skill and familiarity using it. So now that we've seen how to use a multimeter to measure voltage. battery-powered circuits. There is no substitute for regular practice with complex instruments such as these. -48- .Basic of Electronics A good fuse will indicate very little resistance while a blown fuse will always show "O. so long as it's an arbitrarily low figure. The actual number of ohms displayed for a good fuse is of little consequence. so feel free to experiment on safe." (or whatever indication that model of multimeter uses to indicate no continuity). resistance.L. and current.

Infinity means no connection. Measuring Amperes An ammeter measures the flow of current through a complete circuit in unit of amperes. Caution: An ammeter must be installed in series with the circuit to measure the current flow in the circuit. Zero ohms on the scale mean no resistance between test leads. 7. All voltmeters have a large internal resistance so that the current flow through the meter will not effect the circuit being tested. If a meter set to read amperes is connected in parallel. current flows through the test leads and the difference in voltage (voltage drop) between the lead is measured as resistance. and they are very unlikely to affect the circuit under test. -49- . usually 10M. when the leads are connected to a component.0 Ω = zero resistance OL = an open circuit (no current flows) 7. the meter or the leads may be destroyed or the fuse will blow by the current available across the battery. All digital meters contain a battery to power the display so they use virtually no power from the circuit under test. required for measuring computer circuits. A voltmeter is connected to a circuit in parallel. Measuring Resistance An ohmmeter measures the resistance in ohms of a component or circuit section when no current is flowing through the circuit.1. is an open circuit.3. 7. Measuring Voltage A voltmeter measures potential of electricity in a units of volts. just as a water flow meter would measure the amount of water flow. The ammeter has to be installed in the circuit (in series) so that it can measure all the current flow in that circuit. such as across a battery.2. High-impedance meters. open and zero readings are as follows: 0. To summarize. This means that on their DC voltage ranges they have a very high resistance (usually called input impedance) of 1M or more. An ohmmeter contains a battery.Basic of Electronics Chapter 7 Using Digital Multimeter for Measurement and Testing of Electronic Components Digital multimeter and digital volt-ohm-miliamperemeter are terms commonly used for electronic high-impedance test meter. indicating that there is continuity path for the current to flow in a closed circuit.

Basic of Electronics -50- .

2a). When we distance the probes. either low or high in both directions.2. and a symbol for open circuit is displayed (this can be either 0L or 1).Basic of Electronics 7. When the multimeter shows low value.1. In the first case. and in the other it should be very high. buzzing stops. diode is ok if it's resistance value is very small in one. positive end of the diode is connected to one probe and negative end to the other probe (11. When we connect probes to each other. diode is faulty.4. as shown on 11. According to 11. and then it is turned around (11. If the value is equal to or near equal.2b). value should be very low. and should be replaced.1b. and display tells 0. -51- . Digital instrument has another method to test the diodes. and very high in other direction. multimeter should sound a buzz which signals a short circuit. diode's anode is connected to the positive probe of the meter (red probe). Testing Electronic Components 7. It has it's own switch position.4. Testing diode and Transistor with a multimeter When using an analog instrument to test a diode.

3a).Basic of Electronics Now we conenct probes to the diode (11. Then we rotate the diode and connect it again (11. -52- . you do the same thing. only with switched probes. Transistors are tested in a similar fashion. Diode is faulty if you hear a buzz (closed circuit) or some value which represents infinity.4a they are high. When testing PNP transistors. positive probe is connected to base. After that.3b). but the measurements should be opposite: on 11. and the negative probe is first at the collector and then emitter afterwards.4b. since they act as two connected diodes. all steps are the same.4c they are low. both cases should produce a high value on the meter. and the anode is the end of the diode which is connected to probe A (red one). in both cases resistance should be low. one of the two measurements would have shown a value which represents a minimum voltage that could be conducted through the diode (between 400mV and 800mV). and if both of them are functional – transistor is functional as well. According to 11. Both diodes should be tested in described way. negative probe is connected to the base and you test collector and emitter with a positive probe. and on 11. If the measured diode was ok.

Basic of Electronics If you test transistors using a digital instrument.3. it is a certain sign that the coil is either poorly connected or the curls are disconnected at some point. There is. for example.4. this means that the collector current is 74 times higher than the base current. and it's value lays in range between several tens of ohms (in high power transofrmers) to several hundreds of ohms. high power means low resistance. Secondary resistance is lower and is in range between several ohms to several tens of ohms.8mm will do fine) should be soldered to transistor's pins and then plugged into the instrument. When the positive end of an electrolithic capacitor is connected to a positive probe of an analog instrument. display shows a value which represents the current amplification coefficient. and a -53- . even to kiloohms (in low power transformers). and is wound using a thinner wire.5. In case when there is a need to test high power transistors. transistor is plugged into specified slot according to it's type (PNP or NPN) and the switch on the instrument is brought into position with a hFE marking. Since the primary coil has more curls than the secondary one. As displayed on 11. If. a special plug where low and medium power transistors fit nicely. Many modern day digital multimeters have a tool for direct transistor check. In case transistor works. 7. Eexceptions are electrolithic and very high value block capacitors. Capacitors DC capacitors should produce an infinite value on the instrument.5. where the principle of inverse relations is still in place. process remains similar to the one with diodes. 7.4. Coils can be tested in the same way as transformers – through their resistance. transistor BC140 is tested. Infinite resistance still means disconnected coil. and the display shows 74. thin wires (0. All principles remain the same as with transformers.4. In case an instrument shows an infinite value. as displayed on 11. Each diode should produce a value between 400mV and 800mV. it's resistance is higher. Transformers and coils Grid transofrmers are tested by measuring the resistance of the copper wire on the primary and secondary coil.

because by only connecting the probes there should be a short noise heard. Other Semiconductor Devices To test diodes using this circuit. When using an analog instrument on the speakers. it is worth mentionig that the capacitors have considerably wider tolerance than resistors. Of course. this behavior should be linear – jumps and twitches in values mean that the component is not working as supposed to. their variable coil has either 4 or 8Ohms in most cases. speakers would produce loud noise or no sound at all while pot is being turned.7.4. Electret microphones don't produce the noise. not much of attention is being paid to the value shown on the actual instrument. Testing process is shown on 12. process is rather simple – you connect the component to probes of an ohm-meter and turn the shaft. (“Noisy” pot can be repaired using a special spray. speaker is broken.5. With this said.Basic of Electronics negative end to a negative probe. which simplifies the process to comparing the value on the capacitor to the one on the display.4. And another source of trouble could be the built-in FET amplifier. headphones and microphones When testing speakers. we fall back to the diode theory of operation: when anode is positive comparing to the cathode (red probe on anode. 7. and turning the rotor. If there is no noise. Potentiometers To test a potentiometer. because any other value is a certain signal that the plates of the rotor and stator are connected which means that the component doesn't work. or a variable resistor. needle jumps to the lowest value and then gradually comes back towards infinity. whole diode acts as a low value resistor. If that component was to be used in some audio amplifier. which means that speaker sound is higher than usual. Needle should point infinity at all times. (Even small capacitance components get charged while testing. and should be practiced only if there is no replacement for that potentiometer) 7. Same goes for headphones and dynamic microphones. black on cathode). This is a proof that the capacitor is ok. in the opposite direction. and the needle's movement is the charge stored in the component being discharged.6 Speakers. -54- . sound is lower because in that direction diode acts as a high value resistor. any other value means that the component is faulty. and the meter should show those values. There are digital instruments that have the ability to measure capacitance. so the needle doesn't have the time to move.4. which goes even to 20%. and values should do what component's name says – vary. but this is not a good solution since it is weak and short-lived. or oil or even a graphite pencil.) Variable capacitors are tested by connecting an ohm-meter to them. but their discharge time is very short.4. 7. On the other hand. or a pot.

FET testing is done in similar fashion as testing the bipolar transistors. Probe A is connected to the collector of the transistor. transistor is faulty if speaker remains silent in the first two measurements. “music” would have been heard. or diode's anode or one side of the photo resistor. In both cases. -55- . As you can see. photo transistors and diodes is NL-NM (or. if the transistor is ok. which is shown on 12. We displayed graphically the method of testing photo sensitive components on 12. transistor is functional as well as shown on 12. and then probe B is connected first to the emitter.6. everything is in order.Basic of Electronics DC transistor acts in the same fashion as two connected diodes (11.5.7. and the other one is connected to transistor's emitter or diode's cathode or the other resistor's side and some kind of sound should be heard from the speaker. No Light – No Music).4a). We then switch probe connections. So. A goes where B was connected to and vice versa. or if it “plays” in one of the second two measurements. If this continues when the component is shadowed using your palm. If both diodes are functional. One principle that is applicable when testing the photo resistors. if there is no music now. probe A is connected to the base. and then to the collector. everything is in functional order.

but your nerd level will certainly rise sky high if you are able to tell resistor's value from bare sound. closed switches. coils. With transformers with several secondary coils there is a possibility to find beginning and the end of each of them. headphones. transformers. Base rule is: if component is intended to conduct electricity. So with some experience using this instrument on various resistors it will be possible to tell the resistance of the resistor in question from only the generated sound. If component doesn't conduct electricity. it is apparent that different resistance values give different output sound.8.4. When testing different resistors. then music would have not been heard. This may be easier and more accurately done using regular ohmmeter on your multimeter. so absence of sound while testing tells of some coil connection failure.Basic of Electronics 7. -56- . speakers. or open switches. sound will be heard. This is the case with resistors. transformers and such conduct electricity. fuses. And from the sound frequency one is possible to tell which coil is primary and which is secondary. or two copper wires on the circuit board which shouldn't be connected. like capacitors. like different electro motors. Checking other components Many other components may be tested using this instrument. Components which have coils in them.

-57- . where higher values give longer sound time. Tone generated by connecting these capacitors to the instrument will change in level and frequency and fade until completely off when capacitor is discharged. especially the larger ones.Basic of Electronics Functional capacitor will generate no music. which allows for a crude approximation of the component's capacitance. An exception are electrolithic and block capacitors. Length of playing depends on the capacitance of the component.

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