Monthly Archives: September 2014

in memory of peter gutteridge

I have added a song for Peter Gutteridge, a Dunedin musician who died on Monday September 15 2014.

I knew Peter over a period of about 15 years when I lived in Dunedin. His music has been quite influential on mine. In particular, you should be able to spot drones, repeating riffs, simple fuzzy leads and distorted organs laced throughout my songs. Peter had a view that you should always be able to sustain a single note throughout a song, and that everything could revolve around that.

On they surface of it these are characteristics of many bands but they combine in a unique and visionary way with Peter’s most well known band Snapper, one of those never-heard-by-the-populace but enormously-influential-across-the-world bands.

I chose to say my piece in a song, others are better writers:

Honor Harger – Farewell Peter Gutteridge

Grant McDougall – In Tribute: Peter Gutteridge and the Hypnotic Groove

Ian Henderson – Universe of Love by Peter Gutteridge

Andrew Geddis – He’s just one of those people born in the wrong time

hamptone tube mic pre

This was one of my first “proper” DIY projects, the valve (or tube) mic pre designed by Scott Hamptone and kindly made public. I built two channels with my own layout – part of the fun is turning the schematic into a physical design – and even forked out for an expensive Jensen input transformer on one side. I built this some years ago, and have rescued the pictures from the void known as google sites, used back in the day before the complex engine got going.


My vocal mic is pretty much permanently patched into this then a DIY vari-mu limiter. I can’t really give a meaningful description of how it sounds – my goal was to build something that would be good and then use it, not to obsess over whether it was “better” than say the solid state variant of the circuit, which is known as the FetBoy. There is more to be had from improving my singing than improving the preamp.


Like most of these things, it is not difficult to build if you have accumulated a bit of experience on simpler projects and you are careful. Not for beginners though – life threatening electricity etc.

In progress, the small vertical pcb is similar to the JLM Go-between, and provides phantom, pad and polarity.

diy hamptone insides

Another view, one channel completed. The green wire ensures that there is always a good connection between the faceplate and the rest of the chassis. The faceplate is not actually screwed in, it just sits in a couple of slots. Without this wire I got a lot of intermittent buzz type problems.

hamptone tube pre 3b

As specified by Scott, all the power comes from an external PSU. The heaters are DC in series.

hamptone tube pre 4b