How To Build A Guitar Amplifier From Scratch

Did you know that you can learn how to build a guitar amplifier from scratch? Building a guitar amplifier from scratch can save money and by building it yourself you can customize it to fit your specifications instead of a corporations view of what is best for your amplifier. You do not need to have a large background in electronics or a large budget. Learning how to build a guitar amplifier from scratch can also lead to a rewarding side business.

To build a guitar amplifier from scratch you will need:

  • Blueprint or design for an amplifier box

  • Screwdriver

  • Wrenches

  • Pliers

  • Amp instruction guide. These can be found at most music stores.

  • Electrical wire

  • Clamps

  • Speaker

  • Pre-amp

  • Power amp

  • Knobs and switches

  • Plywood

  • Hammer

  • Nails

  • Black felt or other fabric covering.

  • Wood glue


  1. Construct the guitar amplifier box from scratch using plywood. Build your guitar amplifier box according to your measurements or box blueprint. You can also use another guitar amplifier box as a guide. Ideally you will have had plywood cut to fit or cut the plywood yourself at this point. Using a hammer and nails, fit the box together and secure with wood glue. Cover the guitar amplifier with black felt or other fabric covering. You can also choose to leave the covering until the end of the project.

  2. Install the pre-amp device. The pre-amp is the area of the guitar amplifier where the amplifier box knobs and switches will be located. The bass and treble controls are handled by these knobs and switches. The pre-amp also controls the receiving of any electronic signals coming from the guitar.

  3. Install the guitar amplifier box power amp. The power amp takes electronic feeds from the pre-amp and sends them through the speakers. Your amplifier instruction guide will be able to walk you through each step of installation. Any wires or special pieces for building the amplifier box power amp from scratch will be with the amplifier kit and instruction guide.

  4. Install the guitar amplifier box speakers. You can choose any speakers that fit your design tastes. This part of the building process allows for total customization of your guitar amplifier box. Keep in mind that as the speaker gets larger so does the sound output.

  5. Perform a sound and system check. Before calling this project a success you will want to check the guitar amplifier box you just built from scratch. Hook up your guitar and begin playing around with different bass and treble sounds. The idea is to make sure that both the bass and treble play and that any controls work properly.

Building your own guitar amplifier from scratch should only take an afternoon. Companies like Crutchfield offer free amplifier manuals that will make setting up individual components of your guitar amplifier box easier. These manuals may also give you some customization ideas for your project.

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