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AX84 P1

This is our old projects area, and is provided for reference. If you're starting on a new build, please click on one of the other projects areas to your left

This project is undergoing maintenance. Some files may be missing or out of place while this is being completed.


The P1 is a simple tube amp modeled after the classic small guitar amps of the 50's and 60's. It's designed to be a managable project for the first time builder while still offering a satisfying result. An understanding of the dangers of electricity is required to build this amp, but it has been successfully built by a number of people with no previous amp building experience. Although it is a practice amp, you can certainly mic it and use it in a gig.

Be sure to check out the pictures and sound clips below of various flavors of this amp as built by real people.


  • 12AX7 preamp tube provides two stages of preamp gain.
  • EL84/SV83 power tube in Class A, Single Ended configuration provides a very loud 5 watts or so of output power.
  • Bass, Mid and Treble tone controls.
  • Single knob gain control increases the amps volume while increasing the amount of overdrive. It doesn't get a pristine clean tone or a raging death metal tone, but occupies that warm territory in between. Use the amp with a distortion pedal for added flexibility, or use the volume knob on your guitar to vary the amount of power-tube overdrive.

Revision 06.02.23 (02/23/2006) is the current version of this project. It includes a few clarifications over the previous build and features the addition of an axial board layout.

Revision 05.11.23 (11/23/2005) is the previous version of this project. It includes a variety of clarifications over the previous build (Rev 11) in addition to being reworked to be more similar to our other projects.

A Kit for this project is available... Please visit

Skill Level: beginner --- Status: Ready to Build.
Primary Documents:
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: The P1 Theory Document - although this refers to an old rev (10) of the P1, this information is required reading for understanding the basics of a simple tube amp. : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: Rev 05.11.23 (11/23/2005 of the P1, P1-eXtreme, Hi-Octane Build Guide : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: Rev 06.02.23 (02/23/2006) of the P1 Bill of Materials : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: Rev 06.02.23 (02/23/2006) of the P1 Schematic : [download]
•ZIP ARCHIVE: Rev 06.02.23 (02/23/2006) of the P1 templates and layouts : [download]
•ZIP ARCHIVE: This archive contains all of the primary documents for revision 05.11.23 of this project : [download]

Variation Schematics:
•SCHEMATIC: Winfield Thomas' Clean P1 Variant using a 6l6 output tube (3/15/2005) : [download]
•SCHEMATIC: P1 Rev 10 Schematic as referenced by Dave Sorlien's Theory Document. (Superceded by Rev 11 for new builders) : [download]
•SCHEMATIC: P1 Rev 11 Bill of Materials (for reference only- superceded by newer version) : [download]
•SCHEMATIC: P1 Rev 11 Schematic (for reference only- superceded by newer version) : [download]

•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: An example of a terminal strip layout. Mark Searles took the photos of Chris Hurley's DMP build and drew this layout to show where to mount tranformers, sockets, etc... This may not match your parts exactly, but it shows you one way to use terminal strips for point-to-point wiring (as opposed to an eyelet/turret board) : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: Gary Anwyl's P1 construction guide. If you're using a board, this has been partially replaced by the P1/HO/P1x builders guide, but this still has good information in it. : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: The initial usenet posting that started the AX84 project : [download]
•DOCUMENT: Chris Hurley's recollection of the first amp build : [download]
•DOCUMENT: Original 'Modifying the P1 for SV83 Use' document : [download]

•IMAGE: Carl Berger's P1 Amp : [download]
•IMAGE: Carl Berger's P1 Amp : [download]
•IMAGE: Chris Hurley's first amp : [download]
•IMAGE: Chris Hurley's first amp : [download]
•IMAGE: Chris Hurley's P1 Rev 11 : [download]
•IMAGE: Chris Hurley's P1 Rev 11 : [download]
•IMAGE: Chris Hurley's Rev 11 P1 Wiring in Small Case : [download]
•IMAGE: Chris Hurley's Rev 11 Top View, Small Case : [download]
•IMAGE: Dave Sorlien's P1 Build : [download]
•IMAGE: Dave Sorlien's P1 Build : [download]
•IMAGE: Dave Sorlien's P1 Build : [download]
•IMAGE: Don Stamper's super-sharp P1 combo : [download]
•IMAGE: Front View of Randall Aiken's P1 Build : [download]
•IMAGE: Ken Ritchie's AX84 P1 Amp : [download]
•IMAGE: Ken Ritchie's AX84 P1 Chassis : [download]
•IMAGE: Nick Greer's P1 innards : [download]
•IMAGE: Nick Greer's P1 outside : [download]
•IMAGE: Pic 2 of Stephen Crown's REAL cool P1. : [download]
•IMAGE: Pic of Stephen Crown's REAL cool P1. : [download]
•IMAGE: Rear View of Randall Aiken's P1 Build. : [download]
•IMAGE: Tommyd3's P1 Rev 11 Amp, Top View : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Chris built something similar to Winnie's Clean P1 variant for a gent with a 6l6. This was recorded by the condenser mic in a Zoom PS-02 with reverb added at that point. : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Chris Hurley's P1 Rev 11 audio demo 1 : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Chris Hurley's P1 Rev 11 audio demo 2 : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Eli's P1 (Nov 2003) "It has some delay on it, and the amp is pushing a Weber Silver Bell speaker" : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Real cool demo tune by Charlie Lamm and his P1 : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Some P1 Audio from Nick Greer : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Tommyd3's P1 Rev 11 Amp, post-mic reverb added : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Winnie demonstrates the P1 distortion and compares the EL84 to a 6v6 output tube : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Winnie explores some clean tone with a P1 equipped with a non EL84 tube : [download]
•MPEG AUDIO: Yet another P1 Audio Clip from Chris Hurley (rev unknown) : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: Brendan Mayer's parts document gives lots of help abou parts : [download]
•ADOBE ACROBAT DOCUMENT: Nigel Kirkby's account of building a P1 first on PCB, then other methods : [download]
•DOCUMENT: A collection of mods for the P1 (assembled by Phil Rowley) : [download]

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