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Where to learn to start reading schematics and knowledge of electronics Answered

Im just a noob here and everything, dont know all that much about electronics and stuff, but the idea of making all these little gadgets (like an altoids tin ipod you can use anywhere) seems really cool, interesting and most off all very useful. Do you guys have any ideas of how I can start to assemble a basic knowledge of like circuits and stuff and of electronics. Not adavced stuff to start off, just like if I wanted to make something like a porximity detector, or like a microphone bug (thatl send what it hears in one room to a reciever in a diff room), basic stuff like that.


by Forrest M Mims, the old version from radioshack is dirt cheap at amazon:
However I heard about www.amazingwatcher.com which is a free website that will “watch” items for you on Amazon and let you know when amazon has them in stock at regular retail price.

I HIGHLY suggest the AARL handbook. They're pretty cheap (<$20) and are FILLED with knowledge. It starts out with all of the basics, the theory, and general circuits, and the gets into detail about radio stuffs. If you're not into the radio stuff, you still have the essentials =)

I love my AARL ;)


. If you meant ARRL, then I heartily agree. Have to agree with Goodhart on both points.

D'OH..... sorry, I wrote that at 12 AM, which is probably why I wrote AARL... Yes, I did mean ARRL. Thanks, NachoMahma! Once again, you've saved the day!

There you can actually get "information overload", but yes, I agree, lots and lots of good stuff in there.

Great author. I'll 'unify' this thread somewhat (Mims and 555s), and say that Forrest M. Mims III also wrote a nice 'Engineer's Mini-Notebook' for 555 timer circuits. Really simple and thoughtful instruction, with lots of different 555 timer circuits. Radio Shack used to sell it as an 'Archer' publication. Maybe they still do?

I strongly agree, the book is one of my all time favorite, great for beginners..

. Yeah! I have several small books by him. Great stuff.

I have several of his books (one on amps/op-amps, timers, and I believe one on CMOS devices).


10 years ago

I recommend The Art of Electronics by Horowitz and Hill. It starts at the beginning (voltage, current, resistance) and covers just about everything you'll need to build most of the electronics projects you'll see here (or anywhere else). Some chapters are better than others, but it's still the book I go back to most often.

. A lot of ppl start out with 555 timers, a small handful of capacitors and resistors, and a few LEDs. You can build little blinky-light circuits and get an idea of how things work. Google 555 schematic (I suggest reading the Wikipedia entry first, to get an overview - don't worry about the details).

I agree with NachoMahma, 555 timers are a great introduction to electronic circuits. Also, get a Breadboard prototyping board to assemble your circuits on. Cheers, Pat. Pending