Carlson's Super Probe

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Introduction: Carlson's Super Probe

About: Hi, i'm electronic technician but it's my hobby too. I like to do and try many projects just for fun :)

Hi everyone, recently i made the "Carlson Super Probe" and i'd like to share with you how to do this!

First of all, listen Paul's video. You will see why you should build this probe, how sensitive that is. Also if you like electronic you should see Mr Carlson patreon page here: https://www.patreon.com/MrCarlsonsLab and maybe support him.

So let's begins!

Step 1: Schematics

Here are the schematics. Those are exactly the same you saw in the Mr Carlson's lab video. If you find something different, just tell me.

Step 2: ​Doing the Probe

For the probe shell, i used copper. Go to hardware store and buy those pieces. The pipe size is 4/3 inches.

Step 3: Electronics Parts

You will need some specific part. This are the digikey part number. All capacitors and resistors are normal 0805 except for C2 and C5. those one are tantalum 1206.

I did a downloadable cart. To using it, go to digikey, cart and upload the csv file.

Probe Parts:

-----------------------------

The little switch:

CKN9559-ND OS102011MA1QN1 x1

-----------------------------

Pot 100k

CT6EX104-ND CT6EX104 x1

----------------------------

capacitor 1206 22uf x 3

‎TAJA226K010RNJ

----------------------------

capacitor 4.7uf 0805 x 2

1276-1065-1-ND

----------------------------

capacitor 360pf 0805 x 1

‎C0805C361J5GACTU

----------------------------

diode x1

1N5711WS-FDICT-ND

----------------------------

Transistor 3904 sot23 x 6

MMBT3904LT3GOSCT-ND

----------------------------

Light bulb (optional) to put on supply vr. See Video 42:00 min

CM683-ND x 1

----------------------------

.01uf 50v 0805 x 3

‎CL21B103KBANNNC

---------------------------

.1uf 50v 0805 x 2

‎CL21B104KBCNNNC

---------------------------

Led LED BLUE 2.9mm x 1 Note: any led can do

‎VAOL-3LSBY2

---------------------------

Resistor 3.3M 0805 x 5

‎ERJ-6GEYJ335V

---------------------------

Resistor 1k 0805 x 4

‎RNCP0805FTD1K00

--------------------------

Resistor 15k 0805 x3

‎CRGCQ0805F15K

--------------------------

Resistor 2.7k 0805 x 1

‎CRGCQ0805F2K7

--------------------------

Resistor 330k 0805 x 1

‎CRGCQ0805F330K

--------------------------

Resistor 10k 0805 x 1

‎CRGCQ0805F

---------------------------

---------------------------

Amplifier Parts:

--------------------------

1uf 0805 x 1

1276-1066-1-ND

---------------------------

capacitor 1206 22uf x 2

‎TAJA226K010RNJ

---------------------------

capacitor .01uf x1

‎CL21B104KBCNNNC

---------------------------

capacitor 4.7uf 0805 x 2
1276-1065-1-ND

----------------------------

Here are pot without switch. It's very cheaper.

Pot 4.7k x1 (i choose 5k)

987-1736-ND

----------------------------

Pot 2k x1

987-1727-ND

------------------------------

resistor 22k x3

311-22.0KCRCT-ND

---------------------------
Resistor 1k 0805 x 1

‎RNCP0805FTD1K00

--------------------------

resistor 68k x1
A126382CT-ND

--------------------------

resistor 100 0805 x1

311-100CRCT-ND

----------------------------

Transistor 3904 sot23 x 1
MMBT3904LT3GOSCT-ND

----------------------------

Amplifier chip x 1
LM4871MX/NOPBCT-ND

----------------------------

toggle switch on/off

EG2350-ND

----------------------------

Step 4: Probe PCB

To do the pcb, just print and etch the carlson probe.pdf. Refer to the component location to solder the part. You do not need to etch a double side pcb. The bottom side is ground, except for swtich, led and one pin of the pot. Refer to the probe bottom picture.

Step 5: Make Encavure

Make an encavure and solder the pcb right in the middle. Try and adjust the size of pcb to fit in the pipe.

Step 6: Install Wire

Here i'm using a mouse cable. You can use a headphone or mic cable if you like. Keep in mind that the probe will move very often. So use an appropriate cable. You will have 3 wire coming out from this Probe. Supply, Gnd and audio.

Step 7: Put the Probe in a Shell

For now i used black tape. But i'l probably put a little machine screw or a bit of solder.

Step 8: Probe Amplifier.

The pcb is single side. You can refer to the picture as per component location. Another picture is also available below in gerber section.

Step 9: Amplifier in a Box Plus Holder

Choose an appropriate box. I took an old power supply box and some paint.

Step 10: Conclusion

This is the whole project at the end. The speaker is where the psu fan was. The probe itself is very sensitive and a must to have it. I hope you will enjoy the project. See you!

Step 11: Gerber File.

In addition, these are gerber file. You can upload those files to a pcb manufacturer. You can see the future result here: https://gerber-viewer.easyeda.com/ by uploading the file.
Those picture can be use as component location.

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    76 Discussions

    0
    adhmzaiusz
    adhmzaiusz

    2 months ago

    Hi, I started building this and found after ordering that the digikey cart only has 2x 4.7uf ceramic capacitors when 4 total are required if building the amp board too. You should fix the cart since all the other amp parts are on it too. Also, certain items there are way too many of while others there is exactly enough...

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 8 weeks ago

    Cart is now fixed to 4x 4.7uf thanks for the feedback. Some parts was cheaper on buy by 10x so yes some part are too many. It's up to you to adjust the cart before. Bye

    0
    YKLOU
    YKLOU

    Question 2 months ago on Introduction

    Hi,
    I am a beginner and this is my first project. I have completed the built and I am getting the audio sound. However, the audio sound is heard on both the audio and RF mode but with noise. The audio is louder in one mode vs the other. I am not getting the crackle and pop sound when I run a screwdriver against a metal surface as shown by Mr Carlson on both mode. Any idea what I have done wrong that might cause this.
    Thanks for sharing.

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Answer 2 months ago

    Hard to tell just like that.

    0
    slotube
    slotube

    7 months ago on Step 11

    Many thanks for sharing. Your parts
    list was a time saver. Nice job on the
    Probe.

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 7 months ago

    Your welcome, thank you for your comment.

    0
    jord4231
    jord4231

    10 months ago

    Hey thanks for doing this, I'm a pateron for carsons lab but having the files to get jlc pcb to make the pcb certainly made my first smd project a lot easier. I used your file to upload to digikey I only got 2x 4.7uf caps doing it this way and had to get some more. All the same the end result was fantastic. Here in australia I used curtain rod and ends from bunnings for the probe :) thanks again

    my version.jpg
    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 10 months ago

    Very good design, good work. Last week i fixed an amplifier rotel with this probe. Was probing at output and i found directly where the problem was. Very handy to have. Your welcome.

    0
    ghull07
    ghull07

    Question 11 months ago

    Yes it worked! I saved the bill of materials to my digikey account and it added everything automatically. I’m going to check it carefully with my parts list from Mr. Carlson’s print out… Just to double check before I order. But so far it looks good and the cost only came to $15usd!!! I can’t believe how cheap the parts were… I already have an old Heathkit probe body set aside and a nice little enclosure.

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Answer 11 months ago

    Enjoy! Yes double check is a good idea, sometime i can do mistake ;) but should be ok. I choose not expensive part. Some was more cheaper to buy 10x so...

    0
    ghull07
    ghull07

    Question 11 months ago

    Thank you so much for all of your hard work here! I’ve been wanting to make this one for a long time… I’ve made all of his other designs and this one was kind of intimidating. I use his low-voltage leakage tester more than almost anything! And I am now ordering the parts for the recent power supply upgrade he posted!

    Is there A bill of materials for the super probe anywhere? The leakage tester had a bill of materials that was posted by another member… i just clicked on it and it took me straight to digikey & Automatically added all of the parts and quantities to my cart… without spending hours entering the part numbers, & checking my work.
    I wish a bill of materials was offered with every design because that has been my stumbling block on each build!!! I would Gladly pay extra!


    I’m Sorry to take your time, but I have another important question… I’ve made several of his DC blocking protection boxes. Not sure if you know what I’m talking about… But he designed two different ones a year or two ago… In a very small Hammond 1551G box. There are two separate circuits and I have built two of each one for my lab.

    Each Circuit has 215 V Zeaner diode‘s… but i don’t know which Zener to use. It just says to use 15V Zener diode‘s… But there are thousands of different 15v zeners and he didn’t give any specification. Is it a regular Zener or a TVS ZENER?

    I’m so Sorry to bother you, but I hope you can answer this for me and I really appreciate all of your feedback and activity in the patreon community. So many of the tips and extra information I’ve used has come from you! I Recognized your name as soon as I found this article! I always look forward to your input when he comes up with a new design.

    Thanks again!
    I Included a picture of the designs where I need to know what diode to use.

    FBDFB344-3416-4FF7-AC7B-2F82285EB475.jpegC1ADAB38-79A1-44D7-A54D-0AC8CC7DF9AB.jpeg
    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Answer 11 months ago

    I did a digikey downloadable cart. check in parts section.

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Answer 11 months ago

    Hi :) Thank you for the gentle comment. I know exactly what you are talking about. Those zener diode are for protection and can burn anyway if bad thing happen. It's why Paul said to install those one in a easily accessible area if you must replace it. It's regular zener diode but a few watts will help. This should be fine 1N5352BG 5w zener diode 15v or 1N5929BG 3 watts. You can even install 500mw but, you will have more chance to break it if a high voltage happen at the probes. So why not install 5w :)

    For downloadable cart i'll see what i can do.

    0
    frustratedfool
    frustratedfool

    1 year ago

    Hi. Thanks for taking the time to do all this work. Can I just confirm the following (from all the comments): On the Probe, C5 should be 100uf, C10 should be .01uf and on the Amp, C1 should be 1uf and C5 is optional? Also, on the Probe PCB, the back has two separate ground planes, whereas you say the back is one entire plane. Are they separate for a reason? Should they be joined via the copper shell? Also on the front of the Probe PCB at the tip, there are two isolated square copper pads - what did you use these for? thanks.

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 1 year ago

    Hi, the schematics are good. trust the schematic and pcb. No need to jump anything. The probe will be working fine. But at the end, Paul same to have replace C6 22uf by 100uf and c5 is now removed. He put a bulb lamp to protect the probe supply. In case of short circuit, the lamp will turn on. But yes it's optional.

    0
    frustratedfool
    frustratedfool

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thanks for the swift reply. There are two isolated ground planes on the back of the Probe PCB - are they supposed to be kept separate or can they be linked (via the shell for example?)

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 1 year ago

    There are only one gnd plate is on the back (the larger one) and yes this GND should be connected to the probe shell.

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 1 year ago

    Gnd

    probe gnd.PNG
    0
    tbone8
    tbone8

    Question 1 year ago

    Hi, got the amp all assembled and in a box. I powered it up and connected it to a speaker. Nothing smoked or blew up thankfully. There is a tone that comes through the speaker that is fairly loud and doesn't sound good. Hoping this is normal without the probe connected to it? Thanks!

    0
    Yannick99
    Yannick99

    Reply 1 year ago

    Not sure, i never try the Amp without the probe.