how to learn electronic circuit design

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Xufyan, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. Xufyan

    Thread Starter Member

    Aug 3, 2010
    Sometime i wonder what the hell resistor is doing in this circuit, sometimes i just confused seeing the internal circuitary of simple lamp or any other simple household items that can be build using a single switch and a battery then what the hell transistors and capacitors are doing there ?? i am just curious to learn circuit designing

    is there any book that teach us how to create your own circuits or simply circuit designing ?

    i am doing telecom engineering and we have so many eletronics subjects like Opamps and Osciallator, Electric Circuits, Electronic devices etc... but our teacher says since you're going to be a telecom engineering you'll not be taught circuit design :confused:

    without circuit designing these subjects are useless to learn,
  2. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    Consider an artist verses someone who can "paint by numbers." The latter person is just doing rote fill in work, but if they keep at it then it may click way down deep how colors interact, how the impression of shapes and shading can play together, and the "why" that cannot be taught may spring to life and they begin to paint outside the lines and create new fresh art.

    Engineering can be broken down into analysis and synthesis. In analysis one learns how things work, how to calculate what a given device or circuit may do.

    Synthesis is very different as it starts with a desire and a blank piece of paper. One may know of certain established building blocks to do some functions but eventually something brand new must be created. How that new thing comes about I cannot tell you, for me it comes fourth whole from some silent part of my brain, as if that muse was not part of me.

    My muse does need to be fed, a constant stream of facts and details that are left to silently peculate and arise unbidden with some new design. It cannot be forced.

    Analysis can be taught, and it is analysis that feeds the muse.

    Synthesis cannot be taught.

    Learn whatever your teacher can teach you, it is not a futile effort.

  3. Wendy


    Mar 24, 2008
    Cookbooks are good ways to learn how other people solved problems, which is why I like them so much. After a while, you can use the alternate solutions in your projects.

    You hear people talk about "thinking outside the box". Many times this is code that they want to do something that isn't possible, but what it should mean is looking for ways to solve a problem that is not immediately obvious.

    For example, suppose you need a flasher where the battery life is a major issue. Do you really need alternate LEDs on all the time, or if they alternated and were on for a fraction of the time solve the battery life issue?
  4. Adjuster

    Late Member

    Dec 26, 2010
    Simple electrical appliances like electric lamps can be made without electronic gadgetry, as they were in the past. More sophisticated devices, like a lamp that lights when you touch it, or when the room gets dark, need more complex circuits. There is a value judgement as to whether the added cost, complexity, and potential unreliability is worthwhile.

    Your best course for now may be to do your best to learn the things that your teacher is willing to teach you, and think about more advanced things only once you have a better grasp of the basics.
    Captain Cycle likes this.
  5. Sparky49

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 16, 2011
    You might be surprised at what you can design - you just have to have a 'problem' to utilise your knowledge. Even with some basic knowledge you can do some pretty cool things. A lot can be done with some transistors, op amps and logic gates.

    When designing a circuit, think about what you want it to achieve. Then how do you think the circuit will do this? Start simple. What power source will you be using? A 9V battery? Sketch it down.

    Then what? A status led? Draw that down, but remember it needs a resistor to 'protect' it. Does the circuit need to count for a certain amount of time after some sort of trigger? If so, think what you can use. Perhaps a 555 timer in monostable. Draw all that out.

    See how by taking little steps you can create your own circuit? It may not be a super-dooper all-singing all-dancing circuit with a hundred ICs and crystals and bluetooth and all that stuff, but it's a circuit that you have made.

    I say, get a real grasp of the basic concepts, and then tweak them, join them, do whatever to create your own circuit. Good luck!:)
  6. Crispin


    Jul 4, 2011
    Nail on the head I think.

    I used to tinker, read endless books, studied electronics at school (some 20 years ago) but never really did anything great.

    My current solar project is a problem that needs a solution. I am having great fun designing and building it with knowledge I knew way back when (an lots of new stuff)

    Once you have a real problem / project you need a solution for, that is when you can be creative and use the seemingly disconnected ramblings your teacher is teaching you.
    Sparky49 likes this.
  7. EclecticElectric

    New Member

    Aug 3, 2011
    I absolutely agree with the above posts, there is a completely different perspective when you are trying to achieve something specific. Asking yourself the question "what goes into an electric circuit" can lead to endless possibilities and make it seem overwhelming. However, if you ask yourself "what goes into the circuity of a lamp" (using the example from above), it narrows it down quite a bit.

    Best of luck!