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Electronaut Lab

(see map below for directions)

EARS is both privileged and excited this month to be invited into the secret laboratory of the ELECTRONAUT COMPANY, the brain child of inventor/audio designer Rob Roy M. Campbell. Tucked away in an industrial neighborhood, the lab is the birthplace of the handsome meticulously hand built M63 dual channel tube microphone/instrument pre-amplifier.


At fifteen Rob Roy started playing drums in a punk band, and by 19 was touring in the US and Europe, playing drums and guitar in various bands. One day in 1998 he randomly walked into Ian Schneller's Specimen Products (recall our EARS meeting at Specimen in May 2011) and within ten minutes his life had changed forever.  Prior to that he had no idea that making electronics was something that could be done on such a personal level and Ian's meticulously hand built guitar amps just blew his head off.

lethal voltage ! Within a month Rob Roy was assembling PAIA kits, and within a year he was building tube amp projects from Kevin O'Conner's books.  He spent several years making everything that came to mind:  guitar amps, bass amps, spring reverb units, and oddball plate reverbs. He taught himself a lot of other things like 3D modeling, welding, circuit board design, sheet metal fabricating, test & measurement techniques, etc.

Electronaut was incorporated in 2002. Rob Roy's long term goal was to phase out of his computer work day job and phase into electronics work full time. This transition was completed in late 2008, not entirely intentionally, as his main computer client went out of business.

Tubes Galore ! Suddenly he was forced to try and make a living doing electronics, which he was nowhere near ready to do. This led to some freelance product design for other companies including an LA-2 style opto compressor, a 500-series preamp based on a vintage console design, a vari-mu compressor knockoff based on the Altec 436, and some console work. Electronaut finally overcame all of the logistical challenges and began producing its flagship product, the M63 tube mic/instrument preamp. As of today, there are 45 units in the world in twelve different countries.  There are many other designs in the works that will become products in the near future.

Lab Side View Rob Roy is very knowledgeable about tubes as used in audio circuits and will speak on how thermionic emission was discovered and how influential Chicago was in the development of audio technology. (Most people don't even know that the vacuum tube was invented right here in Chicago!) There will be discussion about some of Chicago's early contributions to audio recording, something we can all be proud of.


It's that time of year again...

We would like to take a moment to say THANK YOU to our members who have made EARS possible over the years and hope you will consider renewing your membership with EARS TODAY. As of October 30th, all memberships will expire* (The same night as our meeting at Electronaut... what are the odds?)

*(If you are a NEW MEMBER and joined AFTER April 24th 2012, then your membership extends through October of're good !)

We are asking you to renew your membership
with EARS...

And there's never been a better time to do so. Our low membership dues are still only $40 a year for a premium professional membership.... and boy do we have a great year lined up for YOU !

Because after all, EARS is for and about YOU...

- YOU are passionate about music and sound
- YOU have a desire to learn about audio recording, theory, and related disciplines
- YOU support our vibrant music and recording community and so do we !
- YOUR membership makes EARS possible
- 85% of our budget comes directly from members like you
- WE thank you for your past support and hope you will consider joining again
- WE are providing you with an even bigger button to press below. Here ya go !

Big Button

Doctor T
"Fact: most household injuries are the result of unclicked buttons, Fool !"
"Whenever a button isn't pressed, an angel gets a me on this one"
"You're going to look pretty silly with that button sticking out of your ass!"


-> This meeting is open to everyone, EARS MEMBERS and non-members alike

-> Start time = 7:30p.m.

-> STREET PARKING is available on OAKLEY next to the building

-> Food fare and Adult beverages will be offered at this meeting.

-> You can join or renew your membership at the event itself


-> You can join or renew anytime by clicking HERE:

-> At the beginning of the meeting, EARS will once again open the floor for nominations for President for our upcoming election.
333 N. Oakley Map

EARS Pirate Logo

EARS is proudly sponsored by:

Shure Inc.
Vintage King

Join or Renew your membership with EARS here.

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