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Getting Started in Electronics Paperback – February 1, 2003


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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Forrest M. Mims, III, has written dozens of books, hundreds of articles, invented scientific devices, and travelled to the Amazon for NASA. He loves to share his knowledge with eager students!
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Master Publishing, Inc. (February 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0945053282
  • ISBN-13: 978-0945053286
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 8.2 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Thanks very much to Amazon's reviewers or for their kind comments about my books. "Getting Started in Electronics," which has sold more than 1.3 million copies, seems to have received the most attention, so I'll comment on it here.

The book was developed during a 58-day marathon session of laying out the book and then drawing/printing the pages with a 0.7 mm mechanical pencil. It was then necessary to develop and test each of the 100 circuits. Each circuit was built and tested at least three times to avoid errors. The final round of tests was done directly from the hand-lettered text. The problem with the final testing was that many of the circuits could be built from memory without referring to the circuit diagrams in the book. This, of course, could have allowed errors to slip through. So it was necessary to check off each connection to make sure the book version was correctly reassembled from scratch.

This was the first Radio Shack book that was entirely hand-lettered. Dave Gunzel, then Radio Shack's technical editor, decided it was time for a fully hand-lettered book, and I was glad to oblige. "Engineer's Notebook," which preceded "Getting Started in Electronics," was introduced with several typed pages before full hand lettering was begun. It was Dave's idea to introduce these books, which eventually led to the "Engineer's Mini-Notebook" series. Dave used to witness science entries in my hand-lettered lab notebooks, and those notebooks triggered his idea for me to do the hand-lettered books.

A full list of my books, scientific papers, magazine articles and newspaper columns is at www.forrestmims.org. My scholarly history of Hawaii's Mauna Loa Observatory will be published by the University of Hawaii Press. I am planning a popular version of the Mauna Loa Observatory book and a memoir about my work as a serious amateur scientist.

Forrest M. Mims III
www.forrestmims.org

Customer Reviews

This should be everyone's first book on electronics.
Jason D. Kridner
For beginners it is a very good book, very easy to understand the basic electronics concepts.
Marcos Brazio
All of the Mim's books I have read are all very well written and easy to understand.
jomud

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

238 of 241 people found the following review helpful By Chris O on December 13, 2004
Format: Paperback
I cannot overstate the impact this book has had in my life.

My dad bought me a copy of this book when I was in 7th grade.

22 years later, I'm working in the electronics industry, and I keep my original copy handy for reference or explaining electronics concepts, and I regularly buy additional copies to give to coworkers and friends who need a crash course in electronics. There are some other books (_The Art of Electronics_ for instance) that I hold almost as dearly, but while I'm sure people can come up with flaws in this book, it's been on my shelf for more than half my life.

It literally got me started in electronics.
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93 of 96 people found the following review helpful By Jason D. Kridner on January 18, 2007
Format: Paperback
I read this book when I was 10. I went on to college and got a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering and work in the industry. Never in my education and experience have I run across a better book on electronics. It is very limited on math and won't teach you how to solve circuits, but it will give you a conceptual framework that helps the math make sense.

The book has lots of practical examples that you can implement to get the "feel" of electronics. Many of these exercises are ones that folks in the industry haven't managed to do and it shows in their work. This should be everyone's first book on electronics.
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126 of 141 people found the following review helpful By David Ivey on August 8, 2007
Format: Paperback
I wanted to learn electronics but I ended up being frustrated. Almost every beginning level electronics book explains 'what' resistors, capacitors, diodes, and other electronic components are and how they work. However, they all fall short of explaining 'why' these components are found in any particular electronic circuit. This book is no different.

I can look at a schematic and build what I see, but I have no idea why the circuit was designed the way it was designed. WHY does a capacitor need to be placed between this IC pin and that component? I believe my lack of knowledge is a result of not yet finding the right book to give me that knowledge. Mim's book gave me some of the 'what' but is sorely lacking on the 'why'. Unfortunately most beginning electronics books suffer from the same problem.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By quirmche on October 13, 2010
Format: Paperback
Forrest Mims is the man when it comes to conveying basic electronics. I like his style of presenting the material in a brief clear and concise way. The drawings are top notch! This book is excellent for all ages, so no fear in grabbing this book and thinking it is "for kids".

My only issue with the book is it really hasn't been updated in two decades. Can you believe it? With the explosion of newer electronics on the market in recent years and it hasn't even been revised and updated. ARRRGGGHHHH!

Anyway, don't let that steer you away because everything contained in the book is still relevant today!

NOTE: A more complete "teach yourself" complement to this book is the "Electronics Learning Lab" from Radio Shack. It looks like a kids toy but, for about $69.00 you get a great kit for building circuits that demonstrate all the material he explains in this book. Additionally, the Learning Lab comes with TWO additional Forrest Mims books on Analog and Digital Circuits. Both books are written in the same easy to grasp style as this one.

Good Luck!
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By T. Weghorst on November 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
Hands down the best book for anyone who wants to learn about electronics. Easy to read explanations laid out in the correct order to learn easily by building onto previous examples. Simple projects that are not only fun to build, but many can become useful in the home and your new lab.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Robert Hull on June 19, 2008
Format: Paperback
This was the first book on electronics I ever remember buying. I "discovered" it at the local Radio Shack in the early 80's while attending Navy electronics training. Thankfully this book and its writer, Forrest M. Mims, III made the challenging world of electronics accessible and best yet, fun. With the help of this book, I survived the Navy's training (thank you Forrest!) and it sparked a love for electronics that continues to this day.

Especially good for beginners, I strongly recommend this book for anyone looking to feed their electronics interest. In just 128 pages, Mr. Mims with his simple writing style, great explanations and numerous easy-to-make circuits makes the magic of electronics seem possible. Buy several copies because once you read it, you will want to share it. Just be sure to always have at least one copy for yourself.

Robert Hull
Director of Technical Services
TubeDepot.com
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Erik Miller on September 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
This book is the first one to read if you want to learn about electronics.

Forrest Mims is a giant in the field of hobby electronics writing and I am glad that his classics are still in print. I was concerned when Radio Shack stopped publishing his books, but all the best stuff (the Engineers' Notebooks are indispensable as well) has been reissued.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By R. Grass on January 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
My 10-year-old son asked for an electronics book for xmas and I stumbled across this book online. So far it has been the perfect book for him. It has handwritten text with playful illustrations that make it very accessible. Also, the author presents the information very logically and builds on earlier concepts. I believe he is a professor and if this book is any indication, he is a very good teacher. My son and I read this together and thus far the level of complexity has been just about right - challenging but very manageable. The later chapters do look more daunting but so far, so good.
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