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While waiting for the rain to stop so a can do more drilling for a Holton amp for another SNA member I put together yet another Tripath T4 class D based on a chassis I prepared many years ago for another amp. 
 

All it required for me to do was up the voltage from the Tranni taps and install a T4 module I happen to have. Sounds excellent as all T4s do with that inner warmth, and should produce about 100W of music. 
 

Good once more to use up parts which have been around for many years. T4 module is new but as above the chassis, DA49DB81-6A14-4C87-BB30-81BA1B080EB5.thumb.jpeg.4b7e9ae9a9547093f4aae20a2ebec160.jpegthough in as new condition, has been around for years. 

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1 hour ago, mwhouston said:

While waiting for the rain to stop so a can do more drilling for a Holton amp for another SNA member I put together yet another Tripath T4 class D based on a chassis I prepared many years ago for another amp. 
 

All it required for me to do was up the voltage from the Tranni taps and install a T4 module I happen to have. Sounds excellent as all T4s do with that inner warmth, and should produce about 100W of music. 
 

Good once more to use up parts which have been around for many years. T4 module is new but as above the chassis, DA49DB81-6A14-4C87-BB30-81BA1B080EB5.thumb.jpeg.4b7e9ae9a9547093f4aae20a2ebec160.jpegthough in as new condition, has been around for years. 

Should add;- 30,000uf of filter cap, RFI/EMI IEC socket for clean power and lid lined with bituminised heavy Al for resonance control and some on base.  Retained the Motorola ultra fast/soft recovery diodes. And the T4 s have speaker crowbar protection. Feed straight from my DIY DXD DAC. 

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13 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

Should add;- 30,000uf of filter cap, RFI/EMI IEC socket for clean power and lid lined with bituminised heavy Al for resonance control and some on base.  Retained the Motorola ultra fast/soft recovery diodes. And the T4 s have speaker crowbar protection. Feed straight from my DIY DXD DAC. 

You would be better off with a really nice smps, and some filtering caps and then a nice rfi/emi iec socket, smps will give better regulated power. 

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34 minutes ago, itsparks said:

You would be better off with a really nice smps, and some filtering caps and then a nice rfi/emi iec socket, smps will give better regulated power. 

Not sure the PS needs to be regulated. Not a fan of regulated PS in the audio path. Usually warmer sound with linear PS. That’s how I’ve found it and all I’ve read agrees. 

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1 hour ago, itsparks said:

You would be better off with a really nice smps, and some filtering caps and then a nice rfi/emi iec socket, smps will give better regulated power. 

 

 

While I agree, I think you will find that audiophile ideology often grates against the usual sound engineering practices (pun intended :) )   Maybe someday I will hear it, but I have yet to discover why everyone is so keen on linear power supplies.  It's a fairly new flavour of belief, but very popular. Many will swear it sounds "better".

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1 hour ago, aussievintage said:

 

 

While I agree, I think you will find that audiophile ideology often grates against the usual sound engineering practices (pun intended :) )   Maybe someday I will hear it, but I have yet to discover why everyone is so keen on linear power supplies.  It's a fairly new flavour of belief, but very popular. Many will swear it sounds "better".

PS resilience is what I’m adhering to. Robustness. With my tube gear, choked PSs, even some low power SS Class A amps high current chokes.  Stiffer supplies without more noisy electronics. But to each his own. 

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9 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

PS resilience is what I’m adhering to. Robustness. With my tube gear, choked PSs, even some low power SS Class A amps high current chokes.  Stiffer supplies without more noisy electronics. But to each his own. 

 

Not that 'robustness' and 'stiff' are electrical engineering terms except as a general description, but regulation "stiffens" power supplies, assuming you mean, they do not sag with increasing load.    From that criteria, again, a switching supply may well do even better.

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25 minutes ago, niss_man said:

 

The examples given for when the lower noise of a linear supply may be warranted, are for equipment a step above the audio world.  It is the realm of laboratory measurement equipment etc.  Audiophiles may consider the very highest end stuff to be up there, but that is debatable.   To be PC I have to say IMVHO

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1 hour ago, aussievintage said:

Maybe someday I will hear it, but I have yet to discover why everyone is so keen on linear power supplies.

 

I suspect your bias won't allow you to make this discovery, av.  xD

 

1 hour ago, aussievintage said:

It's a fairly new flavour of belief, but very popular. Many will swear it sounds "better".

 

I would suggest it's as old as ... the time when SMPSs were first introduced?  Which shirley is 20 years ago?

 

People shouldn't "swear it sounds better"/"swear it sounds worse" - they should do the experiment!

 

My own experiments are as follows:

  1. My miniDSP 10x10HD came with a 12v Meanwell SMPS.  I then tried a 12v Sbooster (linear PS) instead - and this delivered better sound.  (Not only to me but to my 'golden-eared' panel who were listening at the time.)
  2. I subsequently tried the 12v Meanwell on a 'Paris' head amp that I had just completed for a member here.  It produced an unacceptable level of noise - in contrast, a 12v Sbooster is dead silent!
  3. This had a different outcome!

I trialled 5 different PSes for my Number9 TT motor speed controller - so something which is not a signal-passing device!  The SQ was judged as follows (a higher number = better SQ):

  1. 48v Meanwell SMPS
  2. 48v linear PS (made to a Hugh Dean design)
  3. an SLA supply - 2 parallel strings of 4x 12v SLAs in series
  4. the linear PS - but with an isolating transformer + hash filter between it and the wall socket
  5. the Meanwell - but with an isolating transformer + hash filter between it and the wall socket!

So you can get a better result - in some instances - when you use a SMPS ... as long as you have some ancillary equipment.  (Yes, I should really try a 12v Meanwell plus an isotran+hash filter on my miniDSP unit!  :) )

 

Andy

 

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13 minutes ago, andyr said:

I suspect your bias won't allow you to make this discovery, av. 

 

Your terminology "bias", not mine.  And you are the one with bias, not me.  You are biased against switching.  I am saying they can both work.  Just that it's not necessary to throw away an good switching supply for a linear one in the belief the sound will improve.

 

13 minutes ago, andyr said:

So you can get a better result - in some instances - when you use a SMPS ... as long as you have some ancillary equipment.  (Yes, I should really try a 12v Meanwell plus an isotran+hash filter on my miniDSP unit!  :) )

 

 

 

In MANY instances. The mistake often made is to assume the typical switching supply is a good well made switching supply.  As you say, even a cheap one (meanwell?) can perform well with additional corrective circuitry.

 

13 minutes ago, andyr said:

The SQ was judged

 

Yeah I know. Properly conducted DBT, right?

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I guess retro-thermionic (me) has its way of doing things which seems to work for both of us and many, many, many others would agree.

 

But and a big butt, there is always a chance for a change. At this point that change is a way off and the “retro-thermionic” sound and it’s way of doing things will remain. Class D may not be retro but adding the retro “sauce” seems to make it feel retro, warm and enjoyable. Linear PSs in not retro electronics like Class D maybe that bridge which can bring newer electronics to the audio fore. And after building dozens of high powered “D” (all sold at this point except this latest) myself and others seriously enjoying them, I’m not about to change. 

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3 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

But and a big butt, there is always a chance for a change. At this point that change is a way off and the “retro-thermionic” sound and it’s way of doing things will remain. Class D may not be retro but adding the retro “sauce” seems to make it feel retro, warm and enjoyable. Linear PSs in not retro electronics like Class D maybe that bridge which can bring newer electronics to the audio fore. And after building dozens of high powered “D” (all sold at this point except this latest) myself and others seriously enjoying them, I’m not about to change. 

 

I won't deny that a particular sound may appeal, and being compliant with the current audiophile lore may also help sales.

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36 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

 

I won't deny that a particular sound may appeal, and being compliant with the current audiophile lore may also help sales.

I have to ask. What of your gear has SMPSs?

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3 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

I have to ask. What of your gear has SMPSs?

 

Good question.  Let's see.   My analogue SS phono preamps,   my digital phono preamp,  my D10 DAC (I presume) ,  the power amp in my home music studio (which I used as a desktop amp for a long time - way overkill)), the Tripath amp I use for the low freq biamping with my SET,    my moOde streaming box,  my home theatre/soundbar/subwoofer,       my modelling guitar amp , my DAB+ radio, even the Google home streamer.

 

These days, it's most things except the valve gear I build myself - for obvious reasons, I build linear supplies for high voltage.  

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2 hours ago, aussievintage said:

 

Good question.  Let's see.   My analogue SS phono preamps,   my digital phono preamp,  my D10 DAC (I presume) ,  the power amp in my home music studio (which I used as a desktop amp for a long time - way overkill)), the Tripath amp I use for the low freq biamping with my SET,    my moOde streaming box,  my home theatre/soundbar/subwoofer,       my modelling guitar amp , my DAB+ radio, even the Google home streamer.

 

These days, it's most things except the valve gear I build myself - for obvious reasons, I build linear supplies for high voltage.  

Which Tripath do you have. I’ve used the hifimediy T4s and mono T3s. 

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10 hours ago, mwhouston said:

Not sure the PS needs to be regulated. Not a fan of regulated PS in the audio path. Usually warmer sound with linear PS. That’s how I’ve found it and all I’ve read agrees. 

You realize that your linear psu aka Transformer Bridge & cap bank, has issues with class d that need some current to keep up the proper rail voltage right ? 

 

You also know some of the best amplifiers on the market such as Bryston and others like DIY use a regulated PSU for the front end because it helps stabilize the amplifier ? 

 

You also know that most of your gear that has a power supply in it is regulated too right ?

 

Class A/b & D both like to use regulated psu's, where as a Class d likes to see a stable voltage/ current.  A SMPS will deliver both of these because it adjusts for voltage / current drop keeping the rail voltage stale for the amplifier to run properly. 

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9 hours ago, aussievintage said:

 

Good question.  Let's see.   My analogue SS phono preamps,   my digital phono preamp,  my D10 DAC (I presume) ,  the power amp in my home music studio (which I used as a desktop amp for a long time - way overkill)), the Tripath amp I use for the low freq biamping with my SET,    my moOde streaming box,  my home theatre/soundbar/subwoofer,       my modelling guitar amp , my DAB+ radio, even the Google home streamer.

 

These days, it's most things except the valve gear I build myself - for obvious reasons, I build linear supplies for high voltage.  

I’m interested to hear more about your biamping setup - what speakers & Xover arrangement?

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9 hours ago, mwhouston said:

Which Tripath do you have. I’ve used the hifimediy T4s and mono T3s. 

 

A different rebadge, but the same as https://www.tnt-audio.com/ampli/dayton_dta100_e.html

 

It's based on the TK2050 chip.  It's just the right size as the bass half of my biamping with low power SET amps.

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1 hour ago, crtexcnndrm99 said:

I’m interested to hear more about your biamping setup - what speakers & Xover arrangement?

 

As above, it is a low power system.  6B4G DHT (same as 2A3) SET amps driving the tweeter and mid,  TK2050 Tripath driving the bass.   The speakers are Osborn Eclipse,   and I am just using the inbuilt crossovers. The mid and tweeter drivers are about 95db efficient, so work very well with the small SET.   The inbuilt crossover limits the bass driver to 125 Hz I believe.    Maybe it's fairer to describe it as a 2 way plus sub-woofer?  But Osborn put it all in one cabinet, and provide the dual terminals for a typical bi-amp setup. 

 

I figure I am getting the benefit of the SET sound, with the class D control of the bass.

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39 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

 

As above, it is a low power system.  6B4G DHT (same as 2A3) SET amps driving the tweeter and mid,  TK2050 Tripath driving the bass.   The speakers are Osborn Eclipse,   and I am just using the inbuilt crossovers. The mid and tweeter drivers are about 95db efficient, so work very well with the small SET.   The inbuilt crossover limits the bass driver to 125 Hz I believe.    Maybe it's fairer to describe it as a 2 way plus sub-woofer?  But Osborn put it all in one cabinet, and provide the dual terminals for a typical bi-amp setup. 

 

I figure I am getting the benefit of the SET sound, with the class D control of the bass.

Interesting, thanks for the description. 
 

Also @Batty , is the sub for the ML-1s the new project? So many projects in that shot.. 

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6 hours ago, itsparks said:

linear psu aka Transformer Bridge & cap bank,

 

To examine that further...

 

The audiophile linear power supply seems to be of fairly rudimentary topology.  You do see chokes sometimes, and I am fairly sure Mark uses chokes.  Some people  actually seem to hate 3 terminal regulators, but even given that, there are many alternatives not seen often.   

 

They beef them up with huge quantities of capacitance - often WAY more than is required.  It is not a calculated value, just more is better.  They do often choose quality components however.  Maybe this speaks more to reliability than sound - improved sound being the questioned variable here.  You also see big electros bypassed by small caps and snubber caps on rectification.   

 

I would describe it as a return to DIY power supply design of the 70s (IIRC) with some tweaks.

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15 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

 

To examine that further...

 

The audiophile linear power supply seems to be of fairly rudimentary topology.  You do see chokes sometimes, and I am fairly sure Mark uses chokes.  Some people  actually seem to hate 3 terminal regulators, but even given that, there are many alternatives not seen often.   

 

They beef them up with huge quantities of capacitance - often WAY more than is required.  It is not a calculated value, just more is better.  They do often choose quality components however.  Maybe this speaks more to reliability than sound - improved sound being the questioned variable here.  You also see big electros bypassed by small caps and snubber caps on rectification.   

 

I would describe it as a return to DIY power supply design of the 70s (IIRC) with some tweaks.

I would agree with you 100%  i see alot of people building psu's but are not calculated properly, but they randomly just stuff in HUGE "UF" caps thinking this will solve it all, in reality it doesn't. 

I used a few nice CRC properly calculated PSU setups in my Class A amps.

 

I recently learned that Class d with a Linear psu such as  TX - Bridge rectifier - cap bank isn't and wasn't good as the Class d amplifier brought down the voltages causing SAG and giving worse performance than a SMPS. 

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16 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

 

To examine that further...

 

The audiophile linear power supply seems to be of fairly rudimentary topology.  You do see chokes sometimes, and I am fairly sure Mark uses chokes.  Some people  actually seem to hate 3 terminal regulators, but even given that, there are many alternatives not seen often.   

 

They beef them up with huge quantities of capacitance - often WAY more than is required.  It is not a calculated value, just more is better.  They do often choose quality components however.  Maybe this speaks more to reliability than sound - improved sound being the questioned variable here.  You also see big electros bypassed by small caps and snubber caps on rectification.   

 

I would describe it as a return to DIY power supply design of the 70s (IIRC) with some tweaks.

Agree that often there is way too much capacitance. I go for 80,000uf of 100v caps in my 300W Holtons. I can turn my power off and it will play for about 10 seconds after. I figure 80,000if is more than enough. I have been told by a professional amp builder that anything over 30,000if is useless. But funny thing is that they themselves have 250,000uf in their amps. It may just be a sales ploy I think.

 

Also there is some evidence that having higher voltage caps than required provide better filtering/ storage. My caps are 100V for an 80V rail. My caps are dirt cheap but bass and transparency in my Holton amps is extremely good. And yes I snub all I can and add small polies (4.7 to 10uf) on the first cap and solder the bridge direct to the first cap for maximum current flow. What ever the hell I’m doing seems to work. 

 

 

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3 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

Agree that often there is way too much capacitance. I go for 80,000uf of 100v caps in my 300W Holtons. I can turn my power off and it will play for about 10 seconds after. I figure 80,000if is more than enough. I have been told by a professional amp builder that anything over 30,000if is useless. But funny thing is that they themselves have 250,000uf in their amps. It may just be a sales ploy I think.

 

Also there is some evidence that having higher voltage caps than required provide better filtering/ storage. My caps are 100V for an 80V rail. My caps are dirt cheap but bass and transparency in my Holton amps is extremely good. And yes I snub all I can and add small polies (4.7 to 10uf) on the first cap and solder the bridge direct to the first cap for maximum current flow. What ever the hell I’m doing seems to work. 

 

 

Wait a second, you arn't using any speaker protection ?  

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11 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

I have been told by a professional amp builder that anything over 30,000if is useless.

 

Any rule of thumb is (virtually) useless.  The criteria should be how much ripple you see under full load, and whether that is appropriate for the device being powered.

 

11 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

Also there is some evidence that having higher voltage caps than required provide better filtering/ storage.

 

Interesting.  Link?

 

 

Edited by aussievintage
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6 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

 

Any rule of thumb is (virtually) useless.  The criteria should be how much ripple you see under full load, and whether that is appropriate for the device being powered.

 

 

Interesting.  Link?

 

 

I’ll see if I can find it. 

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12 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

No. 

I mean his amplifiers are really stable and i woulden't use a SSR either "BUT" the nice thing about his ssr is it disconnects the amplifier from the speaker when turned off so you don't get any dc into your speakers.  IMO ribbon's die from these types of little dc spikes :) 

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3 hours ago, crtexcnndrm99 said:

Interesting, thanks for the description. 
 

Also @Batty , is the sub for the ML-1s the new project? So many projects in that shot.. 

Sub is transmission line only 50 watt plate amp atm but power amp is only 25 watts so atm is enough.

The standmounts are LK1 not ML1

 

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Hate is not a too stronger word when it comes to how I feel about tapping. The waltz I’m fine with but tapping, no way. 

ABDE00B3-99A6-4F1E-A3F3-8763FCF6D738.jpeg

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13 hours ago, mwhouston said:

Hate is not a too stronger word when it comes to how I feel about tapping. The waltz I’m fine with but tapping, no way. 

ABDE00B3-99A6-4F1E-A3F3-8763FCF6D738.jpeg

 

I can sympathise with that, when tapping aluminium (it's a bit like chewing gum). But in my last job, I'd probably tap between 20 and 50 holes a day, in stainless, and maybe that many in mild steel. Mostly between 3M and 6M threads. I found using the tap in a cordless drill on low speed, with plenty of cutting compound, was the easiest option.

 

On harder metals (Staino or mild steel) I like Rocol, especially if using a cordless drill. For brass, copper and even aluminium I use Trefolex. And for small threads in ally, I sometimes just use WD40 or Ardrox Water Displacement Oil.

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In the absence of specialised lubricants, I find that methylated spirit works well for tapping aluminium. It keeps the metal from sticking to the tool and itself. That’s what we were taught to use as apprentices some 40 years ago.

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21 minutes ago, Steffen said:

In the absence of specialised lubricants, I find that methylated spirit works well for tapping aluminium. It keeps the metal from sticking to the tool and itself. That’s what we were taught to use as apprentices some 40 years ago.

After two office jobs lasting twenty years each and two retrenchment I worked in a factor for three months where we made massive industrial blinds. There I was taught turps was the preferred lube for tapping Al. I have turps but the sowing machine oil is on hand so I use it. Funny part is when this amp is complete the HSs run to near 40C and for the first few days all you can smell is the oil burning off. 

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Everyone has their preference and over the last three Holton builds (this is my seventh) I have used sticky silly pads. I know some like mica insulators etc. but after a very successful module to HS assembly I’m staying with the stickies. 
 

I spent a lot of time and extreme care marking, drilling and tapping the HS to ensure best FET to HS alignment for easy assembly. A new 2.5mm drill helped with tapping holes. 
 

By placing the stickies over the fasting bolt and adhering them to the back of the FET first. Then carefully bring them up to the HS and mounting the modules it was the very easiest and best I’ve ever ever done. Must remember this for next time. What an eighth  Holton amp??.?

 

I’d like to know who mounts thier modules high up, in the middle on the HS or low down and why? Any preference? 

FFE9382A-D824-4662-8EEA-9AD17B33C836.jpeg

AC3B7F34-20C8-4DA5-97C2-E9C3664C1515.jpeg

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In The centre, coz that is where the tapped holes were.

1761531402_M2xinitialbuild.thumb.jpg.cd3f4e05a5c71af1e5ac9ae9c8eb96ca.jpg

1875531999_M2xfinalbuild.thumb.jpg.50531610f277acf712dcb281c6baf18b.jpg

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5 hours ago, Batty said:

In The centre, coz that is where the tapped holes were.

1761531402_M2xinitialbuild.thumb.jpg.cd3f4e05a5c71af1e5ac9ae9c8eb96ca.jpg

1875531999_M2xfinalbuild.thumb.jpg.50531610f277acf712dcb281c6baf18b.jpg

So true. If some other idiot has gone to all the trouble to drill and tap I’d be using those holes to. Anyone who thinks electronics is a hot iron and cold beer has never made anything substantial.  You have to get down and get dirty with drill presses, hacksaws, tin snips, sanders paint cans etc. Then the magic appears. 

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41 minutes ago, mwhouston said:

So true. If some other idiot has gone to all the trouble to drill and tap I’d be using those holes to. Anyone who thinks electronics is a hot iron and cold beer has never made anything substantial.  You have to get down and get dirty with drill presses, hacksaws, tin snips, sanders paint cans etc. Then the magic appears. 


oh, man. I can solder to get me by but all that other stuff is what keeps me coming back

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