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NEW GIESELER 12v ENHANCED PSU

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NEW GIESELER ENHANCED PSU

Well I thought it was time to re look at my PSU range. The current range IMHO is still competitive & up to date with current tech but I did think the Gold Tune Enhanced version could be improved a bit in terms of sound & more competitive pricing. It was a bit of a struggle to hear a sound difference between say the Gold Tune & Gold Tune Enhanced versions so the $100 price jump was not really justified.

So far all my PSU’s  use high quality/low noise LDO (low drop out) monolithic regulators. This is the area where the most development is happening with new regulators.  Now looking critically at LDO regulators they do have one aspect that is not the best for audio quality – output impedance. To minimise the voltage drop all LDO regulators run the regulators series device (Mosfet or Transistor) in a common base arrangement, that is the collector (or drain) is the output. This gives the lowest voltage drop but also has high output impedance which is not good for a PSU. This new enhanced PSU is running the series device (Transistor) in “Emitter Follower Mode”. This gives very low output impedance but it needs more voltage at the input due to the bigger voltage drop across the transistor. Also there has been talk on some UK forums that the usual monolithic regulators using lots of negative feedback do tend rob the sound/music a bit.

 

In light of all of this I have come up new design using all discreet components & the pass transistor is now running in “Emitter Follower” mode hence nice low output impedance. Also it is a non feedback design based on a very low noise red LED string voltage reference being fed with a constant current source. The raw DC front end of the design is the same as the Kraftwerk Gold Tune which is well optimised IMHO. It does not have the thermal cut-out, short circuit protection & huge 4 Amp rating of my other designs  but these options are not normally required when running Klein/Gross/Fein DAC’s which only draw a few hundred milliamps.

 

 Does it actually sound any better? Well I have only done a few brief comparisons against a standard Kraftwerk PSU & it definitely sounds better than that. After Christmas I will try some critical comparison with the Gold Tune version & old Enhanced versions & report back.

The current rating is 2A & so plenty for Klein III/Gross/Fein DAC’s. Also with the Gross/Fein DAC’s it is best to use the 16v 2.5A transformer (in photos) as they draw more current. The Klein III will work fine with the usual 12v transformer. The 16v transformer has another nice option which a direct mains earth connection so when using this PSU negative side is now at mains earth. John Swenson of Uptone Audio fame is a big fan of having a PSU negative output connected to mains ground.

Well there are few SNA’s members who are already using this PSU so maybe they can add some comments. Due to the massive amount of Nichicon Gold Tune capacitors the red LED’s run for quite a while after the PSU is switched off – see photos.

They are currently in stock & the cost is $500 including shipping. 

 IMG_0471.thumb.JPG.7ea4b9f2b616e4db93f06ee757eb88d9.JPGIMG_0474.thumb.JPG.7e976765d24d46fe39e2606d442522e9.JPG

Edited by Gieseler Audio

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I used this excellent power supply for my Uptone Audio EtherREGEN, reviewed here

What I liked was the ability of the Gold Tune Enhanced version to provide a more engaging and musical reproduction.

 

Please note that I found burn-in is necessary, a minimum of 5 hours. I am suggesting 20 hours to get optimal results.

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I beIieve I may be the first customer for the Gold Tune Enhanced PSU. I’ll call it the GTE-PSU for this post.

 

Earlier correspondence with Clay had included his characteristically helpful offer of a no-commitment evaluation of one of his linear PSUs to try with my USB Klein III. In the event it was one of these new model units that Clay sent for my auditioning.

 

My listening system comprised:

 

Auralic Aries Femto /LPSU model streaming home-ripped 16 / 44.1 FLACs or equivalent Tidal Premium files.

Curious USB cable and an iFi iUSB Nano 3.0. I intended the latter for use with my iMac with Schiit Modi 3, however both items seem to add even more to my main system. The other USB cable for the iFi iUSB is a Chord Silverline.

Gieseler Klein III USB DAC. Burson Cable+ Pro between Klein and pre-amp. 

Naim HiCAP and NAC32.5 pre-amp, in dual 24V configuration with NAC72 upgraded boards.

Gamut D200 power-amp. Sonus Faber Concerto Home speakers on cheap stands

Naim NACA5 speaker cable. 
Shunyata Hydra power-conditioner, Venom power-cords. These are usable only on components with IEC mains-sockets, hence used on Naim HiCAP and Gamut power-amp only (and on Naim CDS and separate PSU,  not featured in this review.)


The addition of the GTE-PSU in place of the standard PSU immediately brought enhanced soundstage depth and a cleaner / tauter base rendition to what was already a highly satisfying system. (The Klein III had significantly upgraded definition and detail from my original Schiit Modi 3, noting that I am pretty much a noob when it comes to streaming into a main hi-fi, starting this only in August this year.)

 

After a few days of solid listening I invited over a good friend Paul who plays both folk and especially classical violin and viola regularly in a quartet; he’s also built his own amps and other gear.

 

Amongst material played was a Tidal 16/44.1 album: Hilary Hahn Plays Bach, Sonatas 1&2 and Partita 1, ( Decca, 2018).

 

I conducted blind listening tests with Paul of the various configs (with, without GTE-PSU, with/without the iFi iUSB Nano, and again with without the Curious cable). He was astonished at the difference made by the GTE-PSU, as of course am I.

 

My own reaction from day one was that the Kraftwerk gave another level of clarity, with bass getting 'tighter' and perhaps a deepening of the sound stage. It wasn't so much a veil being removed, rather it gave more of what was there before (if that makes sense).

 

The iUSB Nano and the Curious cable each gave improvements, however the Kraftwerk GTE-PSU gave the most distinct one.  On the Hahn violin playing my friend remarked that it sounded like a violin, whereas without it he missed hearing ringing on the E string (no idea what that means personally!)

 

On Davy Spillane’s Atlantic Bridge album, we found that the GTE-PSU gave perceptibly clearer detail and on one track we both heard finger snaps that were missed before.

 

The same enhancement character applied to other material we auditioned.

 

All I can relate to is the difference between my Klein III with its standard switched mode PSU versus this top-of-the-line GTE-PSU. I am thoroughly satisfied that it provides me with a significant boost to a system that I already found highly involving. Bang for buck it is one of the best upgrades going, with the Burson Cable+ Pro coming in as #2 by the same measure.
 

Edited by lenticularis
Clarification on power-conditioner. #2: Burson not Bryston. Minor updates..

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On 24/12/2019 at 11:19 PM, lenticularis said:

I beIieve I may be the first customer for the Gold Tune Enhanced PSU. I’ll call it the GTE-PSU for this post.

Yes, it is quite a mouthful to describe the product and maybe I could have used your "GTE-PSU". 

 

But I think it should be called a Kraftwerk Ultra!  

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Kraftwerk Ultra or Kraftwerk über perhaps...either works well I think!

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Hi Guys,

hey both names sound good.

I was thinking of “KD” as in Kraftwerk Discreet as it uses discreet parts instead of the usual monolith regulator

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1 hour ago, Gieseler Audio said:

Hi Guys,

hey both names sound good.

I was thinking of “KD” as in Kraftwerk Discreet as it uses discreet parts instead of the usual monolith regulator

Better make that “Kraftwerk Discrete” then 😉

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@Gieseler Audio Clay I spoke to you quite a while ago about your efforts with the GROB replacement with which I see you're making good progress. The current price estimate you recently posted puts it way out of my budget. unfortunately so I therefore switched my interest to your Fein II which I understand has a built in Kraftwerk psu (part of it's spec upgrade vs Fein). With your new improved Kraftwerk Discrete design, is it the intention to upgrade the Fein II with this design built in (Fein III)? I live overseas as you might remember and if an upgrade is in the near/mid planning would prefer to wait before I go further with my purchase decisions .

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Hi Roy,

yes it is definitely something I will be looking at.

Once I get back to work (on holidays at the moment) I will try some listening tests to confirm if a 

discreet style pre regulator in a DAC  makes a difference or not.

 

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6 hours ago, Gieseler Audio said:

Hi Roy,

yes it is definitely something I will be looking at.

Once I get back to work (on holidays at the moment) I will try some listening tests to confirm if a 

discreet style pre regulator in a DAC  makes a difference or not.

 

That's good news! I'm in the Gold Coast till end Feb so hopefully will be around if your trials prove positive. Fingers crossed and enjoy a well deserved holiday in the meantime.

 

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I’m not back at work until tomorrow so I will do some testing later in the week.

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When you have time,  please let us know the results!

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Hi Clay,

 

1) any update on the comparisons?

2) is it only the 16v transformer that is grounded on the negative output?  I have an older “not Kraftwerk” 12v PSU and a newer “Goldtune” 12v Kraftwerk PSU. Both use the same 12v AC transformer from what I can tell.

3) Are my PSUs upgradable to “GTE” or “KD” status? (Noting that I need 12v DC output only from both units).

 

PM me if you prefer.  I thought these questions may be useful to the forum though.

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Posted (edited)

1. Sorry no update on comparisons - moving on to a brand new design - more info below.

2. Yes correct it is only the 16v transformer that has the grounding option.

I also just found out the latest versions of the transformers have now gone to a two pin mains plug

so no more earthing option. I don't thing this is a big deal as it seems it is mainly SMPS that benefit

from the earth option.

3. Sorry no it would require a new PCB to suit the Nichicon Gold Tune upgrade. 

OK - I have been putting a lot of effort into a new PSU design which I will be releasing shortly.

The main change is adding a massive iron core choke which reduces the usual spikey ripple to a nice gentle 

sine wave shape. UpTone Audio use this same technique in their superb JS-2 model.
The ripple is extremely low after the choke so the regulator has a much easier job which is a good thing.
The new PSU will be released very shortly so I will do a full release then wth lots of info & measurements.
It should be my best sounding PSU to date.
Stay tuned!

 

 

 

 

Edited by Gieseler Audio

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Posted (edited)

Whenever the new product comes out i expect it to be up there in audio performance with the best of them. I heard the gieseler powering the sotm sms200 ultra against the uptone lps-1.2 and the sotm sps 500.

 

Between the 3 lps, the sps500 was the first to be knocked out. It sounded very open and fast but i felt the soundstage did not sound as well anchored nor as realistic as the lps1. 2 or the gieseler gold tune 12v. The background also sounded quieter on the lps1.2 and the gieseler. 

 

I was very impressed with the sps 500 initially as the soundstage sounded very airy and open but then i thought hang on a minute... why does that instrument seem to be floating so high when in a jazz trio it sounded more natural to be closer together... the presentation just sounded more realistic with the other 2 lps imo. 

 

The gieseler presentation had a really nice tone, texture and density whilst the lps1.2 provided a slightly darker background for the music to emerge from. Between the gieseler and the lps1.2, it was a matter of personal taste in my system. I could live with either one. 

 

I experienced the same effect using these 3 ps to power the Etherregen. 

 

I have no affiliation with Gieseler Audio but i liked the unit so much i bought Snoopy8's gold tune unit. 

 

Edited by Limmie

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