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I returned to DIY electronics in 2009 after a 20 year pause by building a few kits to get in shape. This blog is for me to keep track of my progress.
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Low effort Class D with ready made modules

Posted 5th April 2011 at 04:45 PM by alexcp
Updated 6th April 2011 at 01:29 PM by alexcp

To try out Class D without working too much, I picked two ready-made Class D amplifier modules: one is the $45 2*100 Watt Class-D Audio Amplifier Board from Sure Electronics with the optional $10 volume control board, the other is the $199 IRAUDAMP7S from International Rectifier.

The Sure Electronics module is based on Tripath's TK2050 chipset. Powered from a 150W 24V SMPS from Mean Well, it predictably puts out about 22W RMS to a 8 ohm load. (The declared 2*100W requires a 30V supply and a 4 ohm load.) The sound and the measurements are decidedly mediocre, although at the $45 price, the module still may be a good value. Also, the volume control board feels odd, as the knob only adjusts volume after a push; another push disconnects it again.

The IRF module requires dual rail supply, for which I chose an SMPS400A180 by hypex. With +/-40V rails, the amplifier delivers 100W RMS into a 8 ohm load. The measurements are good, and the sound is very interesting for me, who has never heard Class D before: it is crisp and clear, with an unexpectedly wide, deep and detailed stereo scene. My first impression is, unexpectedly, very positive.
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