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Old 15th June 2011, 02:13 PM   #1
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Default A New approach of Volume Control: AAVA (Accuphase Analog Vari-gain Amplifier)

I read:

How AAVA-II works:
AAVA-II operates by feeding the music signal to a V-I (volt-
age - current) converting amplifi er where it is weighted in 16
steps [1/2, 1/22, ..., 1/215, 1/216].
The 16 current steps are
turned on or off by 16 current switches, and the combina-
tion of switch settings determines the overall volume. The
switching operation is controlled by a CPU according to the
position of the volume control knob. The combined signal
current forms a variable gain circuit that adjusts the volume.
Finally, the combined current is converted back into a music
signal voltage by an I-V (current - voltage) converter.

Are there any experiences from this kind of a level attenuator without any resistors in the signal path?
Attached Files
File Type: pdf AAVA-II 1.pdf (83.4 KB, 262 views)
File Type: pdf AAVA-II Block Diagram.pdf (36.8 KB, 201 views)

Last edited by tiefbassuebertr; 15th June 2011 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 15th June 2011, 03:33 PM   #2
DF96 is offline DF96  England
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This whole complicated circuit (well, more complicated than two resistors anyway) contains no resistors? Does it use switched capacitors instead? Or are we to believe that a whole set of p-n junctions can be matched so accurately that the outcome is more linear than a resistor? Is not a current switch a resistor, of sorts?

This sounds like more straining at gnats and swallowing camels!
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Old 23rd June 2011, 07:42 PM   #3
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digital controlled VCA

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Old 23rd June 2011, 08:17 PM   #4
Javin5 is offline Javin5  Switzerland
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A digtally controlled attenuator. There are a couple of chips that do the same. Not sure if this is realized in discrete form or if it is on an IC.

Of course the music signals flows still through resistors, as with any gain control chip or any relay controlled attenuator. I respect Accuphase very much, but I don't see the big advantage of this, compared to other simple, established solutions.
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Old 23rd June 2011, 09:05 PM   #5
udailey is offline udailey  United States
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If they sent the signal down the interconnects as current and THEN went back to voltage it would make more sense as it would be nearly impervious to EMI RFI which is turned into voltage in the cables anyway. Like CAST from Krell.
purchase LDRs anytime Also try my Resistor Replacers or LDR based Input Selector Email me. diyldr@gmail.com
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Old 23rd June 2011, 10:27 PM   #6
tvi is offline tvi  Australia
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Might this be the patent?
The switch comprises a fixed current drive circuit having a voltage-current conversion gain for converting an input signal voltage applied to an input terminal to a current to output, a current-voltage converter circuit for converting an output current from the drive circuit to a voltage to output, a plurality of signal switching circuits connected in parallel between the input terminal and the input of the current-voltage converter circuit, each composed of a series switch circuit connected between the input of the current-voltage converter circuit and the output of the drive circuit and a short-circuit switch circuit connected between the drive circuit output and the ground, and a switch control circuit for controlling the switch circuits.; The switch control circuit changes over the switching of switches in the plurality of parallel-connected signal switching circuits singly or multiply with specified time intervals one after another to control the gain
Its in Japanese
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Old 27th June 2011, 01:47 PM   #7
Leon08 is offline Leon08  Germany
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This is interesting approach, but I think it's too complicated for volume control. Maybe it's really as good as they claim, but it's very bulky and expensive.So this is for some rich audiophils, wich don't know what to do with their money.
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Old 29th June 2011, 10:34 AM   #8
maxw is offline maxw  United Kingdom
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I've looked at this before and think this type of volume control is really interesting, I would love to make one. If someone gave me a schematic I would design a PCB.

I like it because:
- it's so precise compared to everything else
- lower distortion than PGA2310 etc
- Simple concept
- No click sounds. Pretty much all relay volume controls click when all relays flip (like at step 64/128 etc)

There is some more info here on page 2:

Mark Levinson use the same concept too:

bbp built one a while back. He used DG413 analog switches but these days there are better ones like DG611 or ADG1221. He also measured he version and achieved higher specs than the PGA. Here are his threads:
Solid State Volume controls
Ultra high precision digital control attenuator
Promotion: Hi-end Volume Control Module,Ultimate Attenuator for Audio
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Old 29th June 2011, 11:54 AM   #9
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I was thinking about designing something similiar, but have no time currently. Electric circuit seems not to be a big deal. More interesting is interfacing switches to volume know. I was thinking about absolute one turn encoder and some simple uC, like 8051. Is this a correct idea? Or anyone has more simple way to do it?
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Old 29th June 2011, 12:52 PM   #10
maxw is offline maxw  United Kingdom
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Originally Posted by barmanekm View Post
More interesting is interfacing switches to volume know. I was thinking about absolute one turn encoder and some simple uC, like 8051. Is this a correct idea? Or anyone has more simple way to do it?
You are on the right track. Personally I would use an arduino and a standard encoder since there is a much bigger range available as opposed to absolute encoders.
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