Squirrel And G-Man Twenty Four Hour Party People Carnt Smile (White Out)............. - diyAudio
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Old 14th October 2012, 10:30 AM   #1
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Talking Squirrel And G-Man Twenty Four Hour Party People Carnt Smile (White Out).............

I was sitting down, listening to one of my favorite recordings recently...

( slumped in an arm-chair at 2am, would be a more accurate description )

...and the thought of a total refurb. of my analogue sources popped up again.

Could Shaun have a more 'focused' sound-stage ?
Is it possible to match Paul's on-stage bass in the comfort of your own arm-chair ?
What guitar was Mark playing ? ; perhaps an overhaul would make it obvious.
Maybe Gary's drums might sound like 'the Zep's' after a few kickin' tweeks ?
Paul's keyboards ; even more funky with a new preamp ?
Mark's percussion jazzier ?


I think I just got cured of 'Lazy Itis' ; & caught the DIY upgrade bug again !
Said that last year...
...but this winter could be the last winter of discontent !

I'm sure the stalwart members of diyAudio will help make my Mondays, happy !

Thanks already to :-

...or 'Salad' ( as he's sometimes known as, when you hit the wrong key at 2am )
For 'leafing' through cartridge data & 'needley type knowledge'.

...Thanks for the TT stuff you sent me a while back.
I will also be checking out your component updates.
" They are not resistors, They are CALIBRATION INSTRUMENTS ! "

...For good chats on toobs & sending me the MA-12's constructor guide.

Vynal Kid...
...For pointing out the sinister dial settings on the Mullard 3 Watt.
( don't worry, I always play on 11 ! )

...and last, but by no means not least...

...Quote :- " I keep a few pF's on crocodile-clips ; just in case "
I can tell I'm heading this way.
Hey Ricardo...Can you PM me the schematic ?

& of course everyone else who I've chatted with on diyAudio.

The silver-jubilee year for...


Where's all the media tributes & re-mastered releases ? Did I miss 'em ?
Oh well...
...They weren't The Beatles...

...or were they ?!

Next up

What clunky-kit we've got...
What less clunky concepts we have cooking.

' Tart Tart ' an bye for now.


Last edited by The Space Egg Corp; 14th October 2012 at 10:40 AM. Reason: ' Plastic Face ' missing from thread title. Oh well CARNT SMILE or change it now !!! It's these kinds of sloppy errors that can ruin a good sound-system !!!
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Old 15th October 2012, 09:49 AM   #2
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Thumbs up Our Clunky Kit........................

Sorry about the thread title bye the way...
...Monday's fans will know, there should be 'plastic face' in it also...
...Oh well...nothings 'perfect'...It seems to fit on the board well though...at least on my vintage 4/3rds screen anyway ( might get a widescreen...one day...maybe ).

Last summer we had a bit of a turntable clear-out; and managed to get rid of 4 !!!!
So we only have 3 left now; and will focus on getting the least sorted one, sorted.
We also had a bit of a rumage through the 'cartridge grave-yard' to see if we could turn up any of the 'usual suspects' for a quick line-up...
...found a couple that could be good for setup; but will get a new something, in due course.

Anyway; this is what we're playing with at the moment.
The items in upper-case, are what we have.
The items in lower case, are what we need to make or purchase.

denon dl-?



inverse riaa pre-emphasis filter



new diy 2 stage passive eq riaa preamp


tape sources are :-




( we also have a Technics tuner ! )

So in a nut-shell; what we're looking at doing, is...

Choose a new cartridge that will suit the SME arm & Thorens TT.
Strip, clean & refurbish the SME arm.
Strip, clean, mod & refurbish the Thorens TD160 MKII.
DIY build an inverse RIAA filter.
DIY build a new 2 stage passive-eq RIAA preamp ( the 2 previous ones have feedback EQ ).
Soup-up anything else we find, that isn't souper enough already.

Thought at first I'd be getting to mess about with new carts & arms & cool stuff like that straight off...
...but no; decided first, to look into DIYing the new inverse RIAA pre-emphasis filter.

What could be easier than that !


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Old 16th October 2012, 01:09 PM   #3
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Question Unbalanced ?...Semi-Balanced ?...or...Balanced ?...that is the question...

Well...The whole 'Inverse RIAA' thing, has turned out to be a bit of a can of worms !

Having initialy found, quite quickly, what seemed like a good solution...
...never one to buy the first answer, without further inquiry; we found another take on things, which looks to shoot the first one, right outta the water !

About a week later, finaly ( believe it or not ! ); we appear to have turned up, what seems like reasonable & solid information, from a guy who appears to know his stuff ( done his homework ! ), and seems to be putting forward his version of an inverse RIAA filter, which actualy looks 100% OK.

Making this filter to absolute NASA type space-age tolerances, we think, is going to be very important to us a bit later on, when we start making our passive RIAA networks for the new preamps.

More on 'Inverse RIAA' soon...


The other thing that's in our attention at the moment, is whether or not to make a 'balanced' phono preamp ?
Not sure though whether there is a 'MAJOR +' to be had from this or not ?

As a user, and builder of recording equipment, balanced working is obviously familiar ground; particularly with very low output microphones.

In DIY terms, since we will have a case & 2 power-supplies for the new preamp anyhow...
...it seems to me, balanced just needs 2 extra preamps to be made ( & 2 output transformers ).
Seeing as cases, mains-transformers & power-supplies are already required; going balanced, isn't going to even double the cost.
I figure maybe 50-30% extra cost ( economy of scale coming in here as well, with larger component orders ).

We are thinking at the moment, to use a high output MC cartridge; so won't be using step-up transformers.
Wire-wrapping cable seems quite popular as a tonearm re-wire; I am guessing most people who do this though, are using step-ups.
The other take, as a DIYer, is go 'semi-balanced'; and just re-wire the TT outputs with microphone cable and XLR's, with the screen connected only at the preamp.

At the end of the day also, I am essentialy a minimalist...
...is going 'balanced' & adding twice as much of everything worth it, in terms of performance returns ?

I have tried to consider all the angles on this one...
...I am not sure if I am being a bit 'thick' on the issue...
...but I can't seem to come to an easy conclusion.

If any members have gone 'balanced', especialy with a high output MC & no step-ups...
...or if anyone has any advice or experience which might help solve this question for me...
...I would welcome your comments.

I'm about 50-50 on this at the moment...
...which ain't gettin' me very far !!!


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Old 16th October 2012, 01:39 PM   #4
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Great music ! Unfortunately I have never heard them live.
Inverse RIAA: The Hagerman circuit implements the (controversial) "Neumann pole",
thus the deviation at high frequencies.
A test signal with RIAA preemphasis can be generated with software too:
Error in D. Self-Riaa?
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Old 27th October 2012, 12:06 AM   #5
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Cool Mr Postman Look And See...

Hi Georg

I'm sorry to say I never did either...
...Oh well...other tings woz good as well !

Yeah... That 'Inverse RIAA' is a real minefield Holmes...
...We tink we gotta take on dat ting...
...more later...
( very controversial...probably )

Keep it spinnin' Georg...
...Boo Yah !!!


The postman only called once today...

(Mister Postman look and see.)
Please, Mister Postman, oh yeah.
(Is there a Russian capacitor for me?)
Please, please, Mister Postman, oh yeah.
(You know it's been a long, long time.
Since I heard from that Commissar of mine.)

So many days have passed me by.
You saw the tears in my eyes.
You wouldn't stop to make me feel better
By leavin' me a micro-Farad or a letter.

(Mister Postman look and see.)
Please, Mister Postman, oh yeah.
(Is there military music for me?)
Please, please, Mister Postman, oh yeah.
(You know it's been a long, long time.
Since I heard from that turntable of mine.)

You better wait a minute,
(Wait, wait a minute.)
Oh, you better wait a minute.
(Wait, wait a minute.)
Oh, you better wait a minute, wait a minute.
(Wait a minute.)
Oh you gotta wait, wait.
(Wait, wait.)


Ex-Soviet hardware ROCKS Beavis...'Yeah...Arrhh...HHaaggg..Graaahh ...h...G...brrrr...'
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Old 9th November 2012, 01:02 AM   #6
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Some of the Polytetrafluoroethylene arrived today; for the phono-pre circuit boards.

This is the 6mm thickness we ordered.
We also ordered 3mm thickness; to suit our favorite 'turret tags'...
...should they be needed.

This material can be a bit 'floppy', in our experience.
However; have only used it in very thin sheet form & various diameter rods previously.

The very thin sheet used previously; actualy came with self-adhesive backing.
I think this was a very specialist adhesive; since my guess is, glueing anything to the surface, is pretty difficult.
Anyone got any glueing tips; or know any adhesives that work with this ?
( just thought I'd ask )

...could be great for phono-pre boards...
...easy to de-flux...
...and I guess if you spill any of your scrammbled-egg breakfast on it, there will be no sticking either !

Any tips from seasoned users; most welcome !



Now playing :-
Ryoji Ikeda - '1000 Fragments'

I think the album cover looks familiar...

I wonder if it's any good for 'Back In Black' clones ?
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Old 9th November 2012, 05:48 PM   #7
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Are those Homies?
Paradise Pre-reg PSU PCBs
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Old 12th November 2012, 11:46 AM   #8
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Hi sq !

Arr...a Sheffield lad !
New it well...back in the day.
Birth-place of some of the finest music on the planet !
( we think anyhow )

No they are not 'Homies'...
...They are the 'Lil' Locsters' by O.G.Abel.

I like David Gonzales's artwork quite a bit...
...but when you compare 'The Homies' to the 'Lil' Locsters' in the flesh...
...there really is no contest.

The 'Homies' have nice characters; but the sculpting & painting is VERY poor by comparison.


Nice little pack of IRF9610's arrived in the post today !

Slowly but surely getting some bits & bobs together for the new project.

It seems to be changing a little at present...
...we are now thinking to build, not just a phono-pre, but a fully featured preamp...
...ie. with more sockets, selector, volume & line-stage.

Same kind of circuits & ideas churning around.
Just looking for the best 'practical' solution for the project.
( some influence from previous pre-amp builds, coming in here )

More soon.


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Old 28th November 2012, 07:34 PM   #9
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Thumbs down Polytetrafluoroethylene ( Part II )...

' Dr. Strange-Teflon '
' How I Learned To Stop Worrying & Love The Drift '

PTFE cap-testing @ Space Egg . drift.

Oh Dear !

Those Teflon capacitors we got for our RIAA EQ...
...might just have to go into my Granny's Amstrad system !

They look like top-gun performers, for coupling capacitors ( the good news )...
RIAA caps ?
Forget about it !...

Just been measuring 'capacitor drift' in the Teflons & other plastic caps such as Polystyrene.
Most disapointing, I have to say...

Had thought about using Polystyrene's in an 'inverse RIAA' to...
...simply TOO MUCH 'drift' though...

Looks like it's 'silver-mica' all the way now; for filter-caps anyhow...



My Granny's gonna love the Amstrad up-grade !...
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Old 29th November 2012, 02:52 AM   #10
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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or you could get some teflons made this century =)

btw where's Bez?

Last edited by qusp; 29th November 2012 at 02:55 AM.
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