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Old 8th March 2011, 09:16 PM   #1
Rabbi is offline Rabbi  United States
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Default Testing Tripath TA0102A ?

I recently got an Arc Audio 1500DR with the TA0102A tripath chip in it, The previous owner said the chip was burned out.

How do i go about testing these types of chips?

Thanks
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Old 8th March 2011, 09:56 PM   #2
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What does the amp do when you power it up (draw excessive current, DC on speaker terminals...)?
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Old 8th March 2011, 10:05 PM   #3
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The green LED will blink rapidly , From what ive read they throw error codes when they fault, I cannot find a list though.

No excessive current or dc on terminals.
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Old 8th March 2011, 10:24 PM   #4
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Is the resistor indicated by the arrow within tolerance?

Are any output transistors shorted?
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Old 8th March 2011, 11:47 PM   #5
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resistor is in tolerance at 3.8ohms


no shorted transistors
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Old 9th March 2011, 01:18 AM   #6
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I have all of the data sheets for the Tripath chips, TA102A, TA103A, TA104A, and TA105A if that might help you, it is difficult to find the data sheets for these anymore. It has been a while, but I don't recall anything about the modules coding errors, but I do know that they can crap the bed at the drop of a hat and there is pretty much no replacements out there anymore.

LMK if you want the data sheets.

Later,
Jason
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Old 9th March 2011, 02:11 AM   #7
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Rabbi:
I looked up the owner's manual for the Clarion equivalent and it didn't mention any codes. I couldn't find a manual for the arc.

It's possible that the 1.1 ohm resistor in this amp (photo) isn't the original but I think the resistor is supposed to be 1 or 1.1 ohms. In the photo, you can see that the colors are pretty accurate and the resistor at the left with the orange band is clearly different than the brown bands. At 3.3, it's unlikely to cause a problem but you may want to replace it.

jcampb2:
I think you could probably repair the modules. Many of the components inside the module are ordinary SMD transistors and resistors. You'd need clear photos of the inside of a working module to determine the values of the burned components.
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Old 9th March 2011, 02:35 AM   #8
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mine is clearly an orange orange gold gold, Should i change it out ?
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Old 9th March 2011, 02:41 AM   #9
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No, especially if the solder connections on it look original. I'm not 100% sure that the one in the arc amp was the original but I've had at least one other person with a 1.1 ohm in their amp. If I'm not mistaken, this supplies 12v to pin 19 on the Tripath module. If you have 12v there, this isn't an issue.
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Old 9th March 2011, 03:12 AM   #10
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The Tripath modules have no codes to read. Any flashing power indicators are something the amp company added to indicate trouble nothing more.
Tripath modules lack any Microprocessor power inside to do such things.

Also the more common failure points of many Tripath modules is the twin internal gate driver circuitry and its embedded chip design where the silicon is covered by black sealant I have never seen anyone be able to repair these so far. The main encoding chip is a off the shelf Tripath SMD device. Other then that there are current limiting SMD resistors and what not located under the black lid that do burn out also, but don't be surprised if these are symptoms/indicators of other failure related issues.

None of the Tripath modules are really interchangeable so swapping up or down the product chain is not a advisable thing to do. It seems there was something special about each chips protection circuitry that prevents them from operating reliably say if you jump form a 02a to a 03A modules or a 04A module, something about scaling of the power supply rails.

I have a working Clarion 800 watt amp here I keep, and it had a bad 2 watt ceramic power resistor on the 12 volt supply to the Tripath chip. Once it was replaced and resoldered with silver solder the amp came back to life. Something to do with way too much voltage drop and heat build up, but it was not a module failure. It was a Clarion build/design issue, as it's located outside of the module on the board. This is the one Perry is talking about and it is easily found on the Clarion schematic.

These modules can go silent if any internal current limit opens up, or the encoding chip fails, or the Mosfet gate drivers fail. but the later usually caused the outputs to fail also.
PG made one of these creatures called them the Tantrum 1200.1, I also own two of these, but do not use them because if the modules go inside them I know I will not find any replacements anywhere of a exact module model.

Even Clarion does no service their 800 watt version of this amp any longer due to no supply of Tripath chips and this was told to me 4 years ago by Clarion when i tried to order a replacement module.

Tripath was a local Silicon Valley company and I lived near them while they were in business. They filed chapter 11 then 13 and were eventually bought out by another company as I recall. There are no stocks of part except those that have been hoarded by folks along the way. The 04A chip is available on that auction site form a fella that used to work for PG before the sell off to AAMP, I think he wants about ~$30.00 for the 04A module that was used in many home amps setups and the Audiosource Tripath home amp....
Make sure the Tripath chip has all of its supply rails or it will be muted especially the 12 volt supply that uses a high V drop regulator usually attached to the sink near the front end of any of these designs. it actually feeds the Tripath chip and must be functional or it will be silent.
Your flashing LED is caused by the Tripath chips protection output triggering the main supply to shutdown, The amp maker made it flash ...not Tripath.....Best of luck
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