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Old 26th October 2012, 04:26 AM   #11
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that's a little "harsh". i love the sound of class D, particularly with trewble polite soft dome tweeters like on super zeros. in comparison, my NAD sounded like a wet blanket and my onlyo a little grainy. my panasonic? i love it. it doesn't agree quite as well with aluminum domes now that i'm breaking a nice pair of energy RC-10s, but harsh is not the word i'd use, maybe a little bit clinical, but my panny did wonders for making the most out of the soft dome treble and especially lit up the midrange. now, i'm looking to go the other way and bring some warmth to the aluminum tweeters with either a high end class D amp or a chip amp now that i'm reading up on alternatives. at one time, halcros were called "best in the world", you don't get that by being harsh.

it all boils down to system synergy. if you have 2x ruthlessly revealing gear like my current speakers and amp combo, you'll stray from warmth. actually though, i like a little bit of ruthlessness in the treble. i'm loving the speed my system is doing cowbells etc. these days. i'll try a chip amp first to see if that harmonizes with my speakers better, but i still love my panasonic. my onkyo imaged a little better, but after switching to class D, i finally heard what grain is. the NAD? don't miss it at all.
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Old 26th October 2012, 05:04 AM   #12
cotdt is offline cotdt  United States
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You don't really need a kit for a gainclone. Just buy a pair of LM3875 chips and use the schematic in the datasheet. The circuit is only a few parts and can easily be point to point wired.

As far as Class D goes, UcD at its best with LM4562 sounds warm-bodied and smooth, but sterile. T-amps at their best, are extremely detailed and I love the airyness, but a bit thin and analytical. Gainclones are more euphonic and analogue sounding. Music is more enjoyable even though it doesn't have the top end detail of the T-amps. None of these sound as good as my Tubelab Single Ended 45 amp, but that thing presents music in an entirely different manner.
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Old 26th October 2012, 05:45 AM   #13
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i too love class D. my panasonic spanks the crap out of NAD with superzeros and even my onkyo with lower grain and lusher vocals, but the marriage isn't quite as happy with my very first pair of aluminum domes on my first mid-fi speakers. there's more detail than ever in my system now, but i'm hearing more of that life sucked out sound everyone talks about with class D that my superzeros weren't fast enough in the treble to resolve so i want to balance it with some warmth.

i still love my panasonic, but now have speakers that are up to revealing it's limitations.

i'm looking into "ultimate chip amps". 3875s seem to be most popular and i've already read great things about patek builds before seeing everyone's favorite audiosector kits are really pateks, but if there's an even better sound, i'm looking for that and will accept lower power and less bass. honestly, i doubt i'm even using 5 watts worth of power for most of my listening as i listen at conversational levels most of the time.

for a minute, i was thinking of going the exact other route and trying a minwatt tube amp, but don't like the idea of having to buy replacement parts. i wasn't particularly impressed with tube sound the time i heard it on some demo speakers in a shop either once.

as it's easy & cheap to chip, i'm liking the idea of trying this route first. besides, the TBI sounds millenia i was looking into is an integrated while i'm really interested in the western electric tubed minidac which has it's own preamp already, so i'm looking to go simple with monoblocks.

if i had the money, i'd likely get a cary class D as it even beat a patek in a shootout, but my name IS budget minded afterall. i only bought the energy RC-10s i lusted after on closeout when they got down to $220 from their $600 list. i'm happy with that score let me tell you, but they are less forgiving than superzeros, but dig deeper and tweet much faster and image almost as precisely. i want to warm them up just a bit as my system is now clinical + clinical.
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Old 26th October 2012, 03:25 PM   #14
johnm is offline johnm  United Kingdom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tekko View Post
LM3875 and LM3886 such as the XY kit on ebay definately!!!. The class d stuff is just nasty and harch/sharp/cold/lifeless sounding, not worth the money AT ALL!
My favourite is the LM3875 in the classic minimalist Gainclone setup. Have to say though I would NEVER describe the Class D TA2020 41Hz Amp6-Basic I have as harsh or cold or lifeless. Completely the opposite in my opinion...
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Old 26th October 2012, 06:37 PM   #15
Bare is offline Bare  Canada
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Amazing ain't it? Everyone has a Favourite horse to flog.
Stereophile once measured/published a review documenting the Ta amp chips as 'cleaner' than the gainclones.
Does it matter even a little when typical Audio Weenie is rapidly losing their hearing or has already lost significant portions of it if over 40yrs old ?
If 60..? then an ear trumpet is a possibility :-)
Hell.. I still can't get/find a CD player to produce reasonably acceptable sounds.
My LPs are wearing (worn?) out.
In the Vinyl heyday it was generally accepted that by the 8th playing an LP record had audibly worn. Imagine 100 playings let alone 200.
Computer /Ipod/ Iphone Music? earbuds are more than aedquate IMO.
How many Angels on the head of a Pin concerns :-)

Last edited by Bare; 26th October 2012 at 06:39 PM.
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Old 7th January 2013, 03:18 AM   #16
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Default GainClone site letdowns

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnm View Post
My favourite is the LM3875 in the classic minimalist Gainclone setup. Have to say though I would NEVER describe the Class D TA2020 41Hz Amp6-Basic I have as harsh or cold or lifeless. Completely the opposite in my opinion...
Agree completely with this observation.

One thing I'd like to point out is the people who have the DIY GainClone sites that have prettty much abandoned their patrons. Sites aren't updated for 6mos or a year at a time. Most of the links take you to a '404 unknown" or blank page. If you're going to give up, at least link to someone who has not, or an active forum.
.
Could I get an AMEN from the Choir!
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Last edited by tamasic1; 7th January 2013 at 03:22 AM.
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Old 7th January 2013, 03:41 AM   #17
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best gainclone would be myref. you can contact linuxguru on this forum for the kit.
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Old 8th January 2013, 05:21 AM   #18
djoffe is offline djoffe  United States
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What the heck, I might as well cast a vote for my own kit, the Akitika GT-101. It's a bit different than some, in that it has a regulated power supply, and is complete except for the solder. If it's not pushing the limits of shameless commerce, please take a look:

Akitika GT-101
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Old 8th January 2013, 05:33 AM   #19
cotdt is offline cotdt  United States
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That looks like an amazing kit, djoffe!
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Old 8th January 2013, 05:34 AM   #20
djoffe is offline djoffe  United States
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thanks!
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