Go Back   Home > Forums > Amplifiers > Class D

Class D Switching Power Amplifiers and Power D/A conversion

Please consider donating to help us continue to serve you.

Ads on/off / Custom Title / More PMs / More album space / Advanced printing & mass image saving
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 18th June 2006, 10:31 PM   #1
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Post UcD180ad Vs 41Hz Audio AMP5 (Tripath TA2022)

Here are the two amps I built. I'd like to share the results of my today listening to both amps for comparation.
Click the image to open in full size.
First a few informations about the sound chain and the music played. Without these the report would be too subjective. Music is played from an Hard Disk in wav format, through an EMU1212M professional sound card, to an external Wolfson 8740 DAC (117dB SNR), with a toslink cable (to avoid ground loop and noise from pc). The DAC feeds directly the amps, while the pc acts as pre (just for volume control). Speakers are Fostex full range FE206E (96dB SPL) in a back loaded horn enclosures that go down to 40hz. No crossovers nor other filters.

Music played were only classical and the tests were done together with a professional violinist (my brother, owner of a Klimo valve sound system) to judge the amps with respect to live orchestral sound. In particular, string quartets (Rossini, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky), piano solo (Listz, Chopin) and wide orchestral pieces with "explosions" (Listz Rhapsodies and Mahler's 2nd symphony).

Results:

Both amps are VERY good. Both have been able to reproduce "natural" instruments and showed an impressive stage and dynamic. In the Mahler's 2nd symphony, for example, is needed e very wide dynamic range to reproduce the light flute coming from the back of the orchestra at normal volume, then suddenly a fortissimo with a lot of horns, trumpets and timpani: usually you must stand up and fastly turn down the volume. These amps, even with very loud "fortissimo", don't shout, but you can still perceive distinctly the various sections of the orchestra.

Which is better?

Well, from an objective point of view, UcD180 has better performances. Noise is lower and the instruments timber is more close to reality with UcD just as with valves. The sounds of strings, in quartets, and still more with piano solo, are more precise, have more fidelity to the original live instruments. The orchestral stage with UcD is too more "stable" and coherent: each instrument has his own precise location and correct volume. To judge the quality of high, mid and low ranges, too, UcD is better, the whole range is better controlled and you never hear a single sound that is not like it should be.

That doesn't mean that AMP5 is bad, we are at very high levels of fidelity, simply those things are done better by UcD. But there is something else that AMP5 does better. It is difficult to say but both me and my brother agreed: it is like as from AMP5 come out more information. It is not a matter of timber, dynamic, stage, bandwidth and so on. In a naive way I should say that AMP5 produces more sounds, even in a single instrument. In other words the sensation is that every sound is more rich and the whole stage is more "live".

Which one to hold?

My brother would prefer UcD, because of timber and fidelity that are priorities. I shall hold both, but I think that Amp5 has wide margins for ameliorations (for instance, dual mono configuration and better caps), while UcD is a "mature" project. Besides, richness of sound with tripath is so extraordinary that it is difficult to renounce to it.

Other experiences?

Regards

Thomas
  Reply With Quote
Old 18th June 2006, 10:43 PM   #2
Account Disabled
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Send a message via AIM to classd4sure Send a message via MSN to classd4sure
Hello,

An interesting read. I'm just curious why you'd say the amp 5 can be further improved yet consider the UCD to be a "mature" project. I'd think it stands to reason you could improve on either one with better components and layout?

Would you not agree?

Regards,
Chris
  Reply With Quote
Old 18th June 2006, 11:09 PM   #3
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Quote:
Originally posted by classd4sure
Hello,

An interesting read. I'm just curious why you'd say the amp 5 can be further improved yet consider the UCD to be a "mature" project. I'd think it stands to reason you could improve on either one with better components and layout?

Would you not agree?

Regards,
Chris
Everything can be improved, I agree. But Amp5 is a diy project made by Jan as hobby (audio engineering is not his job) starting from a Tripath's reference board schematic, while Ucd is produced by professionals and already sold to manufacturers (in this sense it is "mature").

What would happen to Amp5 if somebody like Bruno Putzeys or you would improve this project?

Besides I'm sure there is much space for improvements because Audio-research and Belcanto-design tripath based amps sound much better.

Ciao

Thomas
  Reply With Quote
Old 18th June 2006, 11:15 PM   #4
Account Disabled
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Send a message via AIM to classd4sure Send a message via MSN to classd4sure
Fair enough. All the same, You've done a very nice job of these
  Reply With Quote
Old 19th June 2006, 03:02 AM   #5
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Colorado and France
Thomas, thanks for the interesting comparison.

One thing worth mentioning is that the UcD modules are sold to varied markets, not just high-end audio fans. Therefore price of the components is important and some parts such as the input caps can be replaced by better ones on the UcD180 and UcD400 as indicated by Hypex people themselves (Jan-Peter and Bruno). Maybe that would unveil some of the information you are missing?

I am finishing the first of two UcD triple mono amp (for a tri-amplified speaker). In the fall I will build 2 or 3 stereo 1000VA Plitron +/- 80V DC rails Tripath TA0104A amps (as I don't have on hand the two I previously built) and will be able to compare high-end Tripath with high-end UcD.

I am still wondering if with good amps I will be OK with anything less than my ~70' ribbon tweeters (which are overseas, I loved the TA0104A sound with them). With the passing years maybe my ears won't be able to tell the difference anymore... I think we need more comparison of amps and tweeters by people with young ears.
Guy
  Reply With Quote
Old 19th June 2006, 07:14 AM   #6
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Quote:
Originally posted by guyv
Thomas, thanks for the interesting comparison.

One thing worth mentioning is that the UcD modules are sold to varied markets, not just high-end audio fans. Therefore price of the components is important and some parts such as the input caps can be replaced by better ones on the UcD180 and UcD400 as indicated by Hypex people themselves (Jan-Peter and Bruno). Maybe that would unveil some of the information you are missing?
AMP5 costs 78 by 41Hz.... for a new comparison I should replace better input caps for both: for UcD there is a big thread about mods, but no information about Tripath. Have you any hint? I'd be very grateful.

Quote:
Originally posted by guyv
I am finishing the first of two UcD triple mono amp (for a tri-amplified speaker). In the fall I will build 2 or 3 stereo 1000VA Plitron +/- 80V DC rails Tripath TA0104A amps (as I don't have on hand the two I previously built) and will be able to compare high-end Tripath with high-end UcD.
Very interesting so a powerful Tripath amp. Audio Research 300.2 has such power http://www.audioresearch.com/300.2.html but I don't know what chip they use.

Have you a pcb and schematics of your TA0104A amps? This chip is stated as obsolete by Tripath, but on the market are still TA0105A and TDA2500. I don't know any diy hi end project based on best tripath chips, yours would be very interesting.

Regerds

Thomas
  Reply With Quote
Old 19th June 2006, 04:39 PM   #7
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Colorado and France
Basically I changed a resistor to adjust the gain to 26dB and replaced the input caps and resistor to make sure the highpass filter stays low enough FP = 1/((2PI x CIN)(RIN + 5000)).

Changing the input caps is similar on UcD and Tripath and you could use the same input cap to be fair to both amps. Just use the total resistance to ground instead of RIN+5000 above to ensure xover frequency is at or below 10Hz. Usually 2uF is a good value for the input cap. I had used digikey part P3394-ND .39uF polypropylene caps but will now use 2uF Auricaps from partsconnexion.

I am using eval boards for the TA0104A with mostly the above mods. I had bought them 4 years ago and never had a stable environment to build them. Some schematics are in the eval board manual at http://www.tripath.com/downloads/EB-TA0104A.pdf. The current eval boards are priced out of reach. I assume the Audio Research might be using the TD2500. The TD2350 seems to be their only recommended high power chip currently.

Regards,
Guy
  Reply With Quote
Old 19th June 2006, 05:53 PM   #8
eLarson is offline eLarson  United States
diyAudio Member
 
eLarson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Gaithersburg, MD
Quote:
Originally posted by thomaseliot

Very interesting so a powerful Tripath amp. Audio Research 300.2 has such power http://www.audioresearch.com/300.2.html but I don't know what chip they use.
The handles for the 300.2 cost $80 by themselves. ::shudder:: I didn't happen to see a price on it on the link you posted, but I'm sure it's there somewhere.

(ARC created a class T? I really must be living in a cave!)
__________________
Would a woodchuck bother to chuck MDF?
  Reply With Quote
Old 19th June 2006, 05:54 PM   #9
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Hi Guy,

thanks for the answer. I'm going to try two pairs of 2.2uf auricaps for both amps: I'll let you know the results.

TK2350 evaluation board is no more avalaible. But 41Hz's AMP2 use the same chips (but you have to solder yourself the very tiny legged two chips and other smd components). Now best Tripath chip is TDA1400 (max 400W 4ohm; 0,1 THD+N at 180W 8ohm) mono. Reference boards cost $600 and you need two.

Ciao

Thomas
  Reply With Quote
Old 20th June 2006, 03:24 PM   #10
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Colorado and France
Thomas, thanks for the info. The TD1400 is only 60V, so that's the highest voltage available on Tripath now. Evidently they don't want DIYers to buy their reference boards.

I'll be looking forward to your new comparison.

Guy
  Reply With Quote

Reply


Hide this!Advertise here!
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
FS: 41hz.com AMP1 Tripath TA2022 Tekko Swap Meet 7 18th December 2008 11:28 AM
41Hz Amp5 joemana Swap Meet 0 19th December 2007 03:27 AM
TA2020 vs TA2022, Amp5 vs Amp6 mudihan Class D 3 9th October 2006 05:54 PM
AMP5 Available on 41Hz hongrn Class D 4 23rd October 2005 04:12 AM


New To Site? Need Help?

All times are GMT. The time now is 09:23 AM.


vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 1999-2014 diyAudio

Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.3.2