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DAC 2496 (AK4393) DAC KIT With CS8416+AK4393+5532
DAC 2496 (AK4393) DAC KIT With CS8416+AK4393+5532
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Old 6th March 2012, 08:44 AM   #1281
Solve is offline Solve  Sweden
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Originally Posted by hotiron View Post
Use the 0-9v holes and solder a bridge see photo.
Thanks for the info.
Music is the only art in real time....
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Old 6th March 2012, 08:58 AM   #1282
hotiron is offline hotiron  Scotland
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You could also use a centre tapped transformer if you wanted to keep the opamp, and bridge the same link.
If you give up easily Dont start!!
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Old 6th March 2012, 02:54 PM   #1283
jfossb is offline jfossb  Norway
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Default Different board!

I am a total rookie at this!
Inspired solely by this thread, I ordered this complete DAC: Finished CS4398 + CS8416 USB DAC With Transformer+case

Will the basic modifications/upgrades aply to this DAC also? Furthermore, will the position (C3, C24, etc. Be the same on both boards. My litle project would be to swap some of the caps with the suggested ones: Wima,sanyo Oscon,elna silmic, Acording to the BOM. I already understand that it might not be smart to buy a complete DAC but that mistake is already done, and since I will focus on a few basic modifications I would really like to try and make it work, even if it means demounting the finished DAC to some extent. The desoldering is maybe the part that I am most conserned about, and not knowing if the position on the board are the same as for AK4396.
Any answers will be deeply appreciated , since I feel like walking on thin ice already with this (based on my inexperience with DIY projects)
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Old 7th March 2012, 01:25 AM   #1284
truepaul is offline truepaul  United States
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Default Yep, different board !

Hi jfossb --

As a rookie myself, I understand your hesitation regarding desoldering!

There's some good posts on a Forum devoted to "Construction Tips" and the Forum on "Equipment & Tools." Also a few earlier posts in this thread -- search "desoldering." One of the tools recommended costs less than $10 from Digikey, so it's not necessarily expensive. [see this Thread at 1248 for the link].

Get some tools, Find a circuit board off an dead CD player or such, and practice a bit !!

I looked up the DAC you named (on ebay), and it's a cousin to the one under discussion in this thread. At least, based on the pictures I saw, it should have "ljmaudio.net" printed on the board. (Check to see when yours arrives). We can only speculate if it was designed by the same person, or group, or was if the name was added to give it that appearance of similarity.

That said, about 70% of the components *look* like they're in the same position on your PCB (which of course doesn't mean that they are in the same position in an analogous circuit -- just makes it tempting to assume that it is, which I don't recommend doing).... Find out if you can get a schematic from the seller !! If you can, that would make it *much* easier to assess the part-for-part similarities.

I wouldn't order any parts until you see what you've got. Once you have it hand, you can't go too far wrong by swapping out like-for-like (e.g., same capacitance, same or slightly higher voltages). From what Clave reported earlier, the biggest improvement was found by changing out the output opamp (the one marked NE5532) and the capacitors adjacent to and connected to that opamp. Start there, and see what you hear !


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Old 7th March 2012, 07:17 AM   #1285
jfossb is offline jfossb  Norway
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Thank you for your thorough reply truepaul!

I actually have ordered one of those solderpumps, and I will invest in a new solderingiron (the old one is simply to blunt to work with when things get small)
I will try and find a PCB to practice on. My nextdoor neighbour (a good friend of mine) builds hi end DACs based on Bufalo 2/3 chips, and he might have a shotcircuited PCB for me to practice on.
I will try to find the datasheet for the board I have ordered, or I might order an AK4396 board to compare, and/or keep for my next project

Great to get clearified on the opamp improvement!

I am truly amazed at the skill level on this site, and the willingness to help and explain things.

Last edited by jfossb; 7th March 2012 at 07:38 AM.
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Old 7th March 2012, 09:32 AM   #1286
PsychoDogBeast is offline PsychoDogBeast  United Kingdom
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Hi there
I have bought the same, pre built dac, mine came from seller along1986090, took 3 weeks for shipping, came very well packed and is a really well built bit of kit for the money.

Out of the box it sounds really detailed, (i use a homebuilt dual mono power velleman power amplifier, squeezebox running flac files and some 80's Sony APM22ES high end pistonic motion speakers from when Sony built quality gear). But also sounds a little flat in the bottom end, ive had mine running now for 200 hours or so and its getting better by the day so before you decide to modify let it run it in a little

Ive changed the opamp to a LM4562 which has opened the sound up a little, but decided to bite the bullet and do a complete overhaul of the caps less the wima caps in Claves BOM, the total cost of the bits is 40 or so from ebay, ive also been given a pair of surface mount 627 op amps to shove in it when the adaptor arrives.

My DAC is a LJMaudio.net board so im hoping the mods in this thread should apply to my DAC, (i have bought a kit board as well just incase i damage mine). It is mounted to the DAC enclosure by four screws, the LEDs are soldered to the board via ribbon cables which will have to be detached, the builders of the DAC have also hot melt glued all the screw conections for the inputs/transformer supply/spdif output on the board so this will have to be removed too. I will take photos to look at later on this week.

It worked out cheaper for me to buy the pre-built unit, than to buy the board kit/transformer and case, think the total cost including delivery was 68 and i didnt get a customs charge.

Hope the above information will help you a little and good luck
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Old 7th March 2012, 05:15 PM   #1287
jfossb is offline jfossb  Norway
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Of course! It is very helpfull, Thanks!!

I am looking for a little more opened up sound, and a litle tighter in the bass. I do not want more bass, or more highs in terms of quantity.
I am running a Music Angel KT88 tubeamp, Shanling CDT 100, and Montana Monitor loudspeakers.

I will let the DAC run in and evaluate the sound, maybe I am a good step towards what I am looking to improve even in its original state (But then the "maybe just a litle bit better" snowball starts to role ) ....

It would be nice if you would post your experiences with the placement of components in reference to the BOM for AK4396 and ofcourse soundchanges/improvals.
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Old 11th March 2012, 09:40 PM   #1288
PsychoDogBeast is offline PsychoDogBeast  United Kingdom
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Hi Jfossb

Il try my best to let you know when the various op amps and caps arrive/are installed.
Ive tried to stick to Claves BOM as best as i could but a couple of my capacitor substitutions have had to be Nichicon Muse ones as they were easier to get hold of.

Ive taken photos for you to look at below.

cheers james

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Old 11th March 2012, 10:03 PM   #1289
billo44 is offline billo44  United Kingdom
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Originally Posted by ptempel View Post
Was looking at the full BOM posted by ClaveFremen (Dario) in post 1125:

Only two questions on it. Can I replace the 0.1uF Evox-Rifa SMR cap with either Wima pulse film or poly film? Its out of stock at Mouser and couldn't find it at Digikey and Newark. Also, does anyone have a part number or name for the two inductors are (L1 and L2)? Kudos to Clave and all the others for all the testing that was done with this DAC. Was looking at the CS8416 datasheet and are you sure that L1 and L2 are not ferrite beads?

I have the same problem as Phillipe, and I couldn't find an answer to his inquiry....
Is there a good alternate for the Evox-Rifa 100nF 50v, I can't find these in stock anywhere.

Any advice?
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Old 11th March 2012, 11:32 PM   #1290
ClaveFremen is offline ClaveFremen  Italy
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DAC 2496 (AK4393) DAC KIT With CS8416+AK4393+5532
Originally Posted by billo44 View Post
Is there a good alternate for the Evox-Rifa 100nF 50v, I can't find these in stock anywhere.
I've tried Evox MMKs and Wima MKS2, none of them performed as well as the SMRs.

SMRs can be bought and shipped worldwide from Elsa/Distrelec.

Sadly shipping fee is not exactly cheap... but maybe someone can organize a little GB.

For European builders there should be a local Distrelec shop in quite all countries.

A possible (untested) alternative could be Panasonic SMD PPS
ClaveFremen "Bailando Salsa en el Sietch" - For My_Ref FE 12th GB extra boards PM me.

Last edited by ClaveFremen; 11th March 2012 at 11:36 PM.
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