Dual mono AK4495S with AK4137 and MCU/LCD DAC kit for $160 - diyAudio
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Old 2nd March 2016, 02:06 PM   #1
kukynas is online now kukynas  Czech Republic
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Default Dual mono AK4495S with AK4137 and MCU/LCD DAC kit for $160

Dear fellow diyers,

I'd like to share with you lately developed AKM Verita DAC kit, especially for those of you interested (not limited to) in HW DSD conversion.

DAC kit contains 2 boards with extension to third one which is optional USB board (available at the bottom link), boards are 2 layers of high quality with genuine components.
I'm not seller nor designer nor producer but I bought from him within last 18 months several boards and all of them were exceptional compare to price he's asking so can highly recommend his products...

details about DAC kit:

MCU AK4137 board
inputs:
- AES/Coax/BNC/OPT through AK4118 from PCM 44.1 to 192khz/24 bit res.
- I2S/USB (shared) from PCM 44.1 to DSD256
outputs:
- 20 pin I2S
AK4137 conversion up to PCM384 or DSD256
Dedicated Xmos or Amanero board pin/size compatible
MCU with inputs and DSD conversion setting of AK4137 SRC
blue 1602 LCD board with ribbon cable
1/3 button switch board
7805 pre-regulator
ADP151 post-regulators
22/24Mhz onboard oscillators
LXH541 driver between I2S and PCM inputs
fully soldered except input connectors
6-9V/1A AC PSU required
more info in the link at the bottom

Online mode (change of filters, volume control etc.) is not supported on this board

Price = $93 with free WW delivery

Click the image to open in full size.

Dual mono AK4495S
input:
- 20 pin I2S/I2C
output:
- current circuit as is single ended RCA
Jumper switches for HW control of PCM/DSD mode and filters
2x LT1763/6.9V (can be bypassed)
3x ADP151/3.3V (can be bypassed)
Wishay resistors
Output relay
HW volume control pin
connection between AK4137 board and DAC board through 20 pin ribbon cable/connector
board's coming as shown in below first picture, only SMT parts are soldered, all other through hole components needs to be purchased and soldered separately based on BOM list provided!!!
DC PSU = +5V/GND A/DVDD, +10V/GND VDD, +/-15V/GND OPAMP
more details in the link at the bottom
Price = $67 with free WW delivery


Click the image to open in full size.

fully assembled (only for showing purposes)

Click the image to open in full size.


just made arrangement with seller to add all kit parts into less complicated Aliexpress shop and as of today everything's should be available (in certain qty)
All boards can be used separately with any other products from different producers i.e. dual AK4495 can be used with only USB to I2S board such as Jlsound etc.

Producer won't provide schematics of the boards or codes for MCU so be aware before you place an order !!!

If you have any questions shoot I will try to answer but with limited info as my boards are still on order

where to buy:
AK4137 - AK4137 DAC SRC flagship high end audio 786K 32Bit DSD 256 DSD IIS conversion-in Integrated Circuits from Electronic Components & Supplies on Aliexpress.com | Alibaba Group
2xAK4495 - DUAL AK4495S DAC decoder soft control panel and a dual sound channel input support DSD IIS on Aliexpress.com | Alibaba Group
Original Xmos USB module - Aliexpress.com : Buy HIFI asynchronous digital XMOS U8 module USB IIS / DSD supports PCM / DSD from Reliable dsd suppliers on Rose Electronic | Alibaba Group
R-core trany 115V/230V 50W high quality Audio R Core Transformer 15V+15V 9V+9V-in Transformers from Electrical Equipment & Supplies on Aliexpress.com | Alibaba Group

ps. this is not group buy, everybody needs to buy their own boards separately

Last edited by kukynas; 15th August 2016 at 09:37 AM. Reason: change of specs due to unsupported online mode
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Old 4th March 2016, 02:02 PM   #2
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Maribor
Default Ak4490

Great products. Well made pcbs.
A gratefull member from this forum helped me with buying it from China seller.Thank you again.
My dac is not 100% original design. On every board i made some optimization, split some supply lines and give some more regulation with tps7a4700 reg. So the result is very very good. It plays dsd, and have volume settings and filter settings also wia apple remote.
In near future i will install it in apropriate enclosure. That is just finished experimental phase.
Far better than all ES9018 that i had. It is emotional and neutral and no sharp sounded like Sabre can be. It needs far more optimization and carefull design to play it organic...but not as AK4490. I will pass Ak4495 because it is quite the same DAC...THD is even worse than AK4490. I will wait for a half a year to come ak4497. Just change the last board and the show will go on .
That seller also sell very good dsd direct dac board like sygnalist.
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File Type: jpg Ak4490dsd.jpg (391.8 KB, 2655 views)
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Old 4th March 2016, 03:13 PM   #3
kukynas is online now kukynas  Czech Republic
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Hi androa,

yep, he has more boards available at taobao like your single AK4490 with separate MCU, single AK4495 or complete AK4495 DAC etc. the main difference against your standard MCU is that this board also contain AK4137 SRC chip to upconvert PCM to DSD on the fly without using any additional HW/SW mods from either SPDIF or USB/I2S input...
the sound from my single version AK4495 DAC mentioned in dual AK4399 thread sounds fantastic so I had to pull a trigger to get this one for trial, hope to get even more from dual mono version
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Old 4th March 2016, 06:43 PM   #4
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Maribor
Have you done any modification?
Which opamp did you use... filter is 2015 or 2016 version?
My friend bought 2016 version and after first listening test sound is a little bit bright with lme49720 and lme49990.
My dac is tuned into relaxed way...i also use lme49990 with +-15V and VDD and VREF with 6,1V because of FP 6,3V capacitors, AK4495 2016 is 6,9V and output schematic is much different
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File Type: jpg ak4495 output.jpg (43.9 KB, 2528 views)
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Old 4th March 2016, 07:56 PM   #5
kukynas is online now kukynas  Czech Republic
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Join Date: Apr 2014
I haven't done any modification to my fully populated AK4495, I got first prototype version (black PCB) with discrete regulators and extra isolator for input stage, opamps are LT1363, both of LME opamps sounded artificial in this DAC

Click the image to open in full size.

original enclosure sold separately

Click the image to open in full size.

for dual version I plan to use diyinhk ULN LT3042 regulators, dual 3.3V+7V for DAC part and dual +/-15V for opamp part


.
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Old 4th March 2016, 08:50 PM   #6
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Maribor
I see ...your dac is not the same but smells like last version.
No capacity near AK4495 supply pins, the same regulator for DVDD and AVCC..try to splitt that in the new dac. No small decoupling caps near opamp...it is possible that oscillated a bit. Lme49990 is more sensitive to decoupling. 100uf smd tant on DVDD and AVDD pins gives a little less nervous sound. In my other ak4490dac that need dual opamp i tried ad827, ad797x2, opa627x2, opa827x2, lt1364, opa1612, muse 02, lme79720ha and lme49990x2, best lme49990 than opa627 than muse 02....and most soft sounded are ad827 more lt1364 and most opa1612 with powerfull bas and relaxed 3d sound silky highs but soft dull midrange. Aune s16 uses nosier bipolar version for SE output opa1662 and opa1642 on first position.
Xmos board has quite noisy pin and gnd near 1V internal smps regulator pin. I tried to do more filtering as hifiduino suggested, but all the ripple goes to gnd and poluted it. I installed 1v low noise regulator.
In front ...input of 3.3v ADP ...left side under install 100uf tantal...to become more fuller and compact sound. Original xmos plays quite cold and sharp...some more tants near clocks, and splitted 5V usb supply, now i can use 5v regulator or 5v usb supply. Switch the bridge to another position, and put 2 wires from regulator on it and fix. Later that wil be solved with switch....
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Old 4th March 2016, 10:03 PM   #7
kukynas is online now kukynas  Czech Republic
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Join Date: Apr 2014
I think split of AVDD and DVDD regulator is the last thing to modify, first of all bypass of LT1763 will be required, change of the main pre-regulator on MCU board, etc...

I didn't wanna mess around with my current AK4495, it's sounds great as is already, this is first version of his AK4495 family DAC boards, second version (blue PCB) has been modified...

I didn't decide which USB > I2S converter will be used but I plan to look at the board once it arrives and decide after that but for sure there are better converters than his own

we can have a look more in details once it arrives what is best to modify but for sure there is room for improvement

btw. yes I've seen his DSC1 DAC but it's only bare PCB with SMT components in the pack which need to be soldered so nothing for me without proper equipment, secondly you need DSD signal either HW or SW
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Old 5th March 2016, 05:02 AM   #8
ttan98 is offline ttan98  Australia
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Melb
Quote:
Originally Posted by kukynas View Post
I haven't done any modification to my fully populated AK4495, I got first prototype version (black PCB) with discrete regulators and extra isolator for input stage, opamps are LT1363, both of LME opamps sounded artificial in this DAC

Click the image to open in full size.

original enclosure sold separately

Click the image to open in full size.

for dual version I plan to use diyinhk ULN LT3042 regulators, dual 3.3V+7V for DAC part and dual +/-15V for opamp part


.
This model is different from the unit you posted previously. I am thinking of getting this model even though I already purchased a dual AK4490 which is very good audio wise superior to my older AK4396.

I wonder you answer me a few queries I have based on this model:

a. I notice you can change the slope of the output filter, do you notice any audio differences, is this feature useful?

b. Are there any major differences in audio output when compared with your dual AK4399, I believe you own one. Please elaborate.

c. Your opinion is it worth getting to experimenting?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 5th March 2016, 10:13 AM   #9
kukynas is online now kukynas  Czech Republic
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Join Date: Apr 2014
not sure which dual AK4490 version/model you have so hard to judge if you could gain any benefit of buying other AKM board but my version of single AK4495 is not produced any more (only 10pcs. were produced) so if you are interested in fully populated DAC there is new version mentioned here at the bottom of the page which you can buy here but you should be aware of it's limits in terms of potential tweaking due to limited space on the board, not so DIY friendly, on the other hand just plug in and play without much hassle for those wanting fully functional DAC

a: yes, you can change filter setting, difference isn't big but clearly audible

b: I had a chance to compare it to my old dual AK4399 before I sold it and difference was mainly in clarity, distortion and in general more enjoyable way but no wonder, everybody who tried Weiliang boards were aware of his poor implementation so comparison was bit unfair, quality of the board in case of AK4495 is way advanced, on the other hand those who tried AK4490/5 DACs stated the same, it sounds way better than old AK43xx

c: again, hard to judge, if you could share info about your current DAC we might see the benefit, if you'd like to explore options with filter setting etc than easier way is to buy MCU board first and than decide if there's potential to upgrade your DAC board

Last edited by kukynas; 5th March 2016 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 8th March 2016, 01:12 AM   #10
ttan98 is offline ttan98  Australia
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Melb
Quote:
Originally Posted by kukynas View Post
not sure which dual AK4490 version/model you have so hard to judge if you could gain any benefit of buying other AKM board but my version of single AK4495 is not produced any more (only 10pcs. were produced) so if you are interested in fully populated DAC there is new version mentioned here at the bottom of the page which you can buy here but you should be aware of it's limits in terms of potential tweaking due to limited space on the board, not so DIY friendly, on the other hand just plug in and play without much hassle for those wanting fully functional DAC

a: yes, you can change filter setting, difference isn't big but clearly audible

b: I had a chance to compare it to my old dual AK4399 before I sold it and difference was mainly in clarity, distortion and in general more enjoyable way but no wonder, everybody who tried Weiliang boards were aware of his poor implementation so comparison was bit unfair, quality of the board in case of AK4495 is way advanced, on the other hand those who tried AK4490/5 DACs stated the same, it sounds way better than old AK43xx

c: again, hard to judge, if you could share info about your current DAC we might see the benefit, if you'd like to explore options with filter setting etc than easier way is to buy MCU board first and than decide if there's potential to upgrade your DAC board
Hi,

Thanks for the response, I was away for 1-2 days hence for the late reply. My Dual AK4490 is as below. The only change I made so far was exchanging the existing op amp 5534 with LM49710. The latter opamp does make a difference. After the Op amp LM49710 I insert a tube buffer based on 6N11 or 6922 tube and the overall sound is clearly superior to my rather older AK4396. The sound stage wider and better clarity due mainly to a better op amp. The better soundstage is I think mainly due to the dual AK4490 chipsets I am using.

Your board is based on a single AK4495, with in-built filters it would affect the overall output sound. I am thinking of experimenting with it. I can buy it from TaoBoa for about US$70-75 not including postage or more expensive from Aliexpress. I am in no hurry to experiment maybe I wait for a little before I buy one. I suspect the difference in sound quality between with 2 boards is marginal.
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