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Old 20th March 2003, 07:08 AM   #1
rbroer is offline rbroer  Netherlands
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Default Crystal tweak

For people on a low budget (not wanting to buy a LCaudio or Audiocom clock) the following tweak might improve their cd players or dacs that have crystals inside them.

Desolder the crystal, solder say 5 cm fine wire to each leg (I use wire wrap wire)
Solder the wires into the crystals original location.
Bend both wires in a 90 degree angle so the crystal is "dangling" horizontally in the air.

Effectively this will decouple the crystal from a mechanical point of view. Vibrations from transport & pcb will propagate less easy to the crystal, inducing less jitter.
One can see this mechanical sensitivity very easy on a scoop, by just tapping the crystal with your fingernail or small screwdriver.

I've experienced improvements from none to almost as good as a seperate clock. Depends of course on the quality of the local powersupply for the clock gates.

Even on the older "Kwak-Clock" versions the effect was still there.
Only the most recent ones with higher fet current and dual supplies for the comparator are quite immune to the "fingertapping"
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Old 20th March 2003, 07:40 AM   #2
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Default Re: Crystal tweak

Quote:
Originally posted by rbroer
Effectively this will decouple the crystal from a mechanical point of view. Vibrations from transport & pcb will propagate less easy to the crystal, inducing less jitter.
One can see this mechanical sensitivity very easy on a scoop, by just tapping the crystal with your fingernail or small screwdriver.
Can you really confirm your statement Jitter is MEGAHERTZ!

Long wires is a typical no-no if we talk crytal oscillators. What about RFI or EMI from the crystal? Your circuits may pick up the clock signal and really interfere and make things worse!

I think this advice is not very good but if you do have problems with vibrations, let the whole oscillator be suspended in something!
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Old 20th March 2003, 10:20 AM   #3
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Quote:
Long wires is a typical no-no if we talk crytal oscillators. What about RFI or EMI from the crystal? Your circuits may pick up the clock signal and really interfere and make things worse!

Jitter is not per definition in the MegaHertz range but further I agree with Per-Anders. Long wires are a no-no.

Is a tiny drop of silicone kit under the crystal not better to damp it mechanically ? I've seen crystals in expensive players that had a rubber band around them to damp it. When removed the player did sound different ( worse ). This all was not comparable with a low jitter clock that gave best results.
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Old 20th March 2003, 10:45 AM   #4
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Of course, Jean-Paul, jitter isn't measured in MHz but what I ment was that jitter is mostly as high frequency phenomina. A crystal is a mechanical device so therefore it's sensitive for vibrations but in a regular CD-player I think the vibrations are rather small, not the one in a x48 data-CD.
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Old 20th March 2003, 02:12 PM   #5
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You obviously did not experiment with damping the crystal mechanically or you would have said the opposite. It does make a difference, and this is not small. You can try this easily and check for yourself. Brands like Musical Fidelity, Marantz and Arcam to name a few do this for years.
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Old 20th March 2003, 07:46 PM   #6
A 8 is offline A 8  Sweden
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rbroer probably induces more jitter and feels it sounds better.
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Old 25th March 2003, 04:10 AM   #7
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Default What's all this crystal damping stuff, anyhow???

Yes, it makes a difference, but not much. I have measured it. Don't remember the exact amounts, but it didn't help much.

Of course, it may have been enough in your application.

And each brand of crystal is microphonic at different frequencies.

Jocko
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Old 25th March 2003, 12:25 PM   #8
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Welcome back Jocko, nice to see you again.

got a bulging wad now?
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Old 25th March 2003, 02:33 PM   #9
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Default NO!

More broke than ever.

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Old 25th March 2003, 02:35 PM   #10
tiroth is offline tiroth  United States
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