Full Range of Sony CD Laser Pick Ups (with photos) - diyAudio
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Old 3rd August 2004, 01:43 PM   #1
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Default Full Range of Sony CD Laser Pick Ups (with photos)

Which Sony laser pick-up is the best so far?

The KSS213 is widely used in most of the CD players.

The KSS240 is a better quality one and is used by Krnell CD player and it is a direct replacement for KSS213 as I understand.

The KSS390 is interesting as it is the only one with a metal housing.

Any more thoughts?
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Old 3rd August 2004, 01:45 PM   #2
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more ...

(BTW, how to make the photos show up in the post instead of an attachment?)
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Old 3rd August 2004, 01:48 PM   #3
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last one.

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Old 3rd August 2004, 02:04 PM   #4
Netlist is offline Netlist  Belgium
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Thanks deskmate88
Impressive and a good reference too.
I didn't know there were so much.
As for which one is the best, no idea.

Picture don't show up is a forums behavior to save bandwidth.
Unless you host them on another server and link to them.

/Hugo
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Old 5th August 2004, 06:30 PM   #5
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Very interesting , yes.


I had been looking at KSS213F for its plastic dust cover, and generally at getting the best from the KSS laser family.

I had emailed distributors and asked here and there to find no results(except for the "I've been told" or "Looks to me" kind).
like "the higher the letter(closer to Z), it is more compatible to different discs and trays". Which is more or less congruent with the notion that mobile sports cd players use higher letter KSS lasers.
Nothing about its sound quality though, except that "KSS213C is better sounding than KSS213B"...
So far, I have not seen fundamented or reputable info on the KSS family differences.

Interesting you say KSS240 could be compatible and better than any 213.

Even more intriguing is the KSS390. Specially since I've been planning to place some tallish heatsinks on two ICs close to the laser, and with the laser metal housing being probably grounded(How?)...uhmm.
It would be interesting to know anything that prevents unwanted electromagnetics from the sensitive laser.

Thanks already.
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Old 8th August 2004, 06:01 AM   #6
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Default 213 vs 240

I now have some more info on this 213 vs 240. I got this from a very experienced design engineer in a DVD/VCD manufacture.

Although 240 is more expensive than the 213, and looks a little bit better built than 213, the 213 is in fact a newer and better pick up. the laser pick up and tracking has been improved quite a bit especially to cope with the VCDs, as some of VCDs are next to improssible to read.

As a result, the 213 is a newer and better pick up than the 240, the reson that the 213 is cheaper is becuase its quantity is much larger than the 240, more than 50x time more, hence the lower price.

BTW, the 213 in his opinion is better than the Philips 120x series. altough the best are still the Philips CDM1 MK2, CDM4 and CDM9.

So for current production, the 213 is the best CD pick up available.

So take your pick ...
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Old 10th August 2004, 04:13 AM   #7
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Hi mate88,

is it true 213 can change 240 by just replaced the optical set only?
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Old 7th November 2004, 02:06 PM   #8
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So, what's the best KSS-213 (The A, B, C, D, E, F, Q, R or V)? I have a dead B and a lot of people got dead B D and E
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Old 13th February 2005, 06:20 PM   #9
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I have no confirmation of this, but I've read that a lower(closer to z) letter will fit any upper, but not viceversa.

At your case, using a Sony KSS-213A won't do, but any other KSS-213-B, KSS-213C, D, etc. will be OK.

This is congruent with the info that portable CD players utilise lower letter lasers, and that those letters would mean increasingly finer/thiner laser beams, so they are better at handling smaller detail...

After all this time, I'd thought a better source of info for such common devices would be found already...

Any help, thanks
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Old 29th July 2007, 05:15 PM   #10
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Default CD23T KSS213B replacement

I have a Arcam CD23T with the KSS-213B laser pickup installed. I was experiencing a subtle sonic "ticking", both on CD-R and pressed discs. This lead me to try and clean the lens with a lens cloth, that worked but did not eliminate the problem. I then proceeded to make the slightest adjustments to the pickup via the pot exposed, this worked perfectly eliminating the "ticking". I have read this is the power adjustment for the pickup and that it generally means the laser is on the way out if you need to increase the power. I'm nearing the end of the pot adjustment limit, however still operates fine for the moment. I have taken care not to over increase the power adjustment as best I could.

I have sought a KSS-213B replacement which seem readily available, though no reply yet, I understand it remains a current model.

My question regards the installation and adjustment of the pickup. I have heard talk of CRO use. Any experience/precautions would be greatly appreciated.
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