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Old 19th August 2011, 03:32 PM   #17251
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Ray - yes, a pricey accident, if you can even put a price to them now that they are so rare. Ugh, I feel so stupid. Fortunately they still work OK, and it should encourage me to stop needlessly fiddling with the amp. I was experimenting with bypassing the FKs with some different types of capacitor, all of which made sound quality worse anyway, and it was a nice sunny day outside so I had serious questions to ask myself afterwards.

I don't trust the leads on the Mundorfs either. They have 'future bad day' written all over them :-/

Pete - apologies if I'm teaching my grandmother to suck eggs here, but are you sure it's the DOS? Did you take the main board out at all? This happens to me all the time. I wouldn't like to say how many times I've put everything back together to find I've got no sound in one channel. Nine times out of ten, it's just a random one of the few original 12-year-old joints in power supply or output stage on the main PCB that has cracked due to repeated flexing. If I was you, I'd do a visual check first in good light and if nothing shows up, try checking trace connectivity between components with the 'diode' mode of your multimeter from the output socket backwards. I'd do that before unsoldering anything.
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Old 19th August 2011, 04:51 PM   #17252
6h5c is offline 6h5c  Netherlands
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That's unfortunate Pete. It seems your soldering iron or tip isn't up to the job. I have no problems clearing the holes of the board with a 80W soldering station and a 3.2mm chisel shaped tip. It could be your tip is too small so there's not enough heat transfer. Or the power of your iron is too low. But with a good tip, 20-25W should be more than enough for a fixed iron, or 50-60W for a station.

Fill the hole with fresh solder so it's completely filled. It's much easier to clear this way than to try and pry out the last bit of old solder without flux. I use a standard desoldering gun (handpump), works fine. Braid doesn't work with plated holes.

To check the DOS, you could do a simple check between channels with a DMM. All DC levels should measure about the same for left and right. Like Ben says, it could also be the mainboard. Maybe one of the wires that run from the DAC to the DOS' inputs have come loose.

Ray
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Old 19th August 2011, 05:36 PM   #17253
Chivvyp is offline Chivvyp  United Kingdom
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I think my iron is ok but I've been trying to do it with braid, maybe I need to get a solder pump.

I checked over the main board before I decided it was the DOS board, the channel isn't dead, I'm getting sound out but the volume is lower in one channel so I don't think it can be a loose connection and I don't think there's anything left on the mainboard that could affect the channel balance.

Regards

Pete

Last edited by Chivvyp; 19th August 2011 at 05:37 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 19th August 2011, 09:22 PM   #17254
6h5c is offline 6h5c  Netherlands
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Yeah, the braid only removes the solder to about halfway, it sucks

The outputs of the DAC are symmetric: there's a positive and a negative output that work together. If one of them is not connected, you only get 'half' the signal and the output of that channel will be lower. This would explain the balance problem. You can check if both outputs are connected by measuring the voltage at the inputs of the DOS (LO/RO and LON/RON): all should measure about 2.5V DC.

Ray
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Old 20th August 2011, 07:13 AM   #17255
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I put the NX caps in this evening, in the positions where Brent prescribes OS-CONs. Initial impressions are that the player sounds worse than it did with STD/FKs, but I guess the new caps have been sitting for around five years and will take some time to form.

My player has started skipping recently, about once every half hour or so. Does anyone have any idea why this might be happening? I think it started happening when I beefed up the power supply caps to 22k. I could try some white grease on the gears, but I somehow doubt it's mechanical.
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Old 20th August 2011, 09:02 AM   #17256
6h5c is offline 6h5c  Netherlands
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Do you have an oscilloscope? Then you can check the level of the HF signal. If it's too low, you need to replace or adjust the laser.

Ray
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Old 20th August 2011, 11:50 AM   #17257
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Sadly not... and Christmas is a while away.

I am on my second laser assembly, and I remember now that skipping was an early symptom of the demise of the original. I was hoping I'd get more life out of the replacement as it's a newer revision of the hardware, but I've had it about 6 years, which is how long the original lasted.

It's a bit suspect that it would start skipping immediately after some mods though. It was actually worse for a while, skipping numerous times per disc, but then I changed C120 to 470uF and it seemed to improve a lot... and isn't that smoothing motor supply? I hope I'm not embarrassing myself too much here, as I'm definitely a bit out of my depth diagnosing this one.

I read that Brent actually has a 4700uF on C813 (which is what I had up until recently), in addition to a 22,000uF. I have a feeling that it might skip more on heavier music, so I was wondering if the big cap in isolation might have a side effect of causing a skip in some circumstances. I don't know how many people run such big caps on without also adding other regulators, PSUs, etc.

The other thing I changed which might've coincided with the skipping first being introduced was when I changed C111-6 from ceramic discs to silver micas... I guess I'm clutching at straws. I just can't shake the feeling that I've caused the skipping by changing component values or types somehow.

If there's no obvious known issue, and nothing I can test with just a DMM, then I suppose trying a new laser assembly would be a worthwhile test before I start undoing mods.

Thanks Ray.
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Old 20th August 2011, 11:58 AM   #17258
6h5c is offline 6h5c  Netherlands
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It is possible that changing components started the skipping, by slightly altered voltages for example. But it was already at the edge most likely, and if you hadn't changed anything it probably would have started next month or so.

Six years is not too bad though, for a standard VAM unit, assuming you use the player lets say, almost every day? Have you tried cleaning the lens yet? If that doesn't help, you can raise the lasers output a bit by turning the trimmer on the laser a small notch clockwise.

Ray
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Old 20th August 2011, 12:13 PM   #17259
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Hi Ray, thank you so much. That makes a lot of sense to me and I've got a feeling that your insight is absolutely bang on with this as always. I really appreciate you providing an emergency support hotline for me in the middle of the night* :-)

I will find the trimmer and give it a tweak.

*(It's the age old story - woke up due to nightmare about purple octopus, got up to get glass of water, stayed up to obsess about CD player).
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Old 20th August 2011, 12:24 PM   #17260
RCruz is offline RCruz  Switzerland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Hanke View Post
*(It's the age old story - woke up due to nightmare about purple octopus, got up to get glass of water, stayed up to obsess about CD player).
Strange nightmare you had.... I normally have nightmares about melting Euros running through my fingers.
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