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wlowes wlowes is offline

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  • Last Activity: 23rd June 2017 06:31 PM
  • Join Date: 18th March 2007


View wlowes's BlogRecent Entries
Latest Blog Entry

Posted 13th February 2015 at 04:16 PM by wlowes Comments 0
Posted in Uncategorized
Disclaimer that this entry is just a scrap book of my personal journey with a build. No fresh engineering here, so those seeking engineering insights can save the read.

That said, my new music server is now fully burned in, and for me its a delight. It is a collage of ideas developed by diyaudio members and by Lukas Fikus, aka Lampizator. Thanks to all who contributed. I hope these notes pass on some ideas for others.

Basic Approach
My approach is heavily influenced by Lukas of Lampizator fame. I have enjoyed his tube output amp design in my previous DAC, and several cd players. He got me interested in the TDA1541a, and I have had many years of happlily tweaking it for best sound. This server has a clone of his level 6 DAC with tube rectifiers, dual mono supply and film caps in CLCLC configuration.

Also, my digital evolution came via CICS CMP which taught me to appreciate a minimalist PC processor with network attached storage...

Posted 30th December 2013 at 03:35 AM by wlowes Comments 0
Posted in Uncategorized
Two months ago I had great ambitions to complete a long in the planning short on execution music server by xmas. Seems I am too busy and just having too much fun listening to my system to make progress on big projects.

However, in a very low key way my system has made some stunning gains over the 2013 holiday.

My happy 6 year journey with a Lightspeed linestage finally ran afoul when an LDR packed it in. I retooled with some on hand bits while waiting for new LDRs to arrive. A snaffu with my order delayed that whole process. Meanwhile, my wonderful wife asked me what I wanted for xmas. I had been reading Arthur Salvatore's site and became interested in using an autoformer from Dave Slagle for my linestage. If your read the reviews and the technical specs, its intriguing. My system is perfect for passive. I only listen to a music server with triode ouput stage, short interconnects to OTL amps and overall have lots of gain.

On a whim...

Posted 11th September 2013 at 01:31 AM by wlowes Comments 0
Posted in Uncategorized
This is another personal build diary. Don't expect to see any new engineering.. just my take on a lot of other people's innovation...
Sept 2013 Concept complete and chassis design kicks off.

I had really good results over the past 2 years building/tweaking and enjoying a Lampizator inspired TDA1541a DAC with 6n2p tube output. It was prototyped to death and now that I understand it I want a clean, reference build.

Inspired by Lampizator, I am shamelessly using his case design and level 6 output. This means:
-dual mono power supply,
-5C3S rectifier tubes,
-40H chokes,
-6n2p tubes mounted inverted for easy wiring,
-200u polypropylene filter caps
-separate B+ tranny for each channel

Like many, I have followed ecdesigns and Oliver Mai projects. I decided to use Oliver's Red Baron PCB and Salas shunts. Really nicely done and contains all the stuff that makes for a great tda1541a without all the...

Posted 3rd March 2013 at 02:58 PM by wlowes Comments 0
Posted in Uncategorized
The amps continued to run in and proved to be keepers. Well worth doing some final spit and polish. There was a little hum on one amp and some noise / hash on the tweeters of both channels. Nothing major, but certainly audible at 1 foot.
Using AC filament supply for all but the input tube, I figured I should re read the best practices on wire dressing, hum pots, virtual center tap etc.
Looking back there were some spots to improve.
1. tight wire twist on path from bridge rectifier to first caps. Done, no real change.
2. tight twist on b+ supply to input tube plus added BG 3uF 250v cap right at the tube. No change to noise but love the improvement in sound
3. tight wire twist from psu to b+ on all power tubes plus BG 10uF 250v on each power tube. Like the input tube the BG brought an immediate lowering of noise floor that really brought a finishing to the SQ. Quiet background, micro details and just a smooth rich sound. Not colored, just the way it...

Posted 27th January 2013 at 04:08 PM by wlowes Comments 0
Posted in Uncategorized
Done! The second went much faster and was playing music in 2 weeks.

Now that they are running I will borrow from the circuit designer's own description of the sound as it really does sum it up..

"There is no substitute for power and that is what this amp has. Complex musical passages are effortlessly reproduced with a natural depth and breadth unmatched by any other amp. Subtle nuances are clearly revealed underneath pounding crescendos.

Striking imaging causes instruments to be layered in a three dimensional sound stage that recreates the experience of a live performance. The music "opens up" and leaps out of the loudspeaker eliminating any box like sound. The most minute and subtle sounds are revealed producing uncanny realism. Musical voices are warm and lifelike yet completely neutral with a razor sharp focus."

In my own words.. incredibly natural. 3D and layered sound. Deep bass with weight creates...
Recent Comments
Thanks Ryanj
Posted 30th March 2015 at 12:13 AM by wlowes wlowes is offline
Nice job,
Posted 3rd October 2012 at 06:52 PM by Alain Dupont Alain Dupont is offline
Hide this!Advertise here!

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