Low cost SMD stepped attenuators - diyAudio
Go Back   Home > Forums > Design & Build > Parts

Parts Where to get, and how to make the best bits. PCB's, caps, transformers, etc.

Please consider donating to help us continue to serve you.

Ads on/off / Custom Title / More PMs / More album space / Advanced printing & mass image saving
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 2nd September 2011, 04:00 AM   #1
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Toronto
Default Low cost SMD stepped attenuators

I was wondering if anyone has any experience with the small SMD stepped attenuators from china, ex. SMT Resistor 50K Step Attenuator Volume Control Alps | eBay.

For small amps they might be a good upgrade? Anyone know how they compare to the little green ALPS pots (1pc Japan ALPS Volume Potentiometer 10KAX2 RK09 Type | eBay).

Thanks,
Lyle
  Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2011, 04:12 AM   #2
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Toronto, ON, Canada
I suppose it would depend on the type of resistors and the quality of the switch itself. Definitely inexpensive.
  Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2011, 04:22 AM   #3
just another
diyAudio Moderator
 
wintermute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Sydney
Blog Entries: 22
I bought one of these DACT Type 21 Stepped Attenuator 20K FOR PASS B1 DIY | eBay though I haven't used it yet.

my main criteria was good channel matching and checking with the multimeter it certainly achieves that! Not sure what the longevity will be like or whether the 21 steps will be fine enough, but it seems to be what it claims Note that as far as I can tell it is effectively a bunch of smd resistors connected in series and a wiper tapping in at various points along that series of resistors, so somewhat like a conventional pot made up of smd resistors.

Tony.
__________________
Any intelligence I may appear to have is purely artificial!
Some of my photos
  Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2011, 04:56 AM   #4
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Los Angeles
Have you considered a shaft encoder interfaced to a PGA2310? They claim some pretty good specs and would be a snap to add remote capabilities. A PIC or my favorites Freescale HC908 series processors would be pretty simple.

Of course you hollow state guys might not like it.

G
  Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2011, 05:08 AM   #5
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: BC, Canada
I bought a Chinese stepped attenuator with the loudness tap several years ago for a Marantz preamp rebuild and it still works. The tracking is light years better than the old pot (CTC) it replaced. The only question was the longevity, 3 years in service is not long enough.

It looks like this one but with the loudness tap -> 1*ALPS 500K 'A' Log Potentiometer Attenuator Stereo New | eBay
  Reply With Quote
Old 2nd September 2011, 07:04 AM   #6
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Australia
I've been running the "gigawork" attenuator wintermute linked for about a year now. It replaced the standard pot from my Yaqin MC-100b amp that looked basically like a copy of the ALPS blue velvet, but wasn't an ALPS. I assume it was just some good-ish quality Chinese pot.

The attenuator sounds better than that pot. I don't like using all the audiophile adjectives, so I'll just say it sounded clearer.
  Reply With Quote
Old 11th April 2012, 12:23 AM   #7
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Default I agree

I've just recently discovered these volume pots using the SMD type fly speck size resistors. I'm using a 10K one that a buddy of mine gave me in a passive preamp. I'm sure glad he did. I don't even know the brand of it.

I feel this the most transparent, quick sounding volume pot I've ever tried. Better than wirewounds, ladder or series types using 1/4 watt (?) resistors for sure!

It sounds great with every amp I've thrown at it so far. All the way from my my giant 300 watt per channel Emotiva XPA-2 to my 3/4 watt per channel Darling tube amp.

I have not played with optical volume pots such as the Optivol yet. I'm a bit reluctant to have to supply power to a passive. And they are around $50as I recall, so not exceptionally cheap.

Mark
  Reply With Quote
Old 11th April 2012, 02:41 PM   #8
djQUAN is offline djQUAN  Philippines
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: manila
Send a message via MSN to djQUAN Send a message via Yahoo to djQUAN
I ordered a few of these to try in an amp I'm building. They appear to be better sealed versions of the ones linked above. I hope they work well.
  Reply With Quote
Old 12th April 2012, 02:19 AM   #9
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Yep, I plan to order some also. I just have to decide if I want 10K or 20K.

Picking the "K" has always been somewhat of a mystery for me. I used to make passives with 100K Radio Shack pots, but often experienced a little bzzzz noise in them. I switched to 50K Alps blue......similar effect.

Then I thought I'd try a 25K in a Pass B1 Buffered preamp. NO noise. I think experiented with a wirewound 10K. No noise there either. With the large solid state amp I have (Emotiva XPA-2) or with all the tube amps I use. No noise with the 25K or 10K devices.

Mark
  Reply With Quote

Reply


Hide this!Advertise here!
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Low cost transformer attenuators on Ebay sharpi31 Parts 0 15th February 2011 11:37 AM
Need Help choosing Stepped attenuators fb Parts 1 4th January 2010 10:59 AM
Stepped attenuators vs. Carbon pots Klimon Tubes / Valves 25 14th May 2008 06:47 PM
Alps Stepped Attenuators on Ebay Shoog Everything Else 0 11th April 2003 07:10 PM
stepped attenuators? What should I get from the ff. choices? jarthel Solid State 9 3rd July 2002 12:24 AM


New To Site? Need Help?

All times are GMT. The time now is 10:55 PM.


vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 1999-2014 diyAudio

Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.3.2