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Old 25th June 2003, 07:08 PM   #1
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Question Newbie needs a little advise!

Hello all and thanks very much before I even ask my question. This forum is great and even if I don't get a single reply to this post I owe all of you a great deal in what I have gained by reading your posts over the last month or so. Amazing and fantastic!!!

So, my question is this: Which amp should I build as my first DIY amp project?

Some background information to consider:
1) I am a materials engineer working in the R&D business, so my general technical knowledge level is high.
2) I am not an electrical engineer, so my electrical knowledge is fair to poor.
3) My most advanced piece of diagnostic gear will be a Fluke multimeter.
4) I have reread all the publications at PassDIY many times and I feel pretty confident I understand all the concepts presented there.
5) My speakers sensitivity is 89 dB/W/m, impedance is 8 ohms nominal with a 6 ohm minimum (B&W LCR6S2's)
6) I am not the power hungry type. The best sounding system I have yet heard used a 30W/Ch Copland tube amp.
7) I am pretty handy at buiding stuff in general and have great soldering skills.
8) The WAF is critical in my household (Yes I'm whipped!)

I like the idea of building a Zen4 but wonder if it will work well with my speakers, and I am pretty sure building an Aleph X is way out of my league. The Aleph 30 is currently appealing to me. Some feedback from more experienced minds would be greatly appreaciated.
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Old 25th June 2003, 07:53 PM   #2
MikeW is offline MikeW  United States
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The 30 is a good choice. So is the Zen. Maybe V5 will be here soon. Aleph 5's if you need more power. What kind of music do you listen to?
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Old 25th June 2003, 09:06 PM   #3
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Mostly I listen to early jazz or newer vocal jazz and acoustic instrumental stuff, but every now and then I like to hit the rock, so dynamicism is important too. I like good soundstaging, but I will always trade on soundstaging for improvement in tonal timbre and a more natural sound. I like liquidity but not to the point of the euphonic tube sounding gear.

I suspect this is why I am gravitating strongly to Mr. Pass' designs. I play guitar a fair bit and I liek nothing better to hear the perfect natural shimmer and decays of guitar strings. I do like good bass, but I have a *GULP* subwoofer taking care of that problem (can't wait for Mr. Pass to release his crossovewr design!)
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Old 25th June 2003, 09:53 PM   #4
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Go for Alephs.Build either Aleph 5 or Aleph 4.Both outperform easily Zen's ,no matter what variation is it (I mine that couse I built them all).I think that Aleph X might be too hard to built as a first project ,especially that there is no actual correct schematics for it.Alephs are simple and clear ,also properly built offer outstanding sound quality.I might also go for Gainclone which is extremely simple and cheap,but I built that amp a couple of days ago and i think there is too much hype about.In high quality companion yhey just loose with Alephs.
Bartek
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Old 25th June 2003, 10:28 PM   #5
moe29 is offline moe29  United States
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Default good aleph projects

check out:

http://web.vip.hr/pcb-design.vip/index.html

build an Aleph 5.

if you need a preamp, build the Balanced Zen Line Stage.
it's excellent. Use the balanced outputs to drive the A5.
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Old 25th June 2003, 10:41 PM   #6
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Yes ,built Aleph 5,but don't buolt BLS.
Why? Becouse it's no good.If you want simple preamp build Aleph L.It's better sounding than BLS.If You want best preamp,build Aleph P.i built them all.
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Old 26th June 2003, 03:22 AM   #7
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Default why bzls is no good

i found their architectures are almost same in bzls and aleph-p ,aleph-L. why bzls is worse than two others? they all have
differential pair of mosfet , difference is that one use resistors and the other use constant current source. i remember nelson had said resistor is better than constant current source.
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Old 26th June 2003, 04:04 AM   #8
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Have no idea.It just sounds the worst of them and the diffrance is not that little.I have all three of them built with exactly same parts.
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Old 26th June 2003, 04:08 AM   #9
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Also,I don't think resistor is better than constant current source.But even Aleph P v1.0 (resistors) is better then either Aleph L or Bls.
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Old 26th June 2003, 04:26 AM   #10
moe29 is offline moe29  United States
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For a Newbie though, the Balanced Line Stage is the preamp to
go with. You can't beat the excellent construction article. And
it's a great sounding circuit, along with the Aleph L & P's

but Metalman's main question was which amp to build. I wouldn't
shrug off the Zen V4 becasue again, the article is there to help
you along and finish it. Then you can build an Aleph to compare
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