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Old 31st March 2014, 10:12 PM   #531
Coris is offline Coris  Norway
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Hi Corvus5

Welcome back...

Yes is hard to desolder the caps out of the board. Breaking their legs is the best way to remove it. Strongly recommended!
The sound card`s PCB is very easy destroyable when touch it with a regular soldering iron. There is not here about only the temperature of the soldering iron, but it is too, about its heating power in the soldering point. This power it is function the dissipation of the heat into the copper to be soldered... There is a soldering station (induction) type which should be used when modding such sensitive PCBs. That it rigorously control/adjust both the heating power and the temperature at the soldering point, so that one never destroy the traces. But this is quite expensive...

Honestly, this kind of mod, when one it may replace the original caps with better ones, belong now to the "stone age"... The main point modding the Xonar is to give it a better PSU, and replacing its post DAC analogue stage... And a better clock... and some more details...
But do not worry, it will come (hope soon) the mod where is no longer necessary to remove something from the board. But only adding a small daughter boards system. New designed and fully isolated DAC & analogue, with its independent power system (lowest noise floor with the today ultimate technology), which it will use (connect it to) only the DAC digital interface (I2S) from the original sound card.
The PCBs have arrived. It still only to be populate it and test it... Maybe next week it will come out some pictures...
My prototype just sounds fantastic (better than I could get out of an ESS9018 DAC...), but the final design is even more improved. I`m very excited to put all together, to hear it, and see some measurements...

Last edited by Coris; 31st March 2014 at 10:26 PM.
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Old 2nd April 2014, 09:58 PM   #532
Corvus5 is offline Corvus5  Poland
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There's no reason to stay with the card when you can build your own or use different board. This is the card for fast and easy improve in sound. On my own USB interface/DAC/amp I use a lot of eneloops, high quality caps (had to buy some directly in Akihabara) and very high quality resistors, special cables, custom made headphone drivers. Totally different, once it was fantastic but there's still place for improvements. On the Xonar however a lot of things are set. Injecting I2S and own power and amp leaves only DAC chip and CMI chip on board. Is it worth?
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Old 3rd April 2014, 07:14 AM   #533
Coris is offline Coris  Norway
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I think is worth. At least my developed system it can be attached to any I2S interface, or the post DAC processing and its own power system it can be used as a stand alone module on every kind of DAC system. The advantage of ST/STX is the already existent driver, a good integration with the PC/OS system, the capability of digital record/playback 192khz/24bit/32bit, and even 64bit. The only weak part of this sound card is its analogue stage and its related power, and the clock oscillators...
Massacring up an original board, adding caps and destroy the PCB traces, desolder and solder back components, and a chaos of the signal paths on a modified sound card it can not be at all a real improvement. Putting all together in a professional meaner is anyway a better way to go. My system is very easy to be implemented/added in place.

Last edited by Coris; 3rd April 2014 at 07:17 AM.
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Old 4th April 2014, 08:13 PM   #534
Coris is offline Coris  Norway
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I have some pictures of the battery powered clock(s) mod for STX/ST (or for what so ever application). Unfortunately this assembly is not in its final edition, because I discovered some design faults. But the pictures are good to give an idea about.
As the new PCBs will be in place, this mod it may be available for interested ones.

There is place for four (different sized) oscillators on the board, but any kind of oscillator it can be adapted to the existing footprints. Of course this assembly it can be used to clock what so ever. One may only solder the right oscillators in place. The connections between board (oscillators output) it will be made by coax (which it will come together in the kit). The battery is powerful enough to furnish power to the clocks for more than 24 continuous hours. When the device is off, the battery is charged (monitored by specialized chip on board). The charger GND and the device GND are not common on the board. Once the device is on, the board disconnect completely the charger`s GND/Vcc.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Battery powered clocks1.jpg (328.5 KB, 177 views)
File Type: jpg Battery powered clocks2.jpg (384.7 KB, 171 views)
File Type: jpg Mod mounted on STX.jpg (463.8 KB, 173 views)
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Old 6th April 2014, 04:57 PM   #535
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Great coris I would be interested is ALREADY AVAILABLE daughter card has a cost?

You spoke well of I2S interface you have some more info?

Thank you.

See you soon.
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Old 6th April 2014, 05:40 PM   #536
marce is offline marce  United Kingdom
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Is it a lithium ion battery?

The copper pour on the top also could do with some stitching vias down to the GND pour on the bottom, I presume there is one?

Last edited by marce; 6th April 2014 at 05:44 PM.
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Old 6th April 2014, 10:31 PM   #537
Coris is offline Coris  Norway
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ciccio1112 View Post
Great coris I would be interested is ALREADY AVAILABLE daughter card has a cost?

You spoke well of I2S interface you have some more info?

Thank you.

See you soon.
In fact this (battery) PCB it have a design fail (that because is not pictured the backside... But is usable actually, as this one assembled.
The right PCB is in production now...

Yes, the PCBs of the DAC with I2S interface is ready (waiting) to be populated/assembled. Actually I have ready all the PCBs for the whole system, and to populate these it will be my first priority for the next weeks.

Last edited by Coris; 6th April 2014 at 10:42 PM.
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Old 6th April 2014, 10:37 PM   #538
Coris is offline Coris  Norway
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marce View Post
Is it a lithium ion battery?

The copper pour on the top also could do with some stitching vias down to the GND pour on the bottom, I presume there is one?
Yes, there is a 2,3Ah mobile phone battery.
Your presumption is right. But the backside GND plane is not connected with the upper one, and is used as heat sink for the charger system (different GND...).
When the right PCB will be ready, you may see the picture of the backside too...
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Old 7th April 2014, 04:50 PM   #539
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This daughter card with integrated clock as the fixed and colleagues in ASUS ST.
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Old 8th April 2014, 08:43 PM   #540
Coris is offline Coris  Norway
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The assembling is going on...

The PSU is already finished. I`m working now on the post DAC processing module, which is partially assembled too.
There are here some pictures, to give you an idea about the system...
Attached Images
File Type: jpg PSU & analogue module.jpg (280.4 KB, 112 views)
File Type: jpg assembly.jpg (283.9 KB, 105 views)
File Type: jpg PSU1.jpg (265.3 KB, 66 views)
File Type: jpg PSU2.jpg (258.0 KB, 59 views)

Last edited by Coris; 8th April 2014 at 08:46 PM.
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