Qs on Parasound HCA-1200 - Popping. - diyAudio
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Old 8th November 2009, 04:44 PM   #1
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Default Qs on Parasound HCA-1200 - Popping.

I just sold my Nikko Alpha II in mint condition and purchased a Parasound HCA-1200 after hearing some great reviews about this high current power amp. I run some power hungry 1979 Kef 105/2 and needed some extra grunt, and perhaps bass control.

After listening to the Parasound for about 6 hours, I do have a few comments and questions. First, the screws holding the cover have been removed, so, somebody "was looking for something" before.

When I siwtch the power amp on, it emits a popping sound in the speakers when it reaches stand-by, and another one when it reaches operation. Is that a symptom of parts needing changing, and how can I get rid of the popping?

I was hoping for better bass control than my minty 1979 Nikko Alpha II and better mid range, and I am disapointed. Again, is that the symptoms of parts needing renewal.

The four big Nichicon caps are still there and I wonder if they need changing (wouldn't they be the source for the annoying (and dangerous) popping?. After all, the amp is a 1991 unit and caps are known to last 15 to 20 years...

Is there any mod that can be done to improve the sound from new?

Thanks in advance for the help.
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Old 8th November 2009, 05:00 PM   #2
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You should have purchased a 2200, instead. The 1200 is a compromised design, long obsolete, but OK for most purposes. Caps are probably OK. The 1200 that I own still works OK. Pop comes from something else. Try to measure DC on output. If so, servo broken.
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Old 8th November 2009, 06:56 PM   #3
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Hi John

Thanks for the tip. I think that the overall sound is okay. I am only worried by the popping as it can destroy speakers pretty fast. I will follow your hints (DC output-broken servo) and go from there.

As far as obsolescence goes, my take is that everything becomes obsolete a month, a year, a decade after it has been introduced. So it doesn't scare me. I have some 3 decade old equipment that still rivals new offering.
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Old 8th November 2009, 08:14 PM   #4
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Please measure DC output.
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