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Old 23rd January 2012, 04:46 PM   #1
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Default NE5534N best quality replacement?

I have a power amp that uses NE5534N op amps for the electronic balanced inputs, it is in a unity gain configuration. It looks as though these are dead and I would like to replace them with the best quality modern op amps having the same pin out. Can anyone tell me which would be the best new device in terms of sound quality? Since there are only two of them I am not too concerned about the price, quality of sound is most important.
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Old 23rd January 2012, 05:12 PM   #2
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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What supply voltage do the existing 5534s run at?
Can this supply voltage vary?

Most opamps cannot tolerate the highest supply voltages that the 5534 works with.
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Old 23rd January 2012, 05:39 PM   #3
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The 5534s use a local +/-15V which is very simply derived from +/-90VDC main rails by 4W 1K5 resistors supplying 15V/1W Zeners. The resistors run quite hot. It seems quite a rudimentary regulation system. The rails seem quite stable but I could imagine they might move a bit if the amp was being used to anything like its full extent. I hope this helps?
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Old 23rd January 2012, 05:54 PM   #4
sreten is online now sreten  United Kingdom
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Op amps in small-signal audio design - Part 3: Selecting the right op amp

Hi, worth a read, from a big fan of the 5534, should know what is better, rgds, sreten.

Add the supply decoupling caps as described above if they are not there.

Quote:
It has taken an unbelievably long time – nearly 30 years – for a better audio
op-amp than the 5532 to come along, but at last it has happened. The LM4562
is superior in just about every parameter, but it has much higher current noise.
At present it also has a much higher price, but hopefully that will change.
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Last edited by sreten; 23rd January 2012 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:07 PM   #5
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That is interesting reading but is a 5532 the same as a 5534? Also is it generally accepted that the LM4562 is better? Obviously I wouldn't be able to use either since they are dual devices I believe.
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:22 PM   #6
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Hi,

Quote:
That is interesting reading but is a 5532 the same as a 5534?
Am no expert on Op-Amp or such,but the 5532 is a Dual Op-Amp where as the 5534 is a single, so they are not same (as in plug in replacement) !

If you are looking for the best,cost no bar then I can suggest you to look at Burson Audio's Discrete Op-Amp which most claim is the last word in Op-Amps !!

Hope this helps !

Regards.
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:23 PM   #7
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There are number of ultra-super-low distortion opamps now... you'd have to check to see which are unity gain stable, AND to look at ur schematic to see if the 600ohm drive capability is needed. If it is, then you have to select from those that have the same drive capability.

Perhaps if you can post the schematic and model?

Afaik the 5532 is a dual of the 5534...

What I wonder is if they use the same die topology as they did when it first came out or if it has been internally changed over time.

Oh, I'd put sockets in the holes and plug in different opamps and see which sound best, if any...

_-_-bear

PS. using an opamp as a unity gain stage (buffer) in the front end of a power amp is somewhat unusual, I'd expect some gain there. Are you sure that is what it is, and it's not a servo??
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:25 PM   #8
jaycee is offline jaycee  United Kingdom
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The NE5534 is still a great device. Be aware that more modern faster opamps may well oscillate in an old circuit - this is more of a factor with the 5534 because it requires external compensation components.

Dropping 90V to 15V by simple zener shunt regs is, to be quite honest, an extremely poor way to do it. Expect those resistors to fail at some point.
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:33 PM   #9
jez is offline jez  United Kingdom
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I am guessing from the balanced inputs using 5534's and the + and - 90V rails that this is a PA amplifier we are discussing? If so then the 5534's are plenty good enough already!
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Old 23rd January 2012, 06:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaycee View Post

Dropping 90V to 15V by simple zener shunt regs is, to be quite honest, an extremely poor way to do it. Expect those resistors to fail at some point.
Not if you use properly rated resistors. And as for the supply design, it's a simple version of shunt reg....i would prefer it by length over those standard regulators. You just have to carefully filter it with a good elcap.
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