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Old 3rd June 2012, 10:27 PM   #1
Boscoe is offline Boscoe  United Kingdom
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Default Amplifier Simplicity and technology...

Do you not prefer something simple to something more complicated when they have even performance? I particularly like the look of the amplifier design called Zenquito by a French designer. It is very simple and apparently has very low distortion and high output power. Even for me they are a bit too complicated, why not use chips such as the LME49830 they make amazingly low distortion amplifiers?

Also, why are we still using old components? One example would be Exicon double die mosfets, they can dissipate 250Wrms enough to make a 400Wrms amplifier with just one pair. They cost around 18 a pair in the UK the equivalent in 2SC5200 (and complementary) is 50 for the same power. It amazes me why amplifiers are even considered to be used with these type of transistors for high power applications yet they still are. Why doesn't everyone move on?

With all due respect to Carlos for his designs I appreciate all the work he puts in but when I look at a PCB for the DX Hx MKIII measuring something like 265mm x 89mm I really have a bad feeling of why? Why does it have to be this complex? Then I think of the Wire amp. More power and better performance lower cost just by using components that aren't based on old tech.

I have been looking at designs recently and really thinking why bother spending all that money and sourcing all those components for a massive amplifier? Why not just build a Wire amplifier? I know some will say amplifiers sound different but an amplifier is an amplifier only amplifiers not doing their job properly sound different...
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Old 4th June 2012, 06:18 AM   #2
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Default Complication?

Sure, I like things simple and easy to do but that is almost, by definition, the way most people will choose, and the outcome will be an average experience. Won't that tend to be a rather uninspiring exercise from a DIY point of view?

Perhaps you are happy to have all the "works" done by the chip-makers. That's not so much a DIY approach but we do have a chip-amp forum and others that even look at finished products to meet their needs. Then there are those of us who are here to make the most humungous amp. the parts sellers can cater for. No chips or hybrids will be adequate there without real individual determination.

It gets down to your aim. If you want to learn the most and have control over every step of design, come to Solid State Forum. Yes, here we do build amps that sound different by design - not necessarily by fault. Here we make 'em big and small, simple and complex according to our individual persuasion and depth of pocket. I find it entertaining at the simplest level and deeply challenging at the design and designer level. This is something the implementation of a chip-amp will fail to do beyond the choice of supply, periferals, connections and case. Retail consumer products are going to be very similar here anyway.

If all we did was follow the leader and build just the same designs the new kids on the block recycle, I guess it could seem like we are reinventing an old wheel but I think that ignores the educational role of this forum. We get flooded with guys whose 20 year-oldamps are fried or they have no clue why their DIY from some other forum doesn't work etc.
Well, this is the big one, we don't talk in salon lingo and mostly shoot straight, so we get the most serious attention and the best range of resident expertise, too.
It's a great place, here at the sharp, solid state end.

If you go back a further step and consider why there is a forum devoted to even more ancient Tube amplifiers and their sound, you might get a clearer perspective on what inspires us here. Though we are more or less obliged to stay with through-hole parts, not every design is old or actually suited to minaturisation. Take a look at Edmond Stuart's adaptive bias, EC and TMC designs to get a grip on just how cutting-edge some of our members' work really is. Consider the many others who don't publish their work but contribute and benefit in their commercial endeavours by just being around here too.

I can't pretend to speak for everyone or what we all come here for but this is sure the hot spot and we work with gear that has real currency and broad commercial application. What we see in mass produced, minaturised products is the side of audio we don't like because the products do sound all the same, irritating MP3 like way.

Build a high-end amp - taste the difference!
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Old 4th June 2012, 07:47 AM   #3
wahab is offline wahab  Algeria
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As good as it can be a Wire amp is no match for a correctly
designed discrete amplifier using a handfull transistors.

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