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Old 25th January 2004, 02:55 AM   #1
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Default volume control question

hello, i need some help hooking up a volume control. The volume control is an alps which is sold at radio shack, and it is stereo. on one side there are two terminals by themselves (grounds?) and on the other side are 2 sets of 3 terminals (3 on top, 3 on bottom). This will be hooked up to 2 sets of rca jacks, one for input, and the other for output.. (for a passive preamp) What are each of the terminals on the volume control for? It seems very confusing. Thanks
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Old 25th January 2004, 03:58 AM   #2
tiroth is offline tiroth  United States
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Each set of terminals on a plane (deck) correspond to a channel; top and bottom will be your left and right for a stereo setup.

Ignore the two terminals by themself. For the remaining three, connect your input to one of the outer terminals, the opposing terminal to ground, and the center terminal is your attenuated signal.

Virtually all potentiometers are setup this way; the wiper is in the middle with the opposing ends of the resistive element to each side.
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Old 25th January 2004, 05:14 AM   #3
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I believe the extra connections is a tap intended for some sort of "loudness" or some other type of frequency contour filter/eq network. bonsai171 is correct, ignore them.

First confirm which terminal is the wiper:
Use an ohmmeter find which terminal is the wiper, probably the middle. It is the one that will make your ohmmeter display read high-low-high as you turn the knob up and down. The two non-wiper teminals will not change the ohmmeter as you turn the knob.

To confirm which of the two remaining terminals is the ground:
Put the pot in a full counter-clockwise rotation (all the way down) and the termininal with zero ohms to the wiper is your ground.

Aud_Mot
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Old 25th January 2004, 03:31 PM   #4
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Default success!

Thanks for the information! The passive preamp works now! It is safe to use it in the tape loop of my integrated amplifier?
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Old 25th January 2004, 05:15 PM   #5
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Q. "It is safe to use it in the tape loop of my integrated amplifier?"

A. Probably. Depends on how the preamp section of your integrated amp is arranged. If you do that, you will effectivly load you source component (example CD, tape deck, VHS etc) with 3 loads in parallel. The 3 loads would be 1. the rest of your integrated amplifier, 2. your new volume control, and 3. what ever your new volume control is feeding. If you find that other signals start acting strange, it is probably because you created a loading/interaction problem.

Maybe your tape loop is buffered (but problably not), in which case there should be no problem.

The audio pursist solution would be to put a buffer circuit before the volume control. It is a simple circuit that can be done with opamps.

Putting a volume control in a tape loop is an unusual thing to do. Whay are you doing it? Maybe there is a different solution the some on the board can suggest.

I do not think you are likely create any safety issues or damage anything with you new volume control. So if it works and does what you like, enjoy.

Aud_Mot
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