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Old 15th April 2009, 10:11 PM   #11
rknize is offline rknize  United States
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I wouldn't worry too much about getting the wrong parts. Stick to what George mentions on the Tubes and Trandformers page and you will be fine. He's added a few more power transformer options since I last looked.

If you are not sure, just ask here and you will get plenty of opinions.
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Old 15th April 2009, 10:25 PM   #12
chrish is offline chrish  Australia
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I was one of the early builders of the Simple SE. I loved building it so much I have built another half dozen valve (tube) amps. I still have the Simple SE in my system.

If you want an easy to build project, want to experience "tube sound", want excellent value for money and want something that offers flexibility enough to be a cheap beginner project up to a high-end permanent addition to your system, this is it.

The hardest thing, in my opinion, will be building the chassis. Everything else is a snap. There is plenty of experience building this and you will find many people willing and able to offer advice on this forum. Tubelab also answers questions and offers amazing support for his product.

To answer your question about how it will fit in your system - if you have a pre-amp already it is probably easiest to just keep it and use the Simple SE as a straight power amp. This way volume control and switching is done by the pre amp. Makes the build simpler for your amp too. Is your pre-amp a surround sound pre-amp? Do you have a sub-woofer? This will determine the frequency range required of the amp. If you have a sub then the lowest frequencies are not required to be delivered, meaning that you can save money on the output transformers.

I think that Edcor offer great value on their output and power transformers. There has been reports that the Hammond 200 series power transformers are not as good as they used to be. I would recommend the Edcor XPWR059 power transformer http://home.att.net/~Brik/Edcor/Clas...nformation.pdf . For output transformers, if on a budget I would suggest Edcore GXSE http://www.edcorusa.com/Products/Sho...ct.aspx?ID=448 If you have a subwoofer, these are cheap and probably all you will need regardless of budget. Don't be concerned that it says for guitar amp use... If no sub and/or you have a bigger budget, you might consider http://www.edcorusa.com/Products/Sho...ct.aspx?ID=465

There plenty of other transformer options too...

As for other options, I use a 5 Henry 200 mA choke and have no hum (others have used 10 Henry chokes, much more expensive and I don't think required). I used Hammond, but I think Triad do some cheap ones. For the optional power supply capacitor, I go a 80uF motor run from ebay very cheap. Chassis I used a Hammond 12*10. Others have used an aluminium top plate and wood sides that look very good. For tubes, I like EL34. They are half the price of KT88s, but some others do prefer the KT88s...

Some quick tips - don't build with a standby switch and don't use solid state rectification (simply leave the FREDS - fast recovery diodes off the board).

I personally think that building this will be much more rewarding and worthwhile that tube buffer or preamp.

Chris
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Old 15th April 2009, 10:38 PM   #13
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Purchase the passive parts from digikey per Tubelabs parts list, he has digikey P/N's for just about everything. Pick up the tube sockets, tubes, and the optional choke from one online vendor and you are just about done.

There are lots of posts and opinions here regarding output tranformers. Seems like the Edcors offer a good bang for the buck, or the Trancendars from ebay.

For an inexpensive power transformer consider the Allied P/N that tubelab recommends.

I would also use a choke in place of R1. Anything around 5H-10H or so and 100-200 ma or so. Most tube vendors sell these chokes.

The places to spend $$ depending on your budget are the output transformers, the coupling caps, and the choke upgrade. Coupling caps and choke are easy to upgrade later, the output transformers a little less easy once you cut holes in the chassis.
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Old 15th April 2009, 11:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by boywonder
Purchase the passive parts from digikey
Mouser is another good place for ordering parts. I bought many of my parts from them:
http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/showt...60#post1591160
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Old 15th April 2009, 11:49 PM   #15
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For my $700CDN investment:

Tubes- (2) JJ E34L, 12AT7, 5AR4

Coupling caps- (2) Auricap .22uF 600V

Transformers: Allied 6K7VG with a C-14X choke. (2) Edcore GXSE-15-8-5K? I may have the Edcore part# wrong. Their website is still down or moved. They are the $31US transformers.

Any Hammond/Allied parts are Canadian made. So if you can source them in Canada, you'll likely save some cash. I wish I knew this prior to ordering from the US.

George is in the process of finding a new manufacturer of FRED's . Thats D1 and D2 on the parts list. These FREDs are SS rectifiers. You can build this amp switchable between these FREDs and the 5AR4 rectifier. I guess the FREDs are good for loud volume in Ultralinear mode. Otherwise they don't sound as good as the 5AR4 tube. I'd wait till George lists a part # for it from Digi-Key or Mouser. But keep reading, you may find you don't want FREDs anyway.

Also suggested you place a inrush current limiter (Digi-Key # KC009-ND) on both red wire conections between the transformer and the PCB (correct me if I'm wrong) and a third one for..... I have'nt figured this out yet. But these are on back order at Digi-Key till near the end of May. Oh, George's parts list has a # HS189-ND ( from Digi-Key) for a heatsink to go with the CSS's. I had to get # HS194-ND instead.

Mouser wants $20US per shipment USPS(capacitors and resistors) whereas Digi-Key wants $8US UPS to my address in Canada. So if you have the patience to get everything in one order, you can save a bunch.
There are 3 or 4 really good threads on the SimpleSE build on this site to read that will get your head spinning, but ingest it all. Once you think you've come to a decision, keep reading or asking questions before you pull the trigger.
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Old 16th April 2009, 12:26 AM   #16
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Mouser can be a few bucks cheaper than digi-key, although Tubelab's parts list is fairly complete for Digi-key, and rather thin for Mouser P/N's.

Digikey does not stock the Fairchild 1200V/8A FREDs, but Mouser has them. You may want to just leave them off of the board if you want tube rectification, or add them later once you are up and running.
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Old 16th April 2009, 01:40 AM   #17
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Quote:
Also suggested you place a inrush current limiter (Digi-Key # KC009-ND) on both red wire conections between the transformer and the PCB (correct me if I'm wrong) and a third one for..... I have'nt figured this out yet. But these are on back order at Digi-Key till near the end of May. Oh, George's parts list has a # HS189-ND ( from Digi-Key) for a heatsink to go with the CSS's. I had to get # HS194-ND instead.
I thought I read some where to place the ICL after the on/off switch leading to the transformer and also on George's site he also says that adding one to the center tap wire can be beneficial
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Old 16th April 2009, 02:09 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by HEADinaJAR

Any Hammond/Allied parts are Canadian made. So if you can source them in Canada, you'll likely save some cash. I wish I knew this prior to ordering from the US.
As the song goes: "It ain't necessarily so'...best to double-check before you order, I think.
My local electronics place offered to 'special order' Hammond transformers for about double the price stateside. This was 2-3 yrs ago; perhaps things are different these days.
Cheers
John
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Old 16th April 2009, 02:36 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by VictoriaGuy
My local electronics place offered to 'special order' Hammond transformers for about double the price stateside. This was 2-3 yrs ago; perhaps things are different these days.
The quality of recent release of Hammond transformers are questionable. I would look elsewhere.
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Old 16th April 2009, 04:43 AM   #20
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Chris:
I have a Nad pre amp and peerless speakers, two 8" and one tweeter
so I do not have a sub woofer.

I think I now understand the tip of the iceberg relating to the transformers and will check around for prices, I will start local and expand my search, to the on line suggestions here. Some search time will give me a chance to raise some funds for this endeavor.

HEADinaJAR:
Thank you for a Canuck prospective on the parts/price aspect of things. As well as VictoriaGuy.
And not to leave out the rest who have taken the time to add their hard won insight. I have to say this form, as in the members, beacuse that is what makes a forum, are extremely helpful and sharing with their knowledge . I thank you all and will press on with reading Georges sight and the other threads in the forum.
I think HeadinaJar about summed it up "Once you think you've come to a decision, keep reading or asking questions before you pull the trigger." Cheers Ron.
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