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Old 20th January 2010, 01:40 PM   #11
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I'm planning on building a 9-pin one with 6CG7 and 6H30P tubes.
It should be a good combo if you can keep those hungry heaters happy.
I'm going for the Aikido All-in-One LSA/HPA version.
I suppose it would sound even better if you buy the stereo or dual-mono boards and go for a better power supply (like Salas ones) but I'm a tube newbie and would rather avoid all the potential grounding issues that might arise with a more complex setup.
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Old 20th January 2010, 02:09 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by TheShaman View Post
I'm planning on building a 9-pin one with 6CG7 and 6H30P tubes.
It should be a good combo if you can keep those hungry heaters happy.
I'm going for the Aikido All-in-One LSA/HPA version.
I suppose it would sound even better if you buy the stereo or dual-mono boards and go for a better power supply (like Salas ones) but I'm a tube newbie and would rather avoid all the potential grounding issues that might arise with a more complex setup.
Unlike the Grounded Grid,which I purchased as the stock kit,I'd like to go for a 'No Holds Barred' 'All Out Attempt' Aikido.Right from the get-go.

Dual mono separate powersupplys.Separate transformers/power supplies for the heaters.Top-notch components right from the input sockets to the output sockets.When I said "The Ultimate Aikido",I was looking for ideas that could get me a long ,long way there.

I know that there is no-such thing as 'The Ultimate'.

I'd just like people to give me a hint of what they would do if they were prepared to bulid the Aikido that I'd like to have built.

Because: I'd like to have someone build it.

Throw your ideas at me.I'd like to hear what this line stage could do if someone was prepared to implement the optimum(or something approaching it).

I'm ambitious.What can people foresee as a 'Take No Prisoners" Aikido?
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Old 20th January 2010, 03:46 PM   #13
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I'm ambitious.What can people foresee as a 'Take No Prisoners" Aikido?
There are so many things to consider. And I'll indulge you.

But there are no guarantees you'll like it more than your GG. Have you considered that?
The ultimate might also only sound marginally better but could cost 100 times as much (especially if you are going to have someone build it)

Last edited by Bas Horneman; 20th January 2010 at 04:02 PM.
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:02 PM   #14
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First of all the attenuator/volume control is important. Something like the K&K audio stepped attenuator or the lightspeed attenuator (I looks like buildanamp.com pcb's have advantages of the "std" lightspeed pcb's found elsewhere on this site) would fit the ultimate label. Or maybe something simpler such as DACT.

As important...so can't really say "secondly" would be the power supply. Even with the Aikido's inherent ability to cancel psu noise. Here go dual mono. Tube rectifiers. Chokes. No electrolytic capacitors. In a seperate enclosure...bla bla bla.

Then I would have the Aikido built P2P. I.e. not with a pcb on something like teflon standoffs.

Get teflon sockets.

Use a sub chassis for the tubes with some kind of damping/suspension so that the self resonance of the sub chassis is around 63Hz. (See Building Valve amplifiers by Morgan Jones)

Use "boutique" parts (caps/resistors). (I don't want to get into this as everyone has their favourite)

But don't forget...almost all of these things are debatable. (Hence sites like this). And without a doubt a waste of money. But some like myself don't mind the waste of money for what is ultimately a selfish pursuit.

Last edited by Bas Horneman; 20th January 2010 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:04 PM   #15
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Wish me luck.I may have bitten-off more than I can chew.
No, you haven't. The TCJ printed circuit boards come with excellent instructions and are amazingly flexible. See the TCJ web site for Aikido results and valves.

Quote:
Because: I'd like to have someone build it.
Really, it's very easy!

Quote:
I'd just like people to give me a hint of what they would do if they were prepared to build the Aikido that I'd like to have built.
I already built it. I have a dual-mono 9-pin (Novel) Aikido. Some may argue octal is superior, but I enjoy the 6CG7. The power supply uses valve rectification (6CA4/EZ81), and two stages of CLC filtering. The heaters use a separate DC power supply, using a separate power cord. You can see my design here. The final adjustment is choosing the output coupling capacitor, which is entirely up to your economics. For me, it's a Mundorf.

If I were to rebuild the project again, I would change very few things. I like it that much.
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:24 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Bas Horneman View Post
There are so many things to consider. And I'll indulge you.

But there are no guarantees you'll like it more than your GG. Have you considered that?
The ultimate might also only sound marginally better but could cost 10 times as much (especially if you are going to have someone build it)
Indulge me,by all means.

I like what the GG does.I have yet to see one single assessment of the Aikido,by people who have both,as being anything less than a substantial improvement upon the Grounded Grid,and I've seen that sentiment repeated each time.

I'm prepared to take a plunge.One can't expect to get Bugatti Veyron quality for the price of a Kia Rio.Both the Bog-Standard Grounded Grid and a budget Aikido offer outstanding value for money.That cannot be denied.That however does not undermine the fact that things could be done to a higher level with either design.The constraints that stayed the hands of their respective designers were commercial realities.They realised that if their brainchildren were to make any impact upon the marketplace they would have to be built down to a price.

The beauty of both designs lies in their circuits.They remain a testament to what their designers could do whilst constrained by a budget.If the testimony about both of them is correct,they are slayers of line stages with Brand Names which are held in the highest esteem.The evidence of my own ears tells me that the stock-standard Transcendent Sound Grounded Grid kit is a bloody brilliant line stage,that really has to make no apologies for the contribution that it brings to a system.If the Aikido can top that,I want one.

If I'm going to get opinions on how one should be made,I may as well get opinions on how to do this thing as well as it possibly can be done.

Why not?

I love music,and I love what great sounding components bring to a system.They bring me into the music in a way that lesser components don't quite manage.

That's a big pay-off for some money spent.Going faster in a car just doesn't do it for me.Having a better house just doesn't do it for me.Wearing flashier clothes just doesn't do it for me.I'm single.I don't have children,but I love music.Better components and refining my system,get me closer to the music.I'll take that.

Have I convinced you?

I don't want to sound challenging.I'm not trying to confront anyone.I'd like to hear what the Aikido could really do if it isn't constrained by a budget.I'm sure that I'd love the result,because deep down I suspect that people who love this line stage are motivated by the same thing as me:

They love music.

Last edited by theophile; 20th January 2010 at 04:27 PM.
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:26 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by theophile View Post
Thank you for that informative post.
Glad to help. I notice that you have tightened the scope of your request somewhat nonetheless

I submit to you for thought that there is an inherent weakness in ALL the PCB's that are available for the Aikido; the dual triodes are split as 1st/2nd stage instead of top/bottom. This is because Vhk becomes a design limitation and the top triodes can't have an elevated heater. My quest for the ultimate Aikido would involve trying P2P construction and using a tube that is both suited for the 1st and 2nd stages, such as a 6DJ8 or a 6SN7 or equivalents.

To go even 1 step further: why use dual triodes? Use 4 tubes/channel. Then you can REALLY optimize.
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:29 PM   #18
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To go even 1 step further: why use dual triodes? Use 4 tubes/channel. Then you can REALLY optimize.
Yes prefereably DHT. That would add a whooole new level of complexity. (Filament heating to name just one)
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:31 PM   #19
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I don't have children
Yeah now you've convinced me...

Does ultimate only extend to what is audible or also looks
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Old 20th January 2010, 04:33 PM   #20
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I tried two tube regulators
Is one Jan Didden's design?
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