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Old 24th May 2005, 10:08 PM   #1
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Default ASL wave 8 mods

Does anyone or has anyone done any mods to these already great sounding little guys. The design is very simple but there has to be some mods worthy of doing, like replacing caps with auricaps or Solen fastcaps, these kind of easy mods I could do myself, short of doing my own amp.
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Old 25th May 2005, 06:34 AM   #2
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Here is a snippet from Moray James that i picked off the FR Forum a while ago.

Quote:
I am not quite sure just who wanted the information on the "Wave" but I have some experience and thought I would pass it on.
First of all spent the few extra dollars it will cost ant buy the fancy version with the cage and the IEC detachable power cord. Don't use the cage as it makes things sound worse however the IEC allows you to use a quality after market power core and that is well worth the few extra dollars.
The parts count inside is very good and I did not feel that replacing caps and resistors would yield a big enough difference to justified the expense. The amp can and does respond to bypass caps and these are most cost effective and easy to install. Bypass the power supply caps with 1000 Volt ceramic disk caps. I replaced C8 with a 100 micro farad 350 volt cap don't go any higher in value as you will then be likely to have problems. This new cap gives extra smoothing to the ripple coming out of the supply. All large value caps were bypassed with 0.1 uf plastic caps (despite what people say Mylar sound fantastic) All the small value caps were bypassed with 0.01 uf plastic caps.
I removed the "bell" or "end" caps from the output and power transformers. I then installed an electrostatic copper wrap shield around both of the transformers and in my case turned the output transformer 90 degrees to the power transformer and re mounted both transformers on rubber grommets to reduce vibration to the chassis. Removal of the "Bell" caps really opened up the sound and gave a sense of life and new dynamics. I have found this to be true on other amplifiers also. I did not do a direct before and after comparison with the physical orientation of the two transformers however with two chokes you want them aligned this way to place one in the exact electrical/magnetic "null" of the other an so minimize coupling between the two. This makes sense so I decided to do it with the two transformers even though it did involved making some of the lead wires longer.
The second last change that I made was to replace the input interconnect and to shield the power on/off wires which run to and from the front of the chassis to the back to the chassis. This one is up to you to do as you see fit.
Last but by no means least I froze the tubes down to liquid nitrogen temperature. If you haven't tried this do so as it is a great upgrade all on it's own. Sound is smoother and there is more detail with greater resolution and an apparent increase in dynamics. I can assure you that once bit (frozen) you will never go back to non frozen tubes or other parts for that matter.
Next go to Elliott Sound Products and read his article on a passive volume control "project 01" build one to use with your "Wave" amplifiers and then you will enjoy a level of performance you probably have never dreamed you even reach. The price of entry is a laugh. You will now be able to make your "Audiophile" friends so sick with what they own and with what they paid for it that they will in the words of J C Morrison "want to go and find a high place from which to throw off their gear".
Straight from the box these amplifiers (given of course proper burn in) will impress you. They will never impress those with thousands of dollars invested because hey how could something that cheap be any good? Just keep it your little secrete so all the other folks who love sound but not high prices can enjoy them. We don't want Antique Sound Lab to start selling them for what they are really worth now do we?
Another potential mod -- but more invasive -- would be to wire the triodes as a long-tailed pair phase splitter with a CCS and do the RH/partial feedback thing.

I've a 6BM8 donor amp i plan of doing this to.

dave
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Old 25th May 2005, 07:08 AM   #3
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Default Wave Mods

Thanks for the hints, I'll see if I'm up to the mods, but some sound kind of S/Oish. We'll see what I'm up for.

Thanks and happy listening.

Shane
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