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    Building, troubleshooting and testing of these amplifiers should only be
    performed by someone who is thoroughly familiar with
    the safety precautions around high voltages.

Power supply for simple tube compressor

Alex1238

Member
2019-10-08 3:43 pm
Hi, i was considering about attempting to build a small tube compressor unit using only a few tubes, (i will attach the schematic i'm planning to base it on).
The schematic calls for 150v plate voltage, i was wondering if it would be possible to use one of those compact nixie tube drivers that are easily found on ebay.
(such as this one: NCH6100HV High Voltage DC Power Supply Module For Nixie Tube Glow Tube Magic Eye | eBay)

I'm sorry if this is a bad question, i'm trying mmy best to learn as much as i can about tubes as i love the sounds they can produce and i'm generally fascinated by them, i haven't been able to gather much experience with them however.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Hi, i was considering about attempting to build a small tube compressor unit using only a few tubes, (i will attach the schematic i'm planning to base it on).
The schematic calls for 150v plate voltage, i was wondering if it would be possible to use one of those compact nixie tube drivers that are easily found on ebay.
(such as this one: NCH6100HV High Voltage DC Power Supply Module For Nixie Tube Glow Tube Magic Eye | eBay)

I'm sorry if this is a bad question, i'm trying mmy best to learn as much as i can about tubes as i love the sounds they can produce and i'm generally fascinated by them, i haven't been able to gather much experience with them however.

Thanks in advance!
You could use some smps like this :
DC-DC 8-32V to +-45V-390V Step-up Module ZVS High Voltage Capacitor Charge Board | eBay


Needs 12VDC , which could be used to filaments. Has adjustable B+ voltage



Anoher unit :
DC 12V to 150V-420V DC High Voltage Boost Power PSU f Tube amp/ Preamp/ Filament 699973292552 | eBay
Has an adjustable filement output . The heatsink on this should probably
be replaced to a larger one if more that 20mA B+ is needed.
 

Alex1238

Member
2019-10-08 3:43 pm
You could use some smps like this :
DC-DC 8-32V to +-45V-390V Step-up Module ZVS High Voltage Capacitor Charge Board | eBay


Needs 12VDC , which could be used to filaments. Has adjustable B+ voltage



Anoher unit :
DC 12V to 150V-420V DC High Voltage Boost Power PSU f Tube amp/ Preamp/ Filament 699973292552 | eBay
Has an adjustable filement output . The heatsink on this should probably
be replaced to a larger one if more that 20mA B+ is needed.

Cheers, that second one looks promising.
I'm guessing that the nixie psu wouldn't be able to power vacuum tubes?
If it is possible i would still prefer that, as they seem considerably more common and cheaper, just not the one i attached specifically, so is there any actual inherent fault with those?
Also, i now realize that using a built in DC-DC power supply would not allow me to connect the chassis and other parts to ground, is that a proble? Should i perhaps add a ground lug to attach to other equipment?

Thanks again
 
There is no limitation of ground connections with any of the suggested SMPS. Bot needs
DC , 12V is ok for both.
The DC could be made by a conventional transformer with rectifiers and a smoothing cap, or
it could be another smps :
AC 85-265V to DC 12V 8A AC/DC 50/60Hz Switching Power Supply Module Board [email protected] | eBay


This module has the secondary isolated from mains and will not have any grounding issues,you can ground the output any way you like.


You could also use a car battery , this would awoid any hum issues you might encounter,
 

Alex1238

Member
2019-10-08 3:43 pm
Interesting, i hadn't thought about the grounding that way.
I'm sorry if I'm being stubborn or repetitive but would the nixie psu work or not? I also live in Sweden, and all of the proper tube power supplies come out of China, which as you know would double the price in import fees. Would it be possible to use it with proper cooling and 12v for the heaters directly from the power input?

Edit: i was also considering this bone, as it is cheaper and seems simpler and more compact.
High voltage power supply module kit DIY for Nixie tubes | eBay
 
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kodabmx

Member
Paid Member
2011-10-31 1:00 am
Toronto
I strongly suggest you avoid the adjustable supplies like DC-DC 8-32V to +-45V-390V Step-up Module ZVS High Voltage Capacitor Charge Board | eBay

They are very noisy (electrically), and the output isn't isolated from the input (common ground). The other one Peter linked is a whiney POS too but it is isolated. Instead, I would suggest using DC-AC Converter 12V to 110V 200V 220V 280V 150W Inverter Boost Board Transformer | eBay

and either just an RC dropper, or an 0D3 VR tube to get 150V.

Otherwise, 150V is stupid easy to make with an isolation transformer (like Triad VPT230-110) and a simple bridge and RC filter.

The Nixie supplies you link might work, but they are designed for about 2mA of current. You will need more than that.
 
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Interesting, i hadn't thought about the grounding that way.
I'm sorry if I'm being stubborn or repetitive but would the nixie psu work or not? I also live in Sweden, and all of the proper tube power supplies come out of China, which as you know would double the price in import fees. Would it be possible to use it with proper cooling and 12v for the heaters directly from the power input?

Edit: i was also considering this bone, as it is cheaper and seems simpler and more compact.
High voltage power supply module kit DIY for Nixie tubes | eBay
I have used this combination with success, I do have a small number of
them in for sale at tubular-well.se for swedish users.

Grounding is no problem, you can ground the (-) from the power supply
and the (-) B+ will refer to the same ground.

I would refer to the 90-390 volt unit as it has a proper cooling plate,

filament will bo ok with the 12V from the DC supply.


I know nothing about your nixie supply, thus i cannot say anything about its
suitability as power supply, put power ( 5w) seems i bit low.
 
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I just took a look at the one on tubular-well.se, and i think. that one will be just perfect. Have any other tips as far as the circuit and construction go?
No more then starting current is higher then continous current.
The 220 AC > 12V8A works no problem. Other "wall warts" might do
but you have to test. An analogue 12V4A transformer + rectifier might also work all right.
 
I say it regularly … but read KodaBMX's comments!.

He's spot on: nothing could be simpler than using an isolation transformer, a 'canned' full-wave-bridge rectifier and a string of C-R-C-R-C components to smooth out the DC B+ 150V.

For the low-volt side, note that all the specified valves are 6- series. 6.3 volt filaments. A single very small line-to–6.3 VAC transformer would do the trick, as well. Probably less than $30 for the pair if you do some looking about.

Just Saying,
-= GoatGuy ✓ =-
 
DC-DC 8-32V to +-45V-390V Step-up Module ZVS High Voltage Capacitor Charge Board | eBay

This supply will need an external storage capacitor ( 50uF 400V or so)
and a series resistance ( 2.2k 2w or similar) to filter out voltage differences due to on/off regulation. This also takes care of any
high freq. that may leak out from the switcher and crosstalk from
several channels driven by the same supply.
Best is to locate the 50uF close to the load(amp).

As the output voltage is adjustable one can dial in any voltage needed.
 
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kodabmx

Member
Paid Member
2011-10-31 1:00 am
Toronto
Of course I have, Why do you think I wrote that? For fun? Speculation? Everything I write is based on personal experience. If you want them, send me postage. I'll send you like 6 of them, some of which or bipolar. I'll never use them in any of my designs again. I spend two weeks chasing a noise that was down to one of these... It was coming through the speakers even without the tubes installed. It was powering a pair of 6E2 level meters, not even the main audio circuitry. Replaced it with a fixed voltage inverter (the 12V 150W up to 280V AC or DC version I listed above) and all is well.

I've blown up at least 3 of them but replacing the diodes fixed it, and two where the FET shorted.

Even this one works better! DC-AC 12V to 220V Inverter Power Module Power Converter Booster Module Board | eBay

Again, if you want them, send a PM.
 
Of course I have, Why do you think I wrote that? For fun? Speculation? Everything I write is based on personal experience. If you want them, send me postage. I'll send you like 6 of them, some of which or bipolar. I'll never use them in any of my designs again. I spend two weeks chasing a noise that was down to one of these... It was coming through the speakers even without the tubes installed. It was powering a pair of 6E2 level meters, not even the main audio circuitry. Replaced it with a fixed voltage inverter (the 12V 150W up to 280V AC or DC version I listed above) and all is well.

I've blown up at least 3 of them but replacing the diodes fixed it, and two where the FET shorted.

Even this one works better! DC-AC 12V to 220V Inverter Power Module Power Converter Booster Module Board | eBay

Again, if you want them, send a PM.
We seem to have different experience with smps. That's ok, this is how learning works, trying and rejecting or accepting stuff.
Main point is to have an open mind.
Keep up!
 

Alex1238

Member
2019-10-08 3:43 pm
I say it regularly … but read KodaBMX's comments!.

He's spot on: nothing could be simpler than using an isolation transformer, a 'canned' full-wave-bridge rectifier and a string of C-R-C-R-C components to smooth out the DC B+ 150V.

For the low-volt side, note that all the specified valves are 6- series. 6.3 volt filaments. A single very small line-to–6.3 VAC transformer would do the trick, as well. Probably less than $30 for the pair if you do some looking about.

Just Saying,
-= GoatGuy ✓ =-

That does seem like an extremely simple solution, but i was hoping to build something more compact honestly, is that even possible without compromising quality?
 
That does seem like an extremely simple solution, but i was hoping to build something more compact honestly, is that even possible without compromising quality?
OK.

You wear your honestly on your right lapel as an honorable man with a talisman: you motivation can neither be mistaken nor mistrewn . Truly, my honor in carrying on this scintilla of discourse.

The spell wizard is not amused with my variant of strewn.
Oh well.
As well.
Well…
Well met!
Well!!!

Saying without course d'beneficant.
,
-= GoatGuy ✓ =-
 
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disco

Member
2006-04-17 6:27 pm
Holland
Koda, can you recommend these units for use without metal casing in a high gain circuit like a phono pre? The 37KHz switching frequency makes me a little paranoid...
 

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kodabmx

Member
Paid Member
2011-10-31 1:00 am
Toronto
Koda, can you recommend these units for use without metal casing in a high gain circuit like a phono pre? The 37KHz switching frequency makes me a little paranoid...

The scope says it doesn't make it past the power filtering, and as with any SMPS design, placement and layout are key. Don't put the SMPS on top between the tubes, for example :p The ~35 kHz hash does make it past any filter I give the smaller adjustable one though although as acceptable values.

But yes, I can recommend it for phono as I currently use this supply for mine. I use it with a Janus shunt regulator though so even if it was making hash Janus would kill it. I even use them to make the negative bias rail in my monobloc amps, and for the 560V rail also. Over all I've had 1 failure (100W output in a sealed box - torture test, coil failed short) out of like 15 units. It reminds me I must order some more haha.
 
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