Wima MKP vs MKS

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supernet,





some people in my acqaintanceship in fact prefer the MKS4 to the MKP10. But i do avoid using any cap with "Wima" printed on it from cap listening comparisons i made. Maybe except those high voltage KPs intend for television use but even there i prefer Roederstein. And still prefer Siemens/Epcos MKV to all of them.





Wima must have some scientifically elaborated way to §$%& up the inner lead2lelement contact.





You can call this a solid prejudice :) but it is backupped by extensive listnening comparisons under worst-case conditions.
 
German Caps

Ahhh...... a man who knows his Kondensatoren. I only like the small value foil Wimas. My experience with the ERO polypropylenes has much better. I can even hear the difference between Wimas and EROs in the coupling caps in the SPDIF serial digital link! A lot of people recognize the Wimas with thier red or light green cases. I think that many designers throw them in products because people see them and think "oh, Wimas!" the same goes for those light brown Dale resistors. I call this the "designer audio" syndrome. It is sort of like Nike shoes and Coors beer, marketing to yuppies plan. The next step up for "designer audio" is MIT caps and Holco resistors. It really gets funny when you know what to look for.... Of couse a lot of manufactures brand thier caps with the companies name to take this to a new level. Of course they all say picking "designer" parts is to voice the circuit. Then you would think that there would be a greater selection of voices out there than half a dozen brands of components...... Marketing!

H.H.
 
Well if want to be that way, Hairy........

Roderstein Kondenstoren fur die Elektronik are frequently used, along with your least favorite (Wima), for items exported to the Pacific Rim countries.

They like seem to like red and gold parts.

Win some, lose some.

As for why Dale became so popular.........go figure.

If you need to pick parts to "voice" the circuit, then it has other faults that are being covered up with more mistakes.

Jocko
 
capacitors

Nien, der Roderstein ist da UberKondenstoren!!!!! I don't have problems with voicing a circuit, it is using politically correct parts that annoys me. I remove markings off caps just so people won't go "Ah..... brand X capacitors". You know mystery caps, your favorite brand.

H.H.

P.S. the ERO film caps area very nice blue and we all know blue sounds better than red........
 
Folks,

if you crowd me enough withit, i might send you some Siemens/Epcos MKV 25839 coupling caps. Just to try them out.

The Roederstein MKV 1841 and KP 1836 are very good caps as the SCR/Audyn tinfoils are, just different, but only with the MKV, i might consider omitting the 200pF single-plate silver-mica bypass.

The MKV is playing in another league. Also in this league plays the old Siemens MKY (OOP, onyl to be found as surplus). If you should step into them, buy them all, keep what you need, sell the rest to me.
 
Bernhard,

where can I get those Siemens/Epcos MKV 25839 coupling caps here in Austria ?
I must admit that I have no experience with them (or is it the open foil block style cap?)

In this part of the world (Germany/Austria) many audiophiles never rated the red Wimas very high - this is very basic stuff you buy in the Electronics shop to build Non-audio stuff.

Klaus

lohk@gmx.at
 
MKV are only available for large values + they are frightfully expensive. Might be good for coupling caps (if you have the space for them) but could not be used in filters.

Epcos will not say what the plastic dielectric is, so its probably Mylar. Maybe one should compare the figures for dielectric loss. There is also paper that carries the electrodes. Apparently it is not subjected to the field, so both electrodes must belong to the same side of the capacitor.

Let's get some sobriety into the argument. Parameters that influence sound quality are:

1) dielectric:

All dielectrics suffer from dielectric absorption because polarisation is not an instanteaneous and perferctly linear function of the external electric field. Dielectrics in ascending order of dielectric loss are:
air, paper, polystyrene (KS), polypropylene (KP, MKP, FKP), polycarbonate, mylar (MKS, MKT), mica, NPO/COG, Z5U, X7R

It makes me gasp to see renowned U.S. makers of high quality DACs recommend the use of NPO ceramic capacitors in the analog post filter stages...

2) mechanical construction
The electric field pull the electrodes on either side of the dielectric together, while it will dispell the electrodes carrying the same charge (if the are in any proximity, depending on the way the electrodes are connected).
If the electrodes have a chance to move, capacitance will change, causing a non-linearity. The more rigid the construction, the less chance there is of this happening. I am not sure how rigid paper is.
The rigidity of the construction may be the reason for many perceived sound differences. A very loose construction may also pick up acoustic vibrations from the outside.

Proposed test: subject capacitor to 1 kHz, 50 V signal, with and without resistive load. If you can hear the capacitor sing, something is definitely wrong. I have never heard a capacitor sing, but a great many coils, prior to treating them with expoxy glue...

3) rated voltage
The higher the rated voltage, the thicker the dielectric. Hence, nonlinearities should be lower.

4) contacts
Many polystyrene (Styroflex) and older Roederstein KP capacitors are simply a roll of plastic and metallic foils. The lead wires are simply pushed somewhere into the stack. Parts of the capacitor that are at the inner or outer end of the foil roll have quite some path to the wires, so series inductance is high. I am a little sceptical of using these parts in low pass filters where I expect some HF rejection.
Most modern film capacitors are either flat-stacked or rolled film. The big difference to older designs is that all the individual sheets belonging to one pole(or each winding in the case of a roll) are connected at the edge. This is achieved by making the metal foil a little longer then the dielectric. Then little balls of solder are either pressed to the side and sintered or a stream of hot little solder balls is directed to the edge ("schoopieren"). In theory, these little balls could be poorly joined, causing some semiconductive effect that is highly nonlinear with voltage. But then, these capacitors would have considerable ESR which they don't have, being designed primarily for decoupling applications.

I have been using 33 to 1000 pF WIMA FKP and MKP capacitors in active and passive low pass filters and as compensation capacitors in my poweramp. So far, I have been happier than with Styroflex and MKS/MKT capacitors but maybe I should try some Roedersteins...

Eric
 
Originally posted by Jocko Homo

I was trying.......uncharacteristically, I might add........to not be so dogmatic and annoying.





Can't agree with you at all about silver micas.




Jocko and all,

micas can but not must be extraordinarly good. As every cap, there has to be a contacting between component lead and inner capacitor element. If this joint is messed up, sound is messed up as well. Which is the case with about 50% of the micas around there and about 104.67% with all the cheap cylindrical radial-lead clear/foil styroflex caps around.



I am not a fan of coupling cap bypassing at all, usually it messes more up than it does good. Having said this, the fact i use a (special) mica for bypassing tells quite something. I was referring to my favourite mica which is a singleplate mica with silver applied (who knows how, maybe screen-printed) on both sides of the mica and then the sheetmetal leads are riveted into the thing. Yes, riveted. I cannot remember a single case where reasonable appllication of those caps did not better the sound.



Tests with my ESI bridge have shown the micas have one of the lowest damping /highest Q factor around and my dielectric teest bridge from R&S usually shows a tangens delta of 3 to 5x10^-5 . Dielectric absorption is another topic, there the mica doesn't excel, agreed.

Micas become worse with increasing size/value; general rule is not to use micas above, say 100nF, better take a 1st class PP foil cap there. I assume it has to do with dielectric absorption.



Micas are not the most reliable thing on this planet. For this reason and another one mentioned below i would never dream of using micas as a coupling cap in a tube amp. If the cap goes spung, the rare DHT, an AD1 or RE 604 maybe, goes red and boom! and the cathode oxyde coating is butterflying through my living room! From this and the about 50% mentioned above you bet any mica going into one of my circuits is checked and measured before (which is not much work as i tend to use few caps).



In my cap bin i have some hightech potted styroflex with radial leads from Rifa and Siemens i have not yet tried out and compared in the phono EQ, they are too small for coupling cap use. Those styros show the same good measuring results as the micas do except they are way better in dielectric absorption. I come back with results as soon as i have some but phono preamp is not on the menue the next two months.



In my cap listening comparison there was a µ47 silver mica from BMC/Beilicke under test, too. It was a very good cap, but the MKV i was raving about earlier was waaaayyyyy better. The MKV also measured best in any way.



Hint for people who are after micas:

Stick with BMC/Beilicke from Munich and with Richard Jahre from Berlin (Jahre is the mica pioneer, BTW), they are most reliable, measure best, sound best. But even BMC and RJ has to be checked.

And, if you have to check/measure them anyway, you can give Cornell Dubilier and Sangamo a try. TME Sangamo, even the vintage ones, are very good (most of them).
 
Originally posted by lohk


where can I get those Siemens/Epcos MKV 25839 coupling caps here in Austria ?



I must admit that I have no experience with them (or is it the open foil block style cap?)






Klaus,


try www.buerklin.de (Munich) or www.schuricht.de. I buy them at Bürklin.


They are lengthy cylindrical caps with an outer alu housing and rubber-sealed at one end. Axial leads. They look like cheap bipolar electrolytics but they are neither chaep nor electrolytic :)





Eric,


Originally posted by capslock
MKV are only available for large values + they are frightfully expensive.
i would not claim they are cheap at 10 Euro for 1µF. I said all the way i used them as coupling caps. But "frightfully expensive" are the Mundorf, MIT, Hovland musicaps, Audionote Copper and Silver (and some fancy military Teflon caps i am glad i healed myself from desiring them). Let's keep the church in the village, ok?

Might be good for coupling caps (if you have the space for them) but could not be used in filters. Epcos will not say what the plastic dielectric is, so its probably Mylar. Maybe one should compare the figures for dielectric loss. There is also paper that carries the electrodes. Apparently it is not subjected to the field, so both electrodes must belong to the same side of the capacitor.

They may not say today what they use but the MKVs i mentioned are definitely PP; i retrieved this for from a >10 year old data book and got it confirmed by a Siemens/Epcos employee. He was so kind to hunt for me the same info about the discontinued MKY, it also is PP.

But the are high current MKV variants using polycarbonate as dielectric .. Mylar? must be PC.

Let's get some sobriety into the argument. Parameters that influence sound quality are:
1) dielectric:
All dielectrics suffer from dielectric absorption because polarisation is not an instanteaneous and perferctly linear function of the external electric field. Dielectrics in ascending order of dielectric loss are:
air, paper, polystyrene (KS), polypropylene (KP, MKP, FKP), polycarbonate, mylar (MKS, MKT), mica, NPO/COG, Z5U, X7R.

It makes me gasp to see renowned U.S. makers of high quality DACs recommend the use of NPO ceramic capacitors in the analog post filter stages...
What do you mean with dielectric loss? Do you mean dielectric absorption? Then your list complies with mine :) .

NPO has been tried out and can sound quite pleasant in phono EQs and where else the small values apply. not only my opinion, i got about 10 buddies seconding that. But NP0/COG, no other ceramic!!
Mica also has higher dielectric absorption and sounds quite good if not the whole is mica-crowded (nix is' schlimmer als zuviel Glimmer :) ) so it looks like DA is not such a NoNo as fara as sonics are concerned.

2) mechanical construction
The electric field pull the electrodes on either side of the dielectric together, while it will dispell the electrodes carrying the same charge (if the are in any proximity, depending on the way the electrodes are connected).
If the electrodes have a chance to move, capacitance will change, causing a non-linearity. The more rigid the construction, the less chance there is of this happening. I am not sure how rigid paper is.
The rigidity of the construction may be the reason for many perceived sound differences. A very loose construction may also pick up acoustic vibrations from the outside.
Proposed test: subject capacitor to 1 kHz, 50 V signal, with and without resistive load. If you can hear the capacitor sing, something is definitely wrong. I have never heard a capacitor sing, but a great many coils, prior to treating them with expoxy glue...

Fully agreed. Another interesting test: build yourself a foil cable a la Allen Wright, instead of air-spacing have the two foils packed/wrapped together and do a poor job here so that the foils can move. You'll hear that! See under loudspeakers, telephone cable thread.

3) rated voltage
The higher the rated voltage, the thicker the dielectric. Hence, nonlinearities should be lower.
Aligned with my measuring and listneing results.
4) contacts
Many polystyrene (Styroflex) and older Roederstein KP capacitors are simply a roll of plastic and metallic foils. The lead wires are simply pushed somewhere into the stack. Parts of the capacitor that are at the inner or outer end of the foil roll have quite some path to the wires, so series inductance is high. I am a little sceptical of using these parts in low pass filters where I expect some HF rejection.
Sceptical? Never use it! Never use them anywhere!

You made a good point in describing the lead 2 element contact. The schooping you described seems to be a very critical point and production parameters seem to be uncontrollable after all. SCR/Audyn/Mundorf tin foil caps excel here, the tin foil is a real metal foil, not a metallized dielectric foil and can be soldered in an old-fashioned way. I slaughtered one, the inner contact is 1st class.

Methinks lead 2 element contact is what makes or breaks the capacitor quality concerning sonics.

Another voodoo hint (result of my listening comparison): stay away from caps you can pick up with a magnet, be it the leads or the housing.
The fancy Teflon mil cap had a highly magnetic housing, a hermetic one. It had the same nasty, music-killing sonic footprint as the other magnetic caps.

The MKV and the MKY both are hermetic but non-magnetic.
 
Harry,

village and chuch saying means "let's keep things reasonably sized" ...
calling a cap with 1µF and costing retail $10 "frightfullly expensive" is not reasonably sized if coupling caps can go up to $180 (Teflon Mil) or maybe Audionote silver/paper-in-oil varying between 33 and 116 British Pounds, this not yet being the roof. I agree, surplus you can find 1st class stuff for below 1 buck.

The MKV is not yet present in the audio world, TMK Allen Wright is the only one rebranding or reselling it. It is a standard retail product meant for HD applications such as railroad/locomotives and its safety margins are set accordingly. I do recommend buying them surplus, way cheaper. But if i need a value i don't have, i go to Bürklin and i sigh with relief recalling what money i have paid in the past for inferior caps and smiling at what i have to pay today.

Eric,
i guess that the links Harry posted are better than everthing i have. My kjnowledge comes from trying the stuff on the bench and listneing to it in a healthy audio system.

TME, KP indeed sounds better than MKP albeit not much. Differences between brands are bigger. Some manufactureres simply know how to make contact happen and some others how to make it fail.
 
Bernhard,

nice to learn finally what Allen's super cap is.

I'd like to try the MKV, either as a 220 or 330nF
coupler, or as a 100nF (precise!) part in RIAA.

Rather than me going through the moves as a private outlandish person at Burklin, could you
sell me a couple? Depending on total cost I could
deposit directly onto your bank account, or simply
put some Euros in an envelope.

Cheers,


Werner

werner@tnt-audio.com

BTW you being from Munchen know Hartmut Q?
 
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