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Interfacing Amanero, Cronus and AK4137
Interfacing Amanero, Cronus and AK4137
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Old 30th June 2020, 08:57 AM   #31
schultzsch is offline schultzsch  Europe
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Hello again,

Since I got the new mercury iv stage I have removed the ak4137 board. This morning having a few spare hours I wanted to give a listen to the dac with the ak4137 board now that I am a bit familiar with the new sound.
So after connecting the ak4137 board I have set it to output dsd and after started the amplifiers.
With the new output stage when I turn on/off the amps I have no turn on/off thump but today when I started them there was a serious thump at turn on. For curiosity sake I went to measure the dc offset on the balanced output of the output stage. If until now the offset was very small, something in the range of mV now I have 1V hmm..
First thing that went to my mind to do was to change the output of ak4137 from dsd to pcm. Well surprise...when changing to pcm the offset went back in the mV range.
Looking further what can cause the offset on the output I have disconnected the ak4137 board and connected the dac(b3se es9018s) directly to the amanero-cronus combo. When cronus sends the signals directly to the dac I donít have the dc offset on the output when streaming dsd.
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Old 30th June 2020, 10:18 AM   #32
Markw4 is offline Markw4  United States
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: California
Mercury is probably DC coupled (I think it uses a servo rather than AVCC/2 or AVCC/x for I/V input offset). Your old output stage may have been AC coupled, not sure.

You could try disconnecting Mercury from the dac and then measure at the analog outputs of the dac chip instead. (Sabre dacs will operate in voltage output mode if no I/V stage is connected.) If you still see a similar offset effect in DSD then my guess would be that BCLK for DSD is being inverted by the AK4137 (AKM default mode), which then might be causing ES9018 outputs to offset in sort of a quirky way. Looking at I2S signals going into the dac chip with a scope should quickly tell if BCLK (DSD_CLK) is inverted, as explained sometime previously.

If the clock is inverted, and if it is causing a dac output offset, then the fix would be to correct the BCLK inversion. Best way would be to go into AK4137 I2C registers and change the DSD BCLK inversion bit. 2nd best way might be to invert BCLK (DSD_CLK) with a hardware logic inverter IC that only is in the circuit for DSD mode (Otherwise the signal would be inverted for PCM and cause other symptoms).

Last edited by Markw4; 30th June 2020 at 10:23 AM.
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Old 30th June 2020, 12:14 PM   #33
schultzsch is offline schultzsch  Europe
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Join Date: Mar 2009
I was intending to look today at the BCLK but this morning when I seen that I get 1V of dc on the outputs of mercury and also on the outputs of the amplifiers I had removed the ak4137 board from the combo and also disoldered from the dac and cronus the connectors that helped to connect with the ak4137 board.
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