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Vintage dac recap
Vintage dac recap
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Old 11th September 2019, 08:02 PM   #1
cbarth is offline cbarth  Norway
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Default Vintage dac recap

Hi,
I have this old dac that I really like. It is probably from the mid 90's. I had the producer make some mods to it and installed Jantzen Alumen Z copling caps. Holy cow that made a huge difference.
I am considering making a few more tweaks. Belleson regulators and changing the older caps for something newer.

But I'm a novice when it comes to this field. Any recomandations for types of caps that will fit? Pretty tight fit. I'm looking for some smooth, full sounding types.
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Old 11th September 2019, 08:12 PM   #2
cbarth is offline cbarth  Norway
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Sorry, I got some issues uploading pics.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf DSC_0445.pdf (1.56 MB, 73 views)
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Old 11th September 2019, 08:13 PM   #3
cbarth is offline cbarth  Norway
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One more...
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File Type: pdf DSC_0443.pdf (1.52 MB, 54 views)
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Old 11th September 2019, 08:50 PM   #4
rayma is offline rayma  United States
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It's from the 80s with the hand tape board layout.
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Old 11th September 2019, 10:43 PM   #5
Mark Tillotson is offline Mark Tillotson
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The devices seem datecoded 1996, presumably modded then? What a modfest.
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Old 15th September 2019, 11:40 AM   #6
dowser is offline dowser  Switzerland
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Yikes - be careful in there! I couldn’t find any internal pictures online, but hope most of that work is modifications!

Only useful mod based on your picture would be to replace the main 6k8uf smoothing cap. It also looks like maybe an el-cheapo rectifier is fitted, maybe worth replacing with some Schottkys- other than that the caps that are there are OK IMO. Your photo isn’t complete - is there more stuff above top of picture? And what has been done on the track side? I assume very little given all the soldering on component side
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Old 18th September 2019, 12:28 AM   #7
phase is offline phase  United States
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I wouldn’t change anything, except maybe put a snubber on the rectifying diodes.
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Old 18th September 2019, 11:24 AM   #8
cbarth is offline cbarth  Norway
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Thank's for the replies guys.
I actually owned this dac 16 or 17 years ago, but sold it to a friend of mine. It was smooth sounding, but dull.
A couple of years ago I was at a Doxa demo with their 8.2 signature speakers and 61 power amplifier. It sounded really good. As I got to take a look at the electronics, I spotted the old dac. I was shocked that sound was so good with this dac in the chain.

They told me it was heavily modified. When I got home I asked my buddy if he still had it, and bought it back and sent it to Doxa for modification.

I have a Oppo BDP105 which I connected to the dac, but it was not as good as I had hoped for. I bought a Ifi Spdifpurifier and that helped a lot.
Later I bought Roksan Blak amp and cd-player, and I tried the Blak cd player though the Ifi to the dac, but prefered the analog output from the cd player.
But by chance one day I decided to try the Blak without the Spdifpurifier into the dac.
It was a killer match. It was a huge improvement in sound.

I downsized my system a few years ago after losing a bit of interrest. It became more and more about the gear, and less and less about the music. But the synergi in my system now is the best I ever had. Every thing I put on just brings a smile on my face, and that is what it is all about, right?
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Old 19th September 2019, 08:11 AM   #9
cumbb is offline cumbb
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Maybe like this:

De-solder and re-solder all solder joints - MINIMAL solder!
Shottky-diodes.
Remove all little bypass-caps.
One type of caps, if possible. The littel ones polystyrene - as done, or mica. The big ones one type of elektrolytic; 12 or 16 V-types with much much more capacitance.
May be, the Jantzens are not the big match - then. I would use a little electrolyt.
PSU with coil/inductance!

Try to use the analog-output of the dac to drive your amp: bypass the analog-buffer/amp;-) Any electrolyt-caps use.
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Old 19th September 2019, 08:17 AM   #10
cumbb is offline cumbb
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The CS4390 has balanced outputs.
Use balanced amps;-)
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