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Old 31st January 2021, 06:54 PM   #1
D3nsityD3nt is offline D3nsityD3nt  Italy
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Holton amps electrolytic caps experiments
Default Holton amps electrolytic caps experiments

Hello everyone.

I'm about to start my new built for bi amping my speakers. For mid/high section is NXV200L designated and for lows nxV300R2. I have bought them a long time ago, but you know how cruel life is sometimes. It changes priorities are changed despite the will :-)

Now I have a big question to the Holton's amps lovers.
Did you guys tried or did some experiments with different electrolytics on the amp main boards itself? Is it worth the effort?
Mine came with Nichicon Muse. I was wondering if we can make it even better sounding changing (upgrading?) those caps.

I have already figured all power supply caps, so this is out of the way.

Cheers!
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Old 13th February 2021, 09:47 PM   #2
alwaysHiFi is offline alwaysHiFi  United Kingdom
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Hi,

Which cap are you referring to? Audio signal input cap? I have played with a few input caps on my ESP P101. To my ear / imagination I found jantzen alumen z-cap to be very good.

Before you spend money on caps. I would build up the amps, get them working and see how they sound. If Mr. Holton has sent them out with Muse, I am sure they will sound good.

I am using HPA-NXL200 R4.5 with no input cap. My pre amp has next to no dc offset and I run dc off protection at amp output. At setup stage of my amps, I plug in the pre amp and then adjust dc offset of amp to zero. Not sure if that is possible with your model?

If you want to roll input caps, remove them from amp pcb, link on pcb and fit them at input connector. It makes it easy to swap around and not have to disturb the rest of your build.

Last edited by alwaysHiFi; 13th February 2021 at 09:57 PM. Reason: Add last line
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Old 14th February 2021, 02:50 AM   #3
jameshillj is offline jameshillj  Australia
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There's a surprising difference in the amp's sound with different power supply caps too although it's not often mentioned - Panasonic, Nichicon, Elna, Kendeil, Kemet, Mundorf, etc, etc.
It's not just the amount of capacitance - bigger is not automatically better, especially in class AB amps.

I've got the same 200L modules ready to be installed and to drive my efficient 15" bass speakers (<160Hz) and the power supply caps are Siemens Sikorels (yes, those old ones!) and "Elna for Audio" in a C-R-C setup with soft recovery diodes, 300VA 35v sec, transformer per channel, etc - I 'toyed' with the idea of changing the 100uF/16V bipolar cap but decided to leave it original.

Also, the rails Vcc1 and Vcc2 are linked together - you can supply separate 'front end' power supply if required - for my use it's not necessary.

I also purchased the HPA-'Power One' board too, but I think this has been replaced now.
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Old 14th February 2021, 03:01 AM   #4
jameshillj is offline jameshillj  Australia
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I just noticed there's a guy here selling a perfectly suitable power supply kit on the "Swap Meet" here for your 200L modules - Torroidy transformer with the extra higher voltage winding, same "PowerOne" mains kit, a choice of pcb for power supplies, and other bits - in England, reasonable freight for you.
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Old 14th February 2021, 06:08 AM   #5
rabbitz is offline rabbitz  Australia
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I tried several input caps on the NXV200 from MKT, MMK, MKP and various brands such as Mundorf etc but found the Nichicon ES series to be more to my liking.

Watch when cap rolling as the tracks can lift easily.
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Old 14th February 2021, 07:04 AM   #6
analog_sa is offline analog_sa  Europe
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Holton amps electrolytic caps experiments
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameshillj View Post
Also, the rails Vcc1 and Vcc2 are linked together - you can supply separate 'front end' power supply if required - for my use it's not necessary.
Not necessary? A separate supply for the front end usually makes a dramatic improvement.
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Old 14th February 2021, 08:34 AM   #7
jameshillj is offline jameshillj  Australia
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Yes, the extra front-end supply generally makes quite a bit of a difference but with the restricted bass freq response (30 - 160Hz) for these modules in my setup, I hadn't considered it of much benefit.

However, thank you for the timely reminder and I will indeed check it out just to make sure - I should go the 'whole hog' and use good quality 60 volt regs for this too ...

Ah, the input caps - yes, all sorts of options - possibly easier just to attach a quality film cap bypass underneath to avoid disturbing the assembly.
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Old 14th February 2021, 08:39 AM   #8
alwaysHiFi is offline alwaysHiFi  United Kingdom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbitz View Post

Watch when cap rolling as the tracks can lift easily.
Hence why remove cap from pcb and link out. Fit cap at input socket for easy / fast swapping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by analog_sa View Post
Not necessary? A separate supply for the front end usually makes a dramatic improvement.
I agree, I run a Volt one regulator for input VAS. Stable voltage at the drive stages of an amp must pay benefits at all frequencies.
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Old 14th February 2021, 11:13 AM   #9
jameshillj is offline jameshillj  Australia
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Where can I find details about this Volt One reg?
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Old 15th February 2021, 10:35 AM   #10
D3nsityD3nt is offline D3nsityD3nt  Italy
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Holton amps electrolytic caps experiments
Quote:
Originally Posted by alwaysHiFi View Post
Hi,

Which cap are you referring to? Audio signal input cap? I have played with a few input caps on my ESP P101. To my ear / imagination I found jantzen alumen z-cap to be very good.
I do not think there is an input cap on the main amp boards. Mr. Holton confirmed to me that it has to be added separately.
I do not use the input cap. I have Transformer Volume Control as a preamp and that is actually also a DC protection.
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