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DIY amp to replace Rotel RB1090? LF100?
DIY amp to replace Rotel RB1090? LF100?
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Old 5th October 2008, 02:21 PM   #1
Dalek is offline Dalek  Australia
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Default DIY amp to replace Rotel RB1090? LF100?

Hi, first I just want to say thanks to all the regular posters for providing so much information, i dont post to often but i do a lot of reading on this forum.

I have a very basic understanding of amps and have put together a couple of electronic kits over the years, i also have pretty good soldering skills. The problem is i dont have the best understanding of amp circuits.

In my current system im using an rb1090 amp that i bought second hand many years ago before i got interested in diy. The speakers im using are early ML1's (www.lenehanaudio.com.au) but im currently building a set of the new ML1 Signatures which will have a sensitivity of 86db iirc.

Anyway i have not been happy with the sound of the rb1090 for a while now and just want something with a warmer, softer sound to it. Something more tube like that can give me better dynamics at lower volume levels and a much sweeter midrange.

Also the rb1090 is serious overkill for the speakers im using with are 2 way bookshelf speakers! I would like to stick with solid state if i can get the kind of sound im looking for but if i cant then im happy to go with a tube amp.

Im hoping to get away with spending around AUD1500 on a kit or amp.

Some of the amps ive been looking at are the aksa 100 and the lifeforce 100 but its so hard to commit to that kind of money without hearing the amp for yourself. I have read so many good reviews on the aksa and the lifeforce that they have to be good amps but will the be better than the rb1090?

The other amp ive been considering is a tube amp by Joe Rasmussen (http://customanalogue.com/jlti_el34.htm) which has been tested with the same speakers im building and is said to preform very well!

So hard to decide what to do without being able to hear the amps myself.

If anyone has any opinions on how the rotel compares with these amps or any other amps in this price range please let me know.

excuse the super long post...
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Old 5th October 2008, 02:59 PM   #2
Ragnwald is offline Ragnwald  Sweden
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Why give up one of hifi markets cleanest least coloring sounding amplifier?
Build yourself a nice preamp with as many sound implements as you wish. And go for some work of the aucoustics in your listeningroom.
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Old 5th October 2008, 04:11 PM   #3
contax is offline contax  Spain
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A very interesting option. A tube amplifier kit with amazing toroidal transformers designed by Menno Van der Veen.


The kit is inside the High Ende Audio Section

Menno is the author of the book http://www.amazon.com/Modern-High-en...3220216&sr=8-2
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Old 5th October 2008, 04:56 PM   #4
anatech is offline anatech  Canada
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DIY amp to replace Rotel RB1090? LF100?
Hi Dalek,
What you are asking is perfectly reasonable. Updating from your Rotel is a good move forward. I don't find them to be particularly clean sounding. Just another opinion amongst many I'm sure.

Smaller bookshelf speakers are normally less efficient than the larger speakers. You will need more power to achieve the same sound pressure levels. Low bass will tend to cause distortion in your music with the smaller speakers also. You may want to roll the deep bass off to enhance the sound quality. You are the only one who can decide is you need a sub woofer system.

Tube amplifiers can bring a lot of listening satisfaction. I have both Solid State and Tube equipment and I enjoy both. Again, your decision. In the end, you really have to hear each amp. Often, equipment may be good but not what you are looking for. That may be a personal thing. Keep in mind that other people in the household may need to use the equipment. You don't want a fight there.

Happy hunting!, Chris
"Just because you can, doesn't mean you should" my Wife
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Old 5th October 2008, 09:15 PM   #5
Greg Erskine is offline Greg Erskine  Australia
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DIY amp to replace Rotel RB1090? LF100?
Hi Dalek,

Post a request for a demo over at the ASPEN forum. There's a good chance of someone living close by that will help out.


Greg Erskine
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Old 5th October 2008, 09:55 PM   #6
Real_Macgyver is offline Real_Macgyver  Sweden
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On my RB1090 I have changed the input capacitors to Jensen ( copper foil) and Mundorf paper/silver foil.

Also there is 2.2uF Mundorf Supreme over each capacitor in the power supply. I have also added some extra wire of OCC copper to the speaker terminals

The amplifier is much better now, outperforming just any amplifier for $10000

Good luck with your new buy of amplifier.
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Old 6th October 2008, 02:26 AM   #7
AKSA is offline AKSA  Australia
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If you want to hear an amp ask on my forum. Someone may be able to help, particularly if you visit Brisbane.
Aspen Amplifiers P/L (Australia)
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