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LDR Volume/Preamp Controller with 256x64 OLED Display & Remote
LDR Volume/Preamp Controller with 256x64 OLED Display & Remote
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Old 20th April 2020, 06:23 PM   #11
CaptainWatt is offline CaptainWatt  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nautibuoy View Post
Sounds expensive. I imagined that the LDR/switch boards would be stackable on a single e-pot controller
More expensive seems to come along for the ride when it comes to balanced audio because you essentially double the number of signals so you more or less end up with 2x the amount of hardware.

I can envisage a future version of our ePot Mini that could be stackable since the Mini only handles a single stereo input. It gets a lot more complex with our ePot Max which switches up to 6 stereo inputs.

Ultimately the lowest cost approach will likely be a version specifically designed for balanced audio.
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Old 28th June 2020, 03:02 PM   #12
CaptainWatt is offline CaptainWatt  United States
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Hi All,

I'm please to announce that the ePot.V3 "Mini" Electronic Stepped Attenuator is now available for pre-order for $169 which is 15% off the regular $199 price.

We anticipate an August 10th release date.

More info here: Electronic Stepped Attenuator | ePot.V3 Mini | Tortuga Audio

..and here: ePot.V3 Stepped Attenuators set for August Release | Tortuga Audio

Features of the ePot.V3 Mini include:
  • LDR (light dependent resistor) attenuation module
  • .....100 step attenuator
  • .....-60 to 0 dB
  • .....programmable impedance | 20k default but any value 1k to 100k can be ordered
  • .....plug-in replaceable module
  • Optional alternative discrete resistor attenuation module
  • .....127 step attenuator
  • .....-63.5 to 0 dB
  • .....60k fixed impedance
  • .....plug-in replaceable module
  • Smooth stepping with no sonic artifacts
  • No mechanical parts in the signal path
  • Remote controlled (Apple infrared remote)
  • Manual control via rotary encoder
  • Panel mounted via encoder w/ nut and washer – just like any pot or stepped attenuator
  • Smooth muting/unmuting
  • Left/right channel balance w/ reset (+/- 10 db)
  • Optional status LED
  • Optional high contrast menu driven OLED display with encoder & IR receiver
  • Smaller than a credit card – 2.9″ long x 1.35″ wide x 1.2″ deep
  • Can also be chassis mounted with standoffs
  • Screw terminal interface for power and audio input/output
Cheers,
Morten

The ePot.V3 Mini is shown below with a discete attenuation module installed and a loose LDR attenuation module sitting next to it. Note the size relative to a typical credit card.

Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 29th June 2020, 10:33 AM   #13
dvb projekt is offline dvb projekt  Germany
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LDR Volume/Preamp Controller with 256x64 OLED Display & Remote
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Old 4th July 2020, 01:35 AM   #14
uncola is offline uncola  United States
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pretty cool! I hope to see more integrated amps that use this for the volume control with remote.. for a full size amp might need a bigger oled that you can read from across a dedicated listening room.. call it the OLED XL version or old eyes friendly version
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Old 4th July 2020, 12:50 PM   #15
CaptainWatt is offline CaptainWatt  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncola View Post
pretty cool! I hope to see more integrated amps that use this for the volume control with remote.. for a full size amp might need a bigger oled that you can read from across a dedicated listening room.. call it the OLED XL version or old eyes friendly version
The OLED module we use is the largest generally available that I know of at 3.12 inches (diagonal) with 256x64 pixels. I keep looking for the next size up but haven't found it...yet. It can easily render letters/numbers that are roughly equivalent in size to a 0.56 inch seven segment display which is considered good for clear reading 10-15 feet away. The OLED is high contrast white on black. Better than most any non-OLED display which do come bigger but not as inherently clear/bright.

I'm working on putting together a short vid on our OLED display and will post it when available.

Cheers,
Morten
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Old 10th July 2020, 05:25 PM   #16
CaptainWatt is offline CaptainWatt  United States
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Quick update....

Blank production boards for both the ePot.V3 Max and Mini are due in next week. Expect to have all the component parts for the first production batch in by end of next week as well. That will allow us to start production on the boards soon thereafter. The separate piggy back power board is being produced entirely offsite and is scheduled to ship by the end July with delivery in first week of August.

Based on all of that it looks like we continue to be on track of an August 10th release of the ePot.V3 Mini and just maybe the Max as well.

I've been listening to the various iterations of our LDR attenuators for almost 10 years now and without a doubt the V3 iteration is the best sounding yet. Every time I fire up some tunes on the V3 it makes me smile

Cheers,
Morten
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Old 10th July 2020, 05:29 PM   #17
pinnocchio is offline pinnocchio  Canada
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Hi Morten,

Are you referring to the V3 R2R or LDR module or both when you say it is the best iteration?

Thanks
Do
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Old 10th July 2020, 06:04 PM   #18
CaptainWatt is offline CaptainWatt  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinnocchio View Post
Hi Morten,

Are you referring to the V3 R2R or LDR module or both when you say it is the best iteration?

Thanks
Do
To my ears the LDR module is clearly a more satisfying listen although that's a matter of personal preference. I can well imagine others may prefer the sound of the discrete resistor module which will also definitely measure better if low measured THD is what floats your boat. The analog switches we use have a rated THD of 0.004% and the thin film resistors are probably even lower.

I'll eventually get around to putting a discrete module together using Vishay/Texas metal foil resistors but that will probably cost us $350 for the special order foil resistor set alone. And I'm not sure they make those up in the megaohm range that are needed for a 60k design so we might have to drop the impedance. Can't get more pure, low THD, low noise, set of resistor pairs than metal foil.

Will be interesting to compare then.
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Old 12th July 2020, 01:17 PM   #19
dvb projekt is offline dvb projekt  Germany
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LDR Volume/Preamp Controller with 256x64 OLED Display & Remote
Hi Morten,

has the V3 Max optional status LED‘s for the input selection?

Just for the case, someone don‘t use the OLED-Display...
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Old 12th July 2020, 02:54 PM   #20
CaptainWatt is offline CaptainWatt  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dvb projekt View Post
Hi Morten,

has the V3 Max optional status LED‘s for the input selection?

Just for the case, someone don‘t use the OLED-Display...
In a word yes. The Max has an additional 10 pin (2x5) header where the pins are 3.3V, GND with the remaining 8 pins labeled AO-A7. The idea behind this header is to provide the flexibility to control external devices with discrete signals. By default the 6 pins A0-A5 are outputs linked to the selected input. They are normally pulled high and then get switched to ground when the corresponding input # is active. Thus you could connect the negative side of an LED to each of these pins for use as input select status indicator. You could also use these to switch external relays not directly but through an external relay switching transistor. We've not yet implemented a way for a user to configure this header but will eventually add this to the OLED setup menu and once configured you could disconnect the OLED and run headless. We may also/instead make this configurable via some simple UART commands into one of the UART channels.
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