The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Sunfire Home Audio (Stereo) Discussions and Questions
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Miko1971
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 5:52 am

Here is a long awaited update! From Mr. Chow "All the tube sockets, transformers are in position where are ready to wiring, the power supply PCB wiring are most challenge in this project to make it fit and with the wire bus where have to connected to main amplification PCBs." Short-n-sweet!

Image

Image

Image

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Snoop65
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Snoop65 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 8:55 am

Well it's about time! :lol: :D Looks great! A power supply for each channel?
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:34 am

I don't think so, I was originally thinking a 2 box deal but as you might see, highly technical emails are a bit of a linguistically challenging endeavour. But we make do! From what I understand is that it was going to be a tube regulated power supply with a choke "something something flux capacitor driven do-hickie ma job."


I know from my years of reading reviews, magazines etc... A super duper power supply is a must! So I tried to let Mr.Chow know that we need prodigious power.. Exactly how... I'm sitting on the couch next to you wondering myself. I'll be glad when it's done! I keep finding shit to tinker with. I think we will be adding these PCB Standoffs:

http://www.stillpoints.us/index.php/pro ... -stand-off

Just so I can tick the "just because I can" box off!!

Oh!! I think this week I'll be ordering a set of NOS tubes. Upscale audio has all the bad as a ones plus I trust that place to buy tubes from. Kevin is a hell of nice guy and knows what he's talking about. Siemens Cca? Or Telefunkin's are on my short list. Ideas??

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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by radioeng2 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:14 am

It may or may not be just this....but a bit of an explanation on linear power supplies.

A couple of basic beginnings on power supplies are that they are normally setup as either a capacitor input or a choke input. Tube or solid state doesn't determine which it is as either style supply smoothing can follow the rectifier choice.

A capacitor input is the common of the two. A smoothing cap is the first thing after the transformer. Caps are a very low impedance input and when they're hungry, they tend to get snappy. IE...they agressively gulp the power coming from the AC pulses from the transformer.

A choke input (as the first element after the transformer) on the other hand is much more soothing and nice about how it pulls power in. It's not nearly as grabby about how it asks for the current.

Now the nitty gritty. The cap input supply gives you a higher voltage out than the choke. For the same resulting supply voltage, the choke input has to have a voltage output from the transformer. But the big issue and why most supplies are cap input....A choke is heavy and more expensive.

But what we should care about most.........the choke input supply simply sounds better! It's lower impedance means a stiffer, less varying result when the following electronics want power. The less abrupt current grab means less field around the incoming power cord to crosstalk, along with more stable ground side current flow...so less noise inside too.

Inefficient, heavy and costly. But sounds good. That sums it up the choke input power supply.

Mark
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 12:47 pm

Thanks! I enjoy learning. This is all I have info-wise on the power supply. "Tube base power supply which include's Premium power transformer, tube rectifier, choke,tube voltage regulator, 2 power tubes" that was item 11 on the list of mods I signed off on. Does that help explain it? He's going to be overseas for about 6 weeks come the end of the month, so I'm not sure if he'll be doing anymore work otherwise it looks like sometime in April before we get another update... Stay tuned Folks!!

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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Snoop65 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:18 pm

Tubes? You can't go wrong with Siemens Cca's or the Telefunkens. I own two flavors of Siemens Cca's, early 60's and late 60's /early 70's "A" frames. The A frames are nice but the early 60's Tubes are the ones to have. Both are very transparent but the older tube does more for your soundstage. I haven't heard the Telefunkens but BrianT and Doug use them and have said good things about them. Another tube to check out is the Amperex 7308. I use the Holland made version and it has a big open transparent sound with the largest soundstage I have heard from a tube. Images are slightly less focused when compared to the Siemens. Amperex PQ the 6922's are another excellent option. Try Brent Jesse's website he has everything available.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Snoop65 » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:30 pm

From the picture on their site Upscale sells the "A" frame Siemens Cca's.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Snoop65 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 9:29 pm

Here is a couple of pictures I took of some of my Siemens Cca's so you can see the construction differences.
20160208_211825.jpg
20160208_211729.jpg
The tube on the left is a early 60's tube (and the better sounding of the two) and the one on the right was made in the late 60's or early 70's and has the "A" frame getter.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:04 pm

Nice! Thanks for the pics!

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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Sat Jul 02, 2016 8:35 am

Hello everyone,
No update at this time as Joseph has been dealing with the passing of his Father. Sadly. It's been that kind of year. My friend John died from cancer and a month before that my dog also died of cancer, she was 12.

But I do have a component upgrade to note. Instead of using a Alps volume control I've decided to go with a Khomzo stepped attenuator. http://www.khozmo.com/products_dale_shunt.html

Upgrades include:
Series resistors: Vishay "nude" Zfoil
Shunt resistors: Takman REX
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Making room for the Khozmo Attenuator..
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Tue Jul 05, 2016 5:12 pm

Speaking with the owner of Khozmo i was explaining how the motor for the remote was too large and that I'd just just get a non remote attenuator. He then told me they have a new 64 step relay style attenuator and no motor needed! So that's the one I'll be ordering. It's $459 with the upgraded Takman REX Resistor upgrade.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 7:25 pm

Another component upgrade!

So why are we using I.E.C. Plugs? They suck.. I'm going to go with:

http://www.neutrik.com/en/audio/powerco ... onnectors/

And I'm having Joseph modify one of his 1.5 meter platinum power cords with the corresponding Neutrik plug.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Snoop65 » Tue Jul 19, 2016 11:37 am

Miko1971 wrote:Another component upgrade!

So why are we using I.E.C. Plugs? They suck.. I'm going to go with:

http://www.neutrik.com/en/audio/powerco ... onnectors/

And I'm having Joseph modify one of his 1.5 meter platinum power cords with the corresponding Neutrik plug.
Are neutrik rated for that kind of voltage?
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by fill35U » Tue Jul 19, 2016 2:45 pm

Snoop65 wrote:Are neutrik rated for that kind of voltage?
Those particular Neutrik connectors are rated for 250 VAC. Furthermore, they're rated for disconnection under full load (16/20 amps, that preamp should never draw anywhere near that current).

Add in locking and waterproof, and that's one serious connector! 8)
IMG_20160719_153940.jpg
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by radioeng2 » Tue Jul 19, 2016 5:46 pm

I would consider the Powercon connector superior in everyway to the IEC, except one. That's that only a few power cords can be ordered with a Powercon pre-installed.

Of course, changing any cord from an aftermarket IEC to a Powercon is pretty easy. If you're not planning on playing with lots of cords, then that's never really an issue.

For a DIY guys, one significant advantage to the powercon install is that it only requires a simple round hole instead of the nasty, difficult, oddball cutout required for an IEC.

Another large advantage to some is that the locking connection is significant when you care about not having an unplanned sudden outage from moving or stepping on a cord...IEC can't match that.

Nice, nice connectors!

Mark
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