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 » Fri Jul 22, 2016 6:39 pm

very true, i also am going to have the plates on my SoundLabs fitted with these same plugs. I see the I.E.C. connectors are getting loose trying to support the thick power cables now. so having a locking high powered connection makes more sense on these back plates then the pre. But, i wanted to try it and i'm using an Audiohorizon Platinum power cable so it's easy for Joseph to mod the plug to accept the PowerCon. It's a bit of gilding the lily no doubt. But this project has turned into the most expensive ( not including my SL's ) mod/upgrade I've done.

On the update front:

Bad news, The new relay style attenuator did not pass J.C's seal of approval. He said it degraded the sound and he ain't installing it. So, that bad boy is getting packed up and shipped back to Poland. We are reverting back to the non remote one ( the red one in the pics ) with the zfoils and Rex upgrade. other then that..nothing else....

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

Post by Miko1971 » Wed Jul 27, 2016 5:04 pm

Picture of "almost completed" rear panel upgrade. I'm going to go ahead and just have JC replace the rest of the line level RCA's because I have OC(WBT)D.... :)
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by MRHP » Thu Jul 28, 2016 6:57 am

What type rca's are those, are they rhodium plated? Everything looking real nice btw!
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Magnaryder » Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:43 am

MRHP wrote:What type rca's are those, are they rhodium plated? Everything looking real nice btw!
I think Miko mentioned they were WBTs but of what variety I'm uncertain. I'm willing to bet they're top o' the food chain tho :D Nice work on that VTCC. I'd like to put an ear on that one day.

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

Post by Snoop65 » Thu Jul 28, 2016 10:45 am

Magnaryder wrote:
MRHP wrote:What type rca's are those, are they rhodium plated? Everything looking real nice btw!
I think Miko mentioned they were WBTs but of what variety I'm uncertain. I'm willing to bet they're top o' the food chain tho :D Nice work on that VTCC. I'd like to put an ear on that one day.

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

Post by Miko1971 » Thu Jul 28, 2016 8:16 pm

Hello,
Yes..WBT-0210Ag chassis mount. My plan is to run Big Twist Interconnects, 20 gauge Fine Silver Wire in an Oversized PTFE Teflon Jacket, Terminated with WBT-0102Ag Pure Silver NextGen Locking RCA Plugs.

http://www.tempoelectric.com/cables.htm

http://www.wbtusa.com/pages/0102ags.html

http://www.wbtusa.com/pages/0210agsn.html

I'm not sure if anyone has read this paper from the Boston audio society written by Bill Kenny.

http://www.laventure.net/tourist/Wire_a ... _Facts.pdf

He makes a compelling case for the use of the same metal in signal transfer. Please give it a read..
So the internal wiring is JC's Hi Q silver, so silver sockets and silver wire with silver plugs..

Guess I won't be inviting any Warewolves over to listen now :(

Oh.. We are going to replace all the electrolytic caps on the PCB's with Mundorf Mcap Silver oil ones.. If we can make 'em fit the board! Or JC has custom ones he said are similar to Solen.

And yes! I plan on attending CF maybe next year and bringing my stuff too! Working on having a set of Speakers made instead of trying to haul my SL's down there as those bad boys are way too large to screw around with. Speaking of my SL's... I have a set of 8 Giant Threaded Stud Glider's from Herbie's Audio Lab coming in the mail. Should be a nice little tweak.

http://herbiesaudiolab.net/spkrfeet.htm#mobile

To help couple them and make adjusting them easier as they are very heavy.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Fri Jul 29, 2016 1:44 am

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

Post by Miko1971 » Fri Jul 29, 2016 5:49 pm

Put the kids to bed and have a couple handi wipes ready!!!

I am taking you to the land of Audio Erotica!!!

Since the whole Khozmo thing kinda went south I decided to go big or go home.

May I present the Pièce de résistance!!

The Glasshouse Ladder stereo 23 stepped attenuator!

We are pleased to announced we have created probably the best ladder step attenuator money can buy. Combining the best sounding resistors, the 0.4W Charcroft Z-foils and the beautifully crafted Seiden 4 pole 23 pole switch. Constructed using Mundorf 3.8% silver/gold solder with 1mm HGC pure silver as the earth ring. Truly astounding sound stage, clarity and detailing.

"Mama always told me not to look into the eyes of the sun
But mama, that's where the fun is".......

What more can I say?
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Tue Aug 02, 2016 4:14 am

Doing some reaserch I came across the "Super regulator"'designed by the late Allen Wright of Vacuum State. The company is still around and they offer it as a kit. Talking with Joseph he thought that it would be a good idea to incorporate it into our build. What it'll do is provide precision regulation and voltage to the tube rectifier/regulator. That should reduce the heat and add another level of noise reduction. It'll sit in the space the phono board would have occupied.

http://www.vacuumstate.com/index.dna?rubrik=24

The last idea I have before wrapping this up and completing it will be to add a copper plate to cover the main PCB with holes cut for the tubes and lights. That should give it a very finished and beautiful look when you peer into the tube window. Much better then looking at the main board.

Oh.. I also forgot to add that since we have 2 rather large chunks of Lundahl iron in it, I am also adding a Audio Magic Pulse Gen ZX Premier. That is a active EMI/RFI device.

I think that covers any additional work planned.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Wed Aug 10, 2016 9:35 pm

Ahh shit... the bleeding edge of modifications. The Glasshouse attenuator didn't work out. It's really too big even with an extension rod and bracket. I'm replacing that with a Elma compact 47 step SMD.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 4:23 pm

Damn!! I'm making J.C. earn his money.. After a whole lot of dinking around, the Elma Attenuator is STILL 5mm too large!!

The solution is to remove the ribbon cable and replace with Hi-Q wire point to point.

I don't like ribbon cable anyway, this ain't a damn computer....
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:30 pm

Wow! J.C. is on it tonight! Live update! He's figured out how to get that Attenuator in place and now he'll be re wiring by removing the ribbon cable and going old school point to point. What a frikin pain in the ass! He had to strip the pcb to get at all this crapola. Word to the wise, fitting a aftermarket volume control on these vacuum tube pre's ain't easy..

You can also see how bad that cap went now that the pcb is all Nakey and stuffs...
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Fri Aug 26, 2016 7:25 pm

More progress!

Neutrik inlet and accessory inlet block off plate installed.

And the Vacuum State Super Regulator is assembled and ready to be installed.
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Re: The Mother of all Sunfire Vacuum Tube Pre Amp Upgrades

Post by Miko1971 » Mon Aug 29, 2016 5:04 am

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

Post by Miko1971 » Fri Sep 02, 2016 6:46 am

Rear panel is finished ( just have to paint the block off plate )
And the wiring for the vacuum tube rectifier is complete.
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