CF Amp Mods

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OconeeOrange
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by OconeeOrange » Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:16 pm

Don't have the expertise to join this conversation but enjoy reading.
In my CarverFest amps, I have the long plate gold pin JJ tubes.
A set of the best JJ for this amp is about $100.

I don't have NOS ears/$$. These tubes make the amps sound good. Bob tested some for me in the amp on his machines. He said they were great but too expensive for many. He had a big box of of 25cent tubes (most of which did not work).

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Magnaryder
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Wed Nov 13, 2013 5:46 pm

Bill the JJs I was referring to were 47uf500v caps in the power supply. We haven't begun to discuss power tubes yet. Beemers has Mullard 7189s in his, although they were running, I wish they have been running a speaker I knew. He had a nice set of Epicures that sounded great on the Bob 305s. My plan was to get the TADs Frenchguy is running in his CF amp and roll caps and resistors. $450 for a matched quad of some NOS tube great as they may be seems extreme to me and my pocketbook.

Anyone else beside Beemers running a NOS tube?

Al, talk to me about the TADs. Am I right about them?

Jesse Venables.... I know I can depend on you to chime in here.

ray
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Wed Nov 13, 2013 5:49 pm

Going out to the garage to solder in the 47uf JJ.

Report later...if I hear any difference.

ray
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Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:38 pm

Well, I can taste my fillings. Mark reminded me this evening to discharge the power supply caps. I 'thought' I did. I didn't. Got buzzed, cap read 208 volts...after it hit me. Oh well, live(maybe) and learn(not so much). I installed the 47uf JJ cap and the DH Labs silver over copper wire Jesse recommended from the output trannies to the speaker terminals. Took it in the house and fired it up. I have a dead channel. WTF!!!! Back out to the garage. Reflowed the wires I just installed. Back inside. I still have a channel out. WTF!!! Hey, check the input from the Sunfire. I switched the cables. Dead channel moved. Dumbass...I pulled an IC out of the back of the pre. Plugged it all back together and fired it up.

On a side note, I had been having an issue with little grunge from the Sunfire Tube Pre. It was noticeable at CarverFest(TheFirebug pointed it out to me) but it would go in and out. Mark and Mike Beam suggested I pinch the tube socket pins a little with a small set of needle nose pliers. I've done that several times and finally got the grunge sorted out.

The last mods I'll make before we start talking tubes will be installing the 47K and 470K resistors and replacing the little yellow caps with some polystyrenes and installing Rhodium RCAs and those nice binding posts.

The first track on Mark's '08 Carverfest disc is Boz Scaggs' Desire. It has a pretty decent bass line. I'm listening to the amp through a set of Alesis Monitor Ones I got from Harry. This combination does everything well and nothing to terrible. Tonal balance is good, mids are silky smooth, what highs I can hear are delicate and airy.

The music rises from a blacker than black background. Mark was right. That last cap in the power supply has a noticeable impact.

This has been alot of fun. And the payoff is huge.

ray
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Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

"Racing is life, the rest of the time you're just sitting around."-Steve McQueen

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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:35 am

Tonight I changed these electrolytics in my other CF amp. I installed the JJ 47uf/500V, 2 F&T 100uf/100V, 220uf/200V, 2 100pf and 150pf caps I got in Pittsburgh from Beemers. As this amp runs the same tube compliment as the other amp I might be able to see if this change is a noticeable step on the path to CF amp nirvana.

I also installed a front panel power switch.

I had left the 47uf JJ at home so it didn't get soldered in until I got home. Hey, I managed not to get shocked today. Things are looking up!

While making the changes I noticed something I'd overlooked. I can improve the wiring from the RCAs to the tube input and from the tube output to the output transformers and from the trannies to the binding posts with the DH Labs silver over 7 9s copper wire.

I'm getting alot of input from my family on the changes. They're all telling me what they're hearing. It's very kewl!

The next step will be the .1uf Obbligattos after some listening/comparison.

Replace the RCAs and binding posts with Rhodium pieces.

I think I'll change these parts in this order following the Obbligattos:

Mills 2.2K 5 watt ressistors

47K and 470K PRPs or Shinkoh Tantalums haven't decided which. The Tants are quite large and space is at a premium where they are located.

Rewire the audio path with DH Labs wire.

Now for the expensive part.....Roll tubes.

Listened/ing to Alanna Miles, Anita Baker, Manhattan Transfer, Sophie B Hawkins, Diann Shurr and Count Basie, Queensreiche, Dokken and Larry Fast/Synergy.

ray
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by mbskeam » Fri Nov 15, 2013 3:32 pm

=D> =D> =D> :D :D :D
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Chauss » Fri Nov 15, 2013 5:23 pm

Awesome Ray!
I am using new re-issue Mullard's in mine - they sound great!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/4x-NEW-Mullard- ... 43adef07b4
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Zoot Horn » Fri Nov 15, 2013 5:54 pm

Ray,, you are certainly setting the bar up,,eh? =D>

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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Fri Nov 15, 2013 6:47 pm

Zoot Horn wrote:Ray,, you are certainly setting the bar up,,eh? =D>
You set the bar really high George. I'm just humbly following in your footsteps. Noticing you used Russian PIOs(or were they Teflons I don't remember) and Clarity caps in your amps I didn't want mine to sound different since I plan to use them bridged. I was worried I'd mess something up that could not be fixed. Really though, the only things that might be problematic would be the transformers. I did find I soldered one of the little 100uf caps was in the circuit backward(polarity switched) and it didn't nuke. Surprising considering what I'd heard about electrolytics, but it's been in there 2 years without issues I didn't create.

Let's talk tubes. What do y'all say?

Mullards, Telefunkins, TAD Cryos, NOS? Oldass tubes?

Tell what you think and why. Thanks

ray
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Zoot Horn » Fri Nov 15, 2013 7:11 pm

If you can find them,,, try some older RCA(some labeled Silvertone) blackplates-- of course there ain't nothin' wrong with Tele's

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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Fri Nov 15, 2013 7:50 pm

"e="Zoot Horn"]If you can find them,,, try some older RCA(some labeled Silvertone) blackplates-- of course there ain't nothin' wrong with Tele's[/quote]

I was digging through some tubes my neighbor gave me this evening from some old stereo his FIL gave him. I now have 5 vintage HAMMOND grey plate 6bq5s supposedly from the late 50s or early 60s. Can anyone help me identify them for sure? All I can make out is Hammond in silver lettering around the middle of the tube, a halo getter, grey plates and a white six sided plate below the getter. I have them in now....I'll let you know how they sound later.

ray

btw, Mike Beam built me 2 fixtures for placing one OPT per amp on it's side to prevent field interference between OPTs. I don't know if that counts as a mod, but MANY thanks to Mike for the kindness,

Listening to Blow by Blow by Jeff Beck on the new to me Ariston TT. Sounds pretty damn good. I picked up the Jeff Beck, 2 Eagles LPs, The Babys and Sunburst Finish by Be Bop Deluxe, all for $9. Be Bop is next in rotation."
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by frenchguy » Fri Nov 15, 2013 9:47 pm

Ray, yes Im using the TAD tubes in mine, thats what mark suggested I try 2 years ago & I still really like them, they seem to be getting even better with more hours on them :)
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Chauss » Fri Nov 15, 2013 10:17 pm

Use the Hammonds- they are Mullards! =D> =D> =D> You will not be disappointed!
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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Magnaryder » Fri Nov 15, 2013 11:17 pm

Chauss...Mullards eh? How 'bout that? We'll see how they sound in a couple of days, but they sound really good now. \:D/ Thanks for the info!

Al, thanks for the reply. I've been looking. I may have to find another set(6) of Hammonds. Having a couple of spares might be nice.

The other night I 'thought' I had dialed out a very annoying 60hz hum when I played LPs. Tonight it was back. The Ariston uses a 12V wall wort to power its motor. The Linn tonearm has Cardas wiring and the RCA connection is outside of the TT. While I was fooling with the TT I moved the wall wort close to the RCA box. Closer to the box the louder the hum became. Further away the less noise. I turned it up to full volume with the Linn arm at rest on it's stand and moved the wall wort and the Cardas RCA box around until I couldn't hear it anymore.

I have several 12volt laptop power supplies and I'm going to try them to see if they're better shielded.

Those $1 Eagles LPs sound awfully good.

ray
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Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.

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Re: CF Amp Mods

Post by Zoot Horn » Sat Nov 16, 2013 8:22 am

EI's if you can find em-- I have one NOS,,lookng for 7 more.

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