Author Topic: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)  (Read 14426 times)

Offline kajak12

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #20 on: December 24, 2011, 01:43:11 AM »
Yepp they are gonna replace my copper winded Audionote interstages.

I am not in the situation to test both the Jensen and Audionote in my  "Dac-6" so I cannot judge.
Although it would not be the first time that another make tops the Audionote results ( in my configuration).

I do not give a sh-t about brandnames so openminded all the way..... ;)
i hope eye candy will follow
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline Erik van Voorst

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #21 on: December 24, 2011, 08:51:09 PM »

i hope eye candy will follow
[/quote]

At your service  :D

Offline Erik van Voorst

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #22 on: December 24, 2011, 09:02:43 PM »
Yesterday together with a friend (Peter from accoustic dimension audioshop) we did the overhaul.
The copper audionote caps (6 in total) and the two silver Audionote interstage trannies type 420 (the new 404s) with HIB core material.

It all required a bit more thinking out of the box since the copper guys were substantially "bigger" so there came 1 on the topside and 5 on the bottomside of the print (there was still space left  ;D).

So after 30 years of nice service the paper in oil had to be replaced with the copper version.
The silver trannies did not have a mounting screw  :o...so I took a cork block and fixed it on the bottom of the Dac 6.

Normally you would never ever see me do 2 mods at once but this involves so much work (in my situation) everything has to be taken apart so I broke my own rule !!!  :D

After quite a few hours finally listening.... 8)

I can only give a first impression and that is a positive one...nowhere sharp edges (I hate that) more micro info, more shine and "reality"
so it promises a lot....and it better since it costs a lot... ;)
« Last Edit: December 24, 2011, 09:05:02 PM by Erik van Voorst »

Offline Erik van Voorst

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #23 on: December 24, 2011, 09:03:30 PM »
 :)

Offline kajak12

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #24 on: December 25, 2011, 12:13:53 AM »
as all ways your work is first class erik  ;D
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #25 on: December 25, 2011, 12:46:49 AM »
as all ways your work is first class erik  ;D
Yes Erik outshines the masses of hifi wannerbee's with superb implementation which not only demonstrates skill but also sympathy towards achieving a musical outcome.  I feel we can all draw on some of his ideas for inspiration but managing to relise the finishes will not be easy.  Did some one say 'flemo'?
V
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline Erik van Voorst

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #26 on: December 25, 2011, 05:25:41 AM »
Thanks guys  8)

You should know that I hardly place any posts on fora anymore since I cannot handle the nay-sayers like I use to...simply too much fun in my hobby to let it spoil by technokids with no music passion.

However I find here the same stupid guys who can still loose sleep over a new transformer.... ;D

Please check the cd of Stan Getz out "Live Montmartre " it is the one I tested my silver trafos with, fck audiophile cd's and get to the real music....it will tell you in an instant if you are there yet..... ;)

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #27 on: December 25, 2011, 12:50:02 PM »
Hi Erik
 :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D ;) ;) ;)
Yes na sayers indeed, they can measure the inside diameter of a rats dorsal tube but when it comes to conveying emotion and drama they are left with the ruler flat frequency plots which sound as dead as they look.  Give me scale, give me drama, give me music as close to live as possible and keep your lab coats for making cheese and wine to enjoy it with, oh yes and don't forget those select few we call good friends, nothing like sharing the love with chosen ones.

You are always welcome posting here Erik, we all enjoy longingly devouring your posts and images of your fine products.  Silver transformers indeed, ohh arrrgh, pass the tissues.  I see audiokits email shows they have been very busy this last year so no surprise you had to wait a while.  We are used to that living in WA (Western Australia) but this translates directly to wait a-while, which is what we have to do for most things except spreading the love of music amongst friends.

Happy Christmas to you from the other side of the appreicative world.

I am looking forward to getting to know the forum possy better this coming year if work allows as there are some fine people here.
V ;D
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline kajak12

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #28 on: December 25, 2011, 01:35:36 PM »


Please check the cd of Stan Getz out "Live Montmartre " it is the one I tested my silver trafos with, fck audiophile cd's and get to the real music....it will tell you in an instant if you are there yet..... ;)
Where can we get this Live Montmartre " cd  from i am ready to order
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline Jehuty

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #29 on: December 25, 2011, 04:10:50 PM »
Please check the cd of Stan Getz out "Live Montmartre " it is the one I tested my silver trafos with, fck audiophile cd's and get to the real music....it will tell you in an instant if you are there yet..... ;)

Hear, hear!

+2 on kajak12's question, where can I order a copy of the CD?

Thanks,
William
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline Erik van Voorst

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Offline zenelectro

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #31 on: December 25, 2011, 11:40:23 PM »
Hi Erik
 :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D ;) ;) ;)
Yes na sayers indeed, they can measure the inside diameter of a rats dorsal tube but when it comes to conveying emotion and drama they are left with the ruler flat frequency plots which sound as dead as they look.  Give me scale, give me drama, give me music as close to live as possible and keep your lab coats for making cheese and wine to enjoy it with, oh yes and don't forget those select few we call good friends, nothing like sharing the love with chosen ones.


Hey Vita

I love it when you wax lyrical about this stuff :)

WRT flat freq response and measurements, I think Peter Q may well have been wearing his lab coat when he designed those puppies Erik bought!  :)

There's a lot of engineering and theory in transformer design, even AN silver's - read this:

http://www.audionote.co.uk/articles/art_transformer_design.shtml 

I know this too well, I used to work at a transformer company called Alkay Transformers. Yes, these are often used in the KillerDAC. The company was started by a clever
German man, Lothar Keidel. He taught me lots about transformer design and at one stage, after I had left, wanted me to come back and manage the company (which I
declined).

A bit of transformer background:

All the early 'golden era' recordings, that have these attributes you describe, were recorded through transformers. This is how recording gear was made back then and most
of it was what they referred to as a 600 ohm system.

The engineers were acutely aware of the quality of their electronics and  transformers for 1 reason: What went in, didn't come out the other end the same.

They strove to minimize this given that the signal often passed through many transformers. This was in the early days of audio engineering - before they were used as
-intentional- coloration devices. You could say they were used as -unintentional- coloration devices. :)

As such all of the original manufacturers such as Western Electric, UTC, etc, used engineering principles and measurements to quantify the performance of their traffos.

Today we have dozens hi end and pro audio transformer manufacturers, including super esoteric such as AN. They range from very accurate / VG measured performance
to pretty colored. On the transparent end would be Jensen, followed by say Cinemag, Lundahl, then we move to Sowter etc etc. There are some other interesting additions such as Stephens & Billington (transformer vol control) and even Costas Metaxas has done some good work on them.

Jensen's don't change the signal much at all. When it comes to "emotion" or "drama" (I call it "vibe") they don't add much. Sometimes this is a good thing, often it's not - it
depends. For digital a bit of transformer vibe can be good. For analog too much may be not so. If my memory serves me, Brian (plasmaguy) was using a Jensen for his MC step up, and I believe he had tried quite a few. In that case sounds like transparent was the ticket.

For signal coupling I quite like Cinemag, very transparent, but with a bit of vibe and it's all good. As a comparison, I have tried a few Lundahls and they are in a similar
territory transparency wise but the character is not as nice. 

WRT traffos and DAC's I tried a few as I-V converters years ago and they definitely ad an analog type warmth to the sound which was nice but I ended up taking them out.
To me they took away more than they added, without the transformer there was just more there.

WRT "ruler flat frequency response" you mention, most all signal traffos measure very flat, especially low impedance stuff used for DAC I-V's. There's bugger all in it.
It's more the distortion profile and the winding coupling that adds the character you are after. Ref audionote link above.

I have a Sabre DAC here running into a Lundahl, I think in this case the traffo is a good thing, given the sound of the Sabre. I'll eventually toss the Lundahl and go for something else. I do tend to make some initial choices based on data sheets. If you know how to interpret them they can shorten the 'to try list' and in the long run can save
money.

There's a lot of transformers out there and I cant afford to try them all. But if you've got the bucks, (and the time) try whatever you can and see what fits.

Z

Offline zenelectro

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #32 on: December 26, 2011, 12:16:26 AM »
Yepp they are gonna replace my copper winded Audionote interstages.

I am not in the situation to test both the Jensen and Audionote in my  "Dac-6" so I cannot judge.
Although it would not be the first time that another make tops the Audionote results ( in my configuration).

I do not give a sh-t about brandnames so openminded all the way..... ;)

Hi Erik

I have not directly compared the AN traffos either but I believe Peter put a huge amount of design work into them.

WRT brand names, yes Jensen is a very transparent uncolored transformer. But it's not always what you want (see other post)

Speaking of transformers in general, had very challenging repair the other day. Ref pic, had to re terminate these hair
thickness winding wires in an Ampex 351 vintage tube pre amp output transformer.

Z


Offline Erik van Voorst

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #33 on: December 26, 2011, 01:24:00 AM »
 8) ...a steady hand and a lot of love should do that trick.... 8)

Offline Erik van Voorst

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #34 on: December 26, 2011, 01:40:48 AM »
I am quite a few listening hours further and I must say these cans open up.
Compared to the standard copper Audionote ones they show more color but no coloration
(only we understand such a statement :D).

The extra micro info becomes also quite addicted....but to be honest I find the overall improvement hard to convey in words....it is definely there.... 8)

My conclusion is...money well spent...but that is hugely subjective. :D

Offline zenelectro

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Re: Audio Note DAC-6 Matriarch (a DIY project)
« Reply #35 on: December 26, 2011, 11:03:22 AM »
8) ...a steady hand and a lot of love should do that trick.... 8)

Yeah that pretty much sums it up Erik.

Required 2 stages of 'intermediate joining wire' which was then stabilised with glue, then the whole lot closed up.

The wire circled was so fine and old, when I tinned it to join, it just disappeared into the soldering iron tip.

Glad to get that one out of the way :)