Question: what is “sweet”? I can understand the clarity and definition is superior with the teflon capacitor, but I’m not quite “getting” what is superior with the better paper and oils. More 3d imaging? Better harmonic saturation?
The one capacitor that probably should have been included was the Jupiter condenser capacitor (..despite tempo electrics marginal rating). I wouldn’t be surprised if it was very similar to the paper tube Jensen copper while being about half the cost.
It’s a little bit difficult to define “sweet” by word (perhaps due to my limited vocab in English). I think we can also use “warm” or “mellow” (but not “dull”), which you can “taste” the lips, tongue, even singer’s breathe when singing. I think this refers to better harmonic saturation also. Like comparing a 300B tube vocal vs solid state vocal. Perhaps with this you can understand what do I mean by “sweet”.
We can’t make a general assumption about all Paper-In-oil Caps, since not all of them have similar sound. Let’s say Audio Note vs Jensen Paper-In-Oil. Even they both same Paper-In-Oil, but Jensen has better high frequency tones, while perhaps Audio Note has even “sweeter” vocal. More different if you try Jensen Paper Tube or Duelund.
I have tried Jupiter once… but this caps had gone away long ago (I sold it to my friend). Perhaps just not my cup of tea. If I could recall my memory correctly, the tones of this Jupiter is between Audio Note Copper and Jensen “classic” Copper. To Jensen Paper Tube? I can’t confirm, but I don’t think so.
And as my caveat has been written, the result my subject to the listener preference. YMMV.
In reference to your recent cap comparisons. You should give the Claritycap ESA a try as a coupling cap. It doesn’t compare to Duelund of course, but it has a nice warm tone to it and is very affordable. They’re also very compact in size. For a little more transparency and a little more high end tilt, the Claritycap MR is also a great coupling cap. Both are also just as impressive in speaker crossovers.
Thanks for your information. Too bad when I bought all caps from PCX, they didnt carry ClarityCap. Here in my country (Indonesia), hardly to find a good caps. So I need to buy overseas. From your description, I think the ESA could be similar to Jensen. But if I could recall my brain correctly, the MR also quite expensive.
dear jimmy, i hope you can help me with my problem. i own a konzert ks-8w subwoofer(this is the only sub i can afford)but unfortunately the toroidal transformer was burnt, i forgot the unit to turn off after listening a number of songs. it just stays on for almost one day. since in our place there was no support from konzert, so i opt to buy an ei type transformer since there is also no available toroidal transformer here. the rating of ei is 18v-0-18v, 3Amp. the rating of thr toroidal trans is 17.5v-0-17.5v, i don’t know the ampere rating but it has 220VA printed. now my problem comes in here, all relevant connection to the transformer was already done by soldering. but when i turn on the switch, the fuse would suddenly blow. i would replaced it again and still it would blow. what is supposed the problem? i hope you can find time answering me. i was really thankful i come across on your website. than you and god bless. eric
Hello Jimmy I’ve been reading your journal/articles/blog..? with great interest for some time. And now I’m looking to take advantage of your experience (mwahaha) *evil laugh*. Well, that is if you’ll allow it. I’m making psu for some nxV300 modules (aussieamplifiers) and aiming for 60-100k uf per channel, toroid +-500va (dual mono). I need advice on caps to use, they shouldn’t be ultra expensive, but they could be “a little expensive” if that give much improvement.
So, you have any good advice? (oh, and they should be about 100v 8-15k uf range)
Jimmy, can I get your comments on Mr. X’s RS241 amplifier? I’ve been looking to go for one, and I was interested in getting it made by tube lovers indonesia… pls email me at lindenpark at gmail dot com, thanks!!!
Jimmy (and anyone who can advice), i got a quite inappropriate question. As it is the only Indonesian site in the world I know, maybe you can give me a lead.
Dont’t you know some local site where I can buy some kilo’s of REAL PALM SAGO PEARLS? Maybe some on-line grossery or just discussion boards with English speaking people where I could order a bit of this.
Hopefully, it wasn’t too stupid
P.S. My Altec 5021 mod doing fine. Now building a tube hea-damp.
Hi Jimmy, i am one of your avid web site readers and i love to visit your web site. What do you think about the impamp? Do you have any idea for a small pre amp and recommendation for bookshelf speaker for it?
Never heard that one, so hardly to comment. But if some rumors on the diyaudio are correct, then this is a nice stuff.
No need preamp I believe, just with your source volume control (like PC Sound Card or iPod or CDP). Can try passive attenuator also.
For the speaker, I got no idea. Perhaps a DIY with 3″ like Tangband?
Thanks Jimmy for giving me hints of having a passive attenuator. I discovered a supplier http://luminousaudio.com/axiom/rca.html
Any comment? I like to drive the mini tube amp with a cd player source. It looks like they need to know system spec before install the resistor.
My imp amp tube input have -20db consumer to +4db pro level adjustable trimmers.
Quite an exhaustive plethora of information here. Very impressed by your passion for electronics on the inside of the musical boxes, which actually makes or break the music.
AA) Jim, i need your feelers on Elma &/or Shallco switches. I have picked a Promitheus Signature 2 box TVC version. I have gone ahead with & in past have had experience of hearing a Shallco but never and Elma.
Could it be possible to share some details, if you have been able to compare them both ever.
BB) What possibly could be added to a TVC passive-pre to make it sound more huge in all possible respects. Considering we is being used for now it C-core transformer, Elma switches, copper plates etc. (You can avoid this question if its vague to reply back)
I think Shallco should be higher grade compared to Elma. Or you can go with Seiden for the ultimate one.
I think the problem with most TVC is with the output. I would suggest to add at least an active buffer circuit, not just the passive TVC circuit itself.
Or at least, you must know exactly to what device (its impedance spec) which match your TVC, to make sure your TVC will perform well with the device connected to its output.
Sir Jimmy, as you can see, after my mods i still come here for some advice/doubts ! you’re my source for audio knowledge.
So this time is : I’m thinking about creating a party for m friend etc and i was wondering if i could mix my sound system with my brothers.
So a computer would be the source of audio, then a creative xmod(pre amp), then the Altec lansing(amp) , then i would like to attach both my speakers and my brothers both in the same “slot” of altec lansing subwoofer.
this maybe it isnt possible but i would like to understand why, or what kind of criteria is used to calculate this stuff etc.
Sir Jimmy, your idea is the perfect one , i wonder why i didnt thought about it…..anyway my inicial idea was to conect both speakears, mine(2) and my bro(2), to the alte lansing sub….i understand its against the rules, but i want to know why.
By connecting all the speaker to Altec sub, I assume your idea is to have 2 speakers connected to the left output from Altec sub, and 2 speakers connected to right output from Altec sub, right? So you will have 4 speakers + 1 sub.
Btw, your brother’s speaker is passive or active one?
If your brother’s speaker is active one, definitely you shouldn’t do this. You should follow my previous suggestion.
If your brother’s speaker is passive one, you must check the total impedance first (your brother speaker + your Altec satellite). By combining two speakers on one output (from left or right channel), you must sum the total impedance of both speakers connected and see if they are still in range with the Altec’s amplifier output specification. Otherwise, you may damage Altec’s amplifier inside. But I also not suggest this way, unless you know what you are doing.
I’m so glad to have found your website (from Google). Very informative and inspiring
Would you kindly tell a bit about your system? I just started learning about the wonderful world of DIY, my system consists of modded Marantz CD94 transport outputting I2S to my DAC, custom TDA1541a double crown tube DAC, JLTi EL34 (http://www.customanalogue.com/jlti_el34.htm) with Telefunken PCC88 and Philips brown base double D getter, a pair of Quad 21L2 (to be upgraded to horns setup, either Axiom 80 or Tannoy HPD 385) and a pair of Altecs 515C.
I’ll be visiting Indonesia next month and I’m so keen to know about DIY world there. Thank you.
Hi Pak William,
Currently, I’m “building” my system. Most of the time before, I only put them on the desk, never ending experimenting from CDP to speaker. But now I’m starting to settle them one by one. Lot of funds been spent without a real result sometime makes me feel guilty. It takes time to settle down all these things, just enjoy it.
You have a nice setup. Do you visit ID for vacation or … ?
That’s correct Pak Jimmy, for vacation, been living in down under for a while, it’ll be my first time coming back to my home country after several years, really miss my family and friends there…
About building the system, well aren’t we all the same (I don’t have such expertise as yours though), I just started playing around with components such as Jensen, Duelund, Black Gate, military PIO caps, etc etc… Very true that we have to spend some hard earned cash to experiment things, I’ve been lucky enough to meet some people in here which got vast experience and expertise in this wonderful hifi world. Basically, I’ve been learning from them and I’ve also found my reference system here so I don’t have to waste so much money experimenting stuff.
I’m hoping to learn more and I would really like to meet DIYers, hifi and music lovers back in Indonesia. So if you happen to know any hifi clubs in Jakarta, would you please let me know? It would be great if we can keep in touch and someday meet up as well.
Yes we have some local mailing-list for this audio and also have some local DIY gathering. You can join if you are interested, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are lucky enough, perhaps you can join our gathering (every 2-3 months usually).
Hi Jimmy – weird question out the blue from someone you never met. I been trying to find a local agent (I live in Cape Town) for Sanwa multimeters and failed – or even to find schematic on the Net. I see you use one… (you can see where this is going)…
Would you have a burst of shiny happy goodwill to open yours and tell me what the little pot is for the 0ohm adjust knob? I damaged mine, removed it to replace, then lost it ((
This is funny. Check out the pics. Duelunds resistor is nothing more than a 50 cent Faber Castel 5H pencil lead, which doesn’t even have much carbon in it. A 5B has more carbon. This is pure graphite and has no silver in it at all.
The pics can be found at the following website address. Apparently, this site won’t let me post a link so You’ll have to put in the www before it.
To be honest, I can see long time ago that they use graphite things inside the resistor (well everyone could see it inside the “bamboo” hole which covers the resistor). If you ever read Troel Gravesen website, he also ever mentions about the usage of such technique.
For this Duelund and Faber Castel things, I also have read around end of last year (or early this year). But I didn’t pay a lot of attention on it.
I have the standard and the CAST one. For the CAST one, as they “cast” it with something, so what’s inside probably not clear enough. But I assume they are the same materials, except additional casting process.
I bought them around $20 or less (on discount session I think, few years ago from PCX). For this amount, I think the cost is still reasonable. I’m not on Duelund side, but making the resistor (removing the wood from the Faber Castel without breaking the graphite is also not an easy job), then must connect it to the wire (which not solderable on the graphite side), make the bamboo cover, etc, probably won’t be easy if you do DIY. Even if I knew about this earlier, I prefer to spend $15-20 to buy the finished one, guarantee to work, and no risk. Sometime DIY also nice, but I’ve never DIY on component parts due to higher risk – yet.
Some other foil based resistor like S102 or the higher end model, TX2575, also quite pricey. I don’t think the raw material could be that expensive to.
You also can see thousand $$$ for a CD Player which based on CD-Pro2 which we know the cost is less than $1K or even less than 500$. Why don’t make by ourselves? Guido Tent from TentLabs also makes his DIY CD Player, but the price also not cheap. I think this is the “school fee” that we have to pay in order to respect their design and creation (and you just sit back, give your credit card number, and wait them to be delivered). If it sounds bad, definitely they will have bad reputation from the customer, sooner or later
So my opinion is, just take it or leave it. If you can make it better and cheaper, the market is wide open for you to do it Perhaps somebody got idea with 5B and more carbon? Then do comparison with Duelund one, publish on DIYAudio, AA, Audiogon, etc? Why not? But as in most business does, if you can make it better, I’m quite sure you will sell it even more expensive, right?
hello and good day to you jimmy, first of congrats you truly posses a talent very few have in this wonderfull art. Im new to the hobby and wish to make the best quality amp I possibly can not only because my tube amp recently passed away (effing light outs) but also since this will gount as my final proyect in college this semester lol so any help, schematics, pieces, parts, walkthroughs or simple support will be forever thanked. oh and a good question, can one build a 7.1 surround sound system based on single ended amps, preamps and power? with kind and warm regarths uour fan luis
hi Jimmy – I am an expat in JKT and one of my Altec Lansing speakers not working – I think it’s the jack /wiring… getting that all too familiar ‘buzz’ sound – can you recommend a shop where I can take it get to repaired… I tried to take it apart but can’t find any screws!! (alamak!) looks like it’s molded one piece… I am sure a repair shop can sort it…..any suggestions???
I’m thinking of tweaking my Audible Illusions preamp’s power supply caps. It uses 2 4700 uf/50V and a 10,000 uf/10V. Seems have to use electrolytics given the large capacitance, even though I’ve heard that file and foil caps are better. What do you think of the Mundorf MLytic? http://www.eltim.eu/data/mediablocks/MUNDORF%20MLytic%20catalog%20july11.pdf
Any suggestion would be much appreciated.
I dont think VCap is a cheap choice anyway?
Btw, it’s not easy to decide, as those three mostly in different league and I have no idea where you gonna put that and what is your preference in terms of the ‘music’ itself. Giving suggestion at this stage is merely a ‘guessing game’ and I dont think it’s a wise choice
Hi Jimmy, your blog is truly very inspiring and informative. I like your work. I like to seek your advice regarding on cdp mod. My cdp power caps are 4700uf 25v. But if I change to 10000uf 25v, does it help to improve the sound quality? I not intending to change the clock or some drastic mods. My cdp is Marantz CD6000ose KI. Thanks for the help.
As far as I know, MX5021 uses standard EI transformer, not Toroid. Also if I could recall my memory correctly, MX5021 needs two secondary windings with 2 different voltage. Maybe not easy to get toroid with that spec. Btw, it would be better if you post under MX5021 related entry, not on this “About” page
Hey Jimmy, I just recently got my brother’s MX5021. He told me he was having some problem with them and they don’t produce any sound. I anyways got them to check. I have no experience with speakers. I was just wondering if they can be repaired. The woofer is able to power up the control pod and the speakers but there is no sound. The satellites work fine when I connect them to some other player but they don’t work when connected to MX5021 woofer. I got the woofer checked with local electrician and he said all the internal wiring is fine. Any clue?
I believe your local electrician could have some skill checking electronics. So he would be the best guy you can find for good advise. Hard to “remotely” find the problem from here, but I suspect your amp chipset could have some problem.
I’m a British expat living and working here, I have a passion in Audio mostly Theatre Systems however am building a 2 channel rig. Was wandering where are you located? I am located in Bintaro Sector 3 and would like join your events?
It would be very nice if you can join our even which we call GUYUB AUDIO BINTARO. Jimmy Auw is my (our) best friend, he is also my teacher for tweaking. You are most welcome to join on the next even on Sept 29, 2012 at my home : Jl. Titihan 2 HG12A/14, Bintaro Sektor 9 (just in front of “SEKOLAH JEPANG”). My email : email@example.com.
Well, thank you Bung Jimmy !
Hi Pak Anto,
Ini maksudnya paket lengkap barang jadi kah? Kalo seperti itu umumnya bisa didapat di amplifier integrated. Mereknya ada banyak macam, harga juga bervariasi sekitar 2jutaan ke atas biasanya.
Saya senang sekali membaca cerita2 Anda tentang elektronik dan alat suara yg audiophile. Anda pinter sekali dengan semuanya, tingkat cerita di blog ini tinggi sekali. Saya sedikit cemburu dengan alat audio yg high-end Anda punya Mungkin nanti saya bisa belinya juga, tapi saya harus bekerja keras dulu (saya masih muda, 26 tahun). Kalau saya di Indonesia lagi (mampir dgn pamanku), boleh saya mendengar system hi-end Anda? Saya ingin tahu sekali!
Hi Pak Roiko,
System saya biasa2 saja. Tidak ada yang istimewa. Karena hobi saya otak atik, maka kadang2 system saya tidak bisa bunyi karena keseringan dioprek dan oprekannya belum selesai. Kalo Bapak tertarik di bidang audio dan DIY ini, saran saya join ke milis firstname.lastname@example.org dan email@example.com. Keduanya cukup banyak diisi oleh DIY berpengalaman dan sering sharing berbagai hasil karya membernya. Kadang kita kumpul2 setiap beberapa bulan sekali sekedar untuk mendengarkan hasil oprekan. Saya masih tidak ada apa2nya dibandingkan member di milis tersebut. Oh ya, milis tersebut juga isinya orang Indonesia semua.
I would like to, but unfortunately, I have no such experience (and time) to do so, at least at present time. Really sorry for that. I think you can build yourself and as usual, you can always ask me (if I can answer).
I work at a nuclear plant where we use the Sencore LC102 to test caps prior to installation. I have called the tech rep from the manufacturer but have received incomplete answers. Here are my questions. When checking leakage on a cap it gives you readings that flucuate between < 1 micro amp (bad) and then to 0000 (good). When do you really know if it is good or not? Same with dielectric absorbtion. It will read 1 or 2 and if you hold the button long enough it will read 0. It also flucates for ESR. Which reading is acceptable? If you can answer these questions it would be greatly appreciated.