Thursday, 24th April 2014.

Posted on Sunday, 16th May 2010 by Auw Jimmy

I plan to compare some capacitors from Jensen and one from Audio Note. The two from Jensen are Jensen Copper Foil Paper-in-Oil (Paper Tube) and Jensen Copper Foil Paper-in-Oil (Copper Tube). From Audio Note, I have Copper Foil Mylar-in-Oil (I believe this is Copper Tube also). We gonna have a serious battle later since those 3 caps are using different “recipe”. Both Jensen are Paper in Oil type, but with different enclosure. While the Audio Note has similarity with one of the Jensen with Copper Tube, but with Mylar instead of Paper. Audio Note claims the Mylar will provide better combination between sonic reproduction and the reliability.

Shall we prove the result? Later… We must wait after the burn-in session, probably in 100+ hours.

For the burn-in session, I sealed the Copper Tube caps with plastic. This is to prevent the oxidation of the copper tube (both Audio Note and Jensen Copper Tube oxides very fast in my environment due to high humidity, thanks to the purity of the material used also). I should prepare a transparent heatshrink for a good looking appearance, but no time to find one now. Perhaps you will ask why there are 2 pair of Jensen Paper Tube? One is my friend’s, to join the burn-in session before used on his system.

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Posted on Saturday, 24th April 2010 by Auw Jimmy

I just got my Oscilloscope, so I can play more fun with my DIY stuff. Ok, let’s start with some basic “game”, to find the inner and outer foil of a capacitor.

Basically, most of the capacitor, has what we call the inner foil and outer foil. Because, most of capacitor’s construction is based on the winding of paper or other conductor (silver, copper, gold, etc), so we will have a start position (the inner foil) and the finish position (the outer foil).

Although for the film type capacitor, it’s just fine to connect positive or negative to the inner or outer foil. But due to some reason, it’s preferable to connect the outer foil to negative side or to the “nearest” negative side (input side on coupling application).

Why? Because the outer foil will catch the outside interferences. So better if you can put this outer foil to the place nearest to ground or negative pole. So it could completely transfer those unwanted noise faster to the place where it should belong – the ground.

Some capacitor like Audio Note, Jensen, Auricap, Hovland, VCap, etc usually marks their capacitor with different color lead or print some black line to mark the negative side or input in the coupling application. Some other popular capacitor, like Mundorf, doesn’t seem to care about this, means no marks at all. So you got to check it by your own. Other capacitor like Duelund, which uses the Stacked Foil design, I believe doesn’t have any polarity (it’s not winded, but stacked).

How to do the test with Oscilloscope? Simple by testing both leads, and give some “interference” outside the capacitor (touch by hand or put some electric field interference e.g. high voltage cable, etc). The side with higher noise, means the outer foil.

Below are some picture from my own measurement on some capacitors.

Audio Note Oil Filled Mylar Capacitor. The black line marking on the capacitor’s body means the negative or input side. We can see the noise is quite big if we put the positive probe on the side which has black line marking.

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Posted on Tuesday, 23rd March 2010 by Auw Jimmy

After some crazy on the middle of the night decision, finally I decided to purchase the Duelund CAST Silver (CAST Ag) Capacitor. My friend bought my CAST Copper (CAST Cu), so this leaded me into a final crazy decision, to buy the CAST Silver.

The 1 uF and 630 VDC version of Duelund CAST Silver will cost you around US$ 900 each or around US$ 1800 pair. The 0.47 uF and 630 VDC version will cost about 5-7.5% difference, maybe different between retailers.

And don’t forget you have to wait around 2 months, not included shipping time, to get this at home – even if you have the money.

I was surprised to see that the outside appearance of this damned expensive CAST Silver was completely the same with my old CAST Copper. C’mon I spent over 2 times for this caps but with same appearance? Did you buy AMG with standard appearance? ;) At least I expected extra muffler, some body kits, new xenon head lamps, and some shinny grille.

cast-ag-front

The only different was, on the backside. You could side the sticker wrote 99.999% SILVER :)

cast-ag-back

I must wait several days or weeks, before I can judge this capacitor. But I do really anxious to hear how does it sound!!!

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Posted on Tuesday, 23rd March 2010 by Auw Jimmy

I acquired another varian of Jensen Film Caps, the Copper Tube. Basically, Jensen has 4 enclosure models, the cheap Aluminum Tube, then the Paper Tube, Copper Tube, and Ceramic Tube. So far, I have no interest (or budget) to try the Ceramic Tube, so I take the Copper Tube  (hope I made a good decision).

Inside, all of them should be the same. Just the enclosure is different. But I note a significant different in weight between the Aluminum Tube and the Paper or Copper Tube.

After several hours of break-in session, soon I will held a session between my favorite Paper Tube vs Copper Tube. This should be interesting, since Copper Tube is more expensive, and should provide an advantage – less interference, thanks to the Copper natural behavior.

But we must wait several days, or week, until they pass the break-in period.

jensen-copper-tube

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Posted on Tuesday, 23rd March 2010 by Auw Jimmy

At the end or journey where good electrolytic caps is getting more difficult to be acquired, I think I have to consider some alternatives. I love Black Gate and Elna (Cerafine and Silmic), but those are getting rare and expensive. So far, I can live with Jensen 4-pole electrolytic at my Tube HV power supply, but I’m thinking cheaper solution for general purpose usage.

For now, I think this Axial Electrolytic Capacitor from Jensen could fulfill my needs. It’s quite small. The 10.000uF and 16 VDC size is about the size of average thumb. I thought it would be big ;)

I think this gonna be cool for filament supply application.

jensen-elco

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Posted on Saturday, 12th December 2009 by Auw Jimmy

Just arrive, could be my last “considered high end” capacitor… I welcome you, Audio Note Copper Foil Mylar in Oil 0.47uF/630Volt.

I do love the beautiful elegant copper appearance from this capacitor. It just wonderful and good looking (maybe I’m too bored with “brown paper” from Jensen and Duelund). How does this thing sound? Will see, later, don’t expect me to test it soon, since quite busy these days.

audionote

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Posted on Sunday, 11th October 2009 by Auw Jimmy

Still remember my other “stupidity” here? After several hours of investigation, I finally decide that the Jensen Copper Foil Paper Tube is not a good capacitor for bypassing purpose. The music will lose most of its detail. YMMV, this is based on my investigation. Feel free if you have other opinion.

On the other side, I still have the “Classic” Jensen Copper Foil Aluminium Tube. Surprisingly, this capacitor works better on the High Voltage bypass section! The price of this capacitor is only 1/3 of the Paper Tube. I will give some more listening test, but so far I would stick with this “Classic” Jensen on the bypass section. This “Classic” capacitor gives warmth sensation without losing the details.

jensen-duelund

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Posted on Tuesday, 18th August 2009 by Auw Jimmy

After you read this, perhaps you would expect a better system to test the capacitors. So today, I visit a friend, and test the capacitors on his system. We can call him, Mr. X. Here is some brief of Mr. X audio system.

Below is the power amplifier. Powered with RS241, RE604,and 6J5. Rectifier is RGN 2504 (later we try Klangfilm RGN 4004). OT is Tango. Currently powered with Jensen Copper Foil Capacitor and old NOS Western Electric capacitors. FYI, RS241 is claimed by most audiophiles as best sounding tube amplifier (forget 300B or 2A3) – and it’s really proven, if you have chance to hear it. This is an ultimate Single Ended tube amplifier (if you really know what do RS241, RE604, and 6J5 really mean to an audiophile).

1_power

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Posted on Sunday, 16th August 2009 by Auw Jimmy

Just what I’ve promised before, finally today I do the most awaited Capacitors Battle. Actually the “real battle” will be done within next few days. Let’s say, this is as first impression to “hear” how good they would sound ;)

I use ELMA Switch (2 poles, 6 positions). Click here for details. The connection in details also explained there.

Here is the appearance of my jig. It’s an Aikido Pre-Amplifier. Powered with 6N1P tube in front connected to 6N6P tube as buffer stage. Rectifier is RGN 1054. The capacitor used as output coupling. Each channel has it’s own ELMA Switch. Please remember the selection is made in “perfect” mode (read here for details). Oh, I use empty CD holder as base for my ELMA ;)

1_bench

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Posted on Sunday, 26th July 2009 by Auw Jimmy

Still remember my capacitors break-in session? After passing a long 150 hours break-in time, today, I add another session with XLO Test Disc, track #9 “System Burn-In”. I repeat the track for around 3 hours.

Actually, I don’t recommend to use this kind of track to break-in an audio system. A normal break-in with various tracks is still preferred. That’s why, I only use this track after 150 hours normal break-in session with various tracks. I will add another 50-100 hours break-in session with various tracks to make sure all those capacitors are completely break-in. Especially for Teflon based VCap which usually loves longer break-in time.

FYI, my standard break-in session with various tracks will use standard pre/amplifier and completely fed to my DIY speakers. I don’t use dummy load on my amplifier or put the capacitor under PSU jig (some use PSU jig with dummy load to break in the capacitor).

Why I don’t do that? This is my own personal preference, YMMV.

First, if you use dummy load on the amplifier, I think, this is not a real world condition. Dummy load is a fix load, while your speaker is not a fix impedance across frequency spectrum (and will send various load to your amplifier).

Second, putting your capacitor under PSU jig (with dummy load) also will not put your capacitor under real world condition. Yes, capacitor will be loaded with AC signal (both in real amplifier or under PSU jig), but the frequency itself is different. Under PSU jig, you only load the capacitor with specific AC frequency (let’s say 50 Hz?) and specific AC load (let’s say 12 VAC?). While in the real world, capacitor will face different AC frequency and different AC load, depends on the signal loaded from the signal source.

Natural and real world condition are the best to break-in your system!

That’s why, the best break-in rig is under your own system – place where you will put the capacitor for the rest of its life ;)

xlo

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Posted on Saturday, 13th June 2009 by Auw Jimmy

Most of the time, money could buy anything – except time (and sometime, love ;) ). Like this Duelund CAST-PIO capacitor. You have the money, but you have to wait around 6-8 weeks (not including shipping time), before you could get it on your hand (even if you could pay more, it won’t arrive faster). Well, it happens on me. After a long time waiting for this, finally it arrives today – the current most praised and perhaps most expensive capacitor (I’m not saying it’s the best sound one – not yet), Duelund CAST-PIO Copper (Cu) capacitor. I bought the copper foil version. The most expensive (and not reasonable from my point of view) is the silver foil, but that one should be completely out of my imagination (and budget).

Handmade in Denmark? Some say you can’t rush the Danes and yes you can’t. Just wait 6-8 weeks before they will finish your order. This Duelund VSFCu-PIO/CAST is rated at 630VDC or 300VAC.

Suffix CAST means this is the highest grade compared to VSF version only (without CAST). According to Duelund, as below:

The Duelund CAST Capacitor is our no holds barred flagship capacitor.
The construction builds on the foundation of our Virtual Stack Foil design but does so with the addition of a proprietary WPIO dielectricum which necessitates several days of impregnation under high pressure.

Hope they are right, otherwise I shall regret for the rest of my life for buying this capacitors ;)

I plan to run some benchmarking from these capacitors below, to get the “King of Capacitor” title of my version. Please be noted that the best for my ears doesn’t have to be the best for your ears to. YMMV!

The contenders:

  • Duelund VSFCu-PIO/CAST1uF/630VDC/300VAC
  • Mundorf Silver/Gold/Oil1uF/1200VDC/800VAC
  • Jensen Copper Foil Paper Tube - 0.47uF/630VDC
  • VCap TFTF0.47uF/600VDC
  • Jensen Copper Foil - 0.47uF/630VDC

I remove Audio Note Capacitor from my list, since I hate its leakage issue. Good capacitor but less durable is simply out of the league (well, at least for me). I hear the new Oil Filled Mylar from Audio Note is better and safer. Will try if I have chance later.

It’s also interesting to see the battle between Jensen Copper Foil (old one) vs Jensen Copper Foil Paper Tube (latest generation). Just like Audio Note with its new Mylar Filled Oil, Jensen also update their premium capacitor line-up with its Paper Tube version. This Jensen Paper Tube version priced around 2.5 times more expensive compared to the standard Copper Foil.

Now, it’s break-in time!!!

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Posted on Sunday, 10th May 2009 by Auw Jimmy

I have received so many emails asking about how to do the mods. Why I do this? Why I do that? Etc… Ok, I will spend my lazy evening to use one good example and write a simple tutorial here. Just enjoy.

I look around my room to find a good and easy example to support this tutorial. Then, my eyes stunned to my old Simbadda CST z120 Dual-O speaker set. Well, it a small speaker, you can’t call it audiophile or even near it. I open the case and find that this small “thing” could become our perfect object.

You can get at your near computer retailer for very cheap price, less than US$10, I think. Feel free to find any other object. I pick this one simply because this is the only thing that I can find at my room (and suitable for this experiment).

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About Some Audio Parts for Sale !!!