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MHDT Havana DAC - Page 141

post #2101 of 2494

"What you will notice is that one day your system may sound fine while the next day (after it's one step back) it will not sound as good as it did even the day before. This is the stage where the capacitors can actually sound broken" : it has nothing to do with vcaps but I often note that for my myself, I mean curiously depending of the days or moment i listen to music I may not appreciate it the same as before. For example yesterday I found the sound incredible and this evening a bit less tasty. I spoke about that to a friend and he told me it can be explained by electric current which is not the same depending on hour, by tiredness, or even your mood. Is it the same for you too ?


Edited by mako44 - 10/17/12 at 5:01pm
post #2102 of 2494

loserica, how did you get the 0.1uF Auricap leads through the holes?  I am having a hell of a time because the stranded leads are too thick and give way from little pressure.

post #2103 of 2494

You can't put them like this you need to extend wires with thinner ones or enlarge holes with dremel

post #2104 of 2494

Thanks for clarifying -- I ended up just cutting off some strands (actually a lot) to make the total gauge smaller.  It was a pain in the ass and doesn't look so pretty but it got the job done.

 

In addition to the Auricaps I also switched out the 0.22 Clarity Cap ESA for Jupiter Vintage Tone and tried removing C5 again.  Initial impression is smoother (most apparent change), sweeter, more micro detail, and better micro dynamics, especially attack, and a bit snappier leading edge.  I still think I prefer C5 in as I think I lost some body like the last time I removed it, but I'll let the new parts burn in some before I make a call on that.

 

Added vintage Japanese K grade I got from Robert yesterday and that provided a somewhat subtle yet significant improvement that brought more distinct timbres, a touch more micro detail, and more effortless sense of PRaT -- overall more musicality, which is always a big +.

post #2105 of 2494

Mink70, One way to tone down glare and brightness is to use ferrite cores on interconnect and PS wires. Another way is to use x or y type caps across the ac line. I agree with another that the WE 396a has poor dynamics. Mass violins sound perhaps the best on this tube but it is otherwise  thin sounding. The Jan 5670 is a very ballanced tube. I am using the JG5670 and believe it is superior to the Jan but I havn't listened to them side by side yet. The Raytheon 5670 Black plate is brighter than the JG5670 and the sylvania is an other thin and allitle bright sounding tube. The 1950's Tungsol 2c51 is considered to be warm and full sounding by some. You say it's brighter than the GE Jan5670??  I have a pair of WE396a (not JW), russian 63n . I would like to hear theTungsols if they are the black plate d getter type. Let me know if you want to  maybe share loaning of tubes... Tweaker

post #2106 of 2494

Hi tweaker—

 

Yeah, I'd be game. 

 

By Jan GE 5670 you mean the stock tube, right? And what's a JG5670? 

 

I found that while the stock tube is warmer, the Western JW 2C51 I have sounds bigger and juicier, if you know what I mean, with better dynamics and color and bass. But it also sounds edgier, with a more strident treble. I also have a GE 5670 that has similar plates to the stock tube, but and extra mica element and a square getter instead of a round one. Testing it now, along with the Tung-Sol.

 

Will post what I discover.

 

Alex

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tweaker829 View Post

Mink70, One way to tone down glare and brightness is to use ferrite cores on interconnect and PS wires. Another way is to use x or y type caps across the ac line. I agree with another that the WE 396a has poor dynamics. Mass violins sound perhaps the best on this tube but it is otherwise  thin sounding. The Jan 5670 is a very ballanced tube. I am using the JG5670 and believe it is superior to the Jan but I havn't listened to them side by side yet. The Raytheon 5670 Black plate is brighter than the JG5670 and the sylvania is an other thin and allitle bright sounding tube. The 1950's Tungsol 2c51 is considered to be warm and full sounding by some. You say it's brighter than the GE Jan5670??  I have a pair of WE396a (not JW), russian 63n . I would like to hear theTungsols if they are the black plate d getter type. Let me know if you want to  maybe share loaning of tubes... Tweaker

post #2107 of 2494
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimchee411 View Post

 

Also, I tried removing C5 and while it did liven things up a bit, images lost an appreciable amount of depth and weight so I put it back.  I am using this in a speaker set up so it is more important to me than through cans.  It does tell me that the 0.1uF polys make a noticeable difference so I may consider the Auricap XO after everything else is done and settled in.

 

I was back to C5 this evening, in fact the images lose some depth and body when the cap is out. Finally the cap backs to its place.

post #2108 of 2494
Quote:
Originally Posted by robeeert1 View Post

I was back to C5 this evening, in fact the images lose some depth and body when the cap is out. Finally the cap backs to its place.

 

Yeah, it didn't take me long to know that something was definitely missing and put back in the C5.  I wish there was a way to reap the advantages of when it is in and out.  I think the only solution is to try different caps at that position.  And it gets me thinking that every cap has a noticeable impact on the sound, so on my next Havana I may just put CuTF in place of ALL poly caps!

 

Anybody try Duelund VSF in this DAC or in general?  I am interested in how they compare to CuTF.

post #2109 of 2494
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimchee411 View Post

 

Yeah, it didn't take me long to know that something was definitely missing and put back in the C5.  I wish there was a way to reap the advantages of when it is in and out.  I think the only solution is to try different caps at that position.  And it gets me thinking that every cap has a noticeable impact on the sound, so on my next Havana I may just put CuTF in place of ALL poly caps!

 

Anybody try Duelund VSF in this DAC or in general?  I am interested in how they compare to CuTF.

 

I tried many caps on that position, the result was always unsatisfactory, that's why I decided to remove it, but it was at the beginning, almost no upgraded parts in the DAC.

Do you really  think CuTF in every place should increase the quality to maximum? I do not think so, but try and let us know.

 

If you want to run extreme upgrade do not use Elna but look for Black Gate caps, FK, F, N.

post #2110 of 2494

Next weekend I'm gonna replace silver mica with CuTF .01uF (the input and output caps are in the circuit, their quality is important)

 

I think there is no need for further foil caps replacement with CuTF, but who knows. wink.gif

post #2111 of 2494
Quote:
Originally Posted by robeeert1 View Post

 

I tried many caps on that position, the result was always unsatisfactory, that's why I decided to remove it, but it was at the beginning, almost no upgraded parts in the DAC.

Do you really  think CuTF in every place should increase the quality to maximum? I do not think so, but try and let us know.

 

If you want to run extreme upgrade do not use Elna but look for Black Gate caps, FK, F, N.

 

I am beginning to think every cap makes a difference.  You would think C5 is insignificant because it's not in the signal path, right?  And yet there is a stark contrast from when it is in place and when it is removed.  Everybody here who mods this thing hears it.  And if I'm going to put in an upgraded cap, I can't think of a better one than CuTF.  I don't recognize any deficiencies in its sound, meaning too much CuTF would sound too bright or too soft or too clinical, but I don't know, maybe there is such a thing as too much CuTF.  I have read many good things about Duelund VSF, and one direct comparison with CuTF stating that it plays in the same league, but offers a lighter, more delicate touch to the vivid presentation of the VCap, which could be a good attribute to add to my DAC at this point.  What other caps are on the same level?

 

The price of some higher value Black Gates these days can approach that of teflon VCaps and considering the number of electrolytics there are the overall cost would probably equal or exceed that of replacing all the other foil caps with CuTF.  Some values can also be hard to find and age of the stock is a concern.  Is the step from Elna to BG as big as, say, Jupiter HT to CuTF?  That is, is the value for money as great?  Do electrolytics generally influence the sound more than foil caps in this design or in general?  I will have to try replacing some Elnas with BG NX to see for myself.

 

BTW this the great thing about this thread.  That somebody tries something new, learns from it, and shares with the community.  Then others try and offer their experiences so we all gain a better understanding or what works and what doesn't.  We can theorize all we want about what would happen (and there are far too many pages wasted in the bickering of this type on audio boards), but the proof is in the pudding.  So, big thanks to all who have contributed, especially Robert.  I hope I can help out myself because I feel I have gained a tremendous amount from the input of others.  At this point I have little to offer in terms of specifics because I just kind of dove in and threw everything at my DAC at once, but as time passes and I tinker with this and that I will be sure to share my impressions.


Edited by kimchee411 - 10/21/12 at 7:05pm
post #2112 of 2494
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimchee411 View Post


 

The price of some higher value Black Gates these days can approach that of teflon VCaps and considering the number of electrolytics there are the overall cost would probably equal or exceed that of replacing all the other foil caps with CuTF.  Some values can also be hard to find and age of the stock is a concern.  Is the step from Elna to BG as big as, say, Jupiter HT to CuTF?  That is, is the value for money as great?  Do electrolytics generally influence the sound more than foil caps in this design or in general?  I will have to try replacing some Elnas with BG NX to see for myself.

 

 

 

Electrolitic caps influence the sound I'd say more than foils. BG lower values like we have in Havana are not very expensive, I replaced 16pcs of Nichicons with BG, the most expensive were the red ones N-series,

the total cost of a set of BG FK,F,N for Havana is around $350-$400.

You are asking me if they are better than Elna silmic II. Yes, BGs are better caps, the differences are not huge but significant.

It's like with chips, Malaysian K are very good sounding but Japanese K are better, right?

 

Remember every cap makes a difference, so you have to set up the sound characteristic due to your presonal preferences.

post #2113 of 2494

I put C5 back to see and that's very true I hear a much better depth and wider image. Also a bit more accuracy (better position of instruments in space). But it's especially true on classical music, music's more involved and enjoyable, more realistic. However, on my system and in its current stage (no rcore, no cutf..), on the other music styles I tried (pop, rock, jazz, electro...) this difference is less marked, at least what you loose on the other side in openess (air, details, shades...) makes me prefer with C5, even if there's a bit less body. So at the moment I'd say I prefer with C5 to listen to classical music because depth and the wide image improves this music but with C5 the rest of the time.

 

I'll try again when my dac will be more opened. I must say that the cap I put back on C5 is a stock one because of lack of room in the dac so result must be different with a better cap.

post #2114 of 2494
Quote:
Originally Posted by mako44 View Post

I put C5 back to see and that's very true I hear a much better depth and wider image. Also a bit more accuracy (better position of instruments in space). But it's especially true on classical music, music's more involved and enjoyable, more realistic.

 

...and better texture! smile.gif

post #2115 of 2494

If anybody is planning to get the 0.47 CuTF output coupling caps let me know.  I have an extra pair I am saving for a second Havana but I think I want to try Duelund CAST Cu instead if somebody will take these V-Caps off my hands.  I can offer a small but meaningful discount off retail.

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