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MHDT Havana DAC - Page 144

post #2146 of 2485
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimchee411 View Post

When you say there is no use trying Duelunds or VCaps without BG first that implies either that BG are better than them or BG somehow influences their performance to a great extent.  Can you really say that BG FK can compete with the likes of V-Cap CuTF in terms of performance?  I have a hard time believing that any electrolytic will provide improvements even close to CuTF.  $50+ is what you would pay for 2.2.uF Clarity MR, which is one of the very best film caps that smokes your run of the mill Solen or Bennic PP.  Is the gap between Elna and BG that wide?  Plus it's not just the per cap price that I am balking at, it's the number of caps too.  At today's prices replacing every electrolytic in the Havana can easily run you $1000 assuming you can find all of them.  Can changing one or two provide huge improvements?  If so, what are the key electrolytics to replace first?  I may start with one or two and see what happens.

 

I am adding a 0.22 C12 CuTF this week and will post photos of the Duelunds when I do that.

 

@kimchee411,


I think, the correct answer is ...   b). smile.gif

So, Robert refer to these: without BG on the electrolytic section, you don't touch the truly "high-end" sound, or BG influences their performance to a great extent! After I installed about a month ago two non-polars BG (the orange capacitors), I exclaimed: Wow! I couldn't believe that two electrolytic capacitors (placed where they belong) can influence so evident the sound: more refined texture on all frequencies, more rezolution & coherence, a more natural sound! I replaced Elna Silmic-I (47uf/25V) with BG N-series (47uf/50V), just like in the picture made ​​by Robert (two arrows marked with gray).

 

Can changing one or too provide huge improvements?

 

No, it's not a huge difference. Yet it is so important that must be done on this level of quality that we have achieved. I'm totally agree with what he said Robert some time ago: " I can not imagine the Havana sound without them!!" (refers to non-polar BG).

 

1000

 

The next in importance are those marked with purple arrows. The large capacitor near the R-Core should be replaced (mandatory) with BG FK series! I understand from Robert that it is a critical capacitor and it is important to be replaced with what is better.

I will try to change the remaining (smal) capacitors : Silmic-I of 47uF with 100uF BG F- series.

 

Ignat suggested to replace one of 47uF (marked on the photo) with higher value like 100uF.

 

400

 

This is Ignat post: "Frankly speaking it was firstly  suggested by someone in the previous posts /I have quoted him/ but the best result in my case was after I simply placed there one general purpose / mean very simple one/ 100 uF.100V in parallel - on the bottom part of the board. Now I have ordered an ELNA Silmic II for there. Be careful - in parallel the value will be the sum of them but the voltage is shared - therefore you need 100 V for the second one".

 

So I think that the key of electrolytic to be replaced first are those marked in the picture.


Edited by loserica - 12/16/12 at 1:11am
post #2147 of 2485

Thanks for pointing out the key positions.

 

I am already committed to the pot so I might as well go all-in!  So far I have purchased:

 

(8) F series 100uF/25V

(5) VK 47/160

(2) FK 470/16 (<-- Scored these babies at HifiCollective for 8.50 GBP each... last of their BG stock, period!  So proud of myself, haha.)

(1) K 100/50

(1) F 470/35

 

I am debating between either F 1000/25 or FK 1000/16, plus maybe adding 2 FK 100/25 and 2 N 100/50 to use in place of 4 of the 100/25 F series, but going with the FK/N option over the regular F series will cost me dearly -- like $200+ more.  Is it worth it?  Is FK that much better than F?  I know N is even better.  Also, what is the deal with K and VK?  Are they as good as FK?  I think K/FK/VK are all grouped together as "K Series" but what are the differences?

post #2148 of 2485

First try 1000uF16V FK and put at least two N-polar BGs in digital section as a second move, nobody can guarantee you better sound, you may not like it, BGs have a very long period of burning-in, for the first several days the sound  is hardly acceptable in some cases.

You are asking if it is worth to spend over $200 for BGs, you have to risk like you risked purchasing the Duelunds, :))

 

Today I got Vcaps CuTF 0.01uF and installed them as input caps removing the Russian silver micas. I've been listening for 3 hours now.

The sound is opening more with them, trebles are dimmed, (I hope it changes in time), timbre, precision of instruments and depth of image seem to be better.  I'm becoming a true believer of CuTF biggrin.gif.

 

If they stay longer in my DAC, it depends on the final sonic result after burning-in period. They are very promising...


Edited by robeeert1 - 12/19/12 at 8:54am
post #2149 of 2485

So are you saying that you think BG FK is probably worth the large premium over regular BG F for 1000/16 and BG N >> BG F in the digital section?  Yes, obviously there are no guarantees and ultimately I am taking a risk, but I am asking for your opinion so I am not jumping in the deep end completely blind.  I actually already bought BG F 1000/25 and for all 100/25 caps, plus BG VK for all 47/25.  Is it your opinion that N in the digital section and FK for the 1000 uF cap is a worthwhile upgrade from F and/or VK?  What would be the differences?

 

Here are the pics of the Duelunds.

 

 

700

One of the caps is pretty much touching the heatsink, but no signs of any problems so far.

 

 

700

Had to insert a new 47 + 100 uF pair with longer leads to push aside

 

700

*Just* fits in the case, and I didn't have to "squeeze" it in.

 

700

 

700

NOTE: I added 14 AWG teflon tubing over the bare copper leads.  Since they are running parallel I wanted to avoid the danger of contact between them and also provide some protection against oxidation.  These are radial leads and are too thick for the holes, so I used leftovers from CuTF to extend.

 

 

I took these as pics I installed the 0.22 300V CuTF.

 

 

700

 

700

 

I only listened 30 minutes or so after making the change, but CuTF definitely shows its magic here!  Obviously things will open up substantially through the long break-in period, but straight out of the box there is a palpable improvement in micro detail, air, clarity, and precision.  I was not sure how much difference the three 0.01uF CuTF made as I was going through a number of changes at the time, but this one is undoubtable, IMO.  Note that I was using Jupiter Vintage Tone here, which does have a... hmm, somewhat warm, creaminess to it.  It sounds indeed quite "vintage" -- hard to describe.  It would be great for an electric guitar amp, but bringing out the nuances in all the pieces of an orchestra is not its forte.  So if you have something like a Clarity MR the contrast might not as be as stark, but nevertheless the character of whatever cap you put there seems to come out at this position.

 

One more off-topic pic I took on my way to work yesterday...

 

 

700

 

The future of daily transportation?


Edited by kimchee411 - 12/19/12 at 10:58am
post #2150 of 2485

Your Havana looks great , FK are the highest grade of BGs, they are very rare these days. I didn't directly compare F with FK 1000uF in Havana, I only had 1000uf FK and  the improvement was great, BGs you can buy blind if the price is good even STD grade.

 

 

So are you saying that you think BG FK is probably worth the large premium over regular BG F for 1000/16 and BG N >> BG F in the digital section?

 

I think it is not worth it, but small differences can be heard between F, FK and N. (in digital section you better use N if possible).

 

How does your new .22 CuTF sound?

post #2151 of 2485

Thanks for your input.  I will hold off on the NX/FK and stick with plain F until I come across a good deal.  I was planning on buying new from Sonic Craft, but the price is high -- $35 per 100/25 FK, $60 for 100/50 N, $75 for 1000/16 FK.  The invoice for 2 + 2 + 1 of the aforementioned came out to $277.  Too painful at this point.

 

.22 CuTF is a big improvement in my opinion -- one of the most noticeable mods.  I would add more punchy and immediate sound to my previous comments.  Are you still using Jupiter Vintage Tone?  If so, I think you will be very happy with an investment in 0.22 300V CuTF.  It costs under $100 if buying more than one, so think if you have any other applications you can apply second one to, or get a group buy going with anyone else who's interested.  Actually Chris gave me the 2-4 qty price for a single because I was also buying a pair of .068 CuTF at the same time, so if you're thinking of adding different values elsewhere you may be able to get a discount on just one .22 as well.


Edited by kimchee411 - 12/19/12 at 8:34pm
post #2152 of 2485

I'm still using the Jupiter 0.22 "Vintage Tone", it was chosen out of 5 good caps at least, I like its "vintage tone". After reading your very possitive opinion on CuTF 0.22, there is nothing left but to get it somehow.


Edited by robeeert1 - 12/22/12 at 12:08pm
post #2153 of 2485
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimchee411 View Post

.22 CuTF is a big improvement in my opinion -- one of the most noticeable mods.  I would add more punchy and immediate sound to my previous comments.  Are you still using Jupiter Vintage Tone?  If so, I think you will be very happy with an investment in 0.22 300V CuTF.  It costs under $100 if buying more than one, so think if you have any other applications you can apply second one to, or get a group buy going with anyone else who's interested.  Actually Chris gave me the 2-4 qty price for a single because I was also buying a pair of .068 CuTF at the same time, so if you're thinking of adding different values elsewhere you may be able to get a discount on just one .22 as well.

 

Those capacitors (0,01 & 0,22 CuTF) tempted me! I think they will be an audiophile delight after burning-in. This weekend is reserved for me for Black Gate. smile.gif

post #2154 of 2485
Quote:
Originally Posted by loserica View Post

 

Those capacitors (0,01 & 0,22 CuTF) tempted me! I think they will be an audiophile delight after burning-in. This weekend is reserved for me for Black Gate. smile.gif

 

But remember ... no alcohol or your impressions won't count.

 

beerchug.gif

 

(just feckin' mate!)

 

LOL ...

 

.j

post #2155 of 2485
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimchee411 View Post

Thanks for pointing out the key positions. I am already committed to the pot so I might as well go all-in!  So far I have purchased:

(8) F series 100uF/25V (5) VK 47/160 (2) FK 470/16 (<-- Scored these babies at HifiCollective for 8.50 GBP each... last of their BG stock, period!  So proud of myself, haha.) (1) K 100/50 (1) F 470/35

 

I just changed the electrolytic capacitors, as saying: 10 x BG F 100uF/25V, 1 FK 2.200uF/35V, 2 x N series 47uF/50V (I have now four non-polars). I love BG since at the first time audition.

Russian Silver Mica were changed with V-Cap CuTF (0,01 uf/600V);

Elna Rod Starget were changed with Elna ROB Tonerex (3.300uF/25V);

 

The sound is much richer, more refined than Elna Silmic-I & Cerafine; Black Gate sounds more natural, with a higher attack, layering, separation and decay. The air between instruments is incredible.

The voice has become so coherent and so realistic with a very refined texture. By comparison, Elna Silmic-I has provided a muddy sound, expressionless. I think that Havana react positively to the change from 47uF to 100uF capacitance. I haven't tested individual's contribution, for ex. the 2.200uF of FK BG, but I think the rule is the same. Higher capacitance is better.

 

Black Gate and V-Cap CuTF to the input sounds absolutely gorgeous! smile_phones.gif

 

and some pictures:

 


Edited by loserica - 1/20/13 at 5:44am
post #2156 of 2485

biggrin.gif

post #2157 of 2485

1000

 

the perfect "gift" for Havana:

 

1000

 

These Black Gate (especially FK and N series) sounds really good. 

 

Wish You a Happy New Year!
 

post #2158 of 2485

I ordered two pieces of 0,01 uF CuTF for input and I am extremely curious how can improve Havana's sound yet. This is incredible, in what has turned this DAC with these components, especially CuTF & electrolytic Black Gate, japanese K-grade chips. I think that it is able to become a highly refined DAC! smile.gif
 

post #2159 of 2485

Vcap 0.01uF CuTF used as inputs in Havana compared to Russian silver mica play closer to your face and sound richer with incredible precision, extremely well separated instruments.

They have much better timbre, refinement and fun of listening. Silver Micas play flat in comparison. The articulation of CuTF is much better (stronger) and you'll hear a better dynamics.

It's one of the best upgrades. This is after 200h.

 

Joel, I'm sober this time, my impressions should count.biggrin.gif

 

This is it.

post #2160 of 2485

I've installed 1000/25 F, 8x 100/25 F, 2x 470/16 FK, 100/50 K, (4) 47/25 VK and they are surely a worthwhile upgrade!  I can see what you guys mean buy "not huge, but significant".  Definitely more open, clear, and direct, better attack, substantially more air, more micro detail, and more accurate timbre, especially percussion.  I was afraid they might sound thin but that is not the case.  The imaging retains 99% of the weight of the Elna Silmic II but much cleaner sounding.  Very musical and engaging!  The *K are new and not burned in so I will see how they evolve.  I would not pay current N series prices to fill the DAC, but what I paid for the F and *K caps I am very happy!  I may slowly add N caps here and there.   I can see how in some systems BG might be "analytical" or "hi-fi" sounding but for this warm, organic sounding DAC and in my system, which is all tube (6SN7 + 6550) with Tannoy Turnberry SE, the openness and clarity are much welcomed.

 

Loserica, congrats on the .01 CuTF's.  If you find a big improvement with those, I highly recommend getting the 0.22 to match.

 

This DAC is really starting to separate itself from all other DACs I've tried.  I believe the PS Audio PWD Mk II has nothing on it now.

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