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The "Lovely Cube" Headphone Amp (Lehmann Black Cube Linear Clone) - Page 9

post #121 of 1193

aspenx, are there any differences in the sound signature in stock form compared to your previous lovely cube that's using the Elna caps? Which is better, Elna or Nichicon?

 

Btw, what camera are you using? Nice color.

post #122 of 1193
Quote:
Originally Posted by myscoobysti View Post

aspenx, are there any differences in the sound signature in stock form compared to your previous lovely cube that's using the Elna caps? Which is better, Elna or Nichicon?

 

Btw, what camera are you using? Nice color.


There are 3 grades to the Nichicon KG if I'm not wrong. Their specs are slightly different. Seller claims that the Elna and the Nichicon he uses are of the same grade, but I believe the Nichicon could possibly be better.

 

Hmm, it's hard to compare cos I don't have my first Lovely Cube anymore. My memory isn't very good. I haven't heard it stock with the Nichicon either because as I mentioned, I swapped out the Elna RE3 capacitors. Even with the OPA2134, it sounds verrrry good. I don't know if decoupling capacitors can have such big effects on the sound, but I think mine sounds more effortless and airy now. The OPA627 with the 3K ohm Class A bias adapter the seller also sells is great. I didn't think I'd like it this much. It's very engaging yet pretty detailed and non-fatiguing.

 

Thanks. The pics were taken with Nikon D700 + Nikkor 60mm f/2.8 AF-D Micro + on-camera SB600 with cheapo cap diffuser.
 

post #123 of 1193

Stephen saw this post and replied my email. Aspenx, I guess you ordered the finished board only. I OTOH paid for the fully assembled version. Oh well. smily_headphones1.gif
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by aspenx View Post

I ordered it a little more than a week back.

 

Shipping from HK to here (Singapore) by registered mail has never exceeded more than 6 days for me. This particular package was at the local post office despatch centre already on Monday but I only got it on Wednesday. You might want to check with your local post office if you're having any unusual delays. If the seller has shipped it out, you should have received a tracking number from him.

post #124 of 1193
Quote:
Originally Posted by willaw View Post

Stephen saw this post and replied my email. Aspenx, I guess you ordered the finished board only. I OTOH paid for the fully assembled version. Oh well. smily_headphones1.gif
 


 


Oops. I should have been clearer. My bad.

post #125 of 1193
Quote:
Originally Posted by aspenx View Post




There are 3 grades to the Nichicon KG if I'm not wrong. Their specs are slightly different. Seller claims that the Elna and the Nichicon he uses are of the same grade, but I believe the Nichicon could possibly be better.

 

Hmm, it's hard to compare cos I don't have my first Lovely Cube anymore. My memory isn't very good. I haven't heard it stock with the Nichicon either because as I mentioned, I swapped out the Elna RE3 capacitors. Even with the OPA2134, it sounds verrrry good. I don't know if decoupling capacitors can have such big effects on the sound, but I think mine sounds more effortless and airy now. The OPA627 with the 3K ohm Class A bias adapter the seller also sells is great. I didn't think I'd like it this much. It's very engaging yet pretty detailed and non-fatiguing.

 

Thanks. The pics were taken with Nikon D700 + Nikkor 60mm f/2.8 AF-D Micro + on-camera SB600 with cheapo cap diffuser.
 


Thanks for your reply. Does your Lovely Cube get hot running Class A like some of the Matrix M-Stage? I'm wondering if it'll affect the durability of the Nichicon caps since they are rated at 85C instead of Elna at 105C. They are very close to those heatsinks!

 

One more question, if you don't mind (I'm a total noob), any particular reason for choosing Panasonic and Rubycon instead of other brands?

post #126 of 1193


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by myscoobysti View Post

Thanks for your reply. Does your Lovely Cube get hot running Class A like some of the Matrix M-Stage? I'm wondering if it'll affect the durability of the Nichicon caps since they are rated at 85C instead of Elna at 105C. They are very close to those heatsinks

 

Yes, it does get pretty warm. The big reservoir caps are nothing to worry about though. I can place a finger on it for as long as I want. It wouldn't even hit 50C.

 

One more question, if you don't mind (I'm a total noob), any particular reason for choosing Panasonic and Rubycon instead of other brands?

 

It's not the brand but the specs, dimensions and availability (price too) that drove my choices. For specs:

 

                                ESR    Ripple

RE3 470uF 35V         0.494    664

FM 470uF 35V           0.019    2180

ZLH 680uF 35V          0.018    2250

 

Low ESR and high ripple are what you want for your PSU decoupling. These caps all measure 10mm for their diameters and the FM and ZLH are just taller (and still fit) so they are possible alternatives among a slew of other caps out there that also fit the bill. There actually isn't much to choose from if you know your budget and application. FMs are the best readily available Panasonic electrolytics for moderately-sized PSU sections and they are affordable too. The Rubycon caps were just for fun.


 

post #127 of 1193

aspenx, thanks for the lesson on caps. I appreciate very much and glad to know that those Nichicon caps don't get that hot. 

post #128 of 1193

With regards to the question re: Heat and the Class A mod

 

Although the opamps being modded do get hot, the major source of heat in there is the buffer stage which is unchanged.

 

Overall impact of the class A mod in terms of heat is negligible.

 

However - this amp does run warm (at least in standard M-Stage form) - but in Lovelycube form it would depend on the case design and construction - if you put it in a case with air circulation (ie one with slots/holes) this would reduce heat build up (and potentially allow a heatsink on the opamp and biasing deeper into class A - sonic benefits unknown)

 

Or a closed case with larger surface area, (maybe a case designed for heatsinking)...

 

In any case the pure class A buffer with discrete transistors is going to be generating more heat than the opamps.

post #129 of 1193

i used to have a pure discrete class A amp on loan.

it does a few things better than the lovely cube stock if properly heated up. if running cold it have very compressed dynamics, very harsh sounds, grainy, etc.. you name it.

but heated up, it is simply marvelous. when i say heated up, the casing is very hot to the touch, easily said u can make a half cooked egg if u leave it on the case. now that is pure class A.

i have a time i was listening, and i noticed the sound gradually becoming dull.. it really a wtf kinda moment.. until i realized it was raining that day..

neways my lovely cube with lm49820na biased with 10.2kohm resistor actually sounded quite close to the discrete class A, minus some refinement, but without the need to heat them up.

i wouldnt mind the heat actually, caps are made to withstand 300degree soldering iron heat anyways. im more concerned on the opamp limitation on heat.

both amps are able to drive my cans close to what yamamoto ha-02 is capable (side by side comparison). yammy have an unbelievable background blackness on it that pops miniscule detail like bright star on the black skies tho. but for what i paid, lovely cube linear is really a damn good amp.

 

i also seems to just receive a package from hk, would be from stephen. I have to say, he always replies prompt, and ship fast.. it reach my shore the next day, and stuck in customs for a week.. -_-. 

post #130 of 1193

I ordered last night. 

 

It introduced the amplifier with Blog. (Japanese text only)

http://tiiduka.blogspot.com/2010/10/lovely-cube-headamp-2.html

post #131 of 1193
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaEMoNteNTAcLe View Post

i have a time i was listening, and i noticed the sound gradually becoming dull.. it really a wtf kinda moment.. until i realized it was raining that day..

neways my lovely cube with lm49820na biased with 10.2kohm resistor actually sounded quite close to the discrete class A, minus some refinement, but without the need to heat them up.

 

Wah. Too extreme lah. haha. And you're biasing with such a small bias current? Have you tried other values with the LM49820na and why did you settle with 10.2k?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by T.IIZUKA View Post

I ordered last night. 

 

It introduced the amplifier with Blog. (Japanese text only)

http://tiiduka.blogspot.com/2010/10/lovely-cube-headamp-2.html


>部品代だけでも結構な金額になるんじゃないの?

 

同感ですw

あぁ、部品と言えばOPAMPはTIではなくて、BBのOPA2134ですよ。

post #132 of 1193

well that's the only resistor i have atm..

will try the new package from stephen this weekend. im hopin 627 and more bias will do some magic.. biggrin.gif

for pure class A, its' not extreme, rather, it's typical. All class A performs only after warm-up. it happens on even the expensive lavry da-11 which also uses class A for its amp, this was tested at my friends house. the circuit needs some steady current running for it to work well, and it seems heat is one of the indication, as well as byproduct of it.

 

tonikaku sore wa omoshiroi desu ga,

ore wa zenzen yomenai yo. kanji ga shiranakute... xD

post #133 of 1193
Quote:
Originally Posted by aspenx View Post
>部品代だけでも結構な金額になるんじゃないの?

 

同感ですw

あぁ、部品と言えばOPAMPはTIではなくて、BBのOPA2134ですよ。

 

BB=TI's Brand :-)
 

TI acquisitions BB in 2000.  ($7.6 billion)

 

post #134 of 1193

I'm sure you'll like the OPA627 and the bias adapters. I'm really liking mine with the 3k adapters from Stephen. So much so that I haven't tried my LT1028s (and also because I think I toasted the adapter with bad soldering). I wanted to write my impressions on the OPA627 and the adapters but I'm stumped. What more is there to say but "gooooooooooooooood"? I'm definitely listening to my music more than worrying about gear now anyways.

 

So, how do you suggest we listen to Class A gear on rainy days? There are no "cold" days here in Singapore nor in M'sia so it's a good thing? I still can't believe heat is an "indication" of performance really. >< I shorted the transistors on my previous LC once and the heat (and smell!) didn't do any good at all....... haha

 

The M-Stage has its voltage regulators and transistors all mounted vertically. Maybe doing that might be able to ease my worries with using the amp with Class A biasing. I keep my amplifier switched on almost 24 hours a day by the way...


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by T.IIZUKA View Post

BB=TI's Brand :-)
 

TI acquisitions BB in 2000.  ($7.6 billion)


Oops. I made yet another boo-boo. If it means anything, the opamp is marked with "BB". I also read that those marked as "BB" are more laidback in sound than the TI versions. Is this true?


Edited by aspenx - 10/15/10 at 4:00am
post #135 of 1193

I own a lot of OPAMP. It looks forward to Lovely Cube's reaching and doing OPAMP Rolling. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by aspenx View Post

 

Oops. I made yet another boo-boo. If it means anything, the opamp is marked with "BB". I also read that those marked as "BB" are more laidback in sound than the TI versions. Is this true?

 

TI OPA2134

http://focus.ti.com/docs/prod/folders/print/opa2134.html
 

It is a difference of the difference extent of Lot. 

 

 

It seems that industrial OPA2132 is a base. 
It varies in price from OPA2134. 

 

OPA2132

http://focus.ti.com/docs/prod/folders/print/opa2132.html


Edited by T.IIZUKA - 10/15/10 at 4:29am
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