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The "Lovely Cube" Headphone Amp (Lehmann Black Cube Linear Clone) - Page 92

post #1366 of 1387
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cidious View Post
 

 

Replaced out put resistors with RA resistors.. I know.. it all looks sexy now.. That's about everything that changed. The MBEM0414 resistors did a fine job before them. No noticeable difference.. But boy,  this is one sexy machine. Only looking for some black heatsinks for my opamps and I'm done.

Interesting reading!

 

What did you found was the difference between your Nippon LXZ 470uF caps vs Panasonic FR 470uF - what was the bad things  with  the FR´s?

 

And why did you choose the Elna Silmic II at only 100uF and not 470iuF? Was there any change in sound?

 

Also; What was the different between the OPA111 and OPA627? Why did you stay with OPA111?

post #1367 of 1387
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikaelmark View Post
 

Interesting reading!

 

What did you found was the difference between your Nippon LXZ 470uF caps vs Panasonic FR 470uF - what was the bad things  with  the FR´s?

 

And why did you choose the Elna Silmic II at only 100uF and not 470iuF? Was there any change in sound?

 

Also; What was the different between the OPA111 and OPA627? Why did you stay with OPA111?

 

Most of it you can find in this dedicated thread how I started it. http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/headphone-systems/285380-headamp-upgrading-lehmann-bcl-clone.html

 

I found the FR caps to be a little wider than LXZs but also a bit thinner. And at the time I was battling a harsh sibilance problem. That's why I've chosen the LXZs. But They got quite hot. I changed them for the 560uf 35V versions of the LXZs this made the sound softer, more round and with more 'oomph'. Analytic freaks should stay with the 470uf caps. I found the FMs to be nearly identical to the LXZs. Also the KMZ to be nearly identical to the FRs. This is not strange since they all have similar specs and size. What is the best cap depends on the rest of the parts and your preference. I tried to create a balance between components. 

 

I chose the 100uf because of size and because I was told 100uf was enough for this position. One guy even told me if I didn't like harsh treble I could even go as low as 47uf. Which I also tried in the form of 47uf 25V Elna Silmics IIs. I found him to be wrong. I found that bigger caps soften sound, not smaller caps. But this should be calculable for the frequencies. But for now I can only share my experience. 

 

The difference between the OPA627 and OPA111 is easy to describe. The OPA111 is more musical. The OPA627 is more analytical and a bit fast but less depth. The OPA111 is a bit warmer at the cost of some but not much detail.

 

There is also difference between letter combination at the end of the type number. The OPA111VMs are much clearer and exact as OPA111AMs. AMs are warmer and more comfortable to listen too with bright headphones but with dark headphones like the Mad Dogs I prefer the VMs or the OPA627BPs. There is not one good opamp! I have found similar opamps to be sounding good with different DACs and music. But also changing components in the device made me want to roll between opamps. 

 

Eventually I settled for the OPA111VM with a more smooth component selection.

 

I think the Nippon ASF 470uf 50V caps that are in now are a bit to warm and buttery for me after burn in. But I will keep them there for a while until I build my new DAC. Then I will also try 220uf 25V Nippon AWJ (highest grade Nippon capacitor for Audio, just as big as the Silmic II series). To give you an idea of its size. The AWJ 220uf 25V caps are just as BIG as the ASF 470uf 50V caps.. So I will give them a try after I've build a new DAC to go with it if the sound is still to buttery for me. If they don't work out I will try some 220uf Elna Silmic II caps. The Panasonic Pureisms were the most detailed but sounded to harsh for me. Didn't give them the time to run in. But the 470uf Pureisms I had before that didn't seem to get better after burn in. So I have lost my trust a bit in them.

post #1368 of 1387

I have now replaced the four KZ Muse with Panasonic EEUFR, and I must say I´m really pleased with them! Also replaced all Silmic !! cap´s in the Power supply  in my AK4399 DAC.

 

The sound is so engaging and warm but still very detailed.

 

But why is higher ripple better for cap´s in the Power stage? A friend at work told me ripple is usually not good and unwanted!?

post #1369 of 1387

nice improvements. 

 

I'm not totally sure about what specs are really good for PSU caps anymore. 

 

I've tested a lot of caps and eventually settled for LXZs which almost have the same specs as the Panasonic FM caps. Which by specs would be inferior to the FR and Nippon KMZ caps..

 

The thing is. When you look at the FM and LXZ caps they look even in design more expensive and are bigger then their brothers in the FR and KMZ series. I'm not totally sure which one to use in what kind of application. I am using panasonic FR 3300uf caps in my Aune T1 DAC and the are definitely better than the standard caps but It's also because the FR caps are smaller than the FM that I haven't tried the FM's or LXZ for these positions.

 

Well I will be building my ES9018 DAC this week and will start doing some test again.  

post #1370 of 1387

Cidious, good afternoon. Could you please give a link where purchased separately case? Board as you have acquired on aliexspress, and the case can not find anywhere(

post #1371 of 1387
Is this amplifier the same as the normal linear? A zero feedback amp?
post #1372 of 1387
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenyst View Post
 

Cidious, good afternoon. Could you please give a link where purchased separately case? Board as you have acquired on aliexspress, and the case can not find anywhere(

I have not aquired this board on Aliexpress but on Taobao.com. I am working and living in China. I am not familiar with Aliexpress. The taobao link is as follows:

 

https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z09.2.0.0.57LJJf&id=170113399&_u=i2esj2rk165a

 

The owner is a bit of a jerk but you can try to make him ship it internationally.

post #1373 of 1387
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the link Cidious!  That page has some good information about changes to six capacitors in the 2013 revision of the board.

post #1374 of 1387

It does! 

 

Like I said. This seller aint friendly or helping but he knows what he is doing and he sells good stuff. Though he is using cheaper parts here and there. Like ST regs and stuff. But I am VERY happy with his board. Resoldered quite some parts already and the board doesn't bend or break a bit. 

 

 

Btw I've replaced the The Wima FKP2 22nf caps with Wima Black Box caps of the same value on the opamp and input position. This made a slight improvement. The sound is just a tad cleaner.

 

After that I've tried some different electrolytes for the opamp positions. had the big Nippon 470uf 50V caps there. They were very forgiving and buttery but also muddified the sound. I decided to give the Nippon AWJ 220uf 25V caps a try (same size as Elna Silmic II and Muse KZ audio caps. These are the highest grade audio caps from Nippon). I found this already an improvement over the ASF caps. But I was still longing for a bit more openness. Well there I put in the 220uf Silmics II.. Immediately the sound got more detailed. Though they still have to run in and I know they will get even a bit better. I lost some bass with the silmics but I got a lot of natural flavored detail back for it.

 

For opamp position in this circuit:

  • Nippon ASF - Very VERY buttery and jazzy sound. Forgiving to every genre. I could almost (less detailed) replicate the same sound when I accidentally mistook a 470uf 35V Panasonic FM for a Silmic when swapping caps in the sockets.
  • Nippon AWJ - More detailed. Still buttery and great lower end extension. Still I was longing for a bit more openness (Didn't give em time to properly burn in, may have opened up a bit more)
  • Elna Silmic II - Even more detailed. Less bass but great open soundstage without being muddy. Very nice with acoustic snare strikes. A bit more harsh on female vocals but more natural.

 

I also have some Nichicon Muse KZ in the 220uf 25V lying around.. I am really happy with the Silmic II sound so I didn't try them. But for the sake of completing a full roundup of the major (reasonably priced) high-end audio grade caps, maybe I should try them too..

 

Also put in some ClarityCaps. Not sure about the improvement but I definitely like the overall sound! I can't say for sure what the ClarityCaps did because I hear the Silmics still changing from time to time. But the overall improvement is really great. Again.

 

Also got my OPA604APs in dual OPA604AP sounds WAY better than OPA2604AP. More on the spot. Less messy. Same good traits as OPA111VMs but a little less forward and more natural sounding.

 

After a while you forget you are listening to a recording. especially the high bitrate vinyl rips are REALLY doing an amazing job now. Like angels pooping liquid gold in my ears!

 


Edited by Cidious - 2/21/16 at 8:44am
post #1375 of 1387

Hey guys, how are things?

 

Recently got the chance to get myself a pair of active speakers and hooked it up to the amp. The preamp out is very useful as I don't have different volume controls for my headphones and speakers. One thing I probably need to mention though is the amp would get pretty hot with the preamp out. Nothing too hot, just very warm to the touch. I'm not too concerned about it.

post #1376 of 1387
Yeah the amp is getting quite hot. But it feels nice and comfy to me.. even the volume knob gets nice and warm. It's a delight to touch it to give myself another few liquid gold decibels..

Like angels pooping gold diarrhea in my ears..
Edited by Cidious - 2/29/16 at 7:08am
post #1377 of 1387

It does feel good. And my DAC being tube buffered doesn't help with the heat either. Ha ha ha.

 

I think I'm due for a DAC upgrade, but I need to upgrade my cartridge first.

post #1378 of 1387

I sold my LBCL recently and in hindsight it maybe wasn't the best decision. If there's currently anyone out there who considers selling his Lovely Cube send me a PM please.

 

Edit: divine developments brought me back the Lehmann :]


Edited by moriez - 4/4/16 at 1:46am
post #1379 of 1387
post #1380 of 1387

 

Just finished the build of the Zero Zone kit a couple of days ago.  Fun build.  Came with pretty much everything needed, but I had to scrounge around my parts bin for stand-offs for the power switch.  The build went without a hitch.  I never bothered with the NE5532 opamp that it came with.  Instead, I had a couple of 2132's lying around and chucked one in.  The original spec for the Lehmann was a 2134, which is actually a lower "audio" grade of the 2132.  DC offset was around 8 mV for both channels.  The amp pairs very well with my Beyerdynamic DT990 600Ohm.

 

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