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Can changing a DAC's power supply damage it?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

I was thinking of upgrading my rdacs power supply with a maplins one.... I was wondering if this could possibly damage it or cause any problems?

 

Thanks

post #2 of 16

If the new power supply has the exact same voltage and can supply an equal or preferably larger amount of mA it should not do any damage. Do check whether the polarity of the new PSU is the same! There is no standard for external power supplies: sometimes the pin is + and the sleeve is -, sometimes it's the other way around.

post #3 of 16

As far as I know the Maplin power supplies are mostly SMPS type. If you are getting one of those then I very much doubt that you would enjoy any benefits.

Far better is to look at aftermarket linear power supplies that are offered by the likes of Mark Grant Cables or Mains Cables R US if you are in the UK. But they don't come cheap.
 

post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 

As it seems the maplin ones are now the switch mode power supplies... And a linear power supply is £100+ ....

 

Does anyone know where I could find a linear 6v power supply which would fit the rdac which is not so expensive?

post #5 of 16

Yup - use a 6V lead acid battery from Maplins - about 20UKP - and a shortish cable. A 10 ampere hour or so battery is fine and will last for 24 hours or more continuous use. It works fine and arguably better than those expensive over priced after market PSUs ;)

 

Of course you will need to charge it from time to time.....

 

John Dawson (Arcam)
 

post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 

How would i set this up? Because it would be a pain to keep charging the battery every 12 hours or whatever... Is there any way I could set it up so it automatically charged or soemthing?

post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

What specification battery is best? There are various ones 6v 1.3ah, 4ah, 7ah, 10ah, 12ah etc.

 

Also how does the battery connect to the DAC?

 

I could buy a battery and then a plug in charger which will charge it then trickle charge it permanantly? And then how to connect the battery to the DAC?

 

Also is this definately going to improve the performance of the DAC? More so than a linear power supply even?

post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Dawson View Post

Yup - use a 6V lead acid battery from Maplins - about 20UKP - and a shortish cable. A 10 ampere hour or so battery is fine and will last for 24 hours or more continuous use. It works fine and arguably better than those expensive over priced after market PSUs ;)

 

Of course you will need to charge it from time to time.....

 

John Dawson (Arcam)
 

Hi John,

 

I'd like to hear your thoughts on replacing/upgrading the rDAC power supply too.

My Arcam switching supply died, so I'm using a 6V wall-wart transformer.

 

Cheers

post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 

I returned the rdac due to other problems in the end...

 

Hmmm it was a good smooth, clear, detailed sound but also the bass was not very good... Maybe it was a poor synergy with the rest of my system I dont know but it was boomy and generally poor sounding bass... Other than that it was very good though. Does yours have boomy bass etc?

post #10 of 16
I don't have rdac, but I guess the boomy bass is coming from hd650. I always dissapointed with hd650 bass, it's slow, slopy, lose.
I sell my GS Solo because of this, onlu to realize later that the culprit is the headphone.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 

But the bass on the Dacmagic, whilst not perfect... Is a LOT better than through the rdac...

 

Also through my speakers the rdac bass sounded bad whereas through the dacmagic it is good.

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicholars View Post

What specification battery is best? There are various ones 6v 1.3ah, 4ah, 7ah, 10ah, 12ah etc.

 

Also how does the battery connect to the DAC?

 

I could buy a battery and then a plug in charger which will charge it then trickle charge it permanantly? And then how to connect the battery to the DAC?

 

Also is this definately going to improve the performance of the DAC? More so than a linear power supply even?

 

A 12 Ahr battery will last longer than a 1.3 Ahr battery.

It will also cost more!

What you really want to do is ONLY charge the battery when you are NOT using it with the rDAC.

The rDAC should only be powered by the battery, not the battery and charger.

Basically this will keep the charger noise out of the rDAC.

 

A battery is a quieter source of power than either a linear or switch mode power supply.

So, in theory, the rDAC should sound better when powered from a battery.

 

DON'T FORGET TO PUT A SMALL VALUE FUSE BETWEEN THE BATTERY AND THE RDAC.


Edited by Chris J - 6/4/12 at 5:27pm
post #13 of 16

is it a stupid idea to power the rDAC with say a usb power bank and a usb => dc lead cable ??

the powerbanks are 5v and the rDAC needs 6V....

 

cheers,

post #14 of 16

Yes. It will not damage it, unless you feed it the wrong polarity (+/- reversed), but I doubt you will accomplish anything useful IF it works.

post #15 of 16

thanks for the reply! 

 

read quite a few feedbacks on the improvement provided by a better PSU but I think it is foolish to spend half the price of the rDAC in the PSU (e.g. teddy pardo or the botw).

 

And then read this post by Rob Watts:

 

"Battery power has enormous advantages over mains operation, principally very low noise, both in band and more importantly RF noise - much lower than SMPS or linear PSU. RF noise is a hobby horse of mine, as it creates noise floor modulation when random RF noise inter-modulates with the audio signal in the analog electronics. The brain is extremely sensitive to noise floor modulation, as it interferes with it's ability to separate sounds out into individual entities with placement data."
 
Which kind of re-triggered my interest. I think a powerbank is a reasonable amount to be spent to test if there are any improvements.
 
Your skepticism was related to the 5v of the powerbank or is it a more general one?
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