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HE-500, LCD2, D5000, DT770, SR80, on a speaker amp (Emotiva mini-X A-100) Project - Page 244

post #3646 of 3652
Quote:
Originally Posted by KeithEmo View Post
 

Hi Keith:

 

Does the fact  that this is a "flex" amp make it a more versatile (or able) option as a headphone amp than the Mini-x A100?

 

Just wondering...

post #3647 of 3652

I would say yes, but it depends on your needs....

 

The class A/B amplifier and power supply circuitry is basically the same for the Mini-X and the Flex Amp, so you shouldn't expect them to sound any different, and the power output is about the same.

 

The Flex Amp uses a stepped digitally controlled analog volume control, which has near perfect channel tracking all the way down (the Mini-X uses an analog potentiometer which, like all pots, doesn't track perfectly down very low). The volume control on the Flex Amp has a lot of steps (I think it's 128 steps - the 8 LEDs just show you an approximation of where it's set).

 

The Flex Amp has two inputs, which you can switch between, and a loop output

(which may or may not matter to you depending on how you have it hooked up).

It also has auto input switching and auto power switching (which probably don't matter for a headphone amp).

 

The Flex Amp has a nice little IR remote control - included (and you can control it using a universal remote like a Pronto).

post #3648 of 3652

Flex looks cool I guess. Still missing the front headphone jack. Def wont be selling my modded A-100 mini-X for one though thats for sure!

post #3649 of 3652
Quote:
Originally Posted by KeithEmo View Post
 

I would say yes, but it depends on your needs....

 

The class A/B amplifier and power supply circuitry is basically the same for the Mini-X and the Flex Amp, so you shouldn't expect them to sound any different, and the power output is about the same.

 

The Flex Amp uses a stepped digitally controlled analog volume control, which has near perfect channel tracking all the way down (the Mini-X uses an analog potentiometer which, like all pots, doesn't track perfectly down very low). The volume control on the Flex Amp has a lot of steps (I think it's 128 steps - the 8 LEDs just show you an approximation of where it's set).

 

The Flex Amp has two inputs, which you can switch between, and a loop output

(which may or may not matter to you depending on how you have it hooked up).

It also has auto input switching and auto power switching (which probably don't matter for a headphone amp).

 

The Flex Amp has a nice little IR remote control - included (and you can control it using a universal remote like a Pronto).

Thanks for explaining the differences.  I already use the mini-x as a headphone amp, and it works well. I also have two Sherbourn LDS amps (the 2-150B and 2-75B) that are both deployable in the same way, so I could say I'm okay on this front, until Emo comes up with a dedicated headphone amp.  The remote control on the Flex is what I find most tempting, but I am wondering whether Emo's control freak might be a cheaper alternative for now, for controlling headphone volumes, without being too cumbersome.

post #3650 of 3652

Can you elaborate on the digital volume control, some technical details etc.? How is it implemented?

post #3651 of 3652

The Control Freak is quite a bit cheaper, and works very well for most people (I use one at home). However, the Control Freak is an actual potentiometer (like the volume control in the Mini-X) and, like all potentiometers, its channel tracking does become less perfect at very low levels. By using a combination of the volume control on the Mini-X and the Control Freak, you should be able to pick a combination of settings that allows you a very wide range of volume control with good tracking between channels, but the stepped network volume control on the Flex Amp will still have more accurate channel tracking over its full range.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by sahmen View Post
 

Thanks for explaining the differences.  I already use the mini-x as a headphone amp, and it works well. I also have two Sherbourn LDS amps (the 2-150B and 2-75B) that are both deployable in the same way, so I could say I'm okay on this front, until Emo comes up with a dedicated headphone amp.  The remote control on the Flex is what I find most tempting, but I am wondering whether Emo's control freak might be a cheaper alternative for now, for controlling headphone volumes, without being too cumbersome.

post #3652 of 3652

Basically it's what we call "a digitally controlled analog ladder network". What that means is that it is a ladder network made up of a whole bunch of precision resistors, dividing down a real analog signal, controlled by analog switches, which are in turn controlled by digital circuitry. The result is very low noise and distortion, almost perfect channel tracking all the way down, and better reliability than mechanical relays - and it all fits on a chip. (The important thing is that the volume control itself is actually analog; the analog signal is divided down using resistors - it is not converted to digital and back again.)

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by davidsh View Post
 

Can you elaborate on the digital volume control, some technical details etc.? How is it implemented?

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