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Emu 1820m impressions - Page 3

post #31 of 67
Thread Starter 
Daroid, what's wrong with Creative Professional?

1820M and 1212M use the same PCI card so it's not a better version of the card literally. You want to compare the AudioDock to the PCI bracket analog card. Supposedly they measure the same. The AudioDock will eventually be a separately sold accessory I think. So will the clock card.

Well the AudioDock is good because it's outside the computer and it receives power separately from the digital section (but still inside the computer). Those are potential areas for sound quality increase. You can do an easy rewire mod to power the Dock totally separate from the computer. To me this in itself is huge. It let's you use power conditioning for the box. It's like having an external DAC.

WDM support on this card is kind of a joke right now in the more professional sense. It can't do >48khz at the moment and I need that for audio editing and some DVD mastering programs. So I'm still using my RME for that purpose. But yeah WDM enough to support games.

This has a cool external box. And you get a decent headphone jack so it's not directly comparable to another soundcard in the price range.

Having all those outputs is indeed modding potential. Instead of having 1 source, you can have 4 different ones with each a distinct sound for the mood / music you want.
post #32 of 67
Quote:
Originally posted by Wodgy
Why would you expect a single voltage regulator be in a 5-lead package?
look at LT1761 or ADP3309 for example.. modern low noise low power regulators comes in SOT23 packages..
post #33 of 67
Quote:
Originally posted by lan
Daroid, what's wrong with Creative Professional?
Considering Creative have done nothing themselves to the card in terms of engineering, and "Creative" and "professional" well it doesn't go well together IMO
post #34 of 67
Thread Starter 
True. Creative and engineering sound funny in the same sentence.

Well I've begun modding.

I'm going to change all the caps on the PCI card. It's extreme I know. There are only 15 total though. So far what i've done has made things better. It's probably the better power going to the dock. I'm waiting for Blackgates and then I'll work on the ones near the voltage regulators and clocks. I'm estimating that will be another good change.

The dock has a frightning amount more caps. Maybe 100+ I won't be doing all of those. I will be working on the power section and monitor output section first and twiddle with the headphone output. Good stuff.
post #35 of 67
Can you bypass the analog stage of one of the outputs?

Have you found out from Emu whether the RJ45 cable is really a plain ole Cat5 cable?

-Ed
post #36 of 67
Thread Starter 
I don't know how to bypass the analog stage. Is it going from "+" analog out of DAC to jack? If I have to access bottom of baord it's tough as there's little space there compared to the 1212m analog daughtercard.

The thing I'm concerned about bypassing the analog stage is will I still have +4db output levels?

Nope, havn't found out about the RJ45 yet. Tweaking that will be later for me. You could always email them to find out.

A few blackgates are in analog out #1. Sound is immediatly clearer and bass is tighter compared to analog out #2 (which is stock). I couldn't replace them all because blackgates won't fit haha.
post #37 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by lan
I don't know how to bypass the analog stage. Is it going from "+" analog out of DAC to jack? If I have to access bottom of baord it's tough as there's little space there compared to the 1212m analog daughtercard.

The thing I'm concerned about bypassing the analog stage is will I still have +4db output levels?
Yes, it does keep the +4 level, since that differential is controlled somewhere before the DAC chip (or in it). You can actually do the bypass on the top of the board, you just have to remove the little black parts right behind the jacks, and hook up the appropriate lines to the jacks to the + (and - if going balanced) outputs from the DAC. Very simple indeed.
post #38 of 67
Thread Starter 
The DAC's electrical connection is crazy small. I think i'd need a really small soldering tip haha.

Ok I just changed 3 more caps on the PCI card. Sounds better.

I think I may try the analog bypass on output #3. I have to settle down a little bit and let the changes take effect.
post #39 of 67

That's nice!

Thanks for the post. That's one of the nicest sound card reviews I've seen in a while. Covers everything I wanted to know and does so in terms that are meaningful to my application.

You do good work.

BW
post #40 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by lan
The DAC's electrical connection is crazy small. I think i'd need a really small soldering tip haha.
.

What you can do instead, which would make it easier to solder, is remove the output coupling caps (labeled 16V 47uF, therre should be four of them lined upp in a row, just follow the traces from the DAC outputs), and the resistors (1 each) in front of them. Bridge the resistor gaps with solder, then solder from the input solder point of where the caps used to be to the appopriate spot by the output jacks.
post #41 of 67
Thread Starter 
Yes I left the output caps in for now while everything else settles in. I dont like to mod everything at once as I'd like to see quantitative changes from one thing to another.

Cheap upgrade for the 1820m. I changed the stock Cat5e cable to Cat6
post #42 of 67
but i read that using a Cat6 cable with Cat5e jacks results in the transmission performance of Cat5e, anyway.
post #43 of 67

wall wart

ian,
what brand/model wall wart do you use to get 12v dc? I have the flopply connector but want to use a wall wart that will actually make a difference!! (clean, regulated maybe)
thanks
jason
post #44 of 67
Thread Starter 
It's been a long time since I've used that wallwart and I just moved so I don't know where it is. Since then I've used a radio shack 12v power supply and a sealed lead acid battery. Really any of these should be an improvement. It was a cheap wallwart at that. Probably not the best.
post #45 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by lan
It's been a long time since I've used that wallwart and I just moved so I don't know where it is. Since then I've used a radio shack 12v power supply and a sealed lead acid battery. Really any of these should be an improvement. It was a cheap wallwart at that. Probably not the best.
Has anyone tried using external PS to power a regular PCI soundcard? I assume the power comes from computer via one of the PCI slot legs. Is it impossible? I'd love to drop in a big 12V SLA battery just to power my sound card..
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