Amp Kit for Denon D-7000
Dec 16, 2009 at 6:03 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 11

Oberst Oswald

100+ Head-Fier
Jul 5, 2008
Hi all. I'm looking for a new amp that would replace my Travagan's Red. Thinking about building my own. Know how to solder & built a few ACE electronic kits when I was involved in the remote control helicopters/airplane/car hobby years ago. Have complete wood & machine shop. I really don't want to order all kinds of little parts from different companies right now so a full kit would suit my needs the moment. Want to build something, within reason of my beginner status, with "class" for the D-7000. $200 to $500 price range. SS, most likely, or tube don't matter as this is for a gaming computer that has reached its upper limits and want a earphone sound system that will blow my head off
A Max maybe...?
Dec 16, 2009 at 6:37 PM Post #2 of 11
DIY is a lot of fun, and You'll be able to build a nice amp for that much, but there aren't a whole lot of complete kits.

Some amps that would come to mind in your price range would be the CK2III and the M^3, both by AMB labs. The CK2III is compact, SS, and a very good amp all around. If you are building the case yourself, a good quality build would be a bit under $200. Also, the build is pretty easy (single board, PS included etc). I had never picked up an iron before I built mine more than a year ago, and it turned out great.

You can also look into Cavalli audio products. The SOHA II is very good, as is the CTH. The EHHA is supposed to be great but I am not sure about build difficulty. Probably outside beginner range.
Dec 16, 2009 at 7:07 PM Post #3 of 11
I can't speak to what will go well with the Denons, but I just finished the Millett Hybrid MiniMAX and it was a dream of a kit to build. Documentation/instructions are very detailed and simple. And the amp sounds amazing with my HD650s.

MiniMAX Overview

It looks like Beezar now offers a full kit w/ everything for $220. Otherwise the BoM on offers links to just about every component from Mouser and Digikey. Using the case from Beezar makes the amp look very "professional" without having to deal with panel layout, case ordering, etc...
Dec 17, 2009 at 5:42 PM Post #4 of 11
Thanks for replies. MiniMax kit should allow me to get my feet wet without to much crying money wise if a mistake will make it a total loss. Does anybody know if it will work well with the Denons? Couldn't find any info on the website for impedence (sp?) specs but I guess with more time to look I will find it at some point. Will the upgrade caps & other add-ons be worth getting?

Looked at the Cavalli products but I think they are kind of over my head. After I have success with the minimax we will see how far I can go.

Going to wait a few more days before I buy something to do more research.
Dec 17, 2009 at 6:36 PM Post #5 of 11
Hello, I use a MiniMax to power my Denon D2000s. The d2000s are 25 ohm, and (in my opinion) the synergy with the MiniMax is awesome. Hopefully some d7000 owners will chime in to share their Denon/minimax experiences too.
Dec 18, 2009 at 2:49 AM Post #6 of 11
I just got my D5000 today, and while they aren't even remotely broken in, they sound awesome through the MiniMax. Very different from the HD650...

A quick google search showed this:

Again, I can't speak highly enough about the MiniMax kit. I can't offer comparison to other kits available, but the board is well laid out, the pads aren't too small or closely spaced, and it just "falls together".

I've done a lot of soldering... 15 years ago... So I was a bit hesitant how quickly I would pick things back up. But the MiniMax instructions are pretty straight forward in order of assembly, testing, etc... After reading some pointers on soldering ("Oh yeah, I remember what a cold solder joint looks like"), I went on my way. A bit of patience, double checking of each component and solder joint (like working with wood: measure twice, cut once), and I had the amp assembled in two evenings.

I can't offer an opinion on the Black Gates, but you can get additional tubes (12AE6 and 12FK6) from Beezar for some tube-rolling options (still haven't played with them yet).
Dec 18, 2009 at 4:29 PM Post #7 of 11
Bought the MiniMax with the cap upgrade. My soldering iron (Unger) is quite a few years old so can anyone recommend a high quality soldering station, tips (point, spade etc) other than from Radio Shack (I can afford better than that $100. / $300.)? Starting to get a little shaky with all the options of getting started in all this. One thing I do have is a very good Fluke meter. Hopefully this is the beginning of my B22.
Dec 18, 2009 at 6:18 PM Post #9 of 11
I've heard some pretty decent feedback about the Ratshack station; it's not a total piece of crap... Main limiting factor many seem to complain about is getting additional tips, as some stores carry them, some don't, and you have to dig around to find online vendors that carry the OEM tips...

You should be able to get a very decent quality station for around $100. When you go above that, you're getting into fancy SMD or other bells-n-whistles beyond what a basic station is: a hot pokey thing...

If you dig through the forums here, you'll find a general consensus that the Hakko 936 is a solid choice of station. Versatile, quality build, etc... I personally went with the Aoyue 937, a chinese ripoff of the Hakko. It's good enough quality for me (I don't spend 8+ hours a day in front of the thing, I just do some soldering here and there) and it's compatible with the Hakko tips...
Dec 19, 2009 at 11:30 PM Post #10 of 11
Got a Hakko 936-12 on the way...I'm ready

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