DIY vs GD Compass
Jun 19, 2009 at 2:15 PM Post #31 of 34

Originally Posted by JamesL /img/forum/go_quote.gif
SMD soldering isn't hard once you get a hang of it, but the pcm chip and voltage regulators in particular, I wouldn't recommend to someone who hasn't soldered a 8-soic before.. especially with just a radioshack iron.

Perhaps, but for the longest time I have done just that with a radioshack iron (15/30 jobber). Patience, common sense, and technique is all you need. SMD gets a bad rap. I replaced my X-Fi opamps with the radioshack iron (for both desolder and resolder). In fact, the Alien DAC and the X-Fi mods (including recap) were my 2 first DIY projects utilizing the radioshack iron in that order, Alien first.

FWIW, I've also used radio shack solder. I had a large roll that I just finished off.
Jun 19, 2009 at 2:38 PM Post #32 of 34
Don't get me wrong.. I love SMD projects now, but unlike you, I didn't get my Alien DAC on the first try.
I don't know how you did it... but i went through a lot of trouble trying to get those resistors down without some kind of tweezers and some extra flux. Fingers burnt.. resistors lost.. and the dac chip bridged, without any wick or flux. In any case, it wasn't a very good first-project experience for me.
Jun 19, 2009 at 3:03 PM Post #33 of 34
Personally, I had a couple bad experiences w/SMD opamps early on (whether due to them arriving "bad" or me destroying them)... All IMO, but I'd lean away from SMD as a 1st DIY project. Passive SMDs maybe, but more leggy SMD takes a bit of skill I think.
Jun 19, 2009 at 11:59 PM Post #34 of 34
I say Beta22 and y1 Gamma+ all the way! Thats what Im doing to improve on the Compass.

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