MHDT Havana DAC
May 20, 2012 at 5:29 AM Post #1,921 of 2,680

robeeert1

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Posts
396
Likes
14
Quote:
I had my Havana D/A convertor updated recently. It is back in my home, and has about 50 hrs on it. I can already tell it is vastly improved over the original unit. A friend of mine has a Naim CDS II CD player with Naim XPS power supply, and the modified Havana being fed from my PC is pretty much its equal BEFORE the required 300-500 hr break in (Blackgate Capacitors and V-Cap CuTF capacitors take quite a while to break in).
 
I know upgrading can get expensive, but the results seem well worth it. I am still working on the cosmetics of my new chassis, but once it is finished, I will post pictures.
 
I want to thank everyone for contributing to this thread. Without your ideas and feedback, this project would have never got off the ground. I particularly want to thank Roberteeer1, Naimex, and Loserica...
beerchug.gif

 
Enjoy the music mate.
 
We did our best to improve the DAC. This is very important what quality components we use, as we all know stock units will cost a fortune if they use Black Gates caps, best Mundorsfs, V-caps, tantanlum resistors etc..
When I purchased Havana, I compared it with my heavily modified SACD player Shanling T200, shanling was far better than the stock Havana in transparancy, musicality, details etc...
Now the same shanling has NO CHANCE with the modified Havana.  Havana presents higher class (layered) sound in all aspects.
beyersmile.png

 
May 20, 2012 at 1:14 PM Post #1,922 of 2,680

kendrab

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 7, 2011
Posts
29
Likes
10
I have a few more upgrades in mind, but want to enjoy what I have for a while first.
 
My next (last?) upgrades are going to be the addition of an Audio Note Model 280 silver toroidal transformer for the digital section, and a Furutech AC-1501R IEC inlet with EMI filter. If I can lay my hands on some of those Sanyo Os-Con capacitors, I will install them as well.
 
Note: I have 12 spare Russian Military Surplus Silver Mica capacitors. They are 0.01uF(10,000pF)350V =/-0.3% versions, which are a better spec than the typical +/-5-10% versions. If you want a set for your Havana dac (you need 3 per dac), send me a PM.
 
May 20, 2012 at 2:03 PM Post #1,923 of 2,680

niamex

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2010
Posts
102
Likes
12
Quote:
I had my Havana D/A convertor updated recently. It is back in my home, and has about 50 hrs on it. I can already tell it is vastly improved over the original unit. A friend of mine has a Naim CDS II CD player with Naim XPS power supply, and the modified Havana being fed from my PC is pretty much its equal BEFORE the required 300-500 hr break in (Blackgate Capacitors and V-Cap CuTF capacitors take quite a while to break in).
 
I know upgrading can get expensive, but the results seem well worth it. I am still working on the cosmetics of my new chassis, but once it is finished, I will post pictures.
 
I want to thank everyone for contributing to this thread. Without your ideas and feedback, this project would have never got off the ground. I particularly want to thank Roberteeer1, Naimex, and Loserica...
beerchug.gif


I am glad you enjoy the upgrade !
Be good,
Cheers
 
May 20, 2012 at 2:14 PM Post #1,924 of 2,680

niamex

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 3, 2010
Posts
102
Likes
12
Quote:
Pingfloid,
 
You connect 13th leg directly to the grid, and to the ground by the resistor, we omit R26.
Resistance for I/V conversion for most Iout Dacs is in the range 30-500R. I think 180R maybe the right choice, but try close values.
BBPCM56 tolerates max 1k value. Test it by yourself. Lower value resistor - slower sound.
 
 
 


I fully agree with this. I have tried plenty of resistors in that range and for me the best choice /compromise/  is 181 ohms.Please note again it's quality is very important - should be extremely low noise one.
Cheers
Cheers
 
May 21, 2012 at 12:58 AM Post #1,925 of 2,680

redcat2

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 6, 2008
Posts
187
Likes
13
Ok,Havana arrived today, first thing i noticed when switched on compered to the Paradisea dac, is how black the silence is in the back ground very silent, left running now to burn in.
 
May 21, 2012 at 3:23 PM Post #1,926 of 2,680

kendrab

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 7, 2011
Posts
29
Likes
10
Quote:
I have a few more upgrades in mind, but want to enjoy what I have for a while first.
 
My next (last?) upgrades are going to be the addition of an Audio Note Model 280 silver toroidal transformer for the digital section, and a Furutech AC-1501R IEC inlet with EMI filter. If I can lay my hands on some of those Sanyo Os-Con capacitors, I will install them as well.
 
Note: I have 12 spare Russian Military Surplus Silver Mica capacitors. They are 0.01uF(10,000pF)350V =/-0.3% versions, which are a better spec than the typical +/-5-10% versions. If you want a set for your Havana dac (you need 3 per dac), send me a PM.

I forgot to mention these capacitors are a give away...
 
May 25, 2012 at 10:26 AM Post #1,927 of 2,680

kendrab

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 7, 2011
Posts
29
Likes
10
I see a few posts now about bypassing the op-amp in the PCM56P chipset. If you have done all the main upgrades in the Havana dac already, how much of an improvement is doing the op-amp bypass? What do we gain sonically?
 
Also, at this point, the capacitors I offered have now been spoken for...
 
May 28, 2012 at 2:07 AM Post #1,928 of 2,680

Pingfloid

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Posts
201
Likes
15
Hi.
 
I have bypassed the PCM56P chipset, as instructed, but there is almost no sound on the output (it requires to rise the volume at the amplifier at 100% and it is still too low). I am not surprised, because inserting a resistor of such a low value from signal to ground is decreasing it too much. If that resistor is needed, it will probably require more gain at the tube stage.
 
Here are the detailed steps:
 
1.- Remove R25 and R26

 

 
2.- Link pin 13 of the PCM56P chipset with the opposite extreme of R25, R26 (the one connecter to the tube grid).
3.- Connect the resistors (220R in my case) in between this point and Ground.

 
4.- Undo everything. This is not working.
 
I will appreciate any suggestion
smile.gif

 
May 30, 2012 at 2:43 PM Post #1,929 of 2,680

robeeert1

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Posts
396
Likes
14
I installed new output caps in the Havana V-caps CuTF and comparing them with Mundorfs silver/gold.
 
V-caps are new, I have to give them some burn-in time. First impression is wow, I adore the quality.
I will write some more after they are burnt in.
 

 
May 30, 2012 at 9:17 PM Post #1,931 of 2,680

kendrab

New Head-Fier
Joined
Aug 7, 2011
Posts
29
Likes
10
I know I am very happy with the V-Cap setup in my Havana. I used two V-Cap OIMP 2.0uF capacitors, then bridged each capacitor with a V-Cap CuTF .1uF600VDC capacitor. My dac now has about 310 hrs on it, and sounds very nice. When I listen to some of my favorite albums, there is a whole new level of fluidity and detail to it.
 
May 31, 2012 at 4:34 PM Post #1,932 of 2,680

loserica

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 14, 2009
Posts
459
Likes
22
Quote:
I know I am very happy with the V-Cap setup in my Havana. I used two V-Cap OIMP 2.0uF capacitors, then bridged each capacitor with a V-Cap CuTF .1uF600VDC capacitor. My dac now has about 310 hrs on it, and sounds very nice. When I listen to some of my favorite albums, there is a whole new level of fluidity and detail to it.

 
Yes, but I think that CuTF in place of OIMP (those who use them Robert), is another sound experience. OIMP's are the entry level V-Cap, while CuTF used as output capacitors are High-End ('"The killer caps" as they were called..)
I'm sure that sounds great to you, also!
smile.gif
Can You add a picture with Havana?
Thank's!
 
Quote:
I installed new output caps in the Havana V-caps CuTF and comparing them with Mundorfs silver/gold.
V-caps are new, I have to give them some burn-in time. First impression is wow, I adore the quality.
I will write some more after they are burnt in

 
Robert, You didn't plan to change the Russian Silver mica capacitors?
 
May 31, 2012 at 4:47 PM Post #1,933 of 2,680

robeeert1

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Posts
396
Likes
14
To have a long story short V-caps CuTF are the killers. There is no sense to compare them with  Mundorfs.
They sound quite different, control everything much better, Mundorfs sound like an old computer.
 
V-caps CuTF are extremely opened caps. Unbelievable what they do in the modified Havana.
 
I know they are bloody expensive but worth every penny !! 0.47uF is quite enough for Havana, they are fast, not slowed by a big capacitance. (bass response is great)
 
Loserica, Russian silver Micas are great but I think is it a good idea to look for something better.
 
v-caps ??
biggrin.gif

 
Edit:
I'm going to replace input caps "Russian silver mica" with V-cap CuFT .01uF...
I think they could open the DAC more.
 
Jun 2, 2012 at 10:56 AM Post #1,934 of 2,680

loserica

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Apr 14, 2009
Posts
459
Likes
22
Quote:
Loserica, Russian silver Micas are great but I think is it a good idea to look for something better.
v-caps ??
biggrin.gif

 
Edit:
I'm going to replace input caps "Russian silver mica" with V-cap CuFT .01uF...
I think they could open the DAC more.

 
Nice, Robert! Sure will be better.
Can You send us a picture with Havana inside? Can You evaluate at this point Havana's sound? In what price category is now compared to a classic CD player? I know that You have invested in top quality components (Black Gates, Bendix, etc...)
 
PS: You don't think in the near future, if you sell Mundorf caps, ... to upgrade the "rca" connectors with WBT 0210 Ag (Ms) Metal nut and Silver hook-up wire (from DH Labs), for improve coherence? 0210 Ag - Ms are one of the best connectors and believe me, Havana react positively to this change.
it is less important compared with V-Cap CuTF, (If you have not so far..)
 
http://www.wbtusa.com/pages/0210ags.html
 
I think, You already achieved a completely different sound from Havana-stock! (difference day-to-night
smile.gif
).
 
Jun 2, 2012 at 11:50 AM Post #1,935 of 2,680

robeeert1

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Posts
396
Likes
14
Actually I bought the v-caps for my new DIY DAC based on TDA1541A from analoguemetric.com
No mercy for components there, I built a genuine tube's analogue output stage  based on lampizator's scheme, (not a buffer)
The new DAC is built of the best quality components (best ever made siemens CCA grey shields tubes, v-caps CuTF input/output, shinkoh tantalum resistors, LCR, BG, Elna caps, two r-core transformers, etc..),
Will send pictures when it is finished in some days.
 
I will be using the Havana in my second rig in the nearest future or sell it.
 
I put V-caps CuTF in the Havana for curiousity and BINGO!. The caps must stay there !!!
I will order a second pair for my DIY.
 
You ask me about the price range, It's hard to say. It is one of the best sounding DA converters in the world now.
 
0210AG WB solid silver are great and will use them.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top