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The DIY'rs Cookbook

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  1. johnjen
    So first up,
    right off the bat,
    before we go any further,
    lemme ‘splain sumpt’n about what my intention for this thread is, and is not.

    It IS more about sharing our observations, experiments, forays into ‘what if’ territory.
    It IS about sharing our sense of discovery and how our experiments help in increasing our sense of enjoyment and satisfaction while listening to the music we all love.
    It IS about sharing where our individual and collective creativity leads us, so that we can then share these results for others to try (or not) as the case may be.

    There is a wealth of very useful information that us tweakers discover and accumulate over the years.
    This thread IS about sharing this treasure trove of experiential, functional, and insightful information.


    Without fear of being demeaned, castigated, slammed, or made to feel like an idiot…
    IOW be the object of a group pile-on smack down.
    There are plenty of other threads that will be glad to provide this form of ‘entertainment’.
    We don’t need another one and certainly not here in this…

    Smack Down Free Zone.

    This thread is NOT about slamming anyone, anyone’s ideas, their method of experimentation, etc.
    This thread is NOT about ego gratification nor any other ‘justification’ due to belittling anyone or anything.
    And yes there is a fine line here, where hidden humor can be a major factor based upon pre-existing relationships as well as other misinterpretations.

    This thread is NOT about repeating the same old arguments, again.
    Besides we all know them all to well, and they have never, nor will they ever accomplish anything except to kill any forward momentum and any further helpful discussions.

    This thread is about what we CAN do and not about why we CAN’T do something.

    This thread is about contributing for the betterment of any and all who seek to improve their system, by any means they see fit.
    And this includes way out there ideas, all the way from don’t put the power amp at the bottom of the stack, to Pixie Dust™©®: fact or fiction?
    With (I hope) lots and lots in between.

    And while I started this thread and I do plan on contributing, I hope that others will be willing to share their invaluable tricks and tips on improvements they have made or witnessed.
    IOW there is no leader, no single expert, nobody what is in charge here…

    I myself like to use the empirical method, well at least the first several steps anyway.
    Others may use whatever method works for them.
    And by sharing our results we can learn and ‘cross pollinate’ ideas and methods of pursuing our experiments.
    I see this as a ‘win-win-win’ instead of a ‘kill it before it grows out of control’ exercise in the art of smack down…

    And I think a great many are tired of this lack of respect, not to mention the negativity it engenders.
    So here we can, by our intent, set up a Smack Down Free Zone and actually enjoy sharing our ideas and experiments and observations without fear of being ridiculed etc. etc.

    So if you have something to contribute, we welcome your thoughts etc.
    But if your ‘contribution’ is to fix, “Someone is WRONG on the internet", by negation (or worse), then please turn your thoughts into a genuine contribution for all to learn from.

    I'm going to list all of the terms I've 're-purposed' and then add links to their posts that go deeper into the details.

    C3 Cohesion Coherence Coupling
    I5 Intelligibility
    T3 Toe Tapping Time
    HB&W Head Bobbing & Weaving
    S/S Spooky/Scary
    DRC Dynamic Range Control
    tLFF the Listener Fatigue Factor
    CP's choke points
    Acoustic POWER vs volume
    CNST Central Nervous System Tap
    Phase Δ Reduction
    ToP Threshold of Perceptibility,
    Take a Break
    Music as experience
    Holo Holographic,
    SEB Spontaneous Emotional Burst,
    SuperGlue / SuperDuperGlue
    THE Correct Phase
    EQ done correctly
    PRT Phase Reversal Tweak
    SSBB SubSonic Bass Boost
    Break In
    Thermal Equilibrium
    Akiko Sticks round 1
    Akiko Sticks round 2

    autonomic blink response

    Subjectivist vs the Objectivist
    The Prove It Proposition
    My EQ setup
    Designers vs Users
    Connector Contact Patch Resistance Reduction
    Auditory memory
    RN3 progress report
    Spikes, Overshoot, and Wonderful
    Moar is Less.
    Fuses and current draw
    My take on Cable Cooking

    HD800-Jmod write ups. (Note: this is the final post of the series where links to all of the previous posts will be found in the header)

    Power cable series. (Note: this is the final post of the series where links to all of the previous posts will be found in the header)

    ps. And let us remember, one of, if not the BEST way to learn, is to ‘fail’, then learn from the ‘mistake’ and move on.
    Indeed one of the 'Best' ways of defining a Master is by saying they have tried and FAILED more times than the student has even tried.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
    Whitigir, jimmers, sheldaze and 2 others like this.
    I am here johnjen
  3. ericr
  4. Avro_Arrow
    Here is my contribution:
    317/337 (and family) adjustable regulator tweak.
    Replace the voltage setting resistor with a semiconductor.
    Typical 317 regulator implementation:

    Typically R2 sets the current through R1 and the voltage drop of R1 plus 1.25 volts is the output voltage.
    Now if we replace R1 with an LED or two, we get this:

    Now, once again, in this schematic, R1 sets the current and the voltage drop across the
    LED(s) plus 1.25 volts is the output voltage. The advantage is the the voltage drop across
    and LED is much more constant with changing voltage than a resistor. This makes the regulator
    even more stable and less prone to oscillation and ringing which the 317 is prone to do.
    The adjustable resistor VR1 is provided to tweak the current through the LED(s) to provide some
    limited trim of the output voltage.
    Mad Max likes this.
  5. johnjen
    That's really kewl!

    And I think Schiit is using this approach in the 1st gen Mojo amp to set the bias current.

    LEDs set a fairly consistent and stable current, much better than just a resistor ever could.

    And I like your avatar and your user name.
    Not many know about the Avro, WAY ahead of its time, so much so that the project was killed.

    JJ :thumb
  6. johnjen
    Thanks Big Poppa and ericr…!

    I just hit another HUGE lick.

    I mentioned during the secret meet that I had added Walker Audio's SST to the fuses, ac power cables, IC's, and to the 4 pin xlr cable connector for my 800's.
    BIG improvement! (especially the 800's cable connector)

    Then I soldered the 12 awg ground return leads at what I call my 1st splice, where my dedicated feed from the panel pops up and then heads to the duplex receptacles that the amp and dac are plugged into.
    BIGGER improvement!

    Then I soldered the hot and neutral leads at the 1st splice…



    I just nailed yet another choke point, BIG time.

    Smoothness, articulation, C3 (cohesion, coherence, coupling), intelligibility, and much more all took a HUGE step up.

    I just love it when another choke point gets eliminated, because it allows the system to get out of its way all the more.
    And ALL of the previous tweeks cumulative improvements get another leg up as well.

    Interesting times in Audio indeed!

  7. johnjen
    Oh yeah one interesting tidbit about soldering the ac wiring that feeds my audio setup.

    During the Secret meet I was talking to gefski and he mentioned that his father, when he built his house, had soldered ALL of the ac distribution wiring in his house.
    A man WAY ahead of his time!
    And I bet the tunes in that house are KILLER! :atsmile:

    And I still have one additional tweak to make to the soldered romex leads… :wink:


    During that same meet, curbfeeler related a story about how a guy had 'convinced' the local power company to install a new step down transformer at his new house.
    Talk about clean and abundant power…

    I bring this up because just recently the power poles in my neighborhood were replaced and they also replaced the step down transformer that feeds my house.
    They also moved the transformer from down the block to my back yard.

    I now have the shortest run from that brand new transformer to any house it feeds.

    YES! :atsmile:

    ps And I gotta say, again, that the smilies available on this site are WOEFULLY pitiful…
  8. Barra
    Here are a few notes to contribute toward the value of wires:
    Just got some new JJ branded power cables that are braided to 10 gauge, high performance connectors, cryoed, and baked. They are not supposed to sound great until run in for 150 hours so I wasn't expecting much - but that is not what happened. Wow, what a huge noticeable difference. It has been a little while since I have listened to my Havana 2 > Mojo setup so this is not very scientific, but I am hearing some specific differences that cannot be mind tricks.
    Concrete Differences:
    • Louder: I typically listen to my LCD2s between 10 and 12 o'clock and go loud at 1. Set at a little before 12 - 11:45ish - I plugged and turned on and almost blew my ears out. Now 10 is mildly loud and 11 is all I will go. This is all hooked up to my $3, well $8 as it is a 3 prong cheap extension cord.
    •  Pronounced 3D Treble: There is a more pronounced and powerful treble that has added another dimension to the music. It sounds as if it is floating out there by itself, yet connected to the music - if that makes any sense. The LCD is no longer all bass or bright, it has a more natural character. The treble is now very smooth.
    Think What you Want:
    • Dynamics: The smaller elements in the song seem more concrete and crisper rather than being subtle. I am not no longer guessing if that bell is in my head or part of the song. It is still soft like is should be, but now it has texture and edges to the sound. It also roars quickly when called upon, but now doesn't cover up the subtleties. Again, could just be in my head, but I don't think so.
    • Bass Impact: This is more subtle, especially with my LCD2.2, but the bass is meatier with more impact. This can be in my head, but I don't think so.
    It sounds like the fat wire acts like a capacitor to provide a reservoir of power. JJ says no, but how else would it make this much difference when gimped by a cheap extension cord? Maybe it is conditioning the electrical.
    JJ says that the cord is now just getting out of the way of the sound.
    Alcophone likes this.
  9. johnjen
    Do you like the changes and please tell us what has changed, as in clearer voices, more accurate instruments etc.
    or not.

    Are you hearing your music collection, for the 1st time, again?

    And do you hear any changes in the acoustic presentation as you gain hrs?

    And if the changes don't pass the 'this is better' test then the reasons for the why of them, is much less important.

    IOW we want to make changes that are 'better', even so it is good to know what doesn't help.

    ps they are actually 13AWG cables.
    And it's more like the cables allow the system to get out of it's own way.
    And my advice is don't worry about if it's 'imaginary'.
    If the changes are great enough that it isn't subtle but rather dramatic, then they are great enough for anyone to hear.
    Does your wife hear a difference, etc.?
  10. Barra
    If I wasn't clear, I absolutely love the new sound. I'll need more time for specifics, but the tone is more saturated with more textures and more dimension.
  11. tomb
    Yes, and it's the exact same circuit you designed for the power supply of the DoodleBug.  Your design, and a device that can make any USB-powered DAC perform better.
    That said, somehow I think that kind of achievement/knowledge will be lost on this thread, but I'll try to keep an open mind while I gird myself for the typical cable/connector/blue-tack gibberish that will ensue. [​IMG] 
    Welcome to the Dark side of this hobby Barra. You barely have a taste of what decent cables can sound like with cables made of Chinese knock off IEC's and copper wire that has been cooked and cryo'd.
    Things to realize.
    The purer the metal of the cable the better it will sound. Crummy copper sound a tad congested.
    I am a fan of Jena Labs, Cardas, and Oyaide for wire.
    For Connectors I am a fan of Oyaide, Furutech, and Cardas
    Length makes a difference.
    Listen Carefully......
    The longer the cable the more color of the cable.
    The shorter the cable the more neutral sound of the cable.
    For Digital cables you want a short as possible for least amount of artifacts.
    Headphone cables for home I prefer 8ft minimum
    IC's 1m minimum, I really like 1.5 m-2m
    Power cables 1.5m to start
    Treatments for cables
    I would start with Caig products I use Caig Deoxit Gold GX5
    Then you have the grease with metal platelet infused stuff like Walker SST, Mapleshade Silclear, and Furutech Nano Liquid
    I can keep going but this is a great place to start.
    Next part may talk about Dielectric Properties, Cable Geometry and Shielding
  13. johnjen
    Can we look forward to your CONTRIBUTIONS as well?

  14. Avro_Arrow

    I want to abide by the thread rules of not saying anything negative, so I will just keep quiet.
    If the snake oil makes them happy then let them be happy.
  15. bimmer100
    I have made some mods to my p300
    Replaced the hospital grade phosphor bronze outlets with high grade red copper/rhodium plated with insanely grippy inlets, and a second outlet from synergistic research that is tesla treated.
    I will be able to test them... Eventually. Fitting them was difficult enough as they were wider than normal and required very minor modification. Will try with tesla SE t1 cable and ps audio lab cable. In both outlets should produce slightly different results. I thought about replacing the internal wire with high grade wire of some sort. Any suggestions?

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