Updated: 20-Aug-01 16:23
Doede's Audio Tweaks...

Changing the Capacitors in the MU Tube stage

This might seems to a lot of you an open door: better capacitors sound better, and indeed they do…. Why this small item? After publication, I have had quite some reaction on my design style with Elco’s and parallel film capacitors. This would be previous generation designing !! Well I am from another generation than a lot of you, so I took this serious…. I have been listening a lot, exchanging a lot of email and reading around the internet. And guess what? There is (again) no one single simple answer. A lot of people claiming they have the very very very best and all the rest is poor quality junk. Well this is not true as well. It is no religion by the way. What can play a role is personal taste, do you want a warmer sound or more to the pin point?? I was not sure what I wanted, so I bought some HOVLAND MUSICAP’s (Antique) and Solen MKP’s, and some NOS Oil Signal C’s. Very recently a BOX with Angela MKP in Oil, new production, very promising… What I did, is replacing most of the electrolytes in the DAC and TUBE stages with the Solen C’s (power supply and by pass only) for the signal coupling C’s I used the Hovland types. So 2 per MU stage… After playing in for at least 3 days (yeah, it really takes that long!! Pffffff) NOW, I realized why I was getting so many mails, yes this was clearly a move I the right direction. My experience: Stereo image was not affected too much, but the clarity and low level detail improved greatly. This was a real pleasure !! Nothing is perfect, as there is always something to improve…. With all this MKP components, the music can get something over present. This could be a matter of taste, you cannot speak here from poor sound….. but it is my taste, so what the heck! I asked Triodedick, my Tube godfather and he had a nice tip: use a Hovland in the MU from Triode Anode to gate of the Penthode and a PIO for the coupling. This combination is fast, detailed and still smooth fluid. Well good idea. I just purchased 8 NOS .47uF Sangamo and 6 Vitamin Q from Sprague. All from EBAY…. Great Site if you are looking for cheaper components. No dealers who are driving up the price because it s „high-end" grrrrrr….. And how did they sound? Well I don’t know…. I have not built them in for a very simple reason: I do not want to be part of the group DIY’s who change there system every 24 hour and forget to listen to the music! I want to get used to this sound, enjoy it and than do one tweak at a time, listen and enjoy for a longer while… This keeps me from the street, gives me much more pleasure and better founded experiences. So I will do that may be next time   and continue to share with you……

Experimenting with the Oil filled capacitors

It took a bit longer, but who cares? In this vintage hobby, we have all the time of world, don't we? OK, I have been experimenting with he 2 capacitors in the MU stage. The result ofcourse is very individual, but also very interesting. The Hovland's were a great improvement, but still were a little bit "MKP", much much better as the other stuff, but still a bit thin and sharp (very very little !! not bad or so). So I changed the interstage C into a Sangamo .47uF paper in oil. Mhhhhhhhhh, this combination makes it really enjoyable. Still fast enough but smooth and silky. Voices have more body. 2 Oil capacitors were a bit too smooth. I learned this trick from Triode Dick. Use different C's in the chain. You will end up with very nice combinations. The negative aspects of one type f C is not repeating now. Well good tip, as this combi is still playing now. This style will be used in the new Pre Amp as well.  In the "Golidav" I used 2 Oil filled C's in the MU and interstage. This amp is so fast (KR300BXLS with Amorphe OPT) that the 2 oil C's are not making the amp too "brown".

oilc.jpg (9665 bytes)
Sangamo .47uF paper in oil

---------------------- > to be cont’d !!!


IMPORTANT: The information provided on this page is intended as guide for DIY activities and therefore free to copy and or publish. If any one wishes to use any of the information from my WEB site, please make sure to refer and footnote to my URL Link as source! Doede Douma