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Thread: Bgw amp plus eq for free!

  1. #496
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    $14 for 32ft of shielded twisted pair?!?!? Damn, I'm gonna be rich as soon as I dig into the trailer.


    Quote Originally Posted by RMC View Post
    Needed some more solder so went to local electronics store, then saw they had a small roll of installation cable i like left (32 ft), therefore picked it up too, though not in need of this now, but the way things are going that cable might become B/O ("supply chain issues" being the trend) or gets discontinued like so many things these days.

    Two conductors (twisted pair) wrapped in foil shield plus drain wire in contact with the shield drains the unwanted to ground. I don't really like the cable my dealer uses/sells for installations, it looks more like a smaller size microphone cable with a braided shield.

    Richard

    Attachment 90832

  2. #497
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    Hi Riley,

    Yup might dig in the trailer. However, i'm already loaded with cables and connectors so i don't look for any now.

    Note the retail price of audio stuff in Canada is typically 40% higher, sometimes more, than in the US, not counting sales taxes amounting to double digits. We often have an extra middleman to feed, the importer/distributor in Canada.

    Purchasing from the US ain't a bargain either with about 30% currency exchange rate, then 2.5% credit card fee on USD purchases, shipping cost, and the likelihood of having to pay canadian duty or taxes on a new US purchase over $40...

    And you don't want to know the price of gas in Canada, around 45% of the price is taxes... (except oil rich Alberta)

    Richard
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  3. #498
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    As part of turntable stuff i posted last night i forgot to post the pic i had of the scale i mostly use to assess cartridge tracking force. I have three different ones, B&O and Shure, but my preferred these days is a small digital one from Taylor Precision Products measuring to one-tenth of a gram.

    My results with it closely match what i get from balancing the tonearm manually then apply tracking force.

    The other two scales are also good but entail more handling /trial/error and therefore risks of an accident during times where Shure original stylus is no longer available...

    The digital scale is more straightforward to use. Moreover i factor in a small error margin with tracking force. If a stylus is rated max 1.5 gr for example then i'll set my things for say 1.35 gr. On pic it shows 1.41 gr on the scale but the reading actually varied between 1.37 to 1.41 gr so a hair's worth to remove. Its pretty sensitive.

    For a .75 -1.5 gr rated stylus as above i'm comfortable with 1.25 - 1.4 max therefore near the top of range in order to minimize stylus mistracking. The .75 gr minimum is too low and stylus will likely mistrack.

    The cartridge shown on scale has since changed headshell for a nicer one, and i retired my old Me95ED.

    Richard

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  4. #499
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    In view of discussions elsewhere on this matter seems people may find this JBL document helpfull regarding CD/ Bi-Radial horns tilt filter.

    Please don't repost this on other web sites. Thank you.

    Richard

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  5. #500
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    Finally had a chance to test the Digiflex stereo DI box with the portable digital recorder (Mini Disc) as source.

    Ref. Riley's post # 468 on page 32 here.

    RE the DI will give you about a -40 dbm mic level XLR output side of the DI.

    Tried it and its true, but not a problem with the Mackie mixer gain available. I realized after testing the DI/MD that the playback output level on the recorder was low at 9 on a range from 0 to 25. With a somewhat higher level (say 12+) it might have required a little less gain from the mixer Trim pots, though probably not a lot less since this is consumer gear output level feeding Pro level stuff. I could have plugged the recorder directly in the Aphex interface with a "Y" cable 1/8 stereo out to a pair of RCAs on the interface (having two Aphex devices, one always assigned to turntable signal, the other as need be), but the intent here was to test the stereo DI box.

    RE Also those unshielded transformers don't want to be near any sort of power transformer.

    The potential noise i guess Riley had in mind didn't happen. Could not hear any such issue even with my ear to the speakers. Trying to make things bad, lol, i put the DI directly on top of the Aphex interface (turned on, 120V, its transformer doesn't seem to be shielded, at least not fully) and still no system noise. Since the DI balances the line, also matching consumer device to Pro standard wiring and connections, plus the rest of the signal path is balanced too, it might explain the absence of hum/buzz. Haven't experienced that potential problem yet.

    The "before" pic shows part of the setup pending slow/spare time renos. The CD player is out of the picture on the left (Tascam balanced), the two boxes seen are phono related. The Monster Cables to preamp/Aphex have since been replaced by the short Canare RCAs i made. Plus was using the main outs 1/4" TRS on the mixer's top panel right side, which don't require that i pull the mixer from the back wall. Now using the XLR main outs (at the back of unit) so i need to pull it to have nicely curved cables, not crushed ones.

    More to come.

    Richard

    P.S. The pink surface i put equipment on is a large toy box in the basement from when daughter was a kid. I need more space in my temporary setup, have another rack begging to go there, hence me trying to get rid of the damn box ASAP. There's no children here, and we're both retired. Boss already vetoed that i swing the box out, likewise to deliver it to daughter's house or move it elsewhere... Well, then i put some audio gear on top of the toy box, and keep trying to erase it!

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  6. #501
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    The DI box test test setup, on top of the Aphex 120V power transformer. Either the interface's metal case shielding is very good or the DI balancing the line does the trick in killing hum/buzz, it works!

    Bottom center, on top of the red box, is the Mini Disc jacket on which i write artist name, titles and times, its faster. Entering all the info on the Disc has low value to me, more of a waste of time. The recorder bottom right will look way better on a coming pic.

    1/8" stereo cable from the recorder's output to the DI's same type input. Then XLR cables out of the DI (3 ft. from my older Canare cables stock) these going upwards and then dive in the XLR mic inputs top left. I know these aren't the usual line inputs but the mixer's mic channels will take it no sweat. Later another pic will show the more conventional use of the 1/4" line inputs for the MD/DI.

    Richard

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  7. #502
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    In 1999 the JVC portable cost me $400. ca + tx, not cheap but 23 years later it still works fine! At the time Mini Discs sold for $7.ea. I have another MD recorder unit in the rack that one being a full-size Sony.

    Sony developped a number of high potential technologies, e.g. PCM, Walkman was a hit, whereas the MD had a mitigated commercial outcome. Not because of sound quality but instead due to a more elaborate device, higher pricing, the need to purchase discs, etc. People vote with their wallet too, MP3 was simpler, cheaper, no Discs and users could even download/share "counterfeit" audio files, while the MD equipment has the SCMS protection system (only one digital copy of a CD or DAT can be made using optical fiber cable, but analog recorded ones are not restricted. It was the compromise to avoid Sony a ton of lawsuits from the music industry.

    Sony eventually reduced pricing and quality with China stuff in order to give it a second push but it was too late.

    The sound quality from an MD is near CD quality and certainly better than MP3. An almost perfect copy.

    About the 38 hour long play mode. The recorder comes with a lithium battery. An additional battery pack supplied (3 X AA) can be attached to the back of the unit. To get so many hours of use one needs a full lithium plus the battery pack installed with fresh alkaline batteries. A third option is to do without batteries, and use the AC adaptor included (wall wart). Recording seems more power hungry because it reduces battery mode autonomy to about half the time.

    There's many more controls on the side and back of the recorder (Jog dial, set, etc.), a number of possibilities are offered with this format (e.g. editing, erase, move, join) although i don't need all of them. Owner manual has 16 pages, somewhat long for such a small device, there's a lot to describe, since it does everything except coffee...

    The input level bar meter shown on the recorder is at about - 10 db from overload level which gives enough headroom for my applications. Could possibly reduce headroom say to -7 db level however Digital is said to overload less gracefully than analog. In the old days of tape recording one would try to record at as high level as logical in order to minimize tape noise (hiss). Since there's no background noise on MD the higher recording level is less of a concern here, though if quite low then you need to apply more gain during playback. More will follow.

    Richard

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  8. #503
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    The 1/8" stereo cable i use from MD to DI box is pretty large compared to the recorder's size. If there's any loss from that wiring it must be quite low.

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    The small Trim pots shown allow you to bring a device's very low output (e.g. mic or DI box) to a more standard level. Kind of an initial gain adjustment, followed by channel gain, then master output level.

    There's two gain indications on the mixer's Trim knobs: 60 db for XLR mic and 40 db for 1/4" TRS line, i tried both of them for curiosity even if the DI with MD is more like a line level than a mic one (these mic inputs can still take 14 DBu, and the line inputs 22 DBu). With the MD/DI in the mic input (back row) the level is still quite far from 14 DBu). Trim knobs in that case at 3 O'clock giving about the 40 db gain required. Folks more familiar with DBV in consumer gear (ref. 1 volt rms) can convert DBV to DBu Pro gear (ref. 0.775 volt rms) by simply adding 2.2 to DBV number. The other way around, from DBu to DBV, subtract 2.2. More on the way.

    Richard

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  9. #504
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    This time using the XLR main outs at the back of mixer and here i need to pull the unit away from the back wall to insure having nicely curved cables. With installation foil shield cable i use its preferable to do it this way, no tight bends, due to foil being more fragile. In normal use i never had a problem with it.

    Btw these XLR outputs have a switchable level control, giving choice between normal +4dbu output or microphone level. The interesting aspect is the mixer can easily be used as a sub mixer to another of the same or a larger one. Simply depress the level switch, run the XLR cables to a pair of mic inputs on the main mixer, adjust trim gain on the latter and you're good to go as with other mic channels on the main console. This gives even more flexibility.

    Moreover, Mackie XLR outs provide 6 db more output (28 DBu) compared to the 1/4" TRS (22 DBu) on the top panel's easy access. In my present limited space setup its a good reason to make me like the use of the balanced 1/4" main outs.

    I tend to prefer the gain structure on the 1/4" main outs instead of the one from XLR main outs. The former is more progressive, smoother on the ear, whereas the latter is more aggressive with a faster increasing level. Most of the time the somewhat lower output TRS is just fine, but in case more juice is needed then its available on XLR.

    Richard

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  10. #505
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    The quarter 1/4" jack and the XLR outs are feed from the same output IC on the 1402. Pin 3 on the XLR is feed from an inverting op amp stage but the in phase op amp feeds both the output connector options. If they sound different you may have other issues.

    Quote Originally Posted by RMC View Post
    ....

    I tend to prefer the gain structure on the 1/4" main outs instead of the one from XLR main outs. The former is more progressive, smoother on the ear, whereas the latter is more aggressive with a faster increasing level. Most of the time the somewhat lower output TRS is just fine, but in case more juice is needed then its available on XLR.

    Richard

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  11. #506
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    Hi Riley,

    RE If they sound different you may have other issues.

    Btw mine is a 1202 VLZ with pots, not a 1402 wich has faders. But it doesn't really matter, i understand your point.

    The 1/4" and the XLR outputs don't sound different, its just that on the XLR outs with 6 db more gain the increase in sound level when turning up the pot is somewhat brutal with unity at say 10 O'clock on pot, compared to 12 O'clock for the 1/4" outs.

    Assuming XLR unity of +4dbu = 1.23 Volt, and since my amps usually require 1 volt for full power output, so shy of 10 O'clock on the master gain pot i'm already "pedal to the metal" sound level wise...

    That's why i tend to like the more progressive (slower) level on 1/4" outs, plus as a bonus there's no need to pull the mixer from the back wall when using that connector...

    Richard
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  12. #507
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    This time using the 1/4" line inputs instead of the mixer's XLR inputs. Had to change cables from DI box to mixer, for XLR to 1/4".

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    Now the small Canon camera delivered a more acceptable picture.

    As predicted by Riley the DI box output signal does require 40 db of gain. This in order to bring such low level to a more respectable and useable one. The two small black Trim knobs (bottom left) are wide open while the next two are turned off. On that day, the first cable pair was for the MD/DI box, the next one for the turntable output (after going through the Bellari/Aphex duo), and the third pair in the stereo channels is for the balanced CD player.

    One may wonder with so much gain available couldn't this be enough for a turntable signal requiring about +30 db? Gain wise yes, however you're still missing a key item: the RIAA equalization curve built into a phono preamp...

    Richard

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  13. #508
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    HOLD, located under the unit, is an accidental operation prevention function. When activated no button operation is possible. It locks the recorder. Might be useful to prevent unauthorized use of the MD leading to screwing up a recording... There's also a choice of three recording modes available as seen on pic.

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    Two sizes of sticking labels fit on a MD. The larger one on the jacket as previously shown, and the smaller size applied directly on the MD housing presented on the next pic. So it depends on your appetite for writing, and if you're allergic to this then remains entering the data right on the Mini Disk.

    Richard

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  14. #509
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    When I closed my warehouse I think I sent a stack of six MD machines to recycling. At its heart its a laptop hard drive medium but without the shock mounted, hermetically sealed housing. What could possibly go wrong? They did admittedly seem like a good idea at the time.

  15. #510
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    Hi Riley,

    Sony probably burned a whole lot of money in MD development costs. Tons of it, since its a sophisticated technology with many possibilities. My small portable one is proof of this i think.

    As i recall, the system was presented in 1992 and stayed on the market for 10+ years. Around 2001 Sony even said the MD was a keeper, swearing it would not abandon the technology. Well, a few years later they had to swallow that back faced with the market reality from competitive devices...

    Technically speaking it remains a good system but probably not one for the average consumer they were targeting.

    Richard
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