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Roger, that's one of the reasons I enjoy the Music Reference forum. I learn something almost every time I visit. Quite a few years ago, I picked up a PS Audio II amp. It was known for being among the first amps to bypass a bunch of caps with various film types. Being curious, young, foolish, and probably voiding the warranty, I removed some of the bypass caps to try them in a couple of other circuits. I did notice that the other circuits did not sound better, but after removal, the PS did. I didn't understand why. Now I do. Thank you.
Thank you Steve. I agree and I will always use good reliable parts. The Boutique capacitor market has gotten out of hand in price, reliability and fantastic claims. Here is an technical argument against them for anyone to use. 1. Since a coupling cap has no signal voltage across it the dielectric absorption makes no difference at all. Low DA is the main claim of sonics.2. Since a coupling cap conducts virtually no current (typically 1-10 microamps) its series resistance (ESR) and series inductance is of no consequence.3. As long as there is no DC leakage the materials of the capacitor are of no consequence. We could say the materials are immaterial. 4. I have seen too many Boutique capacitors fail. I presume this is due to the lack experience in small new companies making them. I recently met some one who loves Duelund cast caps. However he says they fail in about a year. He uses them as coupling caps in a 300B amplifier. These might be the most egregious of the business at $185 for a 0.1/630 volt. http://www.partsconnexion.com/capacitor_film_duelund_pio_electonic.htmlI recently replaced two silver caps with the logo SK where the S was over the K. I cannot find the maker of these caps. They were in the JADIS JA-200 and had shorted. Does anyone know this brand?
Thanks for the kind reply. Of all my dealers I was closest to Brooks. I knew him before he had his own store. Tom is a great tech and his stories about ARC are true. Everyone suffers when ARC breaks, which it does all too often. Power tubes should never be on circuit boards, too much heat for any kind of PCB lifetime.
Well said! I had a ARC D115II that was an absolute pain to maintain. Lots of problems.Speaking of caps, I have Mundorf Silver/Gold caps in these, and the amps sound fantastic! They put out 110 watts each into a 4 ohm tap pentode. I used to think pentode was not able to provide superior sonics. This amp proved me wrong. Sounds way better than any tube amps I've owned to date. The Mundorfs are a big part of that sound.
This might be interesting reading for those wanting to "play" with caps. I would be interested in what Roger or other EE's think of the article. It seems pretty spot on to me.Kenhttp://sound.westhost.com/articles/capacitors.htm
Thank you Ken..I really really like this guy. I hope to I meet him someday. Unlike the specious claims of premium cap, everything he says is TRUE. It's a long read but I got his message early on and I will quote the end. One thing you can count on ... if anyone wants to sell you 'special' capacitors, designed to replace 'inferior' types (such as polyester, PET, Mylar®, etc.), then you know that there is a problem. These vendors are cashing in on the audio snake-oil bandwagon.
In the Cheap and Cheerful HiFi circle, specificfully the TPA3110 andTPS3116 thread, upgrades in caps are generally considered necessary to draw the best sound out of the amps. http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=122011.msg1342664;boardseen#newSo is the predominant view here is that they're all wasting their time and have defective hearing? Or all of them just deluded and hearing the placebo effect? There's also many over on diyaudio who are also deluded and weak minded. To say that caps never make an audio difference is a gross overstatement, IMO. At some point you have to trust your ears.
Does the audio signal pass through a coupling cap? Why do I hear changes in sound quality between different caps?
I have a new tube preamp which has a balance knob. Say I wanted to compare the output caps of this preamp. Would it be ok for me to simply use the stock cap on one side, a different cap on the other side and run a mono signal to both inputs? Then I could switch between channels using the balance knob.
There are those over on the AVS forum who say that all amps sound the same. You might as well go with the cheapest amp because the only important spec. is the power output. Pro amps like the iNuke are the favorite over there. Many also claim that tubes just add distortion so SS is the only way to go.
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