NC400 longevity / Stability

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Selarom

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NC400 longevity / Stability
« on: 23 Jan 2015, 04:02 am »
This is mostly for long time owners, but feel free to share your comment if you are not.

This seems to be the most comprehensive nCore forum on the internet, so I thought I'd ask here.

Have you found your amps to perform reliably over this long period of time? No issues at all? Do you have any reason to believe that even with proper care, this amp will not last more than say, 10 yrs?

I would love to build three monos for my front stage, but the investment is substantial for me!

I know I have to buy a case and I have to assemble the thing. But assuming I've done everything by the book, I would like to know if this is the kind of product where you know the thing will last forever. Like a Bryston for example, where they build those things like tanks!

Many Thanks in advance!

poseidonsvoice

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #1 on: 23 Jan 2015, 04:08 am »
So far, yes. I have had mine on CONTINUOUSLY since August 2012. No hiccups or issues.

Best,
Anand.

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #2 on: 23 Jan 2015, 12:48 pm »
Just make sure the modules (and especially the smps) stay cool enough.

dpatters

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #3 on: 23 Jan 2015, 01:21 pm »
Mine have been on for over a year.  The only time I turn them off is when I am on vacation or changing out components/cables.

Don

santacore

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #4 on: 25 Jan 2015, 04:15 am »
Mine have been on for over a year.  The only time I turn them off is when I am on vacation or changing out components/cables.

Don

Same here. Sound great!

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #5 on: 25 Jan 2015, 09:33 am »
Mine have been on for over a year.  The only time I turn them off is when I am on vacation or changing out components/cables.

But do you use nampon/suspend?

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #6 on: 25 Jan 2015, 03:07 pm »
Mine have been on for over a year.  The only time I turn them off is when I am on vacation or changing out components/cables.

I do turn my amps off (using the smps suspend). The reason is simple. Some of the components might have typical life times of 40 years or so at room temperature, but once you reach 50 C (122 F), a pretty normal operating temperature in a non-ventilated enclosure, that lifetime has degraded to maybe 5-10 years continuous use - or 60 years of 4 hours/day every day. I have to say I prefer the 60 years instead of 5 years...
 

Selarom

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #7 on: 9 Feb 2015, 02:50 am »
Thank you all for your replys!

If I'm gonna go this route.. I wanted to know that I can expect to have them for a long long time as I plan to do this and be done with amplifiers. I have Ascend Acoustics Sierra-2 speakers with a custom RAAL ribbon tweeter designed between Ascend and RAAL just for this model. The same is with its Seas' custom "curv" woofer, also just for this model.  It is a very accurate, transparent and fast speaker. Power from the nc400 is probably overkill, but the efficiency, size, speed, transparency, lack of distortion and 125db SNR (silent amp!) are very enticing features for me.

zenpmd

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #8 on: 23 Mar 2015, 07:09 am »
What is smps suspend jw?

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #9 on: 18 Apr 2015, 10:47 am »
What is smps suspend jw?

SMPS standby - pin 1 on connector J1 on a SMPS600.

Rclark

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #10 on: 28 Apr 2015, 04:40 am »
Ready for the definitive answer? Mine are the tour amps, see sticky thread, and I have run them daily ever since. They are as reliable as gravity. They never lose their character, never get too hot, even when I flog them hard, and I'm convinced they will last forever. Might have to change caps in ten years, about it.

One of those products that hits 10's on every checklist point.

spreadspectrum

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #11 on: 7 May 2015, 11:07 am »
Julf,

I have been reading on the SMPS standby option, including several posts from you on the topic.  If I may ask you, can you advise on a simple way to add this option to an nCore build? I get the concept on this, but I am finding implementation challenging.  I understand in your case you use a relay to power a small linear supply to provide the voltage... what about a manual option? 

I guess I am asking for the dummy's guide on this - pardon the dummy.

Thanks.

santacore

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #12 on: 7 May 2015, 10:33 pm »
I believe I just connected the 1 wire to a simple on/off switch.

spreadspectrum

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #13 on: 7 May 2015, 11:58 pm »
I believe I just connected the 1 wire to a simple on/off switch.

By that, are you referring to the nAmpon standby/mute?

Perhaps I should be more specific: I like the idea promoted by Julf and others on using the standby on the smps600 unit. Wiring up solutions is where I am stumbling. For instance, I have found a number of IR enabled latching relays that would supply either 5 or 12 volts. I am good with power to the relay. But the output of most of these has a positive, negative and ground terminal. I presume positive goes to pin 1 on the J1 connector. Is negative tied to ground? This is where my knowledge sputters.

Ryan

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #14 on: 8 May 2015, 08:01 am »
Right. The nCore mute is simple, just a switch to ground. The SMPS standby, that turns the power supply off (and thus the nCore(s) fully off) needs a positive (DC) voltage between 3.3 and 12 V. When the SMPS is powered down, it can't provide that voltage, so you have to have an external supply - but the current is so small, that anything (even a battery or solar cell) will do. I used a small linear supply of 7.5 V.

The switch or relay goes between the positive output of that power supply and the standby pin on the SMPS (J1:1), and the negative output/ground of the power supply goes to the ground/earth/neutral of the SMPS.

spreadspectrum

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #15 on: 8 May 2015, 12:26 pm »
Thank you sir!  Exactly the information I was looking for.

If I may ask a related question... the current relay I have my eye on has common, normally open, and normally closed contacts.  Based upon my very rudimentary knowledge of circuits I would presume that common is to ground and one of the others to J1:1.  Do I have that right?

In addition, do you (or anyone) know what pin J1:2 does?  Is that tied to ground?  In the hypex datasheet, it is listed as "NC."  I could make some guesses, but they would be just that.

Ryan

spreadspectrum

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #16 on: 9 May 2015, 12:39 am »
I think I may not have understood the relay to begin with... the power to the relay is one thing.  Power to J1:1 is what is switched on or off by the relay.   I imagine that in order to use the same power supply, I would have to tap the hot lead from the 12 volt input and route that through the relay switches.

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #17 on: 9 May 2015, 06:42 am »
I think I may not have understood the relay to begin with... the power to the relay is one thing.  Power to J1:1 is what is switched on or off by the relay.   I imagine that in order to use the same power supply, I would have to tap the hot lead from the 12 volt input and route that through the relay switches.

Exactly. How you wire it depends on the circuit driving the relay - but I assume it will activate the relay when you want the amp on, and deactivate it for off (some circuits work the other way, activating the relay for "off"). In that case, wire the +12 V to the common terminal on the relay, and wire the normally closed one to SMPS J1:1.

Julf

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Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #18 on: 9 May 2015, 06:43 am »
In addition, do you (or anyone) know what pin J1:2 does?  Is that tied to ground?  In the hypex datasheet, it is listed as "NC."  I could make some guesses, but they would be just that.

NC means No Connection, so it isn't connected to anything.

spreadspectrum

Re: NC400 longevity / Stability
« Reply #19 on: 17 May 2015, 04:30 pm »
Thought I'd post this here as a followup... I ended up adding a manual smps standby, rather than using an RF enabled relay so as to avoid adding another box to my rack.  Since doing so, I am wondering how long it will be until I learn to hate reaching around each amplifer to switch them in and out of standby...

I realize this kind of circuitry may be pretty basic to most, but as a novice it took me a while to grasp what was needed.  Perhaps it well help someone else.

I am using a regulated AC-DC adapter at 7.4 V.  The output of this is split, each of which connects to a DC barrel connector for which the negative terminal connects to ground and the positive to a paddle switch.  The other connector on the paddle switch goes to pin 1 of the J1 connector block. 

The connector housing for J1: http://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en/EHR-7/455-1005-ND/527229

Crimp terminals for housing: http://www.digikey.com/product-search/en?KeyWords=455-1042-1-ND&WT.z_header=search_go