Virtue guts

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earplay

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Virtue guts
« on: 21 Sep 2009, 03:45 am »
Could someone please post photos of the interior of a Virtue amp?

I'm considering getting one because I like the efficiency, safety and size of the Virtue. I want to see the interior because I had a revelation regarding AuriCaps.

I have a modified Sonic Impact Super T, including among other things, silver wire, Vampire posts and AuriCaps. On a whim, I wanted to try some other caps. I bought a pair of Mundorf MKP's.

The improvement, to my ears, was instant. Greater extension on both ends, more detail, smoother, relaxed and more natural sound. And, very tube-like.

I don't know much about electronics and realize that circuit design is important to the final sound of a product. I am just reporting a surprising result from a listening experience.

The Mundorf's are one-fifth the price of AuriCaps. I have a stock MiniWatt and it's a toss-up as to which amp sounds better.

AuriCaps have a sweet sound, to my ear, but I also detect a harshness that is not present with the Mundorfs. With AuriCaps the sound stage had little depth. The Mundorfs sound natural. They pass the piano test. Notes are appropriately rounded with over- and under-tones. The music is rich, like a really good tube pre has been added. The caps cost me about $4 apiece.

So, photos anyone?

droht

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #1 on: 21 Sep 2009, 05:02 am »
here is one that dcolak posted in another thread:


panomaniac

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #2 on: 21 Sep 2009, 12:42 pm »
Not too hard to swap caps if you can use a soldering iron.

rhing

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #3 on: 21 Sep 2009, 01:27 pm »
earplay,

I am always interested in what ideas others have for improving the sound qualiy of a component through parts upgrades/changes. I considered changing out the Auricaps in my Virtue Two for other caps like Mundorf Silver/Oil or V-Cap OIMP; however, I am enjoying the Virtue Two in its current form so much, I haven't given it any more thought. I will say that the Auricaps have taken many, many hours to really open up and provide great frequency extension along with a wide and deep soundstage. I didn't track the time, but my estimate is that it took over 100 hours. In my system and others where I had my Virtue Two amp playing, I have never heard any harshness. These caps are very smooth and natural in my opinion.

The Mcaps should fit inside the compact and crowded interior of the Virtue chassis. Like Michael Mardis said, you can do this with good soldering skills. I would recommend either insulating the cap leads with Teflon tubing or using Mundorf Silver/Gold hook-up wire to connect the caps to the main circuit board and volume pot PCB.

I have also modded a SI T-amp and there is no comparison between the Virtue Two and the T-amp. The Virtue Two is in a whole different league of performance. I suspect that Virtue's newer versions will be even more refined. I would say the same about comparing the Virtue Two with the Trends TA-10.1 as well.

I have included a shot of my Virtue Two as well. You can compare this to the other photo and see that Virtue's build quality is very consistent. I modified my unit with a 50k logarithmic taper SMD stepped attenuator installed onto the volume pot PCB. This upgrade made a significant improvement in sound quality.


earplay

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Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #4 on: 21 Sep 2009, 04:22 pm »
Thanks guys,

The Virtue looks like a t-amp done right.

You're helping me achieve my goal of a small, safe and good sounding amp.   :thumb:

Maybe Virtue has already done that.

dvenardos

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #5 on: 21 Sep 2009, 06:19 pm »
Yep, now you just have to wait to get one.  :D

Thanks guys,

The Virtue looks like a t-amp done right.

You're helping me achieve my goal of a small, safe and good sounding amp.   :thumb:

Maybe Virtue has already done that.

Cheerwino

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #6 on: 21 Sep 2009, 11:16 pm »
Hey Ear,

Is that you over on the Horn Shoppe forum occasionally? So you have Ed's Horns?

I drive Model 1 Horns with the Virtue One and 130w PS, plus a Cube. The Virtue One will drive it to insane levels if you want to rock out but sounds sweet at lower volumes with softer tunes, too. It's a very nice match.  The addition of the 130w supply is a major upgrade all around and sounds good without the sub. However, I love the boom, so the Cube adds even more but IMHO it is not mandatory as long as you have the 130w supply. So, I would try the big PS before heating up the soldering iron if you have the Horns.

At one point I drove the Horns with two Virtue Ones with 90w supplies and that was quite awesome as well. Two Virtue Ones with 130w supplies would have been to die for. Hey, that sounds like something Michael and Seth might actually sell... :lol:

Now this commentary only applies to the single driver rear-loaded folded horn design of the Horn Shoppe Horns. Your results may vary. To paraphrase Nelson Pass, this amp will not necessarily make you happy. Although, it does bring me joy.  :thumb:

I had a MiniWatt with the Horns for a while. It was very nice for the money, but it just didn't have the punch I prefer. Guess, I'm just a SS/chip fellow.

Wind Chaser

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #7 on: 21 Sep 2009, 11:45 pm »
I had a MiniWatt with the Horns for a while. It was very nice for the money, but it just didn't have the punch I prefer. Guess, I'm just a SS/chip fellow.

My Horns are long gone, but I've given some consideration to the Miniwatt, however I think the Virtue amps are better given more options for speakers.  It's nice to read sound quality comparisons between them and see the Virtue come out on top. 8)

Cheerwino

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #8 on: 21 Sep 2009, 11:48 pm »
I had a MiniWatt with the Horns for a while. It was very nice for the money, but it just didn't have the punch I prefer. Guess, I'm just a SS/chip fellow.

My Horns are long gone, but I've given some consideration to the Miniwatt, however I think the Virtue amps are better given more options for speakers.  It's nice to read sound quality comparisons between them and see the Virtue come out on top. 8)
:bawl:

Aw, man.  :wink:

Wind Chaser

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #9 on: 22 Sep 2009, 12:15 am »
Hey Cheerwino,

Not that it would give the punch of the Virtue, but did your Miniwatt have the latest mod?

Cheerwino

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #10 on: 22 Sep 2009, 01:05 am »
No, I traded it and Ed did the mod for the new owner, so I never heard it with the mod. I don't think it would have changed my decision, though.

I did like it for acoustic stuff in particular. It's a great match for the Horns for the money. I'm not sure it would pair well with more traditional speakers. I never tried it with anything else. Ultimately, I found my Virtue One to be more to my taste.

panomaniac

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #11 on: 22 Sep 2009, 03:23 pm »
Two Virtue Ones with 130w supplies would have been to die for. Hey, that sounds like something Michael and Seth might actually sell...

In fact there are a number of systems like that.  On at least 3 continents - maybe 4.

Cheerwino

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #12 on: 24 Sep 2009, 09:20 pm »
Two Virtue Ones with 130w supplies would have been to die for. Hey, that sounds like something Michael and Seth might actually sell...

In fact there are a number of systems like that.  On at least 3 continents - maybe 4.

Cool. I was thinking about the upcoming Virtue Three with dual mono.

ojof00l

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Re: Virtue input rca jacks
« Reply #13 on: 13 Oct 2009, 08:15 am »
sir seth/michael

which is correct?
notice the red/black input jacks' colors/position

black V1


blue v1



virtue

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Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #14 on: 13 Oct 2009, 03:52 pm »
Haha... and SORRY!!! yours truly put + and - on the input jack silkscreen, instead of LEFT/RIGHT.  Just match the colors on the output of your device regardless of vertical position.  I think this is covered in the user manual.

dvenardos

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #15 on: 13 Oct 2009, 04:04 pm »
According to the manual black is the right channel unlike the red you would be expecting it to be.

ojof00l

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Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #16 on: 13 Oct 2009, 04:52 pm »
Haha... and SORRY!!! yours truly put + and - on the input jack silkscreen, instead of LEFT/RIGHT.  Just match the colors on the output of your device regardless of vertical position.  I think this is covered in the user manual.


http://www.wihifi.com/virtuemanual/Virtue%20ONE-TWO%20User%20Manual.pdf

hey seth, even the owners manual .pdf page 5 picture and labels state >
red= right
black=right  :D


ive always thought that its >
red-right / black-left

panomaniac

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #17 on: 13 Oct 2009, 05:10 pm »
The position and labeling of the inputs was a mess!  The whole +/- thing and red black.
Most of the amps where built with the top RCA corresponding to the top speaker terminals.  But not all where done that way.

It's super simple to check.  Just connect one speaker to the top propeller posts and find which RCA makes it work. Voila!  You have found left.  The other one is right. Oh, and don't try to use the sub out as an input, it won't work.  ;)

ojof00l

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Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #18 on: 13 Oct 2009, 05:14 pm »
no biggie, no problemo senyors :D

im using 2 Virtue ones as monoblocks

bottomline is the excellent sound quality of the V1 amp!

cheers :D

dvenardos

Re: Virtue guts
« Reply #19 on: 13 Oct 2009, 05:20 pm »
Of course, Micheal knows the real deal. My manual says black=right and red=left, but sure enough that is not the case. With the power off just unplug one input and see what speaker the music is coming out of.