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PostPosted: 08 Mar 2011, 10:54 
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Joined: 09 Feb 2011, 15:25
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Hello Music Lovers,

I recently purchased a pair of AudioSource 5.3a monoblock amps which I like very much.....But, I also love to tweek things. I have heard that upgrading the coupling caps is a good mod that isn't too involved and yields substantial gains in audio quality.....The problem is I'm a total "noob" and don't know how to identify which ones are the coupling caps......Could someone give me some pointers on how to determine which of the caps is the coupling capacitor.....And maybe some opinions on possible replacements? Thanks in advance for your insight.-Rusty


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PostPosted: 10 Mar 2011, 11:08 
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Joined: 28 May 2008, 21:53
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Location: Winnipeg, CANADA
Hi Rusty, welcome to the forum.

If you can post a schematic of the amp, we can point you to the caps that would be good candidates to upgrade. Also, a photo of the insides may help too.

Cheers

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PostPosted: 12 Mar 2011, 13:45 
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Joined: 09 Feb 2011, 15:25
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Gio,

I have requested a copy of the schematic from the manufacturer, but received no reply. I really don't know where to get one otherwise. Could you give me some suggestions?

Thanks.-Russ


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PostPosted: 12 Mar 2011, 16:01 
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Joined: 08 May 2009, 08:20
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Location: Duesseldorf, Germany
Hi Russ,

with or without the schematics you'll have to take the amplifier apart to locate the input capacitors and to swap the components.
One chance to pimp the amp is open the enclosure and take some good and detailed shots from the inside and the components.
The input capacitor usually locates near by the signal input path (input connector / solder point) and the rest can be seen on the shots.

:2c: You play with your warranty if you change the components :2c:

Locating the input shouldn't be a problem.

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Cheers,
Tom.

Some of my projects: TDA2050 Chip Amp, the LM3886 Gainclone Thread and the Szekeres Headamp Thread.


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PostPosted: 13 Mar 2011, 13:00 
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Joined: 09 Feb 2011, 15:25
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Thanks for your input Tom,

I'll have to crack one open and do as you say.....I remember reading an article years ago in....I think in "Audio" magazine that outlined how to do this mod and I believe I remember reading that the fact that the coupling caps are non-polar made identification easier as there are relatively few of them in the typical amp circuit.....

As for the warranty.....This amp has been discontinued and I bought mine "new old stock" from a seller on ebay......I doubt they were ever covered since i have had them.

I'll try to take some shots and I would appreciate it if you would take a look and give me your thoughts on how to best "pimp" them out....Thanks again....-Russ


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PostPosted: 05 Oct 2011, 13:25 
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Joined: 09 Feb 2011, 15:25
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Hello Again....

I finally got some pictures taken of the inside of my amps.....It's not that easy getting clear shots of all areas of the circuit boards.....And there is one yhat mounts on the front panel that would have to be removed to photograph the circuit components and layout.

I can certainly take more specific areas if necessary. Thanks in advance for any insight you can give me. Please show me how to "Pimp" these amps!!-RAA

I hope the following link works.....It's been a while since I did this....

http://www.flickr.com/photos/euphonyamerican/


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PostPosted: 05 Oct 2011, 14:18 
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Joined: 09 Feb 2011, 15:25
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One other thing.....The link to Flickr seems to be working but doesn't allow zooming in.....The photos are of high resolution so if you download them you can get a much closer look....Thanks everybody again-RAA


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PostPosted: 05 Oct 2011, 14:23 
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......And yet another thing......If you save these photos save them as "Large"......This will give the necessary detail.....and Thanks yet again!!-RAA


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PostPosted: 06 Oct 2011, 02:38 
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Location: Duesseldorf, Germany
Hi Russ,

the photographs are very good! I would say that the input connectors run from the XLR / RCA jack to the circuit board in front of the amplifier (volume control / remote) and then back to the main PCB.
The input on the main PCB should be the molex plug with the red / white / black wires (above the LDR).
The input coupling caps seem to be the two small "back-to-back" electrolytic caps below the molex connector / LDR.
I am very sure there are no film capacitors used on the input. I am also very sure that the amp includes a symmetrical input which makes it a little complicated.

Now - it is not clearly visible on the photographs where the tracks run from the input. At this point it is a pure game of guessings.

Are you very sure to go further? A lot of work and patience will(!) be needed to change the input capacitors.
Also i would like to verify the input tracks first. The back-to-back solution is very common and really seems to be used on this amps.
But, this are speculations and should be verified first (by view on the tracks)...
You will need to take the complete amp boards apart from the enclosures and i can't imagine that a capacitor upgrade would change the sound a lot.
One of the problems on this amps could be the space between the components. Film type capacitors (depending on the used size) can be very large.
It is going to be very fiddly and the results maybe are not worth the efforts... imo.

As said - you will not be ready "on the fly"...

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Cheers,
Tom.

Some of my projects: TDA2050 Chip Amp, the LM3886 Gainclone Thread and the Szekeres Headamp Thread.


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PostPosted: 06 Oct 2011, 09:26 
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Joined: 09 Feb 2011, 15:25
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Hi Tom,

First I want to thank you for taking the time to analyze the circuitry in my amp....The ease with which you sorted it out is very impressive.....

I am a total "noob" when it comes to electronics and while I am intent on learning your reluctance to tackle this mod makes me wonder if it's above my "pay grade". I am usually good with intricate fiddly things and I think I could pull it off if it was a do or die proposition, but your reluctance makes me think twice. I am curious why you feel the improvement wouldn't be worth much effort. Don't get me wrong, I totally respect your opinion so I am thinking you may feel that this amp is of questionable design or quality......After all they only cost me $160 apiece so I wasn't expecting that they were Krells...Ha!!

I would really appreciate your insight on this amp....I know without a schematic or the ability to view the traces on the circuit boards that you will have to make some assumptions and guesses....But I have faith that your experience and knowledge will be mostly spot on.....If you could just evaluate what are, in your opinion, its pros and cons and where you feel the most effective improvements could be made I would really appreciate it.

Thanks again Tom!!-Russ


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