Sound systems

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Re: Sound systems

Postby barfle » Wed Jun 18, 2003 8:22 am

annieb, welcome! I, for one, hope to see some more "shoestring" designs. Clearly, the budget spent isn't necessarily a good predictor of the results.

As far as posting a photo is concerned, what's stumping you? If you have a digital image at an accessible place on the Internet, the easy thing to do is use the "image" button just below the window you type your message in. If you have a print photo and need it scanned, there are many scanners on the market for less than $100 that do a credible job.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby OperaTenor » Wed Jun 18, 2003 11:23 am

Hi Analog, welcome. I'd dearly love to see pictures of your concoction as well. Might you be having trouble with web-hosting?

<small>[ 06-18-2003, 12:23 PM: Message edited by: operatenor ]</small>
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Re: Sound systems

Postby analog » Wed Jun 18, 2003 2:03 pm

Have .jpg photo on my hard drive, but cannot figure out how to paste one into this message block. Image block below asks for an internet link instead of a local filename.

I'm just microsoft-challenged - Sure would appreciate a pointer.

<small>[ 06-18-2003, 03:04 PM: Message edited by: analog ]</small>
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Re: Sound systems

Postby barfle » Wed Jun 18, 2003 2:11 pm

analog, you have to have the picture stored at a location that's accessible by the Internet, and your local drives almost certainly do not meet that description. If your Internet Service Provider (ISP, like AOL, Prodigy, NetZero, etc.) give you a place for a personal web page, you can put it there, probably following the instructions they provide you with. That's where, for example, the picture in my profile is located.

If you don't have that available, there are some sites that will let you put pictures up that can be linked to, much like my personal web pages, but I can't really say I know much about them because my prodigy account works just fine.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby OperaTenor » Wed Jun 18, 2003 2:22 pm

Don't feel bad. I recently had to be walked through this whole process by the extremely helpful folks on this board.

The only way you can post a photo is via web-hosting. I believe most Internet Service Providers offer web-hosting as a feature of their service. If your ISP doesn't (mine doesn't), you have to go to a third party service, which entails (correct me if I'm wrong anyone) setting up your own website, if only for the purpose of caching photos. There are several web-hosting services out there, and IMO you get what you pay for. I settled on www.100megs24.com, which costs me $100 a year for 100 megs of space to fill on my site. Eventually I think I'll fart around with building a website, but for now I'm just using it to warehouse images. But I digress... There will be tools to transfer images from your computer to your site, and once there you access them through their unique address at your site.

After setting up your site, you post images on the b.com bulletin board by clicking on the image button next to the smilies in the "Post A Reply" window. You'll get a field where you type in the complete address (url) of your image at your site. Sorry if this sounds like Computer for Dummies, but that's the only way I can understand it. I think it's a lot of work up front, but it's worth it to be able to communicate better. Hope it helps.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby dkm32 » Wed Jun 18, 2003 4:55 pm

Keep in mind that there are free places that you can stuff picture for displaying. Yahoo! geocities is one. Now, I'm not recommending you use them for your webite/webpages. I'm thinking about moving my website somewhere else for several reasons, but, if you don't have a big bunch of stuff and low access to the stuff, it's a place to put it for free.

There are a couple others. Also, check your ISP. Earthlink provides lots of room! 10mb per e-mail address...I have 80MB with them just becasue they are my ISP. If your ISP provides the ability to build website/webpages, then you can use that.

XDrive (http://www.xdrive.com/) offers 75 Megabytes for $4.95 per month.

Mind you, I'm not promoting any of these, just letting you know there are lots of options out there...shop around!

<small>[ 06-18-2003, 06:01 PM: Message edited by: dkm32 ]</small>
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Re: Sound systems

Postby analog » Sun Jun 22, 2003 1:48 pm

Well ! Thanks to you kind folks I learned a new trick. Not bad for this old dawg.

here's a pipe-tee speaker, of course there are two of these on shelf above computer..... <img src="http://home.centurytel.net/oldjimh/pipetee.jpg" alt=" - " />

and the little amp, glued into a sardine can , is velcroed to CRT.

<img src="http://home.centurytel.net/oldjimh/hobbyamp.jpg" alt=" - " />

Rich sound astonishes everyone - incongruous with looks of it... of course B.Com streams all day.

Thank you Barfle, Oper, and DKM for the help posting photos.

<small>[ 06-23-2003, 12:19 PM: Message edited by: analog ]</small>
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Re: Sound systems

Postby Szereck » Thu Jul 03, 2003 12:32 am

Here is the setup that my dad has.
Speakers: Avalon Acoustics Eidolon

Preamp: Jeff Rowland Design Group Synergy IIi

Phono Preamp: Jeff Rowland Design Group Cadence

Amp: 2x Jeff Rowland Design Group Model 12

CD Transport: Spectral Audio SDR-3000

CD DAC: Spectral Audio SDR-2000

I'm not sure of the make and model of his turntable, tone arm, and cartridge. Nor am I sure of the make and model of his tuner.

The room with his stereo in it is acousticly treated with devices called DAADs (Diffusion Absorbtion Acoustic Device) which make the setup sound so much better.

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Re: Sound systems

Postby BenODen » Mon Jul 07, 2003 12:45 am

:eek: Oh my! That's some high end stuff I'm thinking! Two piece CD players... Who knew!?
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Re: Sound systems

Postby analog » Mon Jul 14, 2003 2:49 pm

Mind you my last venture into higher end fidelity was in 1963 when i stumbled across a Motorola design and replicated one of their 50 watt vacuum tube amps. It was ahead of its time - had a third channel "subwoofer" with push-pull 6BQ5's. Sounded great for many years, but eventually was done in by insulation failure on output transformers.

The little ten watt pipe-tee system I described above was an experiment to improve the sound quality of B.com in our office. (We had an enlightened boss who tolerated creative tinkering.) The amp is IC based (TDA2009). It sounded so good that several folks built copies, but it's obviously not audiophile ...

I certainly enjoyed perusing Rowland's writeup from above post of audiophile stuff. I was pleased to see IC power amplifiers, and surprised by the switching power supplies.

Since you guys are obviously well versed, let me ask - I recently inherited several hundred vinyl albums from a distant uncle, an audiophile. They look so pristine I hate to put a stylus down on them. Is anyone aware of a non-contacting playback device (optical?) for vinyl records? What do you do to preserve your old albums?
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Re: Sound systems

Postby barfle » Mon Jul 14, 2003 5:05 pm

I've heard of a laser pickup for records being made, but I really couldn't say that it exists anywhere. Someone else may have facts about it, but I believe at this point it's just an urban legend.

There really shouldn't be any noticeable damage from a decent record player, cartridge, and stylus. The state of the art in those got to be pretty good, and quite gentle on the vinyl as long as you used reasonable care. Records were manufactured for the great unwashed masses, you realize.

I simply play my records with the same old record player I bought back in 1968, a Benjamin Miracord 50H. I use a Shure V15 Type 5 MR, and I inspect the stylus about once every six months to a year for wear. My records are holding up pretty good. I just keep them reasonably clean, don't let them sit in the sun or get too warm, and I've had excellent results.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby OperaTenor » Mon Jul 14, 2003 5:31 pm

Hi Barfle, I have a "Discwasher" kit, complete with the little ion gun for removing the static charge from the records. Was that stuff just a gimmick, or does it really work? The ion gun seems to make a difference to me, but I'm not so sure about the Discwasher.

My older brother used to hand wash his records in the sink with dish soap, using his bare hands so as to not scratch the records. Another wacky idea?
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Re: Sound systems

Postby barfle » Tue Jul 15, 2003 7:05 am

A discwasher is pretty good, but the old washing them by hand in the sink is what I usually do when I encounter a record that has been allowed to get dirty. I use a soft hand soap or liquid hand soap, and use my fingertips to wash and rinse the disc. I use a cloth diaper with the seams ripped out (*&^$! polyester threads) to dry it off. I'm cautious about getting the label wet, but it happens sometimes and I haven't had any labels peel off any records made since I was born (I definitely have records older than I am, and that's saying something!).

The zerostat is a decent tool for depleting the static charges that can build up on a piece of vinyl. That static tends to attract dust and can also discharge through the stylus (it would have to be quite a charge, though, to go through a diamond) which would make quite a nasty pop. That's only a problem here during the winter, when it's too cold to have any static dissipating humidity, just the opposite of where the smart people live in SoCal. Actually, I had very little issue with static on my records when I lived in Orange County, CA, which was where I did most of my record collecting and playing.

I also have a vacuum cleaner for my records, but it tends to build up dust and tends to spread it around more than cleaning it off. Every record I play, I use a velvet pad to wipe off before the stylus touches the surface. Velvet has all those soft little fibers sticking perpendicular to the surface, and they tend to get down into the grooves and pick up whatever might be in there.

My cartridge has what's called a "dynamic stabilizer." It's actually a small brush just ahead of the stylus that holds the cartridge in place on the surface of the disc a little better than just the stylus would. It picks up dust, too, but in order to do that job better, it would have to be behind the stylus, so the record would pass under stylus just after the brush, instead of almost a full rotation later.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby treebeau » Tue Jul 15, 2003 10:14 am

Hey anyone,

I have a problem. I hadn't used a turntable in over 10 years and the one I have is probably over 20 years old. The belt was so old and brittle that it disintegrated. So, I recently got a new belt. I cleaned up all the old residue with rubbing alcohol and installed the new belt.

Now, the turntable has 2 speeds, 33 and 45. It doesn't sound like the speed is correct for either setting. Songs sound too fast on LPs. So, I was wondering if I need to lubricate something, where, and with what? I am thinking of a spray lithium grease somethere.

Who knows and can help?

Thanks and regards,
Tim B.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby OperaTenor » Tue Jul 15, 2003 10:54 am

Barfle's probably more the man on this than me, but I've tinkered with my turntables in the past and could usually end up with them working properly with no parts left over.

I would be very careful about spraying lube in there. If it gets on a sheave or the belt it will slip and then you've got a whole new set of problems (and I don't think you can ever get the belt clean again). Are you sure you have the proper belt? My experience has been if the speed's not right, it's because the belt is the wrong size. Too fast was usually due to the belt being too tight.

I hope that helps.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby barfle » Tue Jul 15, 2003 11:25 am

Tim, I would first verify that the speed was incorrect, which you can do either with a strobe light (or a fluorescent fixture) and one of those records with all the little dashes arranged radially on the outside edge of the label (they should not be moving), or with a record with a tone of known frequency and a frequency counter (probably more expensive).

If it turns out that it's wrong, I would suspect that you installed the belt incorrectly, it's the wrong belt, or you are still missing a piece or two. Lube for something running too fast seems counterproductive to me.

Another possible issue: The player was designed for use in countries where the power is 50Hz, and you're running it in a 60Hz country. That will make a BIG difference in the speed (20%!). Most players that are intended to work under both conditions will have two capstan shafts of different diameter. If so, you want the smaller one.

<small>[ 07-15-2003, 12:28 PM: Message edited by: barfle ]</small>
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Re: Sound systems

Postby analog » Tue Jul 15, 2003 4:05 pm

:confused:
Tim - simple things first.
The strobe check is a great idea to confirm speed.

Too fast sounds like the belt may be simply running on a "too fat" part of the drive pulley. Look at the motor pulley carefully - does it have two different diameters where the belt can engage? If so the belt probably belongs on the smaller diameter. Were I a builder of turntables, I'd machine the drive pulley with two diameters (in the ratio 6 to 5), so it'd work on 50 or 60 hz. 60 hz being faster takes the smaller diameter.

If this is a servo turntable see if you can figure out how it senses its own speed - look for a loose wire or something interfering with speed measurement, like a dead bug in an opto-coupler.

As for lubrication what I'd use is light oil, and SPARINGLY, on the bearing at center of turntable. A small drop of sewing machine oil or three-in-one is plenty. The little drive motors usually have lifetime oiled bronze bushings - lifetime being ten or twenty years. Again a SMALL drop of light oil applied with a toothpick is good. Probably you'll have to remove decades of dust to reach the shaft.. Qtips.

I mix a few drops of power steering or automatic transmission fluid with three-in-one household oil. The auto lubricants have lots of anti-corrosoin additives, but by themselves are a bit heavy for such light machinery.

As to greasing a changer mechanism - spray goes everywhere, so I'd use a Q-tip instead. Any boat store should have a tube of white grease.

Good luck, & let us know what youu find!
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Re: Sound systems

Postby treebeau » Wed Jul 16, 2003 2:26 pm

Thanks all,

Who wants to come visit and figure it out for me? Although I am pretty handy with most things I typically punt when it comes to electronic and/or electrical gear. Have busted my fair share of VCRs trying to so something simple.

The belt is supposedly the correct size. I went to a web site and searched for my turntable, then used the size the table recommended. It is just a big, weak rubber band to my thinking. I slid it onto the platter then reached inside a cutout, pinched a little bit, pulled and slipped it over the drive shaft. I checked it to see that it was running straight and smooth with no twists.

The drive shaft has two diameters. There is a plastic mechanism next to that that goes up and down depending on the lever that switches from 45 to 33. Like the derailleur for switching gears on a 10 speed bike, really. Pretty simple.

Here's what happens. I put it in 45 and watch it spin awhile. Then I shift if to 33. There is a bit of a groaning sound (not me) which makes me think some lubricating is in order, and the platter does slow down, but not what I would consider enough.

I don't have any tools for checking the speed and am not excited about opening it up to make any adjustments or cleaning. Around the base of the drive spindle there is a yellowish powder. I don't know what it is, or where it could have come from, but it looks like sawdust. A vacuum cleaner applied lightly did not suck it up, so I think it must be a little sticky.

But, I suppose I'll have to open it up soon. I have some one-of-a-kind albums that I want to put onto CDs, so this turntable needs to get fixed.

Regards,
Tim B.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby analog » Wed Jul 16, 2003 9:00 pm

Well Trebeau - dont feel bad I never had much luck with VCR's either. When they quit I let the kids take them apart, kept them entertained for hours.

Do you have a wristwatch with a secondhand? Or one of those fancy ones with a stopwatch built in?
Just lay a penny on that turntable and time 100 turns. 33&1/3 RPM should be exactly three minutes , and 45 RPM = 2minutes&13.3sec.

That's probably your next step.
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Re: Sound systems

Postby treebeau » Thu Jul 17, 2003 8:28 am

Good idea !!!

Thanks and regards,
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