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An Exercise in SPEED (Read 6621 times)
Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #50 - 03/25/18 at 16:19:53
 
Well, the ZMA is back in the stable and new caps are burning in.  Obviously not ready to fully comment, but three things were immediately apparent.  

#1) I did not destroy the ZMA in this process...  Hallelujah!!  
#2 & #3 to come later.  But I will say, these caps are not coming out.  No way, no how.
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will
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #51 - 03/25/18 at 19:08:27
 
Nice!
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stone_of_tone
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #52 - 03/29/18 at 17:27:49
 
I deleted a post from yesterday....because I'm rethinking this..... .

I do look forward to your posts Jeff....I'm just apprehensive about actually doing it. I have a competent soured to do it...however, I might keep my ZMA as is and turn my attention to an UFO Rachel. I don't like the current stock/& going the way of the Dodo bird - of 6P15P's and reg tubes. Having a Rach' gives me Pentodes back in Triode...plus, the mighty nuanced ZMA.

Jeff....but still, look forward to your next post about your mod. I have obviously been intrigued since the beginning of this Thread... .
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #53 - 03/29/18 at 17:57:05
 
Fully understand Stone.  And to be quite frank, I don’t think I would recommend it for your ZMA - or any ZMA still under warranty.  This has nothing to do with the mod itself, and everything to do with voiding your lifetime warranty, and preventing any future upgrades Steve designs for this amp.

That being said, I am pretty astounded by what my amp is doing with these caps.  The bass improvement is pretty shocking.  I would say the density of the sound improvement overall is immediately noticeable.  But the mid-bass and bass improvement is undeniable in my opinion.  It is ballsier, tighter and more dynamic.  As a matter of fact, I had a frightening moment when I first fired up the ZMA with the new mod.  The bass sounded awful.  If was bloated and overstated.  My stomach sank as I was certain I turned my beloved ZMA into a paper weight.  Luckily, only after a few minutes of agony, I realized I had the ZROCK engaged.  I switched the ZROCK to bypass and the sound became glorious.  

I have over 50 hours on the amp and what I have determined is, with these new caps the ZMA is capable of leaching out every drop of goodness from solid recordings in a way it was not able to prior.  This is true to the extent that with great recordings, the ZROCK generally make the ZMA sound worse.  However, bad recording on the ZMA sound really bad - moreso than before the mod.  And with bad recordings, the ZROCK is invaluable.  I will essentially be using the ZROCK as it was originally intended, that is “as needed” rather than all of the time.  The ZMA is just too transparent to be able to use it on most well recorded material.  

From my tour of reference material, the imaging is better, both front to back, and side to side. In my system, I always felt the Torii MKIV had the edge on the ZMA in this department.  Not anymore!  Instrument separation is vastly improved.  I have purposely been throwing some incrediblly dynamic material with extreme transient demand and this amp has not faultered.  It is damn impressive!  And not just in the lower frequencies.  The highs sparkle.  The detail in this frequency range is even more revealing and transparent.  

So far, with respect to the SPEED I was intending, and hoping to improve....    I don’t believe anyone with a ZMA would argue that that amp hasn’t transcended in this regard.  
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stone_of_tone
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #54 - 03/29/18 at 18:18:15
 
Sound advice Jeff, thanks.
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #55 - 03/30/18 at 17:28:58
 
Ive got  KT88’s back in.  

One other thing that has become apparent with late night listening is the amp is more detailed at lower volumes.  I still like to crank the amp up when disturbing the sleep of others in not a concern.  But at night when I have to keep the volume lower, the perceived detail and complexity of the music is improved with these new caps.
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #56 - 04/07/18 at 18:29:31
 
At this point, I have done enough listening to form my conclusion on this modification project.  While I spent about $1700 in various upgrades (connections, wiring, Type II caps, etc.) to my ZMA just prior to this power capacitor experiment, the marginal improvement from that effort is a mere fraction compared to the evolution in sound this power capacitor modification accomplished.  

I am still floored by the difference.  The improvements in imaging, detail, and realism put this ZMA in a new class.  I have to rename it “ZMA2”.   It cost me about $680 in parts and another $300 in labor, but my satification with its SQ has doubled.  So, the ROI was more than recovered.  Honestly, I am still shocked by what I am hearing.  Not subtle.  And as far as scrapping the six 47uF electrolytics for the Mundorf TubeCaps, I can detect no apparent consequences or losses - only marked improvements (coupled with the large capacitor replacement).

Witnessing what can be accomplished by tinkering with the power chain in this amplifier, there is no doubt in my mind whatever route Steve decides to take with his approach, it will yield a marked improvement in the amplifier’s performance.  How will it compare to the performance of my amplifier?  Who knows.  The large 4400uF capacitors I installed were 4 times the cost of the stock ZMA capacitors which are no match when it comes to ESL and ESR performance ratings.  These are Mundorf capacitors with design and testing specific to audio.  Even with keeping the 47uF electrolytics and bypassing them with film caps, there still may be improvements to be had replacing the large caps with a higher quality, better performing option.  But they are not cheap.  Just something to think about.  

But I still assert that if your amplifier is under warranty, I would not make any moves until Steve has had an opportunity to perform his R&D on the power supply chain.  This amplifier has more to give, I am certain of that.  So, if you could achieve those gains from the “factory” and keep the valuable lifetime warranty intact, that is the route I would absolutely consider first.  

Without a shred of uncertainty, what I am getting out of this amp now has cemented my promise to never part with my beloved ZMA - of course until I must hand it down to some worthy recipient when that time in life comes.  

Well, that’s a wrap folks!
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #57 - 04/07/18 at 18:51:27
 
Great news Jeff!
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HockessinKid
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #58 - 04/07/18 at 19:06:51
 
Jeff,

Thanks for sharing your news on the ZMA modifications.  While I am enamored with the 25th Anniversary amplifier Steve has built, I really love my ZMA.  I hope you will provide Steve an opportunity to hear the modified amp and let him decide if an upgrade path is warranted from a business stand point.

If the Mundorf capacitors and additional electrolytics bring the ZMA close to the anniversary amp, that would be wonderful.  I for one would definitely be interested in purchasing this upgrade from Decware, if priced around $1K or so.  

At this juncture in life, it's just hard for me to justify having two amps for my dedicated two-channel system.  Anyway, just wanted to share my thoughts FWIW.  Enjoy your modified ZMA.

HK
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stone_of_tone
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #59 - 04/07/18 at 20:23:20
 
I read ya HK. I can't justify another amp in my Listening Room. I have grad presents to dole out to my deserving daughter (High School) and Son (Stanford).

However, as Jeff stated about my warranty and I want the creator to do it - if he see's fit for it and not placebo, in our ZMA's. I look forward to reading about the 25th and the Mono's 325. I can wait till Steve explores the ZMA and at 1k or so for the deemed enhancement - I agree.

.....and from reading Jeff's most recent post....I doubt it is placebo. Jeff's ears on Reel to Reel with our ZMA and the Tape Tour.... I had in my Room....I look forward.....this ZMA of ours.....Special.
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stone_of_tone
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #60 - 04/08/18 at 14:18:14
 
......I should have had Steve add Balanced inputs when I had her in last year for backlit meters & bullet proof resistors. ....so, come late summer or fall and Steve feels the ZMA could benefit from an power supply and/or bypass enhancement.....I'm springing for the XLR's too. The voltage output/RCA, BY DESIGN of my ZDSD drives into my ZMA exquisitely. However, I want to drive some other DAC'S/Pre, DIRECTLY into my ZMA via Balanced. (ZBIT, has not been forgotten providing adjustability. However, I will have adjustability in the DAC'S analog domain output, then, running through the added XLR gain/direct to ZMA as I prefer).

Being a Kimber Select Dynamic contrast & Tonal color's member/I could never go back to anything else.....I need to budget for too (XLR IC)!

Till then, let's get this 25th, Mono 3/25th & CSP3 upgrade done DAMMIT Grin, so I can get my ZMA in for my enhancements/late this year.




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***************************************************
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #61 - 04/08/18 at 17:00:14
 
I think the balanced inputs would be a great feature on your ZMA Stone.  I do remember Steve discussing the superiority of the balanced inputs on the ZMA when he connected his Otari tape machine while voice the amp.  It would be an absolute worthwhile investment I am sure.  I did consider it at one point, particularly when I sent it back last the have the laundry list of upgrade parts installed.  But with my Ultra being unbalanced, I could not figure out a way I could practically use the balanced inputs the way my system is laid out.  Turned out fine as Steve used the balanced input holes to mount the WBT RCA input jacks.  

With your balanced outputs on your other sources, it will be a hoot to tinker with the various characters each one will present through the ZMA.  Fun stuff!

And nice to read Steve’s journey as he discovers more applications for the 25th Anniversary mod.  I feel there are several looking for that level of improvement on their higher wattage Decware amps.  And as I stated prior, I know he will find a suitable solution for this ZMA.  For the sake of your enjoyement, may that come sooner rather than later!  ;)

Until then, keep on, keepin’ on.
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #62 - 04/08/18 at 17:45:53
 
I remember asking Steve about adding balanced jacks to my ZMA but he thought the ZBIT was a better way to go.  Of course, with the high dollar interconnects Stone uses, that may not be the case always.
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #63 - 04/09/18 at 17:26:52
 
Jeff, yes, ...when at Decware, I think it will be a nice addition/option/XLR inputs~for my balanced outputs from other sources, to have in my ZMA.

Arch, I was fortunate to get the KS6063 to go with my KS1030 when I did. I sold a bunch of stuff/audio related in 2015 and Joe, at the Cable Co. knew I had KS3033 for 15 years in my System and I also owned from Joe the KS3035. He had a mint/demo pair of the 6063's I could not refuse to try (and at the price we settled on). After a comparison of my 3033 vs. my 3035 vs. the 6063....KS6063 won! Incredible combination; the KS1030 & KS6063's with my Decware. I'm spoiled, ...and anything else I try falls short.
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #64 - 05/08/18 at 14:44:39
 

I'm interested in your progress, Jeff, and I'm really glad the caps didn't speed it up to the point of being harsh. Knowing what caps you used I wasn't expecting that - I said what I said previously just as an anecdote. Sometimes you *can* have too much of a good thing.

I posted when those giant caps went on sale a year or two ago, and was tempted to pull the trigger - but these big red nuclear power plant caps were difficult for me to give up!

I'm still tempted to do this upgrade, I'm just kind of concerned that if I do these mods, and Steve comes up with something different, it's just going to be gutted for whatever he comes up with.

I can't really afford to do this mod twice...hell, I can't afford to do it once.  :)  
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #65 - 05/08/18 at 15:53:41
 
Yeah LR, those big Mundorf Mylitics are pretty amazing caps, but I can't say that those alone would do the trick - only because I didn't do my modification in stages.  The (6) .47uF TubeCaps are even more impressive than the Mylitic's from an engineering perspective, in my opinion.  

However, Steve may not have a problem with the large Mylitic's in place when doing his mod, as they are electrolytic and while much better performers than stock, not a huge departure in topology.  

I can't tell you how happy I am with the outcome of this power chain mod on my ZMA.  Dollar-for-dollar, the best addition/change in the amplification department, aside from purchasing the ZMA in the first place.  

But like I told Stone, with Steve intent on reworking this area of the ZMA, I can't say it makes sense to invest make any moves at this point.  Although, I still think that replacing the stock large caps with the Mylitics might still offer improvements, giving Steve even a stronger base to start with on your amp.
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stone_of_tone
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #66 - 05/08/18 at 16:24:15
 
Yes, I was so torn.....having Jeff PM or email the mod pics, et al. Go ahead here and have done.

However, not just to keep my warranty.....I want the Zen Master's journey with her...and maybe those resistor's in the 25th Thread Steve speaks of (as an option/if applicable), can end up in the ZMA (the limited quantity he can obtain)? Or, a better alternative-meeting diminishing returns.

What other discoveries, he might implement (as I eluded to over in the 25th Thread as well)?  
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Jeff of Arabica
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #67 - 06/29/18 at 06:54:15
 
Got my ZMA back from the shop on Monday.  Replaced the (4) 330K signal path resistors with Shinkoh tantalum non-magnetic resistors as well as the the (2) 100K and (2) 82K plate resistors with Audio Note tantalum non-magnetics.  Finally, I replaced the 330ohm output tube grid resistors with 2W versions of the Audio Note tantalums.  

Been burning all of these babies in with all of my usual reference/test material since I got her back Monday afternoon   Shocked

Pics of the 2W resistors, before and after...


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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #68 - 07/01/18 at 01:03:00
 
Sounds fun Jeff. I look forward to hearing about these highly respected resistors burnt in!

Seems we are a similar track. Resistors are amazingly influential little things, so wanting to get to know them I finally bought quite a few popular samples to compare, though didn't go there on the new version Audio Notes. Probably should have gotten a few.

My last resistor foray was basic, maybe a year and half ago in the Torii. I tried Takman metal and carbon films, Kiwame carbon film, Arcol carbon, and PRP metals, .5 and 1 and 2 watt. I like the carbon caps Steve uses, but wanted to see what other resistors could do. The areas I was working then, stock metal films were nicely upgraded with TC50 PRPs from soniccraft, quick and easy. Jeff at soniccraft said they are better sounding than more typical TC100s, and having done a little test a long time ago, I recall agreeing. I find the PRP a straight forward and natural sounding metal film resistor. The rest from that test I found interesting, but more demanding due to having more obvious “signatures,” and whether I liked them depended on location and often on mixing them in series to get value while combining sonic traits. But the PRPs were innocuously clear, dynamic, extended and neutral, with a smooth and not overstated warmth… easy.

Then the last few months, having improved CSP3 connectors and volume, found bypass synergy for the power supply, and bypassed the coupling caps, I finally dug in to wires (signal and power), a challenging balancing act, ending up with variations of OCC silver, pure silver and copper, and OCC silver gold. Then I started in on resistors, the CSP3 a good place to explore being simple and lightweight!

I now have a small selection of Shinkohs, two types of Amtrans, two types of Caddocks, Vishay naked Z-foils, TDK 2W metal, and PRP along with the Takmans and Kiwames I found interesting, but generally a little too “flavored.” Speaking of which, .75 Amtran's Carbon Films are quite “flavored” too, but pretty compelling in moderation. Quite warm, even dark in the wrong settings, or with too many, the balancing toward bass can cause the top to sound "rolled off." But with more open company, they show really nice fine detail complexity in space, so far making their dark character worth adjusting around. We'll see. I wonder (hope) the bass, fine detail, and all will more fully resolve as it does with many things with burnin.

Experiments are mostly the same resistance, a Mills 12W replaced a Dale 6.5W between the 2 - 47uF power caps, .5W carbons changed to .75W Amtrans Carbon Films (AMRG) to the input grids, .5 carbon to .75W Caddock MK-132s to the input plates (also wired to G2 of the output tubes), an 840R series combo (PRP 510R + 330R Shinkoh) from input cathodes to ground (was 920R marked metal film measuring 900). I wanted to open the input tube a touch and get in the clear and complex Shinkoh sound with resistors I had, so made one. 2W TDKs replaced .5W carbons to the output tube P2s (also the coupling caps), a Takman 1W 160R metal film replaces parallel .5W 330R carbons (165R) between output tube cathode and plate, and a Shinkoh .5W 12K replacing a 10K carbon between the silver/gold output signal wire and the WBT nextgen copper/gold RCAs out. I seem to like a little more resistance there than stock. I think I do like slightly bigger wattage resistors, and maybe much bigger (2W) at least with those I am trying, but not sure yet on this one. With wires, bigger can clarify and solidify, but within a given balance can shift things toward bass also, and this seems a factor here too. Lots of variables.

Anyway, with a few of them having only 10 hours on them, others with just 30 or so, and some ~50, they sound good. Though clearly green, better in ways than previous subtler departures from stock that I thought were improvements. Too dark/dense for me now, but we'll see in time. As with bypass caps, I think I am finding that a synergistic blend of nice resistors may more fully give complex beauty than one or two. This may not be the ultimate, but a good way to explore the traits of a number of choices. Once they settle I will do some resistor rolling.

First impressions as these went in….the Amtrans, quite warm/dark, spacious and complex; Caddock 132, BIG, deep and dynamic, a little dark...too pressurized and dense at first, but intersting enough to want to clarify with others; TDK also big, but seemed neutral and transparent in this postion; Takman metal, not liking it as much as PRP in general, in this cathode to plate job it is pleasantly warm and nicely complex; Shinkoh, really nice balance, space and micro detail...revealing and transparent, making all the rest sound more complete...But then...they all need time I suspect to really hear them. The Amtrans Carbons are pretty big resistors, in an aluminum tube, and with gold plated copper wires...a lot or material, and they have refined over a couple weeks. As I listen today the blend is becoming more clear, complex and defined, together creating a nice balance that I suspect/hope will get a lot better.

Anyway, since you have moved to resistors, thought this might be intersting.

BTW, we have speculated about the efficacy of film power caps versus bypassed electrolytics. Trying Jenson electros in the Torii now, clearly not all electros are the same, nor are bypass caps, or no doubt film power caps. And combinations of bypasses and any of these clearly change the story in a big way....making it a little tricky to guess for me. Soooo, since the CSP3 has only two 47uF electrolytics, I decided to try and settle the questions to some degree. I got two Mundorf electros (same look and case as Jensons) to try in place of the stock F&Ts. And I got some 45uF Clarity TC films to try also, though they are bigger than spec, and with the bolt connectors, bigger! So I hope I can figure a way to get them in there. I will start burnin on the caps with my Frybaby to make the evaluation easier. They always need music time to sort out, but the burnin rig gets them through the hardest parts of burnin.

So I am hoping to try the Mundorf with the bypasses I now like, the Clarities by themselves, and Clarities with bypasses.
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #69 - 07/04/18 at 01:44:12
 
Happy to say that what I considered darkness has mostly transformed into dynamic and speedy body with nice frequency range and rich detail complexity. Now with ~35-40 hours on the least burnt in of these resistors, roughly 55-60 on the Amtrans Carbons, and over 75 on the Mills, this combination is becoming quite nice indeed. I still hear a little darkish dullness in the bass/mid-bass, but feel pretty sure this is from remaining lack of burnin. Likely the Amtrans (which seem to need the most burnin) and the Caddocks, judging from how they sounded initially, are finally resolving. Now my guess is that the initial "pushy" quality of the Caddock is transforming into more spacious dynamics and speed with nice density, and I wonder how colored I would find the Amtrans individually at this point? Likely still warm, but maybe not over the top for me. Don't know, but they are doing nice things together now with quite nice warmth including excellent fine detail. I guess I am hearing the Jenson electros in the Torii too, resolving bass seeming to be more noticeably slow during burnin.

But what I am hearing implies that resistors can fit with your thread title, "An Exercise in SPEED." And why not. If they do their thing with less flow damage...by comparison, with better materials, design and implementation, resistors could have better signal flow, complexity, and frequency response. Even with the same resistor, there seem to be a number of folks who think bigger ones, with more of all they are made of, can sound better. I suspect this is a reason you tried some 2 watts, and one reason I did. More listening needed, but I feel confident saying my CSP3 is a bit faster and more dynamic, clearer and more complete/complex with this resistor combo. I am also pretty confident now they will become more transparent, tighter, and reveal more complexity with more hours on them.

Speculation as I am not doing AB tests with burnt in resistors, but based upon initial impressions of each resistor and the combination, and how the whole sounds now, I am guessing they are like caps... depending on what they are made of and how they are made, some resistors just take longer to reveal potential.
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #70 - 07/05/18 at 18:22:27
 
Hi Will,
Great information.  It has been fun following your resistor journey in this thread.  So far, my experience with the tantalums I have installed confirms what you are saying in terms of how flow and mitigation of signal degradation will in fact amount to improvements spanning multiple categories, speed being one of them.  

Most pronounced for me is the amount of finite detail in the music.  I would say that more nuances which were previously below the noise floor have now risen above and are quite noticeable.  It is stunning and even startling at times.  One of the most significant improvements in my ZMA with this resistor swap is in the overtones.  With piano and strings in particular, the harmonic series is longer and lingers more than it ever has.  It is beautiful.  Even reverb and resonance takes on a different life.  Incredibly present subtleties and nuances is the most notable improvement out of the gate.  

I am going to try some non-magnetic, non-inductive Mills wirewound resistors at the input & inverter tube plates in lieu of the Audio Note tantalums.  Wirewound are the best for noise since they are not susceptible to contact or shot noise.  Since these Mills are non-inductive, they won't suffer from the typical high-frequency handicaps of lesser/traditional wire wounds.  And if they suck, I switch 'em back.  

And you are exactly right Will on my 2W resistor choice for the control grid of the output tube.  It only requires a 1/2 Watt but on those Audio Note tantalums, 2W is often placed due to improved sound quality.  

Keep us posted as you continue the journey and Ill do the same.  Looking forward to more updates as they continue to burn-in.  

On your previous post, you picked up some 47uf Mundorfs to try in place of the F&Ts.  I was hoping you would try the TubeCaps un-bypassed so we have another opinion here on these caps  :)  There's always another time...



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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #71 - 07/06/18 at 06:41:43
 
Actually, I am staying put with these Shinkoh and Audio Note tantalums for the time being.  They are just doing it for me at the moment and I need more time with them.  

Today I solved an annoying issue I was having with a subtle ground loop after the 4-pole rewire of my Mlytic caps.  It was not affecting the noise floor, but rather adding some content volume, low level "buzz."  Now that it is gone, my listening experience has just ramped up another notch.  It was really only bothering me a really low listening volumes as it was so subtle it was inaudible at moderate volume levels, but I knew it was there and my OCD wouldn't let me just forget about it. Smiley  

These tantalum resistors are impressive so far.  Need more time to fully burn 'em in though.  

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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #72 - 07/07/18 at 02:07:20
 
Sounds like those resistors are doing beautifully, the sound even now implying they are great resistors. Your caps seem likely to be resolving still also, so makes sense to let everything burn in and enjoy! I had the feeling the Shinkohs are special, and the ANs being based on them, your initial choices may well be exactly right!

My resistor complex is still opening and clarifying and becoming amazing. Like yours, the fine detail complexity and spacial information is really gorgeous.

I recently posted in another thread how fine detail and space are primary evaluation tools for me. Though this was always important to me, when I got my Tranquility DAC some time ago, Eric Hider taught me more. When they were developing the Tranquility, they explored loads of iterations of layout, caps, wires, connectors, damping, clocks, chips, solders, etc, and found that specifically reading decay, harmonics, ambience etc...was a relatively easy first step to see what was worth exploring further....not to mention how beautiful the music can become with this information present and in balance, and what was missing when it wasn’t!

I have found this invaluable as I do modifications. It appears that if the fragile fine information is better, other parts of the signal are generally less damaged also. Not perfect necessarily, as a cap (or whatever) may be good at nuanced fine detail, but lacking in other areas... But if the micro detail and micro dynamics are not there in a clean setup, you know quite quickly if a new part is truncating, masking, or simply not able to reveal all that is possible.

Then synergy. As I waited for my “signal” resistors to wake up, I tried (for maybe the 10th time) a resistor between the CSP3 IEC ground and the nearby connection node where the ground cap and main ground wire from the rest of the CSP3 circuits meet. I got this idea from Steve's CSP3 mod. Not being very techy, I may have this wrong, but it seems like adding resistance to this primary path to ground may power up everything a bit? Sounds that way. I tried a 10R Xicon 5W like Steve used, and found it created too much density for me, but the clarification and solidity were compelling. Then I tried a 6R2, then a 3R. Pretty close now, but the lower value Xicon sound was too tinselly/distorted for me.

So I tried a Mundorf M-cap Supreme 3R3 I had used on my speakers. Cut off the leads and soldered on soft/pure 20 gauge silver leads and Wow...nicely solid and refined...smoother, bigger, not lacking definition, but also having a bit much of what I hear with a lot of Mundorf things, a sort of "affected" "warmth" and smoothness that to me overly emphasizes "smooth warmth." The best of them I have are Silver Oil Supreme caps, and they are good at fine detail, but I still think they need help to more fully reveal fine detail and space. But probably more, what I think of now as the Supreme density gives a thickened quality to the mids and mid bass, tending to "mask" fine detail. So the very refined, but not quite my style Mundorf M-resistor came out too (again!!!).

But also, even a cleaner 3R3 may be too much in my arrangement of mods. Though exploring similar ideas and approaches, Steve and I ended up with different combinations of parts, and I am guessing I had already increased density and clarity from connectors, wire, power supply bypass choices, etc. And perhaps most influential, to tighten, balance, and solidify the Jupiter HT coupling caps, and to get a bit more clarified punch, I decided to try bypassing the 0.47 Jupiters with 0.1 Jantzen Sliver Z-caps. I think this combination has held up as "a truly great cap" in every iteration of the CSP3 I have explored since the Jantzens went in about a year and a half ago. They contributed a lot to signal coherence, density and balance while integrating open fine detail of the HTs.

So at this point the primary ground resistor is overstated for my CSP3 configuration, though I expect to try more, perhaps smaller value Mills or Ohmites. BTW, the 12 W Mills I put in the power supply did seem to clarify things nicely on first impressions. I have an Ohmite Gold to try there, and also some Mills and Ohmite Golds to compare to the Dales currently powering the power tubes cathodes.

So this is about resistors, but I told this part of the story in part to explain why I have been reticent to try the Mundorf Tube Power caps. That said, I am happy to find I like the Silver Oils bypassing the CSP power supply, and I did not love them in speakers. And the regular Supremes I tried in the Torii power were better there than in speakers too, though I was still relieved to replace them...subtler, but still that "Mundorf thing." The Silver Oils are still in the CSP3 and they are bypassed by a 0.01 Mundorf Evo Silver/Gold Oil that seems to be sticking too. These experiments help me think more positively about trying the Mundorf Tube Caps, especially if I can't fit in the 45uF Clarity TC films when the time comes! Knowing me, I may need to try both anyway! Toward the end of ultimate sound, this is a less costly place to explore with just two 47uF caps rather than 8 in the Torii! And your impressions are compelling!

Don't know if it will work, but I will try my Frybaby2 on resistors. Though I was hoping otherwise, enough people serious about resistor exploration seemed to think 100 hours or so is necessary for several nice resistors. I am reluctantly agreeing at this point. But I am trying too many types and sizes at once to clearly comment. And some resistors, like .5W PRPs, seem to adapt quickly compared to some of the bigger, more complex ones I am trying.

All that said, the sound today is becoming pretty incredible. It started to really wake up yesterday evening, and now...exciting! Guess the pokier resistors are coming in (and the Torii power caps?) ….immediacy, textures, space, amazing clarity across the spectrum without hardness, at least right now!@#$%^ ...Complex clarity and speed have been primary all along, but now it is starting to shake me up!
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #73 - 09/09/18 at 02:35:16
 
I posted this in another thread but feel it is relative to this thread, which was the beginning of my ZMA modification journey....  

With much needed influence from Wil and BonnyA, last week I decided to finish the enhancement project and move forward with power supply bypass caps.  I have the amazing 47uF Mundorf TubeCaps installed and wanted to follow Steve's lead and further bypass those caps.  I used the same values as BonnyA, .47uF and .1uF caps.  Due to the size of the TubeCaps, I wasn't sure I could find room for these bypass caps. It was close.  There was one space left on each side where they fit like a glove.  it took a little Tetrus skill but I found a great spot.  

The bypassing has further enhanced the high frequency detail and speed, as well as another slight step in lowering the noise floor.  These bypass caps made a noticeable improvement and they are not even close to burning in (the caps I used came with a 350 hour burn in recommendation).  

All in all, time and money well spent!  ...the icing on the cake  :)
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #74 - 09/11/18 at 17:03:06
 

Jeff,

I noticed in your resistor upgrade you called out the four control grid resistors as 330K when you meant 330 ohms.

Steve
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Re: An Exercise in SPEED
Reply #75 - 09/11/18 at 17:10:37
 
Steve,
Yes, typo on my part.  Thanks for clarifying that.  Luckily I purchased the 330 Ohm resistors, not 330K Smiley
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