Author Topic: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072  (Read 12414 times)

rob61

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Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« on: July 18, 2010, 09:20:36 PM »
I'm using a Drawmer 1960 tube compressor and mic pre unit. It sounds good. Today I had it open to clean a pot, and noticed an abundance of NE5532 and TL072 op amps (it a really a hybrid - using a few tubes but solid state as well).

ALL the op amps are socketed, so I was wondering, since this is about 18 years old, if there are any newer op amps that are a DIRECT replacement for the NE5532 and TL072 op amps in this that would give added sound quality without screwing something up. I'm talking plug and play here.

I found one posting in a board where a guy claimed he changed the ne5532 to the opa2134 and noticed a real difference in a DBX compressor. That is what got me wondering if there were any new and improved op amps that could be direct replacements for my Drawmer 1960.


conleycd

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2010, 10:29:36 PM »
Others can jump in but... I wouldn't touch them at all.  Lots of hit records have been made on equipment using both of these chips.

The big problem, as I understand can also be the unexpected current draw - especially with TL072 upgrades.  These draw less 3ma or so but up an "upgrade" of say an OPA2604 is 12ma.  That adds up pretty fast to your power supply giving up it's soul.

It could also sound worse or nasty things.

CC

Samuel Groner

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2010, 03:24:55 AM »
Quote
It sounds good.

The obvious reply must be: so don't touch it...

Quote
If there are any newer op amps that are a DIRECT replacement for the NE5532 and TL072 op amps in this that would give added sound quality without screwing something up.

The only direct replacement for an opamp which works anytime is the same opamp. If some new opamp has "improved" characteristics then its different, and that means that there is some circuit which will not work anymore because it depends exactly on the characteristics of the old opamp which has changed in the new one. You have to understand the circuit to make an educated decision.

That said there are of course parts which are reasonably safe to suggest as replacements--from my point of view these are LT1469 and OPA2134. But make sure to check this thread: www.groupdiy.com/index.php?topic=29265.0

Quote
I found one posting in a board where a guy claimed he changed the NE5532 to the OPA2134 and noticed a real difference in a DBX compressor.

You'll find an optimistic post for every possible change in audio electronics, and for both directions...

Samuel
« Last Edit: July 19, 2010, 03:26:38 AM by Samuel Groner »

Michael Tibes

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2010, 04:33:13 AM »
I'd first analyze the circuit and definitely leave all the sidechain areas alone. I haven't fully understood how the vca works in the 1960, it's a big potted something, so I'd also be cautious about dc offsets in that area. I'd want to make sure nothing is particuarly adjusted or selected before swapping opamps - unless the service manual with alignment instructions is available? The input / output / micamp / DI in areas should be less critical and might be candidates for swapping. Afaik the 1960 is in fact a fet compressor, so there will most likely be something to align and dc offsets might play a role. Anyway you could mark the origins of the opamps you take out in case something gets weird, but it might also be difficult to hear immediately if something changes for worse.

After 18 years it might also pay off to recap the baby. From my (long ago) experience with other stuff from Drawmer it might also be worth taking a look at the psu and power distribution. And did you ever change the tubes? I just thought about it the other day, mine's still on it's first set of tubes. I never looked into it, it always worked fine. But the standart lifetime of a normal ECCxx might be long over now, I don't know if they had special longlife versions in there?

Replacing the output pots might be a good thing too, in mine they're noisy as hell when being moved.

Michael

ppa

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2010, 04:39:02 AM »
op275
Pier Paolo

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abechap024

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2010, 02:49:20 PM »
Tle2072 is a pretty much direct replacement for TL072. it boasts a 40u/vs slew. You'll have to try it out and listen. I've never compared it directly to a TL072. Check out ti.com for some free samples, thats why they have them! sample away. test some out:

Opa2132 sounds nice
Opa2107 sounds nice :-D
Opa2227 sounds nice
Opa2228 sounds nice :-D

Try them all!! (they all can be sampled from TI in DIP form)

I would record your findings, using the same source and settings for each test, just switching the opamps. Go back later and somehow get it so you can solo different files without looking at which is which. Choose your favorite and you might be amazed! or you might not!

Plus don't be afraid to experiment!! All the Ics are socketed so let the critics be damned, wost thing that could happen is some osccilation, if its sounds good it is good. The Ne553x are not bad chips by any means but doesn't mean they are the best.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2010, 02:52:17 PM by abechap024 »
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living sounds

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2010, 05:31:07 PM »
From my experience these older OP/ OPA op amps all sound vaious degrees of "not-that-great" (cloudy, lacking details, taking away punch/immediateness). With proper decoupling the 5532 can sound pretty good. The TL072 isn't great IMO. Replacements: For the 5532 the opa2211A or opa1612 as well as LT1358. For the TL072 the AD8512 (should usually also work as 5532 replacement).

abechap024

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2010, 07:48:51 PM »
Hi,
I'm not sure what you mean by "older" opa op amps
But, Its a safe bet the opa2228 and opa2107 are very very clean and I would be hard pressed to find anyone that sits down and really listens do them, with anything bad to say about them. That if course taking for granted a circuit they were designed in. Whether or not they will work in your circuit - you never know.
Try it out, hey they are free - give them a listen. I think the "characteristic" burr-brown sound isn't so much with the 2228 and 2107

but decide for yourself.
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living sounds

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2010, 01:54:48 PM »
Hi,
I'm not sure what you mean by "older" opa op amps
But, Its a safe bet the opa2228 and opa2107 are very very clean and I would be hard pressed to find anyone that sits down and really listens do them, with anything bad to say about them. That if course taking for granted a circuit they were designed in. Whether or not they will work in your circuit - you never know.
Try it out, hey they are free - give them a listen. I think the "characteristic" burr-brown sound isn't so much with the 2228 and 2107

but decide for yourself.

I've tried them in many applications, especially consoles and converters. The 2211A/1612 just sounds a lot clearer, detailed, punchy, more real to my ears (=more transparent) than for example the 2227, 275, 2134. You can get those more recent chips for free from TI, too. Use a Brown Dog adapter for DIP applications.

abechap024

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2010, 10:26:49 PM »
Nice! I haven't been exposed to them. They do look tasty! now I want to test them out...... ::)
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audiovisceral

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2010, 07:29:39 AM »
I've tried them in many applications, especially consoles and converters. The 2211A/1612 just sounds a lot clearer, detailed, punchy, more real to my ears (=more transparent) than for example the 2227, 275, 2134. You can get those more recent chips for free from TI, too. Use a Brown Dog adapter for DIP applications.

Have you tried the LM4562? It has very good distortion/slew specs and seems to get very positive reviews.

Jarno

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2010, 05:40:48 PM »
Careful with oscillation though, it's not the drop-in replacement the pinout suggests.
Has OPA2134 been mentioned? A very nice sounding opamp, imho, although my experiences are primarily in very simple circuits (guitar pedals), differences could be harder to detect in more complex circuits.

living sounds

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2010, 07:55:52 AM »
I think the TI chips I mentioned above, the LT1358, the LME49723, LM6172 all sound better than the LM4562 (which IMO is kinda sterile sounding). Some of these are high speed op amps and may not work as a simple drop-in-replacement.

I think the OPA2134 is easily surpassed by the aforementioned AD8512 in all sonic aspects- more clarity, details, punchier bass etc. But it needs an adapter for DIP-applications.

Jarno

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2010, 01:08:21 PM »
Ouch, that AD opamp is expensive! Went to search on eBay, but 7,50eur each, man that's hefty.

living sounds

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2010, 01:20:27 PM »
Ouch, that AD opamp is expensive! Went to search on eBay, but 7,50eur each, man that's hefty.

It gets down quite a lot once you buy more. We could organize a group buy, I'm already having one for LT1358.

regularjohn

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2010, 03:13:40 PM »
LT1358 and LME49860 get my vote!
SATANOSCILLATEMYMETALLICSONATAS

Holmqvisten

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Re: Suggest opamp replacements for NE5532 and TL072
« Reply #16 on: November 24, 2010, 04:57:13 PM »
The LM4562 is a great substitution for the 5532. It basically outperforms the 5532 in every way. As for the TL072 I would go for OPA2604 since it also has a fet input and good distortion and noise performance.


 

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