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Project Specific Discussions => Dynamic Processors => Topic started by: abechap024 on March 14, 2011, 03:11:31 PM

Title: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 14, 2011, 03:11:31 PM
Rev 3 Manual: is www.acsoundstudio.com/clx_vu/clx_manual_rev3.pdf (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/clx_vu/clx_manual_rev3.pdf)

Things fixed in REV :
     Grounding Scheme
     Output transistor Footprint
     Resistor labels
     Cleaner build (hopefully)
     Easier to tell what parts needed for respective VCA builds

C11 can be changed from 0.33uF to 1.8uF if using THAT chip. C11 passes audio to the sidechain, if left @ 0.33uF there is a slight rolls off of low frequencies sent to the sidechain, which may or may not be preferable. 


EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW IS FOR REV 2HERE. (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/MANUALS/CLX_VU.pdf)



Cheers!
-Abe

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~``



This is the build thread for the 160vu clone. Please post all build/troubleshooting type questions and answers here. Please do not post random questions about where to get board etc.

Here is a collection of information that you might need when building your boards:

Complete Schematic (Including VCA/RMS/Meter Emulation) (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/Circuit1.jpg)
Complete BOM for THAT chip build (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/CLX_VU%20bom%20THAT%20CHIP.pdf)
Complete BOM for Just the Main Board (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/BOM_MAIN_BOARD_2.pdf)
Complete BOM for RMS Unit (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/BOM_RMS.pdf)
Circuit Board Layout (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/PCB_Board.jpg)
Discrete VCA BOM (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/BOM-CLXVCA.pdf)
Original Schematic (easier to read) (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/160VU_SCEMO.jpg)
Original Calibration Procedure (Very Important) (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure.pdf)
Original Owners Manual (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/160-161%20Owners%20Manual.pdf)
Unique Meter Scale (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/160scale2.jpg)
2RU Rackmount Case Cutouts for Hairball type Meter. (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/AC_VU_2ruFACEPLATE_dim.bmp)



Also a bit of good news for those that haven't ordered parts yet: If you want to save a bit of money you can substitute the output transistors with the 2N5818/2N5819 transistor pair. You save about .40 cents from the 2N4037/2N3053 pairs and about a dollar from the NTE128/NTE129 pairs. Only thing is the 2N5818/2N5819's are in a different case and aren't rated up to 5w(!) that the other transistors are rated to. But should be fine.

Pre-orders for another batch of boards can be found here:

http://www.groupdiy.com/index.php?topic=51031.msg647827#msg647827
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
Post by: Songguy on March 15, 2011, 08:58:36 PM
Abe, great idea with the build guide and parts kit!

Also, looks like I need another board.
Chris
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
Post by: kazper on March 16, 2011, 01:14:21 AM
In the case cutouts are those sized for the stocked 1176 switch mechanism?
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
Post by: abechap024 on March 16, 2011, 01:27:03 AM
In the case cutouts are those sized for the stocked 1176 switch mechanism?

Yes check out hairball audio they have the correct switches

Also FIY: I'm in process of making a detailed pdf with build instructions (with pictures :D they always help me more than anything)
and an updated calibration procedure. None of this stuff is too hard once you do it once or twice :)! All the information can be found online already but it will be nice to have it condensed down and specifically for this circuit board.

I can already see the desk lamp and smell the rosin! I'm just waiting on some more parts to get here for the pics
Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
Post by: mushy on March 28, 2011, 07:56:51 PM
Got my boards.  They look great.  There's a lot packed in here!  I have some 202c's sitting here, and I'm trying to figure out exactly how you intended these to be used with this build? 

Thanks for everything!
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
Post by: abechap024 on March 28, 2011, 08:36:24 PM
202's weren't intended to be used with the build. You actually need a 200 series VCA.

I'm currently working on a build PDF with all sorts of pictures and what not to help with the ease of the build and stuff! So stay tuned :D
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
Post by: abechap024 on April 12, 2011, 02:34:23 AM
The build PDF is coming along, yet a little slower than planned. My apologies for all those anxious to get started. Some parts were unexpectedly back ordered, and some ordered  parts aren't *exactly* right, but hey it will be ok, I got them now, were getting everything worked out.

One thing that has me smacking my head is the Power IN Molex adapter, seems that only the circular pins will fit as the hole is 0.46mm 0.046 inches . I overlooked this detail and ordered SQUARE pinned molex headers - no fit! But the pins are pointed so they go in enough you can still solder them in. It might look tacky. I'm ordering the correct headers. I figure we shouldn't let that oversight stop the whole kits from shipping out. So I'm shipping them out with the parts, and who ever can't get the square pins to work, or just doesn't like them send me an email in a week or two and I'll send you some rounded ones. Thanks for your patience guys!
ALSO

Updated BOM www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/CLX_VU%20bom%20THAT%20CHIP.pdf (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/CLX_VU%20bom%20THAT%20CHIP.pdf)

While I was making the kit I realized that some of the 1 nF caps on the input and on the output, while probably the original polyester spec'd capacitors will work just fine, I figured most people would rather use polypropylene since they are in the signal path (even if any signal that sees them goes to ground) - but hey you know what they say - everything effects everything effects everything.

Also undated the Round Pin only Power header.

Cheers,
Abe

Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: abechap024 on April 13, 2011, 05:03:34 AM
Built this REV 2 today. It works, But please read first post to get build updates.  My apologies on not catching these mistakes earlier.

-Abe



Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: slowbass on April 15, 2011, 02:50:20 PM
Hello,
Could you please explain how to use the hairball switch for this build ? The only idea I could find is to power off the unit when the power button is engaged and to power on when another button is engaged, which seems rather odd !
Thanks !
Title: Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: abechap024 on April 15, 2011, 04:41:31 PM
Hello,
I'll be taking a bunch of pictures this weekend to help shed more light, but you have it exactly right. Just like the 1176. Instead of an "On" button its an "Off" button.

Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: nielsk on April 16, 2011, 02:26:50 PM
If you can organize the BOM as to "basic circuit" as in if someone were using original VCA & RMS modules, then have separate VCA and RMS  sections, that would be very helpful!
Oh, and maybe a color coded schematic showing the parts needed (or not needed) for the VCA (one color) and RMS (another color) sections... ;D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: Winetree on April 19, 2011, 11:05:28 PM
Any help with a parts number for the power transformer.
Just want to get it right the first time.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: abechap024 on April 20, 2011, 02:49:40 AM
Sorry been busy getting finals out of the way ::)

for the transformer 18v dual secondaries and at least 50VA should be fine

Like this one http://www.antekinc.com/details.php?p=645 (http://www.antekinc.com/details.php?p=645)

I also have been working on some updates with this new layout...



Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: abechap024 on April 20, 2011, 02:58:09 AM
If you can organize the BOM as to "basic circuit" as in if someone were using original VCA & RMS modules, then have separate VCA and RMS  sections, that would be very helpful!
Oh, and maybe a color coded schematic showing the parts needed (or not needed) for the VCA (one color) and RMS (another color) sections... ;D
Yep I'll get those all re organized and up by tomorrow. Thanks for your patience.

-Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: slowbass on April 20, 2011, 10:04:11 AM
Hello,
About the transformer, would a 2x18V 15VA be enough for two channels ? I already have this model...
Thanks !
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: abechap024 on April 20, 2011, 06:16:03 PM
Well assuming we divide 15VA by the total voltage supplied by the transformer (18v *2) = 36v then we have roughly 0.41 amps supplied by the transformer. Assuming each channel uses about 1/4 amp to operate (probably uses a bit less, thats just what the originals fuse was rated at per channel)  You will be slightly under recommended available VA. But there is a margin there. Try it, and if it gets too warm to touch, definitly the smart Idea to use a higher rated transformer.



**Also I'm getting the kinks worked out with this new layout. You might find you need a higher value capacitor in C14 originally 22pf  I found I needed a 150pf.**
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
Post by: abechap024 on April 21, 2011, 02:26:12 AM
If you can organize the BOM as to "basic circuit" as in if someone were using original VCA & RMS modules, then have separate VCA and RMS  sections, that would be very helpful!
Oh, and maybe a color coded schematic showing the parts needed (or not needed) for the VCA (one color) and RMS (another color) sections... ;D

www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/BOM_MAIN_BOARD_2.pdf (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/BOM_MAIN_BOARD_2.pdf)
www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/SECTION_1_SPECS_3.jpg (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/SECTION_1_SPECS_3.jpg)

Heres some info till I finish compiling everything for the manual.

Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: Songguy on April 21, 2011, 08:30:58 AM
Hi Abe,
I would like to build a dual mono version of your compressor. What do I need to be aware of? Do I need a higher power toroidal than the one you suggest on your website?
Looking forward to receiving the parcels.
Cheers,
Chris
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: abechap024 on April 21, 2011, 01:03:54 PM
Hi Chris,
For a dual unit, I would recommend building both on-board power supplies, as it will help with cross talk and increase performance, even if ever so slightly.

The transformer I recommended on my site will work fine for 2 channels. I recommend at least 25VA per channel in the power transformer, but you could no doubt get away with less.

The fuse should be 0.5 Amp for a dual unit.

Getting School all finished up. But found out today the last package with all the parts has arrived!! HAPPY DAY!
Sending them all out Very Very soon. Thank you for your patience all. you are most gracious!

Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: nebula on April 25, 2011, 09:08:20 PM
Hi Abe,

I've got my two boards, which I plan to build in a dual-mono config.  They look great!  I already bought (or had) many of the parts before I knew you'd be offering parts kits, so I'm going to finish sourcing the few parts I still need.  I'm left with a few questions:

Looking at the latest BOM, I see the Molex headers - you specify Molex, the series, the pin shape - maybe you could simply include the Molex part number?  It would probably save builders like me heaps of collective time.

How much it will matter whether we use the "A", "B" or "C" variants of the 2180 VCA?

Have you used the "Collective" case?  There are a few minor things I'm wondering about that as well...   I think I'd like to use 1/4" TRS in instead of the XLR connectors.  Are they punched for the Neutrik "D" XLR?  Will there be room for a larger toroid than the one you're recommending?  I don't know the hole sizes, so can you recommend a particular 20K pot to use for this configuration?  Oh, and their web site shows a "CLX-160" graphic on the case, but this project is called "CLX-VU" - is that the way it's staying? Is there a provision for a main power switch that will kill power to the transformer?

Does the Hairball meter you're recommending have a correctly printed scale for i/o levels as well as gain reduction?

Anyway: thanks for what looks like it's going to become a great DIY project. I can't wait to hear these puppies in action!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: abechap024 on April 25, 2011, 10:01:35 PM
Hi Abe,
Looking at the latest BOM, I see the Molex headers - you specify Molex, the series, the pin shape - maybe you could simply include the Molex part number?  It would probably save builders like me heaps of collective time.

Molex has many many many different styles of headers and receptacles. Many many many different types will work. It depends on what you want. Also many different companies provide headers, Molex just seems synonymous with headers, kinda like Kleenex is really just facial tissue. Many many different types will work. But I know for a lot of people sifting through that many options can be time consuming (I know) So I'll try and add some generic part numbers to make everything a bit easier.

Quote
How much it will matter whether we use the "A", "B" or "C" variants of the 2180 VCA?
Good question. I offer the kits with the 2180A VCA, just cause - for 3 bucks more - why not. But on the same token I'm running the 2180B's in mine, cause I haven't measured very much different distortion between A and B variants and usually the 160vu is used when you want a little "color" or what have you. Not something like the stereo buss. Then again its very tricky to accurately measure different specifications in VCA's because by their very nature. Sound wise - granted this isn't a blind test by any means -but just the general impression of the different VCAs, The A sounded more transparent and while the B didn't sound bad, it maybe didn't sound quite as clear. Again, that could just be my bias of what I'm expecting the different parts to soundlike.

Quote
Have you used the "Collective" case?  There are a few minor things I'm wondering about that as well...   I think I'd like to use 1/4" TRS in instead of the XLR connectors.  Are they punched for the Neutrik "D" XLR?  Will there be room for a larger toroid than the one you're recommending?  I don't know the hole sizes, so can you recommend a particular 20K pot to use for this configuration?  Oh, and their web site shows a "CLX-160" graphic on the case, but this project is called "CLX-VU" - is that the way it's staying? Is there a provision for a main power switch that will kill power to the transformer?

Yes I have a Collective case, And you need higher stand-offs to get the boards in correctly. Also I don't like using XLR on my line level equipment, just personal preference, I know most all other studios seem to favor the XLR on everything...The Collective cases work quite well, and are very nice. They are pre-punched with XLR, but if you want to use TRS an easy fix is to get a piece of metal and cut it in a rectangle so it fits behind the XLR jack holes and use the screw holes for the XLR jacks to screw the piece of metal tight. Then drill a 1/4" hole for the TRS jacks in the piece of metal covering the XLR holes. And I wouldn't get too hung up on the name, I think me and Dan for Collective cases spoke generally about the project being called CLX-VU, or CLX 160. or something. CLX is 160 in roman numerals so that's my reasoning behind CLX-VU.

Quote
Does the Hairball meter you're recommending have a correctly printed scale for i/o levels as well as gain reduction?
As of now if you want to purchase a correct scaled meter you need to contact DBX and they charge upwards of a 100$ so I'm told. I've talked to Mike from hairball about supplying a custom Scaled meter. But I think we came to the conclusion that the meters are very simple to change the scale (you just pop off the front and the scale slides out.) check the top of this thread you can print out your own custom scale and even add a logo or whatever if you like.

Quote
Anyway: thanks for what looks like it's going to become a great DIY project. I can't wait to hear these puppies in action!

Well thanks for your optimism!! This project does sound good, I'm finding correct calibration plays a big part on getting this unit to sound optimal. Mainly setting up the RMS unit wave symetry. Using the trimmer on the REV 2 boards it makes it much easier to correctly set up the RMS unit. Originally DBX had factory workers with big resistor switchers just solder in the correct one after the unit was all assembled. I'm expecting to be finished with the manual this week, covering many questions that I expect builders to run into.
Thanks!
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: sr1200 on April 26, 2011, 03:19:36 PM
couple of "dumb" questions.  Im trying to put together a "cart" on mouser for the "THAT" build.
Some of the suggested lead spacings are unavailable but im sure wont be an issue since the non-conforming ones are only like 2.5mm shy (just bend a leg or 2 out)

1) how detrimental is that 3.02K resistor (cant find one, but found a 3.01, can i just tie a 10ohm resistor to it to make up or is the 3.01 ok?)
2) the optional 100pf for the THAT build im assuming is a ceramic (same as C25, 26 and 81)

Had another ? but just answered it myself.

Thanks

edit:
for the transformer is this acceptable:
http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Triad-Magnetics/VPT36-690/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMv4oUrzpPKU3A2NOXuypJmAKGn4tZBCYX0%3d (http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Triad-Magnetics/VPT36-690/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMv4oUrzpPKU3A2NOXuypJmAKGn4tZBCYX0%3d)

If anyone cares to look this over, might be a good start point for a pre-made list of goods:
http://www.mouser.com:80/ProjectManager/ProjectDetail.aspx?AccessID=11e05cb026  (http://www.mouser.com:80/ProjectManager/ProjectDetail.aspx?AccessID=11e05cb026)
Notes: the Molex connectors i got from Newark (mouser didnt have all of them in stock)
The LM301 (no specification on if its the 8pin or 16 pin, 8s are out of stock at Mouser, in at newark)
R49  subbed a 1.3M no 1.29M
R125 subbed a 261K no 260k
R5 subbed a 3.01K no 3.02
went with 1/4 TRS connectors (since my patchbay is bal 1/4" makes connecting easier and cheaper than XLR to 1/4")
transformer is a best guess if anyones got a better source (or the right one if this is wrong) pls let me know.
Meter from hairball
pots i went with the bournes (more expensive but from my experience they seem better)
some caps lead spacing will need to be "adjusted" slightly to fit... again if anyone want to suggest a better fit please do.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: sr1200 on April 26, 2011, 04:26:41 PM
Anyone interested in the wood side case?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: abechap024 on April 26, 2011, 06:21:04 PM
Hello,
Yes, 3.01k is fine, 3.02k seems hard to source.

Also a note on the 260k resistor - that is the resistor that determines how much current the LEDS receive. And now its looking like a lower value will probably be better, if you like your LEDs to shine a little brighter.
(sorry I chose such a weird/hard to source value!)

All your other subs should be just fine.

And yes 100pf should be ceramic.

Transformer you spec'ed should work great.



Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: abechap024 on April 26, 2011, 06:21:59 PM
Anyone interested in the wood side case?

Just remember with wood sides, there is no electrical shielding on the sides...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: sr1200 on April 26, 2011, 06:55:32 PM
Quote
Just remember with wood sides, there is no electrical shielding on the sides...

True, but the top,front back and bottom are all connected. I may have found someone to make them if anyone is interested.  I should find more out later in the week.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: abechap024 on April 27, 2011, 03:45:14 AM
I bet it would look really good!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: nielsk on April 27, 2011, 08:28:46 AM
For 1/4" TRS connectors why not use the Neutrik D series version? It fits in the D series hole...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: sr1200 on April 27, 2011, 10:42:18 AM
updated (fixed a couple of lead spacing issues with some caps)
http://www.mouser.com:80/ProjectManager/ProjectDetail.aspx?AccessID=4796fbc057 (http://www.mouser.com:80/ProjectManager/ProjectDetail.aspx?AccessID=4796fbc057)

I used those specific TRS connectors on my M-S matrix box and it just looks really clean and neat.  The D series is nice(espeically the locking one), but since i dont have very "good" metal working equipment, cutting/drilling the smaller hole is easier as well.
Edit: fixed link  :-[
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: sr1200 on April 27, 2011, 11:01:03 AM
Abe, did i miss it on the BOM? Switches?

I guess this can work:
http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/CK-Components/7301SYCQE/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMuIC3ROaEqRYYddGtbX1Nlx (http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/CK-Components/7301SYCQE/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMuIC3ROaEqRYYddGtbX1Nlx)
This is a bit overkill but would look cool as hell:
(http://www.surplussales.com/Images/Switches/Pushbutton/swp-1000-77-52.jpg)
(found at)
http://www.surplussales.com/Switches/SWPushB-2.html (http://www.surplussales.com/Switches/SWPushB-2.html)

EDIT: Just a heads up: DO NOT order this thing... total crap.  Its not really a 3 button, its 2 and the third is independent from the other 2... doh!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
Post by: abechap024 on April 27, 2011, 01:36:35 PM
Ah! Thanks, I need to add those to the BOM. Yes those switches look like they should work great! Better to have too many poles than not enough..
aLSO A 3PTT could work just fine too, but might take a little tricky wiring of the switch...
Might as well just get the one from hairball for 5 bucks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: abechap024 on May 03, 2011, 04:39:39 AM
(http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/TEST/complete_build_1.jpg)
(http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/TEST/complete_build_2.jpg)

My first completed rev2 unit! Its actually for Dan Dunderlloo, those are his cases
Having r36 adjustable and using it to calibrate the RMS unit really helps the compressor sound its best.

Build manual - first sections. www.acsoundstudio.com/MANUALS/CLX_VU.pdf
 (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/MANUALS/CLX_VU.pdf)

right now its really too huge! 150+ mb!!!! Anyone know how to encode it without loosing all the detail?? Its only the first sections! I still need to do the calibration and wiring guides. But very close to finishing those too.

Also with these PCBs I found a way to lower the noise on maximum gain. using 2 wires. Its simple and I will cover it in the manual.

How are other peoples builds going?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: sr1200 on May 03, 2011, 09:42:14 AM
Ill see if i can cut the size down , i have a few programs that might be able to "compress" it properly (pun intended)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: sr1200 on May 03, 2011, 09:54:40 AM
Here ya go... under 6MB
http://www.meirecords.com/BJ/CLX_VUopt.pdf (http://www.meirecords.com/BJ/CLX_VUopt.pdf)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: abechap024 on May 03, 2011, 01:20:56 PM
awesome! What program did you use?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: sr1200 on May 03, 2011, 02:15:06 PM
Acrobat Professional.  We have all the CS suites at my day job, usually does a good job of optimizing the file.  (you lose a little on the graphics, but I thought they were plenty clear, especially if it were to be printed out).  But makes it WAY easier to DL.  If you have revisions or something let me know, perhaps you can FTP the file or put it on your server so i can grab it and "re-optimize".
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: abechap024 on May 03, 2011, 02:17:36 PM
Okay awesome! Yea that optimization seems to better than what I could get. I'll let you know. Thanks

AC
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU )
Post by: Songguy on May 05, 2011, 08:58:36 PM
Abe, great work on the build manual so far! Love the details you have included.

Looking forward to the next installment!

Cheers,
Chris

Ps please get some good pics of the wiring for this bad boy.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on May 10, 2011, 09:46:50 AM
Bump for Manual!

Cheers,
Abe

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW IS HERE. (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/MANUALS/CLX_VU.pdf)

A LARGER MORE EXPLICIT WITH DETAIL VERSION OF EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW IS HERE. (http://www.acsoundstudio.com/MANUALS/CLX_VU_HQ.pdf)

Cheers!
-Abe

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on May 10, 2011, 01:49:29 PM
want another Optimization? ;)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on May 10, 2011, 02:12:30 PM
Actually taking your cue I was able to get it down to 10mb using acrobat.
Thanks!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: slowbass on May 10, 2011, 02:21:35 PM
Great work, thanks for the manual !
So, it's not a good idea to use the "optional psu" part for a dual clx or can it work ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on May 17, 2011, 07:41:21 AM
hey Abe

Which meter should one order from HAirball to fit Danderloos cases ?

Also I'm guessing that one of each type of switchbank is needed ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on May 17, 2011, 10:46:12 AM
Hi Rob,
Yes you will need one of each switch-bank and http://hairballaudio.com/shop/product_info.php?cPath=25&products_id=64 (http://hairballaudio.com/shop/product_info.php?cPath=25&products_id=64) meter the 1ma smaller one.

Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: thebigskinny on May 18, 2011, 09:40:15 AM
Just looking at the case wondering about the switch banks. Don't you only need one switch bank per unit?
Oh and Abe , I got the parts kits, very well packaged and documentation is great.  Just have to get some bits here an there!!!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on May 18, 2011, 11:37:52 AM
Just looking at the case wondering about the switch banks. Don't you only need one switch bank per unit?
Oh and Abe , I got the parts kits, very well packaged and documentation is great.  Just have to get some bits here an there!!!

1 switchbank per channel.

If you build a stereo one you buy one of each.  so the extra switch on one of the banks is the mains on/off & on the other bank it is a stereo link
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on May 25, 2011, 10:14:06 AM
Started my build last night. got the board almost completely stuffed and have some questions...

1) R29 and R28 arent on the THAT build BOM.. do I need them?
2) The caps at the right sid eof the power supply on the board and schem say 10uf 16v the BOM says 25V (im guessing the 25s will work)
3) C16 on the board says trim and no value, its not on the BOM either (jumper?)
4) Anyone tried to wire this bad boy using a Lorlin rotary switch?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on May 25, 2011, 11:52:53 AM
Started my build last night. got the board almost completely stuffed and have some questions...

1) R29 and R28 arent on the THAT build BOM.. do I need them?

Nope you don't need them if you are building a THAT chip build.  R29 biases the discrete VCA positive supply and R28 is part of the discrete vca symmetry circuit
Quote
2) The caps at the right sid eof the power supply on the board and schem say 10uf 16v the BOM says 25V (im guessing the 25s will work)
yep they will work and wont mind as much on your first power up while you adjust your voltages if they are more than 16v for a bit.
Quote
3) C16 on the board says trim and no value, its not on the BOM either (jumper?)
No, that is to trim the 22uf timing capacitor. chances are you will never need it, unless you want to experiment with different timing capacitor values and a switch. So do not jumper it, if you do it will short out your rms unit.
Quote
4) Anyone tried to wire this bad boy using a Lorlin rotary switch?
very possible
you would need a least a 3pole/3position (so a 4pole 3 pos would work) .
You could also just wire it up to always be in GR mode. then you wouldn't even need a switch. Thats where my meter usually stays...
Good luck!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: dandeurloo on May 28, 2011, 10:59:21 PM
Hey Guys, just wanted to give you a update on the compressor. I got a chance to finally fire mine up today.  I did a few tweaks but not much.  Basically I just put a new meter scale in the meter and re calibrated the meter.  Abe your PDF is wonderful!  

(NOTE****If you are gonna use one of the scales form ABE's pdf you need to make it 50% the size of the pdf.  I found that to work pretty nicely compared to the DBX 161 I have here.)


Ok, so after changing the few things with the meters I got to running sounds through the CLX.  Right from the start I was impressed!  Its very much a DBX 160 vu sound.  I have a 161 here that I tested it next to and a pair of 160x's and a slew of other greta compressors.  All of the DBX compressors have the same kind of sound but the VU's both just have ablot more vibe.  The attack time or something is more musical.  Plus when the VU's really grab down the Snap sound of the compressor is much more pleasing the the 160x's.

(NOTE*** I test all the compressors by multing them on my patch bay and then running them to different channels on ,y folcorm so it was a pretty Apples to Apples Comparison.)

Anyway the long and short of it is the CLX sounds great.  The CLX is a little brighter and more present then the 161 VU.  I have a few ideas why that may be.

1. Balanced vs. Unbalanced?
2. Brand new parts vs. 40 year old parts
3. THAT chip vs. OLD DBX chip.  

I didn't try this because I am very happy with the sound of the compressor but if you want to try and get even closer to the vintage vibe I think I would try and mis adjust the trim on the that chip so it is a little dirtier. I think that would make the CLX so close you would have a hard time picking them out if you get you thres, ratio matched up.

Overall I think the CLX is a hair punchier then the vintage units but still has the grab and release (gooey) you want out of the DBX 160 vu.  It also for some reason seems to have more flexibility in the pots then the 161 VU?  Not sure why but, it seems to cover a little wider range all around then the 161 VU.  By this I mean I have more adjustment range of the compression and shape of the compression. All the way form more to less and everything in between.  

The more I compared the CLX next to the DBX 161 I prefer the CLX.  For somethings I am sure the vintage unit would sound better but I think overall I am glad I own the CLX and my friend has the 161!  I will be using these a lot on Kick and Bass!

Thanks Abe for the project. Now everyone else go finish yours these things are sweet!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 04, 2011, 02:10:06 AM
OK so i had the thing up and running, sounded pretty awesome squish sauce... i was playing around with the meter (jumping various settings since i didnt hook up the actual switch yet) and bam... dead.  blew the fuse.  Popped in another (no jumpers on the meter pins) turns on for a sec, and blows out again.  Any ideas of what i killed?  Im thinkin I jumped the wrong 2 pins the first time, but now that theres nothing on the switch pins... at a loss.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 04, 2011, 02:25:48 AM
Hmmmm that is a good question...

Okay so if you were jumping the meter switches there is a number of things that could've possibly gotten blown...

Depending on how you jumped maybe one of the voltage regulators got blown, or maybe the output transistors got blown and thats whats blowing your fuse.

Or an opamp got fried and its pulling too much from your fuse.

Try pulling all the opamps out - see if that helps

try measuring the resistance between your power rails and ground and each other, if its too much lower that 100ohm you got a prob....

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 04, 2011, 11:00:34 PM
Took the chips out. Was playing with the continuity test on my meter and noticed the 2 outside legs of the BC550c (Q2) is short (beeeeeeep) i dont have another bc550c to test against. Does that seem right?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 04, 2011, 11:16:52 PM
Yep, thats right. That transistor is used more like a diode, hence the shorted legs...

What are the fuses rated at you are blowing? I would start at the transformer and work in.....I'm trying to think of things that would cause a direct short of the power rails to blow a fuse and I can' think of many things. Are your output transistors testing good?

Cheers,
AC
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 04, 2011, 11:50:28 PM
Just took the chips all out and its still blowing 250ma fuses. Upon poppin the probes around. I noticed all 3 ac inputs are open. (open to ground as well). Guess thats normal though.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 05, 2011, 12:12:43 AM
Im thinkin maybe replace the vr's.  Thete shouldnt be any shorts on the legs of the NTEs right? 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 05, 2011, 12:38:10 AM
Correct there shouldn't be any shorts on the legs of  the output transistors. Are you using the doide checker to test the transistors? thats a handy way to do it...

replacing the Vrs might be a good idea. You could try taking them out then pluggin it in (with no ICs just to be on the safe side.) That would issolate your problem to VRs or later.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 05, 2011, 12:54:23 AM
Yep was using diode check and open/short (2 different setting on my
Meter). So i replaced the VRs and GOLD!!!  Only odd thing now is i dont have anything on the pins for the meter and the meter is working....   It didnt do that before to my knowledge.  Lol. Oh and btw. F'n GREAT job on this thing.  Its total liquid squish.  Has a real gooey sound (no other way to describe it). It's just organic. Got kick n snare gettin ponded by these things and the whole kit getting destroyed by the sb4000.  Compression heaven?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 05, 2011, 02:45:41 AM
Congrats on getting it sorted.

These things are a lot of fun. I've gotten my best personal best Rock mix to date by doing somethings different and using these to gooify-chunkify the bass, somehow on these tracks it really let the kick sit on top but the bass in a way that I've never gotten it to before. Still trying to figure out how it does it! I think the 2nd harmonic distortion has something to do with it.

Anyway nice to hear some success on these units. :)

Cheers,
Abe


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 05, 2011, 03:14:13 PM
Lets see if i can get this to make sense...

to wire a lorlin 4p 3pos switch to the board (gonna use b# for board point and p#(or letter) for the switch prong/pole/thingy

pA - b2
p1 - jumped to p5/p7/p8
p2 - jumped to p3
p3 - jumped to p2 and out to b1

pB - b6
p4 - jumped to p6
p5 - jumped to p1/p7/p8
p6 - jumped to p4 and out to b5

pC - b3
p7 - jumped to p5/p8/p1
p8 - jumped to p7/p5/p1 and out to b7
p9 - b4

pD/p10/p11/p12 not used

maybe a graphical representation will be easier... (the dotted and dark solid lines are jumpers)
(http://www.meirecords.com/BJ/switch2.JPG)

Does this look about right or am I WAY off the mark here?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 05, 2011, 04:39:57 PM
Nearly there with this project just need to get a few parts tomorrow. 

I'm using a generic PSU board that mnats supplies with his 1176 boards.  Is the best place to take the unregulated +&-24v comes from the inputs to the regs ??


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 05, 2011, 09:19:13 PM
Just an update on my diagram above. Just finished building it (the thing in the drawing). Works perfectly!!  CCW is INPUT. CENTER is GR.  CW is OUTPUT.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 06, 2011, 12:35:50 AM
Dumb questions:  The ground from the IEC.... wheres that supposed to be hooked up?
Part kits still available? (wanting to build ch2 soon) ;)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 06, 2011, 03:23:35 AM
Just an update on my diagram above. Just finished building it (the thing in the drawing). Works perfectly!!  CCW is INPUT. CENTER is GR.  CW is OUTPUT.

Awesome, and good diagram in case anyone else wants to use a rotary switch.

Dumb questions:  The ground from the IEC.... wheres that supposed to be hooked up?
Part kits still available? (wanting to build ch2 soon) ;)

The ground should be attached to the chassis somewhere, for safety reasons. You may or may not then choose to attach your Analog power ground to the ground of the chassis. I think its common to find the Analog ground attached to power ground with a 10ohm resistor bypassed with a 100n capacitor. But I my CLX I just leave them separate.

And yep there sure are kits left! Not many boards though, I need to get rev 3 cooking. There is about a week lead time,on some of the more expensive parts i didn't buy in bulk (That chips and some other chips) But I'm getting another batch in soon, so order whenever you want.

Nearly there with this project just need to get a few parts tomorrow. 

I'm using a generic PSU board that mnats supplies with his 1176 boards.  Is the best place to take the unregulated +&-24v comes from the inputs to the regs ??

The original takes the +/- 24v after the diode rectification smoothing capacitors. Probably the best bet.


Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 07, 2011, 01:01:34 PM
OK so I got both units passing a signal, & compressing but they don't calibrate properly at the mement.
First off I have a few questions about the build pdf.

Should C16 the lower tant cap be fitted.

Should R25 22R omitted, on the page in the pdf titled CLX-VU part designations for the that 2180 build, it shows it as fitted, but it says omit for that build on the pcb ?

I'm noticing that in the level calibration info on the pdf it say to get -0.11v on the top end of R79, on page 3 of the DBX calibration information it says to set it to -0.011v


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 07, 2011, 01:43:10 PM
More questions

1:4 ratio calibration......  what position should the make gain control be ??

How does one adjust R56 & R59 ? I can't seem to find any info on this ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 07, 2011, 02:08:19 PM
Quote
-0.11v on the top end of R79, on page 3 of the DBX calibration information it says to set it to -0.011v

I was going to question this as well... my meter was reading in mv not v which i assume is correct. Also, on the symmetry calibration... the trim pot does nothing (or seems to do nothing at all) but the waveform looks damn good anyway, and the unit doesnt sound distorted.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 07, 2011, 06:54:45 PM
Quote
-0.11v on the top end of R79, on page 3 of the DBX calibration information it says to set it to -0.011v

I was going to question this as well... my meter was reading in mv not v which i assume is correct. Also, on the symmetry calibration... the trim pot does nothing (or seems to do nothing at all) but the waveform looks damn good anyway, and the unit doesnt sound distorted.

I'm pretty sure it should be -0.011v or 11mV, since I can't actually set it to -0.11v since it's out of the range of the trimmer.

I'd like to know more about R56 & R59 since at the moment my meter shows -40dB GR when in reality the maximum actual GR I'm getting os only getting around -6dB
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 07, 2011, 07:26:22 PM
OK so I got both units passing a signal, & compressing but they don't calibrate properly at the mement.
First off I have a few questions about the build pdf.

Should C16 the lower tant cap be fitted.

Nope that is there just to trim the installed timing capacitor (as the DBX schematic)

Quote
Should R25 22R omitted, on the page in the pdf titled CLX-VU part designations for the that 2180 build, it shows it as fitted, but it says omit for that build on the pcb ?

That is my mistake, I only fixed it on the low res PDF, sorry for the confusion. you want to omit it.

Quote
I'm noticing that in the level calibration info on the pdf it say to get -0.11v on the top end of R79, on page 3 of the DBX calibration information it says to set it to -0.011v
Ah! Good catch :) Thanks I'll get that sorted too.

Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 07, 2011, 07:29:23 PM
I'll have to research some more on the gain 1:4 ratio some more.

I do know that the r59 trim pot controls how much the bass moves the meter as compared to the highs.

and r56 is the meter tracking, making sure the meter is acuate throughout the whole scale.

The calibration section has some holes in it that I need to get more in depth with...eventually :)

http://www.dbxpro.com/product_downloads/Calibration_Procedure/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure.pdf

Cheers

Abe

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 07, 2011, 07:38:41 PM
One other thing I noticed in the DBX cal info is that on page 1 it says

"Note :On model 160, tie " - " terminals to Gnd, for normal testing"

Having just read the DBX alignment info in full, it seems there is a lot to calibrating the 160, think I'll have to sleep on it & take a look tomorrow.  I think that perhaps it is better to follow the calibration procedure in the DBX document.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Winetree on June 07, 2011, 09:44:47 PM
Looks like you need a resistor sub box for calibration. Any leads?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 07, 2011, 09:56:48 PM
Nope, thats what the trim pots are for

The resistor sub box was used to calibrate the voltage regulator, on the CLX the voltages are changed with trimpots

The resistor sub box was also used to trim the RMS unit (probably the most important calibration as far as the sound of the unit and it relies on the calibrated voltages)  and that is replaced with a trim pot on the CLX.

See how easy I tried to make it!??!  ;D

Also the rms symetry trims out distortion, and for reasons beyond my understanding it worked on the prototype but on rev 2 it has no effect. Very strange indeed. But that being said on the prototype, the distortion you could trim out got it around the same levels I'm seeing on the rev 2.


AC
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 08, 2011, 12:04:08 PM
Ok so I have things working a bit better now on one channel.  the reason I was getting hardly any compression was that I had  R30 installed.  In the pdf coloured overlay it indicates to install it, but it difficult to read that it says omit it for that's builds on the overlay.

I'm thinking that it might be good to have a checklist of parts to OMIT on the pdf.

The channel I have working seems to behave quite well although the tracking on the meter needs some trimming since it's showing -30dB when I only actually have -10dB.

Also step 2 of the DBX calibration procedure "connect the sub box betweeen the 2 trim pins of the rms unit .....
Is this relevant to the that's build ?  If so i can only see 1 trim pin ?

Quote
Quote

I'm noticing that in the level calibration info on the pdf it say to get -0.11v on the top end of R79, on page 3 of the DBX calibration information it says to set it to -0.011v

Ah! Good catch Thanks I'll get that sorted too.

I can only get to -0.004v before I run out of trim ?

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 08, 2011, 01:40:24 PM
I'm thinking that it might be good to have a checklist of parts to OMIT on the pdf.

Good idea, when I get some time I'll do that

Quote

Also step 2 of the DBX calibration procedure "connect the sub box betweeen the 2 trim pins of the rms unit .....
Is this relevant to the that's build ?  If so i can only see 1 trim pin ?


This is outlined in the CLX build manual. It is important to do as it affects the timing/calibration of the rest of the unit.

Quote
I can only get to -0.004v before I run out of trim ?

I've had enough variation on all of my units. Try adjusting the RMS first... probably something simple.

Cheers!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 08, 2011, 01:59:31 PM
...Having just read the DBX alignment info in full, it seems there is a lot to calibrating the 160, think I'll have to sleep on it & take a look tomorrow...

Yes! it is the most in depth calibration of any unit I've made thus far. I though 1176's were tricky ;) But really the only calibration that really affects the sound is R36...the others are just for levels and meters...

Got manual corrected and uploaded. Waiting till tonight to upload the HQ version as it takes a lot of bandwidth and time...

Thanks
Ac
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: sr1200 on June 10, 2011, 09:48:01 AM
(http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/260372_2118306080333_1326207212_2556708_1284538_n.jpg)
It's ALIVE!!!!
(http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/260350_2118277319614_1326207212_2556702_3285350_n.jpg)
Gonna try and cram 2 of these into a 1U.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Rob Flinn on June 10, 2011, 11:36:33 AM
I have mine working now, but I still can't get the scaling on the meter to work properly.  I would be interested to know from anyone else whether this lines up properly for them ?  R56 & R59 trimmers seem to do nothing.  Is anyone else experiencing this ?


Apart from that it's great, thanks Abe for a nice project, I appreciate the amount of work you have put in on this.   
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on June 10, 2011, 10:37:46 PM
sr1200 lovin the one rack space idea man!

Rob - keep trying I got mine to line up...you might have to mess with the meter emulation pot to get it in a working range of the other pots.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Songguy on July 02, 2011, 11:19:37 PM
Hi Abe,

Why can C-14 be populated with a 22pf or 150pf ceramic capacitor?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 02, 2011, 11:28:22 PM
Hello,
We change the 22pf to 150pf because the original impedance with the discrete vca was 100k and we lower it 20k for the that build and that means we need to increase the capacitance to about ~ 150pf. At least that's what I found had to be done to get Rev 2 to function optimally.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Songguy on July 03, 2011, 12:39:26 AM
Thanks Abe,
I notice that in both of my board kits I have an extra 150pf ceramic after populating C22, C82 and C14 with the designated 150pf's.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 03, 2011, 12:40:54 AM
Okay, I must of added 1 more to your kits without realizing I already added them. Sorry for the confusion. Maybe they will come in handy someday?
Cheers,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Songguy on July 03, 2011, 11:38:27 AM

One last capacitor question.

optional capacitors: C39  NEEDED FOR THIS BUILD 100pf OPTIONAL

Can you tell me why this may be optional? It reads a bit ambiguous to me.

Thanks for taking the time to answer my noob questions.

Chris
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 04, 2011, 09:14:26 AM
The original didn't use one but I found it necessary when interfacing with the THAT chip.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 09, 2011, 09:34:06 PM
I have mine working now, but I still can't get the scaling on the meter to work properly.  I would be interested to know from anyone else whether this lines up properly for them ?  R56 & R59 trimmers seem to do nothing.  Is anyone else experiencing this ?


Apart from that it's great, thanks Abe for a nice project, I appreciate the amount of work you have put in on this.

Okay Updates! :) :


To get the level calibration to work correctly (measuring 0.011v or 11mv on the inside leg of R79 with 1.228v input sig)  I found you need the meter reading "input".

Also if using the hairball 1ma Meter you need to put in a 3.3k resistor in the resistor spot instead of 1k.

Annnnndddd more to come I imagine...

:)
 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Songguy on July 10, 2011, 08:45:40 PM
hi all,

can you tell me if i have the right idea for the parallel wiring. Ive never wired 2 boards to one trafo before.
check the pic.

cheers,
Chris
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 11, 2011, 08:32:09 AM
Yep thats correct!
They look like they are in parallel which is what you want.

Cheers
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Songguy on July 11, 2011, 09:19:22 PM
here is a pic of the trafo/switch wiring using the antek audio trafo. thanks for checking my work Abe  :)

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: slowbass on July 12, 2011, 04:42:11 AM
Hello,

I've finished my dual clx and it works fine but I have three questions :
- is the 3k3 resistor with the hairball meter really important + the calibration in input mode ? how does it affect the meter ? because I don't feel like deracking, opening and desoldering the compressor !
- how do you wire two units for the stereo mode ? it's not in the instruction manual
- while calibrating the ratio, R43 almost didn't change anything on both units...

Thanks again for this very cool project !
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 12, 2011, 12:31:54 PM
Ah Cool!

Well the 3k3 resistor is necessary for more accurate meter functionality. I found with the 1k meter doesn't scale correctly. BUT that being said if you just plan on leaving your METER in GR mode then leaving in the 1k shows you more of whats going on.

For stereo mode you want to wire the switch to connect both timing capacitors together (22uf tantalum caps) connect the pins that aren't connected to ground.

R43.....yea now that you mention it, it didn't change much on mine either, but my 4:1 was pretty close, so I didn't think about it too much. why it doesn't work is a mystery it is all hooked up correctly

Well I take that back!!

Just looking at the PCB board, looks like the center wiper isn't connected to the 7.5k resistor correctly. I don't know how that happened because its correct on the schematic. So if your looking at the board Straight on with the writing up, solder blob the left pin and the wiper pin together of r43

Weird! It doesn't seem to effect the sound and calibration of the unit that much. But glad we caught it.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 13, 2011, 04:09:12 PM
Also seems like 500ma fuses aren't enough for repeated power cycles. Even Slow-Blow are randomly tripping on power up.

I am now using 1A fast-acting.

No problems
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: nebula on July 30, 2011, 02:29:32 PM
Abe, one of the first things I did when I started building is put a 150 pF cap in C39, following the instruction on page 18 of the build guide.  As I am finishing up on populating the board, I noticed the BOM (and discussions here) say it should be 100 pF.

I'm still puttering through getting the boards done, but should I plan to leave the 150 pF in place, or should I swap it out for a 100 pF?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on July 30, 2011, 02:46:59 PM
Hello, 150pf for c39 is perfectly fine. That opamp buffers the DC voltage, so its bandwidth does not have to be very large at all!

(thanks for pointing that out I'll fix it on the build manual)

Thanks,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: nebula on August 23, 2011, 06:28:32 PM
Abe,

C13 is marked on the board as a 22uF electrolytic, but not mentioned in the BOM.  In the hi-res pic of a completed unit posted elsewhere, the capacitor is present.  Is it necessary?

Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on August 23, 2011, 06:31:32 PM
Hi, Nope not necessary. Its for the discrete VCA and just goes between the power rails.

-Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Winetree on August 25, 2011, 05:33:04 PM
I'm using the 4 gang meter switches from Hairball.
If you use the first one for power, then every time you press another switch,
it releases the first one turning the power off.
The first switch doesn't have it's own latch and uses the release bar to keep it engaged. This is the big black switch.
It  also says you can use the channel 2 one for a stereo link switch, having the same problem.
What to do?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on August 25, 2011, 06:10:46 PM
You need to wire the power switch like on the 1176, when you push the power button when you want to turn it off, and selecting a meter mode will turn the unit on. All you have to do is switch whatever pins you have the AC power on.


For the Stereo link, you have to press both the link and the meter function you want, I wish there was a more elegant solution than this, but it works.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: Winetree on August 25, 2011, 09:05:16 PM
OK, Went out into the studio and turned on an 1176.
Any meter select turns it on and the power button turns it off.
My idea was to  unlatch the power switch from the latching bar and make it latch independantly.
The switch has provisions for the little plastic latching bar inside, it's just not there.
That way the power switch would latch off and on and not be effected by the others. Same for Link.
So much for practial thinking.
Is there a diagram for what your talking about. I haven't found any of this in the manual.
Thanks.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: abechap024 on August 25, 2011, 10:22:24 PM
Hi sorry,
I misunderstood you. If your using hairballs switches there is no way to unlatch them and if you could they would just be momentary switches.

The simplest was to do it, is make sure the power button is the OUT position and with DMM find 2 lugs that show no resistance, then push the switch IN and then make sure the resistance goes to infinite.

Then solder your power to those.

I think thats what your asking right?

Cheers,
Abe


PS Check out Chris's drawing just a few posts above this ^^^ :)


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE MODS (and rev 3)!!
Post by: abechap024 on November 08, 2011, 01:14:41 PM
Hi All,
Well got REV 3 done, easier to build, new manual is up.

Thanks!

Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: waner on November 21, 2011, 01:54:06 PM
Hi

Almost finished with my CLX-VU. I have two questions:
1. I have a Led for "above" that is brighter than "below". Could I put a resistor in series to ground (of that Led) or will it affect the compressor in any way?
2. Is the XLR:s grounded to the chassi? If yes: Booth IN and OUT?

Thanks
Mattias
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 21, 2011, 03:00:37 PM
Hi

Almost finished with my CLX-VU. I have two questions:
1. I have a Led for "above" that is brighter than "below". Could I put a resistor in series to ground (of that Led) or will it affect the compressor in any way?
2. Is the XLR:s grounded to the chassi? If yes: Booth IN and OUT?

Thanks
Mattias

Hello
1)You safest bet is to just get similar LEDs or just stick with one brighter than another, I really don't have any Idea if it will mess with the circuit.
2) Its common practice to only link the Input XLR to the chassis.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: waner on November 23, 2011, 12:08:53 PM
Thanks Abe

I have two more questions

1. I`m using Hairball VU`s with LEDs. From the schematics it seems that the LEDs are connected straight from the secondary of the transformer (via R125) and to the LEDs of the VU. That meens that the LEDs get AC. Is that correct? I saw that you use Hairball VU. What value of R125 do you use. From the BOM it`s 260k or 10k for brighter LEDs.

2. I have grounded the input XLR to the chassi. Do I need any more ground connections to the board?

Regards
Mattias
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 23, 2011, 01:15:52 PM
Thanks Abe

I have two more questions

1. I`m using Hairball VU`s with LEDs. From the schematics it seems that the LEDs are connected straight from the secondary of the transformer (via R125) and to the LEDs of the VU. That meens that the LEDs get AC. Is that correct? I saw that you use Hairball VU. What value of R125 do you use. From the BOM it`s 260k or 10k for brighter LEDs.

yes 10k works fine.

Quote

2. I have grounded the input XLR to the chassi. Do I need any more ground connections to the board?

Regards
Mattias

nope

enjoy!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: waner on November 23, 2011, 02:38:54 PM
Thank you!

Mattias
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on December 08, 2011, 08:18:26 AM
Hi Abe
Got my boards last week and there are plenty of components packed in! The build manual looks excellent too. I'll start building very soon and let you know how I get on with it.
Cheers
Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on December 11, 2011, 11:50:01 AM
Spent a very wet afternoon here happily soldering the resistors in place. Perhaps I've misread something but my BoM shows 10k or 260K for R125 (LEDs) but the Rev 3 board silkscreen shows 4.7K. Have I missed something?
Thanks for all the hard work you guys put in with these projects, my home studio has benefitted greatly as has my electronics knowledge (I am a Mech Eng by profession and my electronics circuit theory can be a bit rusty!).
regards
Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on December 12, 2011, 08:57:12 AM
Spent a very wet afternoon here happily soldering the resistors in place. Perhaps I've misread something but my BoM shows 10k or 260K for R125 (LEDs) but the Rev 3 board silkscreen shows 4.7K. Have I missed something?
Thanks for all the hard work you guys put in with these projects, my home studio has benefitted greatly as has my electronics knowledge (I am a Mech Eng by profession and my electronics circuit theory can be a bit rusty!).
regards
Steve

Hi Steve,
Sorry I didn't include the updated REV 3 BOM in this latest version of the build manual! Thanks for pointing that out. Fixing it right now.

Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on January 07, 2012, 03:58:19 PM
Hi Abe,

On a similar note the BOM I have specifies 1N004 for CR1-CR4, CR20-CR23 where on the rev.3 PCB are marked as 1N007.
Shall I trust the PCB and use 1N007s?

thanks
Michael
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 09, 2012, 11:28:13 PM
Hi Abe,

On a similar note the BOM I have specifies 1N004 for CR1-CR4, CR20-CR23 where on the rev.3 PCB are marked as 1N007.
Shall I trust the PCB and use 1N007s?

thanks
Michael

1n4001, 1n4002, 1n4003 etc up to 1n4007 are all fine just that 1n4001 is only rated at 50v and then 1n4007 is rated at 1000v. when you figure the price difference (almost none) it makes sense to use the highest rated diodes in all your projects wether they specifically ask for 1n4007 or not. usually 1n4001 will be perfectly fin, but always nice to have more robust parts.

http://www.diodes.com/datasheets/ds28002.pdf

Have a good one.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on January 10, 2012, 08:16:18 AM
Thanks abe, that makes sesne  :)

I hope I'm not asking too much but is there a BOM for rev3? The current BOM I have (5/2/2011) makes it a bit harder to source the exact components and values I need (especially on the film caps). One example is that I can see many 100nf on the PCB but the BOM calls only for one (C100)...

Also, has anyone sourced (in UK or Europe) any VU meter that would fit in 1U rack ?

Thanks again for your help.
Mike
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Rob Flinn on January 10, 2012, 09:03:11 AM
Also, has anyone sourced (in UK or Europe) any VU meter that would fit in 1U rack ?

Thanks again for your help.
Mike

Hi Mike I used some meters from HAirball that were really cheap, I can't remember the model number but I think Mike at Hairball told me which one to use, & they fitted Danderloo's case to, which I bought so I could wrap the project up quickly.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on January 10, 2012, 09:18:37 AM
Hi Rob,

Did you have to pay any import taxes? Do you remember (roughly) the total cost?

Mike
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 10, 2012, 04:37:36 PM
Hello,
here is the rev 3 bom/manual

http://www.acsoundstudio.com/manuals/clx_manual_rev3.pdf

the meters are on hairball audios site. they are the 1ma ones that mount behind the faceplate.

Cheers!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on January 10, 2012, 06:22:11 PM
great thanks! I had the manual but I was missing the page with the bom. All good now  :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on January 20, 2012, 04:32:56 AM
Hey Abe,

I have a couple of more questions if you don't mind  :)

1) C1 and C4 (100nF). Do these need to be installed? (they're not in the BOM)

2) What's that above C4 (labeled as +24V and G). Is it just a test point where you can measure your voltage? I assume no component need to be installed there (?)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 23, 2012, 08:06:16 PM
Hey Abe,

I have a couple of more questions if you don't mind  :)

1) C1 and C4 (100nF). Do these need to be installed? (they're not in the BOM)

Yes. Thanks for pointing that out. you should install them.

Quote

2) What's that above C4 (labeled as +24V and G). Is it just a test point where you can measure your voltage? I assume no component need to be installed there (?)

Thats for if anyone wants to use a lamp instead of leds in their meter.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on January 29, 2012, 05:03:03 PM
Hey Abe, still here with more questions! :) (i know, i know... ::))

I powered it up and it looks to function OK. I haven't connected the meter and the switches yet (I haven't received them), and neither I have calibrated the unit. It passes audio and it compresses though.

However, the voltage regulators are getting hot! I can't really touch them. Is this normal? I'm using a 2x18V 30VAC trasformer for a single unit, which should be fine.

In the power rails, I measure +/-15V and +/-28...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 30, 2012, 08:54:27 AM
However, the voltage regulators are getting hot! I can't really touch them. Is this normal?

Hello,
Questions are good! Hmmm on my builds the regulators don't get especially hot...I don't know if I could touch them though, I haven't tried! I'm powering on a set, so I'll try and touch the regulators. It could be that you don't have the switches hooked up. All in all i wouldn't worry about it too much, maybe try touching other components (after you wire up the switches) and see if any opamps or chips are getting hot. If not, then your ok, I'd say.

Have a Good one!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on February 02, 2012, 04:16:01 AM
Thanks Abe,

It'll be interesting to see how hot your regulators are.  I'll try with the switches once I get them. Opamps and chips seem to be OK at the moment (not hot at all).

Is there any chance this is cause from the high voltage I get in the 24V rails (I measure +/-28V)?
In fact, is it normal/OK to have 28V in these rails?

I was thinking of using a relay connected to the +/-24V for bypassing the signal but I don't know if that's a good idea.

Thanks
Mike
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: pacemaker on February 02, 2012, 09:26:10 AM
Hi Guys, i'm finishing mine to, with dan's collective case,
and i'm struggling to install the boards inide the case,
wich seems to small for m ,
can somebody post pics of an inside build unit ?
thanks in advance,
francois
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on February 02, 2012, 04:00:16 PM
Thanks Abe,

It'll be interesting to see how hot your regulators are.  I'll try with the switches once I get them. Opamps and chips seem to be OK at the moment (not hot at all).

Is there any chance this is cause from the high voltage I get in the 24V rails (I measure +/-28V)?
In fact, is it normal/OK to have 28V in these rails?

I was thinking of using a relay connected to the +/-24V for bypassing the signal but I don't know if that's a good idea.

Thanks
Mike

Hi Mike
I checked some regulators today and they don't get too hot to the touch. I'm using 20v secondaries which comes to about 26v on the output section. So I wouldn't worry to much about it. Yes 28v is fine for the output. I think I used a 25v secondary transformer for my first build and that gave me upwards of 30v and its still running today.

24V relays should work fine with the 24v taps.

Hi Guys, i'm finishing mine to, with dan's collective case,
and i'm struggling to install the boards inide the case,
wich seems to small for m ,
can somebody post pics of an inside build unit ?
thanks in advance,
francois

Hi Francois,
Yes the boards are a bit hard to fit once the switches are in there. The best way I found was to mount one board in between the meter switches slightly under one of the meters, and the second board mount above the second set of switches. I found that using 2" spacers with 2.5" screws worked great.
I'll look for a pic around somewhere.

Abe
Cheers!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: pacemaker on February 02, 2012, 07:26:09 PM
yeah that's what i thought,
it's tricky !
maybe we shouls warn dan about this, so as he can provide deeper cases to future buyers ,
i think i will try a deeper ,
as i hate sneaking to mount PSU transformers, AC wiring to power switch etc...
but would love to see some pics of your build ;-)
thanks again for this boards,
regards,
Francois
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on February 12, 2012, 12:35:30 PM
 Hey guys easy solution.  Just let me know you want it 11" and I will send one when you order instead of the standard 9" deep. 

BTW, just mixed a record last week.  I used the CLX on all the perc and random stuff.  Sounded amazing plus it was awesome watching the LEDs bounce! 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: pacemaker on February 12, 2012, 03:11:00 PM
ok cool dan ,
but for the ones who allready have the 9" cases ?  ;)
regards,
Francois
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on February 12, 2012, 03:21:49 PM
I know, sorry.  I have mine in a 9" and I know Abe has made a bunch in 9" cases.  So we thought 9" would be fine with everyone.  Would it help to see some pics of how they fit in 9" cases?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on March 18, 2012, 02:24:11 PM
Hello Everybody,

I'm on my way to finish my stereo CLX-VU, with DBX200 VCA and DBX208 RMS detector.
Everything isn't finish right now but I've got a question about Q7 (Rev2 board)

in the manual, it's said:

THE EXTERNAL
TRANSISTOR BC560C MUST BE SELECTED
ATER THE 200 SERIES VCA IS
INSTALLED/BUILT. HOW TO EXACTLY
SELECT THESE TRANSISTORS AND OPTIMIZE
THE DISCRETE VCA IS OUT OF THE
SCOPE OF THIS MANUAL


I can't find any information to choose the transistor, does anyone succeed in building the CLX-VU with DBX200 VCA?
Any information to help me?

Thanks!
 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 19, 2012, 05:39:25 AM
Hello Everybody,

I'm on my way to finish my stereo CLX-VU, with DBX200 VCA and DBX208 RMS detector.
Everything isn't finish right now but I've got a question about Q7 (Rev2 board)

in the manual, it's said:

THE EXTERNAL
TRANSISTOR BC560C MUST BE SELECTED
ATER THE 200 SERIES VCA IS
INSTALLED/BUILT. HOW TO EXACTLY
SELECT THESE TRANSISTORS AND OPTIMIZE
THE DISCRETE VCA IS OUT OF THE
SCOPE OF THIS MANUAL


I can't find any information to choose the transistor, does anyone succeed in building the CLX-VU with DBX200 VCA?
Any information to help me?

Thanks!


Nope!
But I am getting ready to start on a pair with original DBX Cans. What I would do is just measure out a couple transistors, measure by HFE. Choose some various values. And Put some sockets in that spot and put a middle of the road value in, and power it up and see how it sounds, then replace that transistor and see how it sounds.

From theory I have no idea what that transistor is supposed to do, and really I imagine there is a good chance it will work just fine with any transistor in there, I don't think its a matter of working or not working.

Go for it!
Abe


PS Maybe (hopefully) someone else more knowledgeable can shed some light on this? Cause I would also love to know what it does and how to choose it.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on March 19, 2012, 03:41:22 PM
Ok!

I was on my way to do the same, match some pairs and test... I let you know if I found something about it!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 26, 2012, 01:29:14 PM
Hi Abe/guys,

My unit is almost done! I'll post some photos soon.  :)

However, I have one (hopefully) last question. Checking with my scope it looks like the output sums the signal (i.e both pin2 and pin3 on the XLR have the same polarity. Is this normal? I would expect same amplitude but different polarity between pin 2 and 3 for a balanced output...

thanks
w.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 26, 2012, 05:13:42 PM
Hi Abe/guys,

My unit is almost done! I'll post some photos soon.  :)

However, I have one (hopefully) last question. Checking with my scope it looks like the output sums the signal (i.e both pin2 and pin3 on the XLR have the same polarity. Is this normal? I would expect same amplitude but different polarity between pin 2 and 3 for a balanced output...

thanks
w.


Yea I had to look at the schematic to be sure, but looks like the output signal doesn't get its polarity flipped for either Pin 2 or 3. Must be a type of impedance balance, would be my guess...anyone?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 26, 2012, 05:55:35 PM
So that means there's nothing unusual with my unit right?

FWIW, I checked (with the scope) the TL082's pin2 and 3 (inverting inputA and non-inverting input A) and both signals have the same polarity.  I'm talking about the input TL082 (TL082a1 in abe's PCB).

If I disconnect the TL082 from the PCB,  the scope shows inverting and non-inverting signal (as in the input).

any clue? is this normal?

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: hop.sing on March 27, 2012, 06:19:29 AM
So that means there's nothing unusual with my unit right?

FWIW, I checked (with the scope) the TL082's pin2 and 3 (inverting inputA and non-inverting input A) and both signals have the same polarity.  I'm talking about the input TL082 (TL082a1 in abe's PCB).

If I disconnect the TL082 from the PCB,  the scope shows inverting and non-inverting signal (as in the input).

any clue? is this normal?
Yes that's normal. Think about the feedback going into the negative input, wich is the same polarity as the positive input. That is not happening while the chip is disconnected.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 27, 2012, 07:31:30 AM

Yes that's normal. Think about the feedback going into the negative input, wich is the same polarity as the positive input. That is not happening while the chip is disconnected.
[/quote]

OK I see, that makes sense..  ::)
Thanks for that.

Still trying to figure out why the output the sums hot and cold signal though...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 27, 2012, 10:31:30 AM

Yes that's normal. Think about the feedback going into the negative input, wich is the same polarity as the positive input. That is not happening while the chip is disconnected.
[/quote]
OK I see, that makes sense..  ::)
Thanks for that.

Still trying to figure out why the output the sums hot and cold signal though...
[/quote]


Well I admit I don't understand completely how it does this, but the engineers at DBX no doubt knew what they were doing. I can understand when 2 signals are out of phase and then summed how that gets rid of noise, but the 160VU is doing something different...

Wait I remember reading something in an original 160vu manual that the output circuitry is different and "noise sensing" or something and counter acts for noise is the line somehow (opamp feedback loop?) at the very least don't worry about it, but I am curious too how it exactly works, must be pretty simple. I see if I can dig of that manual.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 27, 2012, 10:39:43 AM
Yes, it's quite odd indeed... I'd be very interested to know (purely for educational reasons) why DBX engineers did it that way.

In fact, what I get on the output is  the sum of both signals on pin2 (like they're added with the same polarity) and nothing on pin3. This is clear on the scope but when I use my soundcard's I/O the unit seems to be at unity gain with the gain pot at 0db, which seems correct.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: hop.sing on March 27, 2012, 05:02:30 PM
Wait I remember reading something in an original 160vu manual that the output circuitry is different and "noise sensing" or something and counter acts for noise is the line somehow (opamp feedback loop?) at the very least don't worry about it, but I am curious too how it exactly works, must be pretty simple. I see if I can dig of that manual.
Since I wonder, too (Even though I do not build the unit, or own it, only the humble dbx 117, which I like a lot), I had a look at the manual and the schematics.
The manual states hum suppression with that circuit and the way I see how it could work, I might be wrong though, is:
R92, R83, R84 and R33 are all 1% resistors, the first two are going to pin3, the latter building the feedback network. So, if any hum gets into the compressor through the output, it will be the same amplitude on pin2 and 3. On Pin2 it will travel the feedback network to the negative input of the 301 the same amount of hum should enter the positive input of the 301 through R92. It will be canceled at the ouput of the opamp.
R93 and R103 are obviously simulating the output impedance at pin2, so you have an impedance balanced output and also the noise entering through Pin2 and 3 sees the same impedance on both lines.
So DBX did not rely on the following device (It might be unbalanced anyway) to cancel any noise, but built a circuit do do it in the 160 itself. Seems clever to me.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 28, 2012, 07:33:06 AM
Interesting approcah...
Thanks for the expanation hop.sing.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on March 30, 2012, 10:30:48 AM
Got everything soldered up, all connected and ready for testing. When powered up on the power rails I am getting the  + or- 15V within spec. The 24V rails are showing +16V and -41V which seems way out. Are there any obvious cuplrits causing this before I start desldering components?!
Regards
Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 30, 2012, 07:25:43 PM
Got everything soldered up, all connected and ready for testing. When powered up on the power rails I am getting the  + or- 15V within spec. The 24V rails are showing +16V and -41V which seems way out. Are there any obvious cuplrits causing this before I start desldering components?!
Regards
Steve

Hmmm....Are you sure you are measuring correctly? If so, you must have your transformer hooked up on correctly would be the only solution  I could think of. Because if you look at the 160vu schematic it goes:

Transformer -> Diodes -> smoothing caps --> +/-24 tap

So maybe you have the center tap of your secondaries hooked in the wrong spot (it should be the center pin of the power TX input on the PCB)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on March 31, 2012, 05:41:41 AM
Hi Abe
Thanks for the quick reply.  It is puzzling me as the power supply section is straightforward, even for me to understand! I have got two boards and one transformer so it would suggest that the transformer side of things is the problem as both boards are similarly affected. I am checking the voltages against the ground point on the power rails pads (marked "G") but I am wondering if I could have a ground problem. I have only grounded the boards via the screen on the input jack connection.  From the schematic it shows the centre tap(CT) as being grounded but when I check between the "G" on the power rail pads and the CT point there is no continuity. I am wondering if I have missed something. Thanks for your patience!
Cheers
Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 31, 2012, 10:08:07 AM
Hi Abe
Thanks for the quick reply.  It is puzzling me as the power supply section is straightforward, even for me to understand! I have got two boards and one transformer so it would suggest that the transformer side of things is the problem as both boards are similarly affected. I am checking the voltages against the ground point on the power rails pads (marked "G") but I am wondering if I could have a ground problem. I have only grounded the boards via the screen on the input jack connection.  From the schematic it shows the centre tap(CT) as being grounded but when I check between the "G" on the power rail pads and the CT point there is no continuity. I am wondering if I have missed something. Thanks for your patience!
Cheers
Steve

Hmmm, yes center-tap is ground. there should be continuity. I would double check your transformer wiring again. The problem has to be there I would bet. Sounds like you are measuring it fine.

Good Luck! You will get it!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on March 31, 2012, 01:11:58 PM
Hi Abe
It's a bit embarassing but the problem turned out to be a dry joint on the CT terminal. However rather than beat myself up too much, the reason was simple. The large Molex connectors for the AC provide a substantial heat sink. As I soldered the pins from the underside of the board, as there isn't any other way, there was insufficient heat to fuse the solder with the ground trace, which is on the top side of the board of course. It is now sorted out and I am getting +-15V and +-29V. It's a bit more than the 24V so I hope this is OK. Looking at some earlier comments it seems this is not so unusual.
Anyway, now for the setting up...
Thanks for your help

Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 31, 2012, 01:31:18 PM
I'm getting around +/-28V on these rails too, so I think you're OK.
I think there're' only smoothed and not regulated anyway.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on April 01, 2012, 07:56:39 AM
OK the story so far...
I have the Rev 3 boards, PSU OK now, gain, threshold pots work (plenty of gain!); Ratio-sort of; above and below leds OK; switches don't seem to be working (triple checked to ensure the wiring is correct), strangely the VU meter on one channel moves up one step on the scale (R109 still disconnected of course), R36 doesn't seem effective, passes audio but no discernable compression. It feels as if I have left something out! Time to really start looking

Regards

Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on April 01, 2012, 03:13:20 PM
Hi!

So I finish my unit with original DBX RMS 208 (which is a discrete version, not the same as the one which is on the board (Rev2)) and DBX 200.

And I can't calibrate it... it's working, compressing, everything is ok, but I dont see the same thing on the offset pin when i try to adjust R36, if I put the input signal to -60db, I've got a blured triangle waveform (even if there is not input signal), and if I rise the level, I see something like a square waveform coming through the other one, but if I adjust R36, nothing happen, except at one end, everything go flat and a big hum appears.

I double and triple check everything, try all the trimmers, the original calibration setup, but I can't figure it out... And if I try to continue, I can't have the -11mV a the R79 pins, meter works, but has the level calibrartion isn't ok I can't get all the "0"

Other strange things:

- with the RMS unit on the board, I can't have the below led to work (above seems OK), and without the RMS unit, the below LED works fine
- I can't get ride of a hum (even if the RMS unit is off the board), with low noise mod or not, it seems there is a lot of ripple in the +/-24V rails, is that OK? I change the 1000uF to 2200uF, and it seems to be better but not as expected
- i don't seems to have unity gain when not compressing, something like -10db is lost. But as I can't calibrate it, I'm not sure...

So my question is:

Do you think it's not possible to use DBX RMS 208 and 200 VCA? Do you see anything i can do?

I'm thinking the 208 i've got is an older version than the one you can build on board, maybe it the problem...

I made 2 boards the same, and the 2 are behaving the same, I don't think the RMS or the VCA is dead, cause the unit is working.

Anyone do the same with success?

Abe, any idea?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 02, 2012, 11:11:14 PM
Hi!

So I finish my unit with original DBX RMS 208 (which is a discrete version, not the same as the one which is on the board (Rev2)) and DBX 200.

And I can't calibrate it... it's working, compressing, everything is ok, but I dont see the same thing on the offset pin when i try to adjust R36, if I put the input signal to -60db, I've got a blured triangle waveform (even if there is not input signal), and if I rise the level, I see something like a square waveform coming through the other one, but if I adjust R36, nothing happen, except at one end, everything go flat and a big hum appears.

I double and triple check everything, try all the trimmers, the original calibration setup, but I can't figure it out... And if I try to continue, I can't have the -11mV a the R79 pins, meter works, but has the level calibrartion isn't ok I can't get all the "0"

Other strange things:

- with the RMS unit on the board, I can't have the below led to work (above seems OK), and without the RMS unit, the below LED works fine
- I can't get ride of a hum (even if the RMS unit is off the board), with low noise mod or not, it seems there is a lot of ripple in the +/-24V rails, is that OK? I change the 1000uF to 2200uF, and it seems to be better but not as expected
- i don't seems to have unity gain when not compressing, something like -10db is lost. But as I can't calibrate it, I'm not sure...

So my question is:

Do you think it's not possible to use DBX RMS 208 and 200 VCA? Do you see anything i can do?

I'm thinking the 208 i've got is an older version than the one you can build on board, maybe it the problem...

I made 2 boards the same, and the 2 are behaving the same, I don't think the RMS or the VCA is dead, cause the unit is working.

Anyone do the same with success?

Abe, any idea?

Hi, hmm interesting, did you make sure to use the correct resistors/parts for the discrete VCA?
Also what do you mean by "with" and "without" the RMS unit?
Do you have your LEDS wired correctly?
You need to choose one of the transistors next to the VCA with the VCA so maybe that is your problem, I don't know.
How much hum do you have?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on April 03, 2012, 05:07:25 AM
Hi, hmm interesting, did you make sure to use the correct resistors/parts for the discrete VCA?
Also what do you mean by "with" and "without" the RMS unit?
Do you have your LEDS wired correctly?
You need to choose one of the transistors next to the VCA with the VCA so maybe that is your problem, I don't know.
How much hum do you have?

Hello,

Yes I'm sure about the parts, I double check for that.
So, "With" means with the RMS unit solder on board, "Whitout" with it desolder of the board (yes I can do that with this version ;-). When I remove it, the unit doesn't compress anymore and act like a pre (it seems ok to me)
The Led is wired OK, I redo it to be sure.
I put a random BC550C, maybe it's part of the problem, but I don't have problem with the VCA, it's the RMS I can't figure to calibrate, so I think this is different.

For the hum it's a quite audible one, but with my scope I see a pretty high riiple on the 24V rails (triangle waveform), I put some 2200uF instead of the 1000uF, but it's still there. Maybe it's a different issue, but I think the hum is not linked to the RMS thing...

So I believe i've got mutliple problems, making it hard to find which cause what...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on April 08, 2012, 12:22:18 PM
Hi Abe
I reckon it's all now working nicely. Good on acoustic guitars and superb on heavy rhythm guitar. I haven't tried it on drums yet but I will do soon. I have two 2-channel G1176s so it will make for an interesting comparison.
Regards
Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 09, 2012, 01:34:51 PM
Hi Abe
I reckon it's all now working nicely. Good on acoustic guitars and superb on heavy rhythm guitar. I haven't tried it on drums yet but I will do soon. I have two 2-channel G1176s so it will make for an interesting comparison.
Regards
Steve

Hi Steve,
Just saw your earlier post today, Glad you got it all figured. I'ts good on kick :)

Best of luck recording!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 09, 2012, 01:37:08 PM
Hi, hmm interesting, did you make sure to use the correct resistors/parts for the discrete VCA?
Also what do you mean by "with" and "without" the RMS unit?
Do you have your LEDS wired correctly?
You need to choose one of the transistors next to the VCA with the VCA so maybe that is your problem, I don't know.
How much hum do you have?

Hello,

Yes I'm sure about the parts, I double check for that.
So, "With" means with the RMS unit solder on board, "Whitout" with it desolder of the board (yes I can do that with this version ;-). When I remove it, the unit doesn't compress anymore and act like a pre (it seems ok to me)
The Led is wired OK, I redo it to be sure.
I put a random BC550C, maybe it's part of the problem, but I don't have problem with the VCA, it's the RMS I can't figure to calibrate, so I think this is different.

For the hum it's a quite audible one, but with my scope I see a pretty high riiple on the 24V rails (triangle waveform), I put some 2200uF instead of the 1000uF, but it's still there. Maybe it's a different issue, but I think the hum is not linked to the RMS thing...

So I believe i've got mutliple problems, making it hard to find which cause what...


For the Hum,
You could get some perf board and wire some rectifiers off board with some 1000+uf caps and then wire the output of that into the board. The idea is to get that noisey 60hz, 120hz off of the main board.

Best,

Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on April 10, 2012, 05:13:18 AM
I was planning to do something like that to get the hum go away!

I'm wondering if the discrete RMS and the discrete VCA make a a big difference in the consomption of the circuit, inducing the hum.

I'm planning to build a RMS on the board to see if everything work find with it, and try to figure out with this isn't working with my discretes ones.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 11, 2012, 10:40:28 AM
I was planning to do something like that to get the hum go away!

I'm wondering if the discrete RMS and the discrete VCA make a a big difference in the consomption of the circuit, inducing the hum.

Thats interesting, very well could be!


Quote
I'm planning to build a RMS on the board to see if everything work find with it, and try to figure out with this isn't working with my discretes ones.

Good luck, I finally got my hands on a set of discrete RMS/VCAs from some old DBX sound reduction stuff so I'm getting around to making a pair, and then hopefully I'll make a pdf on how to do it to help other people too, so this is good stuff!

Best,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on May 04, 2012, 04:46:46 AM
So,

I finally get my unit to work:

I remove the original RMS 208, and build the on-board RMS, it make the unit behave the right way to calibrate. I don't know why my discrete version isn't working (in fact it is working, the unit is compressing but I can't find a way to calibrate)

I add an external power supply, it a bridge rectifier and a pi filter with 2*2200uf, 12ohm 1W resistor and 4*1000uF after the resistor, and the in the 2 boards. It kills all the ripple, no they are dead quiet.

It's working great, I can keep the discretes VCAs which are working great without too much concern.

I still can't reach one point in calibration: the -0.011VDC at the leg of R79, no way I can have it. So I do this a little as I feel looking at the above/belaw Led and trying to do the same on the 2 units, and everything sound fine to my ears! So the unit find is way to the studio and I already use it on a mix. I must says it was great and I don't regret the time I spent making it working!

Thanks Abe!

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 04, 2012, 11:34:23 PM
So,

I finally get my unit to work:

I remove the original RMS 208, and build the on-board RMS, it make the unit behave the right way to calibrate. I don't know why my discrete version isn't working (in fact it is working, the unit is compressing but I can't find a way to calibrate)

I add an external power supply, it a bridge rectifier and a pi filter with 2*2200uf, 12ohm 1W resistor and 4*1000uF after the resistor, and the in the 2 boards. It kills all the ripple, no they are dead quiet.

It's working great, I can keep the discretes VCAs which are working great without too much concern.

I still can't reach one point in calibration: the -0.011VDC at the leg of R79, no way I can have it. So I do this a little as I feel looking at the above/belaw Led and trying to do the same on the 2 units, and everything sound fine to my ears! So the unit find is way to the studio and I already use it on a mix. I must says it was great and I don't regret the time I spent making it working!

Thanks Abe!

Nice! Thanks good news. So what did you use for Q7 (the transistor that goes with the VCA) did you just use a standard bc560c?

Thanks!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Mirouf on May 05, 2012, 04:52:14 AM
Yes, I just pick one and it's working great!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: supiarmando on May 16, 2012, 12:47:13 PM
Does anyone have some pcbs? I am interested in buying 2 pcbs!!! Any help is very appreciated!!!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 17, 2012, 12:49:55 PM
Does anyone have some pcbs? I am interested in buying 2 pcbs!!! Any help is very appreciated!!!

Email Sent. Have 2 left ordering more very soon. Thanks :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: supiarmando on May 29, 2012, 07:34:12 PM
Maybe stupid question, but is there a wiring for "how-to stereo link". I read the pages but did not find. Any help would be great. Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 30, 2012, 01:00:16 AM
Maybe stupid question, but is there a wiring for "how-to stereo link". I read the pages but did not find. Any help would be great. Thanks


You want to connect the 2 timing caps together to have the units behave in stereo. You still want to match the controls as close as you can to get it tighter, but no different than 2 x 1176s
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: supiarmando on May 30, 2012, 10:51:37 AM
is it that simple?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 30, 2012, 11:52:51 AM
is it that simple?

Yes! Or you can take it from the pad closest to the little "ST" on C16. But it all connects to the same place.

Best,
Abe
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: SLB on June 25, 2012, 11:04:42 PM
Hi all,

I will be stocking meters for this project. The meters will be 1mA FSD with the scale pictured. The pointer will be white and the LEDs will also be white.

Please see attached meter scale. The meter will fit the DIY racked and Collective Cases case.

The meter will cost $33.00AUD each plus postage to your destination.

If you order more than 2 meters the price is $30.00AUD each.

I will be ordering the meters next month. I will post back when they are in stock. PM me if you are interested.

Kind Regards,
Ladislav
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 26, 2012, 01:25:28 AM
Looks nice. Are they the same dimensions as the hairball meters?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: SLB on June 26, 2012, 03:53:11 AM
Yes these meters will be the same size.

Regards,
Simon
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: RATMNL on June 26, 2012, 08:37:22 AM
Looks really nice. Following closely!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on June 26, 2012, 11:12:16 AM
Guys I have another batch of CLX cases coming as well!  Should be well stocked for a while then.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on August 09, 2012, 08:00:30 PM
When using dbx 200 cans. It need R27 (distrortion trim) but what R25,R64,R66,R102 and C16 do?

Do i need use matched cans for stereo operation?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on August 10, 2012, 11:17:26 AM
When using dbx 200 cans. It need R27 (distrortion trim) but what R25,R64,R66,R102 and C16 do?

Do i need use matched cans for stereo operation?

As mentioned before, any part that says "TRIM" is exactly that, faithful to the original schematic, used to trim the other parts. Its up to the user themselves if they feel the need to trim any part. Nowadays with more precision parts I haven't ever found the need to "trim" any part, but better to have a space if you need it than not.

Matching cans? Wouldn't hurt. Sometimes the cans have a number on them, and they are the same number in stereo equipment (the old noise reduction units) I haven't personally run any tests.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on August 10, 2012, 12:57:19 PM
When using dbx 200 cans. It need R27 (distrortion trim) but what R25,R64,R66,R102 and C16 do?

Do i need use matched cans for stereo operation?

As mentioned before, any part that says "TRIM" is exactly that, faithful to the original schematic, used to trim the other parts. Its up to the user themselves if they feel the need to trim any part. Nowadays with more precision parts I haven't ever found the need to "trim" any part, but better to have a space if you need it than not.

Matching cans? Wouldn't hurt. Sometimes the cans have a number on them, and they are the same number in stereo equipment (the old noise reduction units) I haven't personally run any tests.

Ok. One seller have matching option. So i think that it is for stereo. Anyone have samples with dbx 200 and that 2180? I am not sure what to use.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on October 26, 2012, 07:39:22 PM
Hi!

I got my board today and I'm starting to gather BOM to order from Farnell and some local shops.
I already have few 500 uA VU meters here so I would like to use one. Those are cheap chinese from dealextreme - CHECK THE LINK (http://dx.com/p/500ua-vu-current-meter-7071)

I'm wondering what resistor should I use for this type of meter?
Since 1mA meter uses 3K3 and 100uA uses 10K, is my assumption correct I should use 6K8 resistor?
Or it is impossible to use 500uA and I should get 1uA or 0.1uA VU meter?

thanks!

Luka
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on November 03, 2012, 11:58:21 AM
Guys..

I am building a 160VU rev 2 with the original VCAs... I wired up one PCB. What I'm getting at the output is a mild triangle wave (with no input) and nothing happens if I apply any input. More over, if I wiggle the ratio knob between 1.5 and 2 it makes (physically, not on the output) a sizzling sound from the knob as if it were in short circuit or something. And there's a bit of resistor cooking stink from it as well.

I got the 200 VCA which the seller says is for the 160VU. The footprint obviously matched, except for one pin which wasn't present on my VCA modules, so there was nothing to solder into the hole on the PCB. I don't have the PCB here, but it should be either the GND, 112 or COMPH, but probably GND.

Any ideas? Should I abandon all hope and build the THAT version?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: usekgb on November 03, 2012, 12:30:27 PM
Have you checked for DC on your ratio pot?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on November 03, 2012, 01:11:11 PM
Have you checked for DC on your ratio pot?

Heh, there is indeed +15VDC on the ccw and -15VDC on the cw ... but why?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 03, 2012, 01:54:55 PM
Have you checked for DC on your ratio pot?

Heh, there is indeed +15VDC on the ccw and -15VDC on the cw ... but why?

Thats what you want for the ratio. Double check your wiring, thats were my builds usually get fouled up. (Make sure your using the rev 3 build manual)

Also don't worry about extra holes on the PCB that is fine. enless its something simple like ground then just solder a wire to the mu-metal cover and ground it, but they usually had ground on them.

Did you take note of all the different components you have to install for the 200 series vca?

try bypassing the control voltage, and see if signal is even getting through the vca.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on November 03, 2012, 04:05:46 PM
Have you checked for DC on your ratio pot?

Heh, there is indeed +15VDC on the ccw and -15VDC on the cw ... but why?

Thats what you want for the ratio. Double check your wiring, thats were my builds usually get fouled up. (Make sure your using the rev 3 build manual)

Also don't worry about extra holes on the PCB that is fine. enless its something simple like ground then just solder a wire to the mu-metal cover and ground it, but they usually had ground on them.

Did you take note of all the different components you have to install for the 200 series vca?

try bypassing the control voltage, and see if signal is even getting through the vca.

Yup, using rev 3 manual (but Rev 2 PCB!).. going to check the wiring again, and see if there's anything funny happening there..  my case has IN / OUT / GR instead of IN / GR / OUT that the manual has so maybe I did something there, I know I was aware of it, but it might have slipped..

I have grounded the 200 can to no effect. Yes, I did use the silkscreen values of resistors that didn't have (T) in parenthesis, and installed the R27 trimmer, Q7 transistor, R28 resistors etc..

I'm not sure how to bypass the CV..

btw, I just saw this: http://www.acsoundstudio.com/DIY/160vu/BOM/2ndREV/Information/PCB_Board.jpg is this also a problem on the REV2 board? If so, I have it rotated the wrong way (same as on silkscreen) so maybe that's why I'm getting triangle wave output?

Thanks for the help guys!

EDIT: having changed the transistor orientation, the output pot now works and the unit passess a weak sine signal. So far so good, off to see if I can up the signal to normal level or if something else is amiss :) but my scope died, so I can't test everything else, I'll just have to improvise or wait for a new one..
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Majestic12 on December 30, 2012, 08:29:16 AM
I finished one side of my dual unit today. It's working perfectly on the first power up but I haven't calibrated it precisely yet.
Very nice compresson on kick and snare drums !

(http://i48.tinypic.com/23hw2vc.jpg)

(http://i45.tinypic.com/9020jb.jpg)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 09, 2013, 07:49:42 PM
Board Pre order!

http://www.groupdiy.com/index.php?topic=51031.msg647827#msg647827

:) :) :)

Whos in??

THanks!

Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on January 22, 2013, 07:59:27 AM
Hi!

I've started shopping parts for my V3 board.
I noticed that BOM file for THAT build on the first page is not the same as BOM included in V3 pdf!
When I bought resistors from the CLX_VU bom THAT CHIP.pdf and stuffed most of them, I noticed that some are missing. Then compared it to clx_manual_rev3.pdf and saw there's a difference. So advice for everyone - make sure you use latest BOM!! And that would be the one included in manual_rev3 document!

Now I have few questions.
1) Some resistor values are unobtainable in my local shops. If I for instance need 23K2 value, is it ok to use two resistors in series (22K1+1K1) or in parallel (2x47K)? I have this issue with values 23K2, 6K04, 5K49, 133K, 22Meg.
Whould there be issues if I do paralleling and serial connecting to achieve required value?

2) What if I use closest obtainable value? For instance if I use 6K19 instead of 6K04, since this 6K19 actually measures 6K13 would that be okay?

3) Also I have weird situation with 4M7 resistor (R52). When reading color code on it, it says it is that value. But when I measure it with my multimeter I get 5M6 value. That is too much off! Should I trust its actually 4M7 and assume my multimeter is acting weird on such high values (it is set to max 20Meg range... can't use lower setting since lower is 2Meg)?

:)
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on January 22, 2013, 09:45:07 AM
Shot, whats the tolerance of that resistor?  Best to stick with 1% (or better in certain circumstances) when you can, less issues with variation, but when you get up there into the Mohms, the swing can get pretty hairy.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: irfrench on January 22, 2013, 09:57:44 AM
Shot,

I'd defo try to stick within the 1% range, do you have any similarly high value resistors to see if your DMM is misbehaving?  Last time that happened to me I needed to change the batteries...  :-[ :-[ :-[


I finished mine about the same time as Majestic12 but didn't want to share the limelight!  ;)

Pics of the finished unit:

(http://media.tumblr.com/2ec23480897ee3077526efda7c4aa2d9/tumblr_inline_mfwfh1A0Ea1r2bfgn.jpg)

(http://media.tumblr.com/826cce50ce6be0deb7d9dca6f5ba65e7/tumblr_inline_mfwflcAhZ11r2bfgn.jpg)

(http://media.tumblr.com/342c81756d16b7770610b7ac46b004f6/tumblr_inline_mfwflvwV7v1r2bfgn.jpg)



Cheers,

Ian.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on January 22, 2013, 03:32:48 PM
Damn! It never crossed my mind that it could be multimeter's batteries! I'll swap them tomorrow!

All resistors I'm using are metal film 1%.
Today I went to some other shops and I still cannot find values like 23K2, 5K49, 6K04, 133K and 22Meg.
I could combine few resistors to get the desired value.
Should I do it?
Or I can order from Farnell (only they have representative here in croatia), but the smallest quantity would be 50 pcs of every value. That would be buying 250 resistors to use only 6 of them!

What would happen if I put 5K6 instead of 5K49?
The 5K6 actually measures 5K56. That is close. Less than 2% off.
If I go 22K1+1K1 to get the 23K2?
If I use 6K19 (measuring real value of 6K13) instead of 6K04?
And so on... (100K+33K=133K, 10M+10M+2M=22M)
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 22, 2013, 09:40:26 PM
Damn! It never crossed my mind that it could be multimeter's batteries! I'll swap them tomorrow!

All resistors I'm using are metal film 1%.
Today I went to some other shops and I still cannot find values like 23K2, 5K49, 6K04, 133K and 22Meg.
I could combine few resistors to get the desired value.
Should I do it?
Or I can order from Farnell (only they have representative here in croatia), but the smallest quantity would be 50 pcs of every value. That would be buying 250 resistors to use only 6 of them!

What would happen if I put 5K6 instead of 5K49?
The 5K6 actually measures 5K56. That is close. Less than 2% off.
If I go 22K1+1K1 to get the 23K2?
If I use 6K19 (measuring real value of 6K13) instead of 6K04?
And so on... (100K+33K=133K, 10M+10M+2M=22M)

DO it! I wouldn't worry about it TOO much. Should be fine. Remeber a lot of these parts back then were 5% when they built them. Just take notice of the resistors in the RMS unit, try to get those as close as possible. The closer the better, but I doubt a few percentages off will do anything to adverse.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on January 22, 2013, 10:11:53 PM
YESSS! Thanks Abe!
I will now!
I didn't want to do it before consulting you (and others who built it).
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on March 14, 2013, 04:13:05 PM
Anyone know what is differences between silver and black cans? I have silver on my build but original 160 have black can, right?
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 14, 2013, 07:53:31 PM
Anyone know what is differences between silver and black cans? I have silver on my build but original 160 have black can, right?

My understanding is the Silver cans were a little bit more nosier...by how much im not too sure. If anyone has any hands on experience I would like to know too.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 15, 2013, 05:08:20 PM
Hey abe, I have an 'odd' question for you  :o

I have two 20K and one 22K linear pots. Can I use the 22K instead of getting a new 20K and if so where would be more appropriate (threshold, ratio or make up gain)?  :)

thanks
w.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on March 15, 2013, 06:43:09 PM
Anyone know what is differences between silver and black cans? I have silver on my build but original 160 have black can, right?

My understanding is the Silver cans were a little bit more nosier...by how much im not too sure. If anyone has any hands on experience I would like to know too.
  FWIW, here's a quote from the THAT corp that mentions the Silver Can and noise,
"...dbx chose to develop its own Class A VCA, the dbx 2001, housed in a silver can. Class A operation resulted in a substantially higher noise  floor, resulting from higher current through the gain cell and the correspondingly higher shot noise. However, some users claimed to prefer the sound of this device because of its lower THD."

Lots of other great info on that page; http://thatcorp.com/datashts/dn127.pdf (http://thatcorp.com/datashts/dn127.pdf)


  BTW, does anyone have a Mouser BOM or something along those lines to make the parts hunt easier.  I have the CLX160 BOM, but searching the right size parts is very time-consuming so I thought I'd ask. Thx!

Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 15, 2013, 06:56:34 PM
Hey abe, I have an 'odd' question for you  :o

I have two 20K and one 22K linear pots. Can I use the 22K instead of getting a new 20K and if so where would be more appropriate (threshold, ratio or make up gain)?  :)

thanks
w.

Yes, you totally can. I've used 25k with success and no noticeable difference.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on March 15, 2013, 08:29:03 PM
Wondering is my threshold knob calibration right. It stops .01 but it goes lots of over 3?
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: warpie on March 15, 2013, 08:58:15 PM
Yes, you totally can. I've used 25k with success and no noticeable difference.

Cool, thanks. Have you use 25K for all three pots or just for one of them?
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 16, 2013, 12:18:54 AM
Yes, you totally can. I've used 25k with success and no noticeable difference.

Cool, thanks. Have you use 25K for all three pots or just for one of them?

All three.


Wondering is my threshold knob calibration right. It stops .01 but it goes lots of over 3?

Hi Late,
I'm not sure If I understand exactly what you are saying...language barrier. I wouldn't worry too much about it though, just make it the same on both channels.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on April 28, 2013, 09:50:16 AM
hello i try to prepare my future Clx and i have some questions :

it's possible to have a Vumeter Led for Input Output AND a second for the compression ( as Dbx160A) ?

where i can wire the GR meter ?

thanks
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 29, 2013, 10:56:56 AM
hello i try to prepare my future Clx and i have some questions :

it's possible to have a Vumeter Led for Input Output AND a second for the compression ( as Dbx160A) ?

where i can wire the GR meter ?

thanks

Hello,
You could just wire the PCB to always be on GR mode, and then wire a buffered VU meter with a switch to monitor the input XLR and then the output XLR. Hope that helps.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on April 29, 2013, 12:21:54 PM
thanks for your answer : if i "lock" the Meter on GR i have a positive tenssion for the 0db Vu  ? and after the tenssion of the GR is less ?

On the PCB what is this plots ? :

(http://img4.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_451290Capturede769cran20130429a768181411.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=451290Capturede769cran20130429a768181411.jpg)

beasue the tenssion of GR is to the VCA out no?

thanks
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 29, 2013, 01:24:35 PM
thanks for your answer : if i "lock" the Meter on GR i have a positive tenssion for the 0db Vu  ? and after the tenssion of the GR is less ?

On the PCB what is this plots ? :

(http://img4.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_451290Capturede769cran20130429a768181411.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=451290Capturede769cran20130429a768181411.jpg)

beasue the tenssion of GR is to the VCA out no?

thanks

Helllo, Follow the manual and calibration steps and then just hardwire the switches to "GR". You will have to sit down and draw out a diagram to figure out how to wire it. I don't know off the top of my head, I could tell you but then its not DIY is it ;)

OK actually I'm just re-reading your original question and I don't really know for sure what you are asking, so just to make sure: you want one meter always set on GR and another separate meter that just shows input or output gain right?

In that case, EASIEST would be to do just what I mentioned before, and strap a VU directly on the input/output jacks, with a buffer circuit to compensate for balanced signal and also to make sure you don't add distortion to the audio.


In the DBX 160vu circuit, it gets the input VU signal from the RMS voltage and the output from the RMS voltage PLUS the voltage of the makup gain knob, so its not really a "True" VU on the input/output, but for all intents and purposes works just like one and is how they implemented it. Strapping a vu on input/output will give same results without having to try and split up the rather complicated meter selection/makup/rms circuitry.
Title: Re: Re-Order!!! CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on April 29, 2013, 02:43:59 PM
ok thanks if you want to see my project is here : http://www.groupdiy.com/drawing-board/channel-strip-projet-ssl-9kw492clx-vu/

and the front :


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 29, 2013, 09:21:21 PM
PS update ya'all,

C11 should be 1.8uf otherwise there is a slight bass roll off to the side chain. People that bought kits from me will see 2 x 1.8uf polypropylene caps for this purpose. The 0.33uf sounds fine, the bottom bass gets "bigger" but slightly not as controlled on some things.

If you wanted to get fancy you could put the 0.33uf and 1.8uf on a switch and have a HPF for the sidechain.

If you wanted to get really fancy, you could add another switch and take a tap from the output before the last lm301 stage and send that into the sidechain, and wala you get a feedback 160VU. Sound wise, its much more gentle and natural sounding, cool on some stuff, kind of boring. I did it to one of mine, definitely 2 compressors in one...more la2a sounding but opinions may vary! (sure hasn't replaced the la2a in my rack!:) Turns the gain knob into a threshold knob tho! Kinda weird but cool DIY.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 01, 2013, 02:24:05 PM
Regarding the output transistors included with kits:


The emitters are the holes nearest the "tab" of the transistor footprint. Have the flat side of the output transistors face inward toward the center of the PCB. Theres a few pictures in the build manual of the PCB with the correct orientation of the transistors.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on May 03, 2013, 12:27:12 AM
Rev 3 P.S.B.
C1 & C4 are not on the BOM. PSB shows 100nf.  No extra parts in kit. Are they used?
Do the 102K/400  1nf blue caps go in C24 & C84?
I've got all the red caps from a former parts kit as are shown in the Project Build Manual.
Are they better than the newer gray ones?
I've got the big old red 475J/250v Film cap for C21.
Would that be better to use than the little 4.7uf/25v bi polar cap included in the kit?
                     
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 03, 2013, 08:31:13 PM
Rev 3 P.S.B.
C1 & C4 are not on the BOM. PSB shows 100nf.  No extra parts in kit. Are they used?

no those are optional.

Quote
Do the 102K/400  1nf blue caps go in C24 & C84?
Yes those are the polyester caps
Quote
I've got all the red caps from a former parts kit as are shown in the Project Build Manual.
Are they better than the newer gray ones?
Nope, they both will work equally fine.
Quote
I've got the big old red 475J/250v Film cap for C21.
Would that be better to use than the little 4.7uf/25v bi polar cap included in the kit?
They will both sound great! The original used the little 4.7uf bi-polar cap. So use whatever you like.
                   
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: waner on May 04, 2013, 02:43:35 AM
Hi

I have a question reagarding calibration of the RMS unit.
The build manual says that I should put a signal of 100Hz -60dB on the input and then adjust R36.
My question is:
Is it -60dBm or dBu?

Thanks
Mattias
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on May 07, 2013, 09:26:19 AM
re: stereo link

Won't "linking the 2 caps together" change the compressor time constant?
would something like http://hairballaudio.com/guides/Stereo_Link_Wiring_Guide.pdf work?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Greenote on May 07, 2013, 01:32:30 PM
Great Project....Couple of questions. Stereo Build, Collective Case, Hairball meters/switches.

1. What size are the holes for the Hairball switches? I have some size #2, but they're too large for the front panel.

2. Any ideas on mounting the LEDs. I used Heat-Shrink. to thicken up the small LEDs, but theyre just kinda flopping around inside the case. 

FYI, The recommended torroidal xformer is back in stock. The Amveco alternative is quite spendier $42 on DigiKey.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on May 07, 2013, 07:02:12 PM
Place L.E.D.'s in the  holes and hot glue the back of the L.E.D's to the backside of the faceplate.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 07, 2013, 10:45:01 PM
I found some led mount things on mouser that work just great with dans CLX cases. Let me see if I can find them again.

I *think* they were these, you might want to double check. If not it was something like them.
http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Bivar/CR-104/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMtilyJihmhKqxNokeKFkmzIYuf096hicBQ%3d
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on May 07, 2013, 11:43:09 PM
REV 2 Question;
C39 use 150pf instead of 100pf?
C14 use 150pf instead of   22pf?
R1 straight wire?

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on May 09, 2013, 04:10:59 PM
Abe did you manage to finish the unit with the original 200?
Wondering how it's comparable and if worth the £££££

There was a guy on another post saying something about sharing audio files but I don't think that ever happened?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: 100WChris on May 09, 2013, 04:16:10 PM
Hi!
Did any of the european buyers received their boards? I´m in germany and i´m still waiting for my pcbs to arrive :(
Chris

EDIT: boards arrived today! Hurrrraaaa  :) Thanks ape for another great DIY project!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 09, 2013, 04:19:38 PM
Yes. Two weeks ago.

Hi!
Did any of the european buyers received their boards? I´m in germany and i´m still waiting for my pcbs to arrive :(
Chris

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on May 10, 2013, 05:31:59 PM
Hi there
Sitting here with the kit and is wondering about the transistors for Q2, Q8 and Q14 ( I read about it in the start of the thread, but still confused and can't find any data og them when I Google) :

I got 2 transistors in the kit labelled : 2N 5818 and 5819 - 5818 is for Q14 and 5819 is for Q8, right?
And then Q2 ( BC 550 C) is missing in the kit?

then one more question : at the BOM rev 3. it doesn't look like 200 ohm or 1 K ohm( what I see at the pictures) for R30 + R48?  Or am I wrong?  It says 200 ohm/1Kohm at the pcb?
Thanks and best regards from Nick W


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 10, 2013, 06:28:05 PM
Hi there
Sitting here with the kit and is wondering about the transistors for Q2, Q8 and Q14 ( I read about it in the start of the thread, but still confused and can't find any data og them when I Google) :

I got 2 transistors in the kit labelled : 2N 5818 and 5819 - 5818 is for Q14 and 5819 is for Q8, right?
And then Q2 ( BC 550 C) is missing in the kit?

then one more question : at the BOM rev 3. it doesn't look like 200 ohm or 1 K ohm( what I see at the pictures) for R30 + R48?  Or am I wrong?  It says 200 ohm/1Kohm at the pcb?
Thanks and best regards from Nick W

Yea some of the kits I stupidly left out the BC550 and a 1k resistor email me your addy and I can send you some replacements. Also don't look at the pictures too closely on the boards, because I use different parts, same values but like different colors and they visually aren't the same. Go by measuring the resistors and then also capacitors codes.

2N 5818 and 5819 - 5818 is for Q14 and 5819 is for Q8, right? that is correct have thier "face" (flat part) face towards the center of the PCB.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on May 10, 2013, 07:19:21 PM
Thanks Abe
So I choose between  200 ohm or 1 K ohm for R30 + R48 ?
 

Best /Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 10, 2013, 07:21:19 PM
Thanks Abe
So I choose between  200 ohm or 1 K ohm for R30 + R48 ?
 

Best /Nick


you will want 1k there to optimize the impedance for the That chip.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on May 10, 2013, 07:43:45 PM
Thanks Abe and now back to the soldership :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on May 11, 2013, 03:27:09 PM
Abe do you still have part kits available for a build?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 15, 2013, 01:30:56 AM
Abe do you still have part kits available for a build?

Yes I do have a few extra stashed away.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on May 15, 2013, 03:44:03 PM
Newbie Question regarding the powersupply:
I got this power supply ( see pic) and i'm confused where the red,brown, blue and green goes to the pcb (AC,CT,AC)
Could someone help me please :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 15, 2013, 05:52:48 PM
Connect Red+Brown and that is your center tap. Doesn't matter how you connect the other ones, just as long as the center tap is in the middle.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on May 15, 2013, 05:55:35 PM
Thanks Abe one more time for taking your time
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Songguy on May 15, 2013, 09:19:34 PM
Hi abe,

I'm thinking about installing a LED along with the switch I'm using to select stereo mode. Any ideas on wiring up an led, can this be done?

Best,
Chris
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 15, 2013, 10:40:26 PM
Hi abe,

I'm thinking about installing a LED along with the switch I'm using to select stereo mode. Any ideas on wiring up an led, can this be done?

Best,
Chris

Of course, just wire the led and current limiting resistor to a power rail and the other side of a double pole switch
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on May 20, 2013, 04:42:51 PM
Will this power transformer work for a dual unit ?

http://ca.mouser.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?R=VPT36-1390virtualkey55310000virtualkey553-VPT36-1390 (http://ca.mouser.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?R=VPT36-1390virtualkey55310000virtualkey553-VPT36-1390)

I'm ordering stuff from Mouser for other projects, might as well combine and save shipping

-Dave
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 20, 2013, 04:45:17 PM
Will this power transformer work for a dual unit ?

http://ca.mouser.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?R=VPT36-1390virtualkey55310000virtualkey553-VPT36-1390 (http://ca.mouser.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?R=VPT36-1390virtualkey55310000virtualkey553-VPT36-1390)

I'm ordering stuff from Mouser for other projects, might as well combine and save shipping

-Dave

looks good!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on May 21, 2013, 04:55:55 PM
What is everyone using to mount the pcb to the case? I'd prefer not to drill if at all possible. Has anyone used something like this before?

http://www.wlanparts.com/product/EZSNAP-5-3/PCB-Mount-Nylon66-48mm-standoff-for-3mm-hole-3M-adhesive-4-pack.html
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on May 21, 2013, 05:16:37 PM
that went terribly wrong with me on pedals so decided to take 45min to drill
any drill will probably do the trick for 4-40 thread and you can get one of those stepped drill bits for a £10

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on May 21, 2013, 06:19:31 PM
Pedals get thrown around. I don't drill cases anymore. I use the nylon 3M PC mounts on all my projects.
On microphone Power Supplies, I'll JB Weld the transformer brackets to the case.
Neat and strong no problems so far.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Majestic12 on May 24, 2013, 09:27:33 AM
I have a problem on the calibration process on one channel of my dual unit.

I can't get the voltage at the end of R79 down to -0,011V as stated in the manual. I can turn the trimmer to any position I like, the voltage is stuck to +2,4mV
when in Input Mode.
The channel is working perfectly and all the other calibration steps are performed. Does anybody know what to do ?

I already checked the trimmer and its working perfectly. No problems on the second channel.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ffarrell on May 25, 2013, 06:36:45 PM
My 1u  stereo 160vu clone. 

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sidewalkmantra on May 26, 2013, 10:30:42 AM
REV 3: excuse me but when in inserting a polarised cap in C21- what polarity is insert 1 for this cap? It appears to be unmarked on the board.

Thanks in advance
Gordon
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 26, 2013, 06:41:19 PM
Finished my second unit. But i have problem with output gain. It not increase the output, it just give more distortion. Could it be vca problem? Because i have old black cans and both channel have same problem.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on May 27, 2013, 02:29:07 AM
Finished my second unit. But i have problem with output gain. It not increase the output, it just give more distortion. Could it be vca problem? Because i have old black cans and both channel have same problem.

Is it a 202 or 200 VCA?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 27, 2013, 05:39:12 AM
Finished my second unit. But i have problem with output gain. It not increase the output, it just give more distortion. Could it be vca problem? Because i have old black cans and both channel have same problem.

Is it a 202 or 200 VCA?

200 series black. It is marked "vca" and it is potted. So i cant see inside. Bought them from ebay some month ago Sound is very distorted.


Edit:

Tested with another vca and it work. Weird that both are broken. Seller told in ebay listing that they are tested.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 27, 2013, 12:17:18 PM
REV 3: excuse me but when in inserting a polarised cap in C21- what polarity is insert 1 for this cap? It appears to be unmarked on the board.

Thanks in advance
Gordon

A polarized cap is supposed to be inserted there...Check the cap, if its one of my kits it looks like an electrolytic but is a bi-polar electrolytic (just like the originals) orientation doesn't matter. :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 27, 2013, 12:18:49 PM
Finished my second unit. But i have problem with output gain. It not increase the output, it just give more distortion. Could it be vca problem? Because i have old black cans and both channel have same problem.

Is it a 202 or 200 VCA?

200 series black. It is marked "vca" and it is potted. So i cant see inside. Bought them from ebay some month ago Sound is very distorted.


Edit:

Tested with another vca and it work. Weird that both are broken. Seller told in ebay listing that they are tested.

Did you make sure to use all the correct resistors (the ones not with the (T) next to them? Also make sure the That 2180 circuit isn't installed, sounds like a control Voltage problem...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 27, 2013, 12:38:07 PM
Finished my second unit. But i have problem with output gain. It not increase the output, it just give more distortion. Could it be vca problem? Because i have old black cans and both channel have same problem.

Is it a 202 or 200 VCA?

200 series black. It is marked "vca" and it is potted. So i cant see inside. Bought them from ebay some month ago Sound is very distorted.


Edit:

Tested with another vca and it work. Weird that both are broken. Seller told in ebay listing that they are tested.

Did you make sure to use all the correct resistors (the ones not with the (T) next to them? Also make sure the That 2180 circuit isn't installed, sounds like a control Voltage problem...

Yes. It worked well with different vca.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on May 27, 2013, 03:56:05 PM
I got mine to work with an original 200 (silver can, unpotted) VCA. Somehow I managed to fry the meter TL071, the RMS section of TL082 and the meter emulation ICs.

Btw, the "low noise mod" added about 10dB of noise for me.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 27, 2013, 03:59:12 PM
I got mine to work with an original 200 (silver can, unpotted) VCA. Somehow I managed to fry the meter TL071, the RMS section of TL082 and the meter emulation ICs.

Btw, the "low noise mod" added about 10dB of noise for me.


the low noise mod is only for rev 2....did you have rev 2 or 3? anyway thanks for reporting your success!! nice to hear. how is the hiss noise? i hearrd the silver cans are maybe a little hissier, but dont know it it will bother me
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on May 27, 2013, 04:30:16 PM
I got mine to work with an original 200 (silver can, unpotted) VCA. Somehow I managed to fry the meter TL071, the RMS section of TL082 and the meter emulation ICs.

Btw, the "low noise mod" added about 10dB of noise for me.


the low noise mod is only for rev 2....did you have rev 2 or 3? anyway thanks for reporting your success!! nice to hear. how is the hiss noise? i hearrd the silver cans are maybe a little hissier, but dont know it it will bother me

I do have a (pair of) rev 2 boards :) that's why I was surprised that it ended up being counter-productive. I'm getting about -70dBFS noise residue on my system (TC Konnekt 48). Looking at the analyzer, it is mostly 60hz harmonics with some hiss, bot not too much. Since I have to replace the fried ICs I took from the other channel to troubleshoot / fix the first channel, I didn't sand down and close the case yet, I expect the noise to drop somewhat from that. Maybe shield some cables going to pots and switches too.

Thanks for the project, it's really great. I would also recommend it to newbies wanting to learn compression.. the LEDs are extremely helpful and absence of attack / release makes it easier to dial in what you want. Maybe not the best tool for all jobs, but I'm liking the usual suspects of bass, kicks and snares, some vocals (especially dynamic mics over tube amps, gives them back some pop).
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 27, 2013, 05:16:10 PM
Yes the silver cans are little bit more noisier. I have both silver and black. I like more black cans and they sound more like an original 160vu. I have two silver and one black (unpotted) they work well. But those two potted black cans not work. Sound is so distorted, is it possible that dbx have made different sorts of black cans for different units. Or are they just broken? 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 27, 2013, 05:48:55 PM
Yes the silver cans are little bit more noisier. I have both silver and black. I like more black cans and they sound more like an original 160vu. I have two silver and one black (unpotted) they work well. But those two potted black cans not work. Sound is so distorted, is it possible that dbx have made different sorts of black cans for different units. Or are they just broken?

hmm I would think they are broken?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on May 27, 2013, 05:50:44 PM
Hey there- got my kits and everything in the build, I am wondering which meter I got, the 1mA or the .1mA???? I ordered the one recommended from the AC site links on abe's page. I just need to know which resistor to pop in the board!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 27, 2013, 05:53:28 PM
Hey there- got my kits and everything in the build, I am wondering which meter I got, the 1mA or the .1mA???? I ordered the one recommended from the AC site links on abe's page. I just need to know which resistor to pop in the board!

Hi!
10k is for 0.1ma deflection meters (it soaks up more current) and the 3k3 is for the 1ma (soaks up less current leaving more for the meter)
Hairball meters are all 1ma.
Happy building!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on May 27, 2013, 05:57:06 PM
sweet!!! And I am also assuming that the components on the board with (T) are for the THAT build which is what I am doing correct!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sidewalkmantra on May 28, 2013, 04:32:41 AM
Thanks For that Abe!  I have asked some silly questions :-[
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on May 28, 2013, 07:33:54 PM
I am at the same thing as well. its not on the BOM, soooooooooo I am ignoring it until further instruction!!!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 29, 2013, 05:02:07 PM
Yes the silver cans are little bit more noisier. I have both silver and black. I like more black cans and they sound more like an original 160vu. I have two silver and one black (unpotted) they work well. But those two potted black cans not work. Sound is so distorted, is it possible that dbx have made different sorts of black cans for different units. Or are they just broken?

hmm I would think they are broken?

Yeps it sounds like a broken. I would like to do it to your pcb. Do you know is it possible to use BC263C like in original. So replacing BC550/BC560 with BC263C. Anyone have black can schematic?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on May 29, 2013, 09:30:43 PM
dumb question (as usual) whats the value of R125 supposed to be with a "THAT" build?  My original unit has something different than what the board says... cant remember if there was a reason for that i over looked in the build manual or what.  Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 29, 2013, 10:05:38 PM
dumb question (as usual) whats the value of R125 supposed to be with a "THAT" build?  My original unit has something different than what the board says... cant remember if there was a reason for that i over looked in the build manual or what.  Thanks

Thats the current limiting resistor for the LEDs in the meters, 4k7 is the value that is on the Rev3s
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on May 30, 2013, 11:29:34 AM
And that answers that, cool.  I only have a couple hundred of those resistors layin around. lol
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on May 30, 2013, 09:16:49 PM
OK! missing a couple of resistors and capacitors form my kits. NOT a real problem if they are not needed. C11, C1, C4, C16, C13. I also need to know if I have installed my 103 C18 in the correct holes on the PCB. I have the leads in holes 1 and 3 if you are looking at the C18 box silkscreen from the top of the PCB and the holes are left to right like all of the pix in the build guide. Is this fine?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 31, 2013, 12:44:09 PM
Maybe it is easier to use bc550 and bc560. But looks like that bc263c is pnp and bc109 npn in original black can build. Can someone tell something about that matching thing?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on May 31, 2013, 01:16:13 PM
Quote
Can someone tell something about that matching thing?
if it's just to match those PnP and NPN, you can use your multimeter's HFE function or get an Atlas Peak measurer.
Bear in mind they are temperature sensitive, including to the touch.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on May 31, 2013, 06:19:17 PM
C16 is a trimmer so I can ignore that, but I have an extra capacitor in my kit so far and extra 1.8uf. should this actually go in the C11 .33uf spot like the C12 which has to two options?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on May 31, 2013, 07:35:53 PM
C16 is a trimmer so I can ignore that, but I have an extra capacitor in my kit so far and extra 1.8uf. should this actually go in the C11 .33uf spot like the C12 which has to two options?

C11 is 0.33uf.

C12
1.8uf for that chip
0.33uf for discrete vca
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: rewrew on June 01, 2013, 11:25:48 AM
Hi Abe,
If I used 25 uA meter, how to calculate  R107?
I have mine working now, but Il can't get the scaling on the meter to work properly.
Regards Andrzej
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on June 02, 2013, 04:34:03 PM
the antek transformer has a purple lead coming off of the primary side. What do I do with it?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 02, 2013, 07:49:18 PM
the antek transformer has a purple lead coming off of the primary side. What do I do with it?

I believe that is connected to the chassis ground. That is what I did and my power rails are working perfectly.

On another note my compressor is not passing signal on both channels. I have triple checked everything and can't find anything wrong. I tracked the input with a scope and I'm getting signal into the rms circuit. After the rms circuit I'm unable to trace the signal. The above/below leds respond properly. Not sure about the meter, the resistor that needs calibrated is still out of circuit. Anyone have a guess as to what is wrong? I'm using the kit abe provided for the THAT chip build. I can post pictures later.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on June 03, 2013, 02:19:21 AM
the antek transformer has a purple lead coming off of the primary side. What do I do with it?

I believe that is connected to the chassis ground. That is what I did and my power rails are working perfectly.

On another note my compressor is not passing signal on both channels. I have triple checked everything and can't find anything wrong. I tracked the input with a scope and I'm getting signal into the rms circuit. After the rms circuit I'm unable to trace the signal. The above/below leds respond properly. Not sure about the meter, the resistor that needs calibrated is still out of circuit. Anyone have a guess as to what is wrong? I'm using the kit abe provided for the THAT chip build. I can post pictures later.

In my case it was a dead IC TL082.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 03, 2013, 06:31:46 PM
On another note my compressor is not passing signal on both channels. I have triple checked everything and can't find anything wrong. I tracked the input with a scope and I'm getting signal into the rms circuit. After the rms circuit I'm unable to trace the signal. The above/below leds respond properly. Not sure about the meter, the resistor that needs calibrated is still out of circuit. Anyone have a guess as to what is wrong? I'm using the kit abe provided for the THAT chip build. I can post pictures later.

The signal flow goes into the VCA not the rms circuit, the rms circuit is the start of the sidechain and converts the audio into DC so thats why you cant trace it.

Follow your signal to the that 2180 chip. Search for the datasheet if you need to know the in/out pins. If audio is going in and out of your vca check the second Tl082 chip as that is the make-up/buffer for the output of the VCA. Then it goes to the output section LM301 and the output buffer stage (2 transistors)

Also since both your channels are not working that is suspect.

On a side note, I've had people putting in all their chips before calibrating their voltage rails!! If you do not calibrate your voltage rails to +15/-15 before inserting your chips, you will obviously and very likely BLOW your VCA and other chips.

Not saying this is what happened to you, but thought I would mention it.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on June 04, 2013, 08:11:30 PM
ok Disaster! sparks on the one compressor board in the LED section I believe. i had some smoke out of that board. then the other boards ratio pot smoked!!!!! I could not get mV's to read on either board. from the 15v rail's on the smoking LED board I got 47.7 VOLTS DC ?!?!?!? and could not get it to drop into mV range?!?!?!?! the other rail with the smoked ratio pot I could not get a steady mV reading. it went from 129.98 down to 78,8 on the mV setting of my DMM. It would fluctuate between these no matter how I twisted the trimmers r100 and r101. so I am guessing I f**ked my entire build at this point. pretty f**king bummed. The VU meter on the smoking ratio pot side was pulsing as well. this was all over the course of ten minutes of trying to set the power rails. when I put my DMM on the G with a + or - side on the 15v rails I would get a -23.2 and a 23.2 reading on them. the 24v rail always read 50.4 on both boards
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on June 04, 2013, 08:52:30 PM
It must have been quite a show. I'm just finishing two stereo builds. 
After Reading the posts, did you check the voltages before installing the I.C.'s?
Not being able to adjust voltages is usually a blown regulator. Did you install the right ones, in the right way.
Check direction of electolitic caps.
If you didn't check voltages first, I'd remove all chips, Vca's and start with the power rails first, replacing blown regulators and get the voltages right.
Checking blown I'C's is another matter.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on June 04, 2013, 09:14:28 PM
no this was the 1st power up, so no chips where in. all the elctrolytics are in properly, when you say regulators do you mean the R100 and R101?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on June 04, 2013, 09:31:42 PM
No. R100 & R101 are the trim adjustors. You turn these to adjust the voltage.
LM317 and LM337 are the regulators.
Are they in the right positions and direction. Are the diodes (IN4001) in the right directions?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 05, 2013, 02:06:13 AM
ok Disaster! sparks on the one compressor board in the LED section I believe. i had some smoke out of that board. then the other boards ratio pot smoked!!!!! I could not get mV's to read on either board. from the 15v rail's on the smoking LED board I got 47.7 VOLTS DC ?!?!?!? and could not get it to drop into mV range?!?!?!?! the other rail with the smoked ratio pot I could not get a steady mV reading. it went from 129.98 down to 78,8 on the mV setting of my DMM. It would fluctuate between these no matter how I twisted the trimmers r100 and r101. so I am guessing I f**ked my entire build at this point. pretty f**king bummed. The VU meter on the smoking ratio pot side was pulsing as well. this was all over the course of ten minutes of trying to set the power rails. when I put my DMM on the G with a + or - side on the 15v rails I would get a -23.2 and a 23.2 reading on them. the 24v rail always read 50.4 on both boards

Ok. First of all you're not measuring anything in mVs at this stage. I'm confused a little by what is going on, your supposed to be looking at the +/- 15v rails while turning your resistors. If things are smoking, check what components your smoked, lucky they are all super easy to get from any generic electronic parts store.
Also, the 24v rails are bi-polar also? I  sense some general fundamental misunderstanding at this point, you always should measure from ground to the different points.

Also if you get sparks and smoke that is a very good sign you did something incorrectly and I would immediately power down and check your connections. Good place to start to look is incorrect soldering, solder blobs/ solder bridges. Also diode orientation.

A side note, why would you want to have the pots and everything hooked up when you are adjusting your power rails? Just more things to go wrong. I would check your wiring and orientation.
Good luck, don't get discouraged your probably almost there.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Curran on June 05, 2013, 06:52:26 AM
I though I was supposed to have everything hooked up except the chips, and YES there is some very fundamental dumbness in my brain. Reading the build manual I took the +/- 50mV to be that i had to get the test points to read that!!! I am to much of ab "A" to "B" brain. I miss very important subtleties until I get hit over the head with a flaming compressor!! LOL. I will disconnect everything, rebuild the led harness(Channel #1) and ratio pot ( Channel #2) look at my soldering on the back(Everything looks correct as far as orientation)
and figure out if I truly destroyed my compressor's. my wife is awesome and cheered my up right away with some parks&rec though which is nice. oh well.................

So I want the 15v rails to actually read 15V's give or take a bit right?! WOW this is so sensible no wonder i missed it. and the 24V rails should fall into line on their own correct? and I do NOT want to read my ground from the "G" on the test points of the board? but from a chassis ground reference? and another thing I have the boards on plastic standoff's, is this bad? I use them for the pedals I build for Strictly 7 Guitars
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 05, 2013, 11:22:00 AM
I though I was supposed to have everything hooked up except the chips, and YES there is some very fundamental dumbness in my brain. Reading the build manual I took the +/- 50mV to be that i had to get the test points to read that!!! I am to much of ab "A" to "B" brain. I miss very important subtleties until I get hit over the head with a flaming compressor!! LOL. I will disconnect everything, rebuild the led harness(Channel #1) and ratio pot ( Channel #2) look at my soldering on the back(Everything looks correct as far as orientation)
and figure out if I truly destroyed my compressor's. my wife is awesome and cheered my up right away with some parks&rec though which is nice. oh well.................

So I want the 15v rails to actually read 15V's give or take a bit right?! WOW this is so sensible no wonder i missed it. and the 24V rails should fall into line on their own correct? and I do NOT want to read my ground from the "G" on the test points of the board? but from a chassis ground reference? and another thing I have the boards on plastic standoff's, is this bad? I use them for the pedals I build for Strictly 7 Guitars

Cool, yes you got it. Yes each power rail should be +15 and -15 respectivley. +/-50mv (just get em as close as you can, not a big deal). And the +/-24 rails you don't have any real control over and will drift depending on what kind of transformer you use and your line voltage etc. etc. The voltage of the +/-24 rails is not too critical as it just powers the output stage. I've had it as high as +/-30V and as low as +/-20V.

When checking if things are fried, resistors will have to look visually burned to a crisp and diodes you can measure with a DMM. Also you can measure transistors with the DMM (they are just 2 diodes connected together) With your pot that started smoking, it either is totally shot or just doesn't work were the smoke was let out, you can measure that too, but ultimately you will probably want to replace it.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on June 05, 2013, 07:07:50 PM
Finishing 2 stereo builds Ver. 2 and Ver. 3 boards.
Just want to make sure I've made all the Componet changes.
Reading all the posts is a little confusing
Have the BOMs been updated with the final changes?  Different values, Omit, Don't use.
What happened to the VER 2 docs?
The Ver 3 build manual is a combo of both 2 and 3 ??????
Just want to make sure everything's right  before first power up.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 05, 2013, 07:16:59 PM
On another note my compressor is not passing signal on both channels. I have triple checked everything and can't find anything wrong. I tracked the input with a scope and I'm getting signal into the rms circuit. After the rms circuit I'm unable to trace the signal. The above/below leds respond properly. Not sure about the meter, the resistor that needs calibrated is still out of circuit. Anyone have a guess as to what is wrong? I'm using the kit abe provided for the THAT chip build. I can post pictures later.

The signal flow goes into the VCA not the rms circuit, the rms circuit is the start of the sidechain and converts the audio into DC so thats why you cant trace it.

Follow your signal to the that 2180 chip. Search for the datasheet if you need to know the in/out pins. If audio is going in and out of your vca check the second Tl082 chip as that is the make-up/buffer for the output of the VCA. Then it goes to the output section LM301 and the output buffer stage (2 transistors)

Also since both your channels are not working that is suspect.

On a side note, I've had people putting in all their chips before calibrating their voltage rails!! If you do not calibrate your voltage rails to +15/-15 before inserting your chips, you will obviously and very likely BLOW your VCA and other chips.

Not saying this is what happened to you, but thought I would mention it.

Thanks for leading me in the right direction Abe! I fixed the issue in both channels and now are both passing signal! I had soldered c12 and c21 into the wrong pads on the PCB, aligning them to the right. So to anyone else working on this project, when looking at multiple pads for a capacitor footprint align to the left (when looking at the text on the PCB facing you).


A few questions about the calibration:

4:1 ratio calibration R43 does not effect the level (also is CCW a typo in the manual, isn't fully CW no compression?) Do I need to solder blob the left pin and wiper pin together as you mentioned earlier in this thread? It isn't a big deal as it is only off by .07db.

Meter emulation calibration: R124 will not adjust the meter in either direction very far. I'm using the 1ma hairball meter. Is the solution to turn the screw on the meter to get it close to 0? I'm not sure if that is okay to do.


A huge thank you for this project, I can't wait to use it on a record in 2 weeks!  :D :D :D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 05, 2013, 10:17:33 PM
Finishing 2 stereo builds Ver. 2 and Ver. 3 boards.
Just want to make sure I've made all the Componet changes.
Reading all the posts is a little confusing
Have the BOMs been updated with the final changes?  Different values, Omit, Don't use.
What happened to the VER 2 docs?
The Ver 3 build manual is a combo of both 2 and 3 ??????
Just want to make sure everything's right  before first power up.

Yes, there are a few changes from rev2 to rev3. Nothing that drastic though. The Rev2 manual is still available. the link is here :
http://store.acsoundstudio.com/project-support/clx-vu.html (http://store.acsoundstudio.com/project-support/clx-vu.html)

Hope that helps.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 05, 2013, 10:23:40 PM

A few questions about the calibration:

4:1 ratio calibration R43 does not effect the level (also is CCW a typo in the manual, isn't fully CW no compression?) Do I need to solder blob the left pin and wiper pin together as you mentioned earlier in this thread? It isn't a big deal as it is only off by .07db.


The blob trick was only needed for rev2. Honestly the 4:1 calibration doesn't really make a huge difference in practice. Though you should be seeing a good amount of change. (your turning the pots more than just once right? these are 20 turn pots :)


Quote
Meter emulation calibration: R143 will not adjust the meter in either direction very far. I'm using the 1ma hairball meter. Is the solution to turn the screw on the meter to get it close to 0? I'm not sure if that is okay to do.

It should be able to peg the meter harder than its been pegged before! Again the only thing I can think of is that your not turing the trimpots enough times.

Quote

A huge thank you for this project, I can't wait to use it on a record in 2 weeks!  :D :D :D

You bet! Thanks for getting it and hope it works wonderfully for you. I love mine on kick and snare during tracking. Though you have to be SOO careful not to destroy your snare tracks (I speak from experience ;)) When the meter is twitching, and lights blinking its usually just right.

Also a killer on guitars, bass!!
Rock on good luck!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 06, 2013, 01:53:05 AM

Quote
Meter emulation calibration: R143 will not adjust the meter in either direction very far. I'm using the 1ma hairball meter. Is the solution to turn the screw on the meter to get it close to 0? I'm not sure if that is okay to do.

It should be able to peg the meter harder than its been pegged before! Again the only thing I can think of is that your not turing the trimpots enough times.


I did 20 360 degree turns and continued till I heard a click and stopped. On channel 1 I'm measuring 2.6 vdc at the pcb pad on r124 (the empty pad next to the silk screen r124), and channel 2 is reading a proper 15vdc. The maximum voltage I'm able to get into r108 is 2.6 vdc for channel 1, and 15 vdc for channel 2. Ignoring channel 1 for the moment, channel 2 reads 7.67 vdc on the other end of r108 and then ends up with .046vdc at the VU. R124 allows the meter to move to the right by about 5db on the scale. All resistor values are correct, and there are no cold solder joints. I am baffled at the moment, not sure what is going on. Maybe both TL071's aren't functioning quite properly? As for channel 1, isn't that pad directly connected to the +15vdc power?  :o

Thanks for taking time to answer my silly questions!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 06, 2013, 10:52:48 AM

It should be able to peg the meter harder than its been pegged before! Again the only thing I can think of is that your not turing the trimpots enough times.



I did 20 360 degree turns and continued till I heard a click and stopped. On channel 1 I'm measuring 2.6 vdc at the pcb pad on r124 (the empty pad next to the silk screen r124), and channel 2 is reading a proper 15vdc. The maximum voltage I'm able to get into r108 is 2.6 vdc for channel 1, and 15 vdc for channel 2. Ignoring channel 1 for the moment, channel 2 reads 7.67 vdc on the other end of r108 and then ends up with .046vdc at the VU. R124 allows the meter to move to the right by about 5db on the scale. All resistor values are correct, and there are no cold solder joints. I am baffled at the moment, not sure what is going on. Maybe both TL071's aren't functioning quite properly? As for channel 1, isn't that pad directly connected to the +15vdc power?  :o

Thanks for taking time to answer my silly questions!

Hmm...are you using the 3k3 resistor instead of the 10k resistor for the meter? (you should use the 3k3 with 1ma meter)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ishish on June 06, 2013, 01:16:59 PM
Trying to wrap up a stereo build here and I feel I am very close. One channel is passing audio and compressing beautifully! Yay. The other channel is compressing as well, but sadly, there is a lot of distortion in the signal at all times (even with compression at minimum). Any helpful ideas about where to start hunting down the problem? I've been very meticulous, and with one channel working I must not be too far off. Power rails at +/-15v and +/-23.7v.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 06, 2013, 02:07:54 PM
Trying to wrap up a stereo build here and I feel I am very close. One channel is passing audio and compressing beautifully! Yay. The other channel is compressing as well, but sadly, there is a lot of distortion in the signal at all times (even with compression at minimum). Any helpful ideas about where to start hunting down the problem? I've been very meticulous, and with one channel working I must not be too far off. Power rails at +/-15v and +/-23.7v.

I would power down both and switch chips in both and see if the problem follows the chips or on the board. If its the board I would look at all the diodes first (make sure they are in the correct orientation. And then the RMS unit.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 08, 2013, 04:49:13 AM
Iv'e have 15 volt at the power rails, there's light in the LED's - but there is only comming noise(hum) out of my Maschine. Any idea what's wrong?
2 IC's went up in smoke and I replaced them and now I'm thinking if the other IC's is spoiled
If that could be the reason,is there a way to test the IC's if they are working?
Yes- I've already tested and beeeped my soldering and the other components and checked the in/outputs if They had been misplaced..Everything should be in the right place ha ha
Please help me :)
Best from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 08, 2013, 01:23:48 PM

It should be able to peg the meter harder than its been pegged before! Again the only thing I can think of is that your not turing the trimpots enough times.



I did 20 360 degree turns and continued till I heard a click and stopped. On channel 1 I'm measuring 2.6 vdc at the pcb pad on r124 (the empty pad next to the silk screen r124), and channel 2 is reading a proper 15vdc. The maximum voltage I'm able to get into r108 is 2.6 vdc for channel 1, and 15 vdc for channel 2. Ignoring channel 1 for the moment, channel 2 reads 7.67 vdc on the other end of r108 and then ends up with .046vdc at the VU. R124 allows the meter to move to the right by about 5db on the scale. All resistor values are correct, and there are no cold solder joints. I am baffled at the moment, not sure what is going on. Maybe both TL071's aren't functioning quite properly? As for channel 1, isn't that pad directly connected to the +15vdc power?  :o

Thanks for taking time to answer my silly questions!

Hmm...are you using the 3k3 resistor instead of the 10k resistor for the meter? (you should use the 3k3 with 1ma meter)

Unit is up and functioning 99% (stereo link was working but isn't anymore.. will eventually figure it out). I had the 3k3 resistor there, still couldn't get enough current to the VU, swapped for a 1k, no change, and then a jumper. Figured out the problem was TWO bad TL071's... what are the odds?! Back to 3k3 and the meter is working perfectly.

Thanks Abe!  :D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 08, 2013, 01:38:58 PM
Iv'e have 15 volt at the power rails, there's light in the LED's - but there is only comming noise(hum) out of my Maschine. Any idea what's wrong?
2 IC's went up in smoke and I replaced them and now I'm thinking if the other IC's is spoiled
If that could be the reason,is there a way to test the IC's if they are working?
Yes- I've already tested and beeeped my soldering and the other components and checked the in/outputs if They had been misplaced..Everything should be in the right place ha ha
Please help me :)
Best from Nick

First triple check that every IC is in the correct place. If you have a scope trace the input signal per Abe's suggestion:

Follow your signal to the that 2180 chip. Search for the datasheet if you need to know the in/out pins. If audio is going in and out of your vca check the second Tl082 chip as that is the make-up/buffer for the output of the VCA. Then it goes to the output section LM301 and the output buffer stage (2 transistors)

Study the schematic and you'll eventually find it, good luck!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 08, 2013, 04:27:17 PM
Thanks for replying Eparg, I wiil try your advice and beep my Way trough the Ic's  :)
Best regards from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 09, 2013, 05:37:45 PM
Hey guys

So completed mine. Time to polish the little things now :)
Anyone else followed the suggestion to change the cap? (0.33uF)?

I managed to pull the sound I wanted from some snares exactly like the 160's I remember, but for the life of me the kicks just loose all body and get clicky, as if it wasn't fast enough (but this beast is that fast).

Eg. I can match the example in the sound cloud to 99.99%

I did do a silly mistake and installed the BC550 on the RMS section the wrong way around. I'm assuming the "timing cap" is the 22uF tantlum, maybe I damaged the cap?

Ideas before I start hacking at the board?

J
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 10, 2013, 04:31:24 AM
Crap got the wrong meters, didn't I? http://www.hairballaudio.com/shop/product_info.php?cPath=25&products_id=59
That's what I get for rushing
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 10, 2013, 10:55:07 AM
Crap got the wrong meters, didn't I? http://www.hairballaudio.com/shop/product_info.php?cPath=25&products_id=59
That's what I get for rushing

Those will work but are noticeably "slower" and you have to use a 10k resistor instead of 3k3. Or just ship them back and get the right ones.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 10, 2013, 10:57:10 AM
Hey guys

So completed mine. Time to polish the little things now :)
Anyone else followed the suggestion to change the cap? (0.33uF)?

I managed to pull the sound I wanted from some snares exactly like the 160's I remember, but for the life of me the kicks just loose all body and get clicky, as if it wasn't fast enough (but this beast is that fast).

Eg. I can match the example in the sound cloud to 99.99%

I did do a silly mistake and installed the BC550 on the RMS section the wrong way around. I'm assuming the "timing cap" is the 22uF tantlum, maybe I damaged the cap?

Ideas before I start hacking at the board?

J

I would use 1.8uf for the 0.33uf cap like I stated before, maybe its the actual kick / kick sample that you are compressing that is clicky itself? If you wanted more bass out of it , you could use a 0.33uf cap, that would let the compressor not react so much to the lows.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 10, 2013, 01:48:43 PM
tried it on a handfull of kicks and pretty much all of them became thin and weightless (loosely describing as loss of low end)
but except for one kick it simply wasn't fast enough and this is pretty darn fast compressor. Or maybe it's fine. I'll compare it with a 160 some point soon I hope.

Meanwhile I may socket the caps and give it a go.

I've been on the soundcloud groupdiy page is there someone that could pretty please post a kick setting there?

For the meter! RIght! I could raise the meter but only to halfway! I'll try with 10k too. thanks!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 11, 2013, 03:24:45 AM
I'm a bit confused about the measuring method at the powerrails- maybe it's my bad English:
I can measure 15 volt at the plus and minus points,where i put the black lead (com) of my multimeter at the minus point and the red lead of my multimeter at the plus point.
Is it the correct Way to measure?
I ask because I read that some put the Black lead on the G point at the powerrails and the red on the minus or plus and measure from that, and if I dó that I got something like 0-1 volt out of that.
Right now I got 15 volt at the 15 volt points and around 50 volt at the 24 points
Best from Nick






Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 11, 2013, 03:50:02 AM
Hi Nucleus

No, you have to measure witht he black probe on G. Red probing +15 should yeld a positive voltage, on -15 a negative voltage.
Check your DMM setting, You should be on V DC, not AC, and probes on the correct place (V+Com)

Then adjust the trimmers.

Seing 50v on the 24v rails though. What are the voltage (AC this time around) on your CT points?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 11, 2013, 02:21:05 PM
Thanks jplebre- I send you a virtual beer for helping me :)
Now I have 15 v at the minus and plus point and around 27 v at the 24 v points.Measured with the black lead at G and red lead at minus or plus.
I've measured in DCv mode.Still it doesn't give meaning to my brain why I should measure with the black lead at the ground point,because the pcb it's not connected to the chassis yet so there's no ground connection to the outside of the unit.
Thanks again for your help JPL
Best from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 11, 2013, 02:51:56 PM
I've measured in DCv mode.Still it doesn't give meaning to my brain why I should measure with the black lead at the ground point,because the pcb it's not connected to the chassis yet so there's no ground connection to the outside of the unit.

to the best of my understanding, or how I interiorized this, this "ground" is a reference level.
may or may not be the same as a power ground or the earth, although it is?

This ground will be the CT as well.

(bit rusty, trying to grab most of these principles but there's so many variables).

Cheers for the beer :D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 11, 2013, 02:54:14 PM
Right socketing the caps - more roundy goodness for the kicks, but not an extreme difference.
And I just noticed something:

Rev3board:, meter still without the "callibration" resistor, RMS callibrated, i/p at 0.011v
- I do not have 15/-15 on the ratio pot. but on the threshold and o/p pot. Did I misread the info a few pages back?
- R43 does nothing. Ratio, on the other hand, only does "compression on/off" and then very little if no change from 1.3ish to +inf
What exactly was the "mod" on rev2?

Or is this just my unit? :shock:

edit I don't have LED attached and I just saw on original schem the ratio is tapped onto that
Edit 2: Above/below led do not interfere with ratio, back at schematic for me
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 12, 2013, 05:51:24 PM
freaking great sounding unit.

Anyway, some more things I'd like to report with forumites, to see if anyone experienced this:
- Ratio was working fine today (i know analogue gear can be temperamental, but damn!)
- @Abe, what's that via next to the O/p and the pcb standoff hole? seems that if I put a nut there the o/p stage goes into cutoff.
- with the hairball vu I can't get the meter to go to 0 even with 10k resistor. The TL opamp gets incredibly hot as well after a few turns of the trimmer.
Any other ideas before I get some 1mA meters my way?

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 12, 2013, 06:02:28 PM
freaking great sounding unit.

Anyway, some more things I'd like to report with forumites, to see if anyone experienced this:
- Ratio was working fine today (i know analogue gear can be temperamental, but damn!)
- @Abe, what's that via next to the O/p and the pcb standoff hole? seems that if I put a nut there the o/p stage goes into cutoff.
- with the hairball vu I can't get the meter to go to 0 even with 10k resistor. The TL opamp gets incredibly hot as well after a few turns of the trimmer.
Any other ideas before I get some 1mA meters my way?

I had two bad tl071's, I would try buying new ones and popping them in. I couldn't get my meter to zero before I replaced the tl071's. Triple check the orientation of the tl071. If its getting hot that is a bad sign, mine is barely warm.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 12, 2013, 06:10:33 PM
eparg, this with normal vu meters, not amperometers?
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on June 12, 2013, 06:12:16 PM
creating my BOM now for a stereo unit. Where are yall sourcing the NTE292/ CA3083???? digikey isnt stoked and neither is mouser...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 12, 2013, 06:13:39 PM
kingston I got a few spare from ebay - littlediode (UK)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 12, 2013, 07:30:02 PM
eparg, this with normal vu meters, not amperometers?
thanks

I'm using the hairball 1ma meter
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 13, 2013, 07:14:46 PM
Hi Abe,

Finally finished my CLX today with VCA200 and it is sounding great, just three questions to be sure:

Calibration of R34 didn't do anything noticable for the distortion, I used a couple of programs for testing, but the differences when turning a lot of times where not visable for me?

For the rev 2 build is it for the Hairball 1ma meter: 1k or 3k3?

What is the average noisefloor what you guys are measuring, I am getting about -76dB with gain at 0.

Thanx for the build, really great and looking forward to use it in the studio!!

RJ
 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 13, 2013, 10:16:50 PM
Hi Abe,

Finally finished my CLX today with VCA200 and it is sounding great, just three questions to be sure:

Calibration of R34 didn't do anything noticable for the distortion, I used a couple of programs for testing, but the differences when turning a lot of times where not visable for me?

For the rev 2 build is it for the Hairball 1ma meter: 1k or 3k3?

What is the average noisefloor what you guys are measuring, I am getting about -76dB with gain at 0.

Thanx for the build, really great and looking forward to use it in the studio!!

RJ

Cool just reread and noticed you did it with the 200 discrete vca. Black can or silver?
1ma meter is 3k3.
noise floor should be down around -90 or so (that is with that chip) is it hiss or hum noise floor?
r34...were is your distortion at? also you have to turn it a lot and watch like on rmaa, watch for the 2k or 3k overtones and there will be a little sweet spot.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 14, 2013, 03:08:21 AM
Hey guys

took the CLX for the studio today. Regardless of being close to the 160, everyone loved the darn thing.
I'm going to be mixing with a veteran some point in the next coming weeks and he has an army of 160's. He asked me to bring mine, should be fun!

I still think something is fishy with the ratio. It's like it should be a log pot instead of linear or soemthing too sensitive to start with and then almost no change at all, and 1:4 trimmer there's no difference CW to CCW (rev3).

J
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: plektra on June 14, 2013, 04:06:00 AM
Hi, I'm having some issues with the rev.3 kit and Purusha's front panel. For those who aren't familiar with this, the panel has got a subpanel to mount the switch assembly and ratio & gain pots. The problem is that subpanel is too thick for the pots, which are not tall enough to be able to fasten the nuts. I was thinking of getting rid of the whole subpanel and use regular standoffs for mounting the switch assembly, but I would have to add some through-holes to the front panel for the standoff screws.

If people have had similar issues, how have you solved this out? I could switch to longer pots, but the whole idea of attaching the switchbank only using the mounting via pots doesn't actually really convince me, I'm looking for some more robust way to do it.

Some photos:
http://capstanaudio.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/photo-13-6-2013-22-19-43.jpg
http://capstanaudio.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/photo-13-6-2013-22-20-03.jpg
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: baadc0de on June 14, 2013, 04:31:34 AM
Had the same box here but no problems encountered. I had some pots with longer thread it seems... I think Piher from banzai. The switch assembly is definitely robust enough when mounted that way, our box is in use for quite some time and no problems or loosening up yet.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 14, 2013, 04:40:26 AM
Hi your options are:
- screw standoffs to front panel
- use longer pots
- cut the metal bracket with something (angle grinder will do) and glue it. Hibrid based (epoxy) will do and will not go anywhere. Majestyc12 suggested it to me and indeed it's strong!
Also, you may need to trim the bottom of the case. The L shaped lid was touching the inside metal. Most likely because I didn't line up the metal bit exactly.

J
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: plektra on June 14, 2013, 04:51:29 AM
Thanks for the suggestions. I think I'll go with the solution of cutting the metalpiece in half so that it will only attach the switches and glue it with epoxy. If that won't do it, I can always go with the hole & screw alternative.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 14, 2013, 05:00:57 AM
on both mine and majestic's units, those switches are not going anywhere
;)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on June 14, 2013, 10:28:33 AM
so this is the 1st build where i sourced all the parts myself... and as soon as I submit my mouser order i realize.... I FORGOT STANDOFFS!! lol. they wheren't in the BOM, so my real question is metal or plastic? ... i hope the rest of my parts are right haha
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 14, 2013, 12:25:47 PM
Hi Abe,

It is a silver can! When I bought it I did not know that there were also black cans, but it sounds great! Today i did a new measurement for what about the noise and RMS level is -84dB and maybe noise is a little bit higher than hum I think. But it is now connected with a maudio soundcard with cinch, so maybe gonna be better when fully balanced.

Now I have the correct 3k (shop didn't gave me 3k3) for the meter and went trough the calibration, there is one strange thing, for the input or output mode the meter goes below the scale, when measuring the voltages I noticed that the voltage for the meter is negative (no input signal). Any idea?

grtz,

RJ
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 15, 2013, 03:44:20 PM
The BOM says that the resistors should be 1%- can I use  5% instead ?
Best from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 15, 2013, 04:08:00 PM
should be fine but test them. you might be lucky enough to get them within tolerances.
the original schematic says 5% unless where specified so check there ;)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 15, 2013, 04:50:14 PM
Cool JPlebre ,and thanks one more time :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: eparg on June 16, 2013, 12:28:21 AM
Now I have the correct 3k (shop didn't gave me 3k3) for the meter and went trough the calibration, there is one strange thing, for the input or output mode the meter goes below the scale, when measuring the voltages I noticed that the voltage for the meter is negative (no input signal). Any idea?

grtz,

RJ

If you mean it goes below the scale to the left with no input signal then the meter is functioning properly in that regard. No input signal = no input level = no output level. The meter should rest on zero when you have it in GR mode with no input signal.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 16, 2013, 06:00:37 PM
Hi Eparg,

Thanks for your reaction but what I meant is that the meter goes below the normal rest postion (eg the position where the meter is when power is down) because of the negative voltage it then receives. The meter is pulled down instead of pushed up and I do not know how long the meter will like this before burning. I was experimenting with a diode on the plus side of the meter and this solves the problem, only I have to caliberate the whole meter again including finding the right resistor. Also with the diode I do not know if the working of the meter is less accuarate?

RJ
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 16, 2013, 06:24:14 PM
Does someone know if it is possible to use DBX 260 vca's in this project?
Best from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 16, 2013, 06:44:11 PM
TFP you sure you don't have the leads the wrong way around?
is it a vu meter or an ma meter?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 16, 2013, 06:59:21 PM
It the hairball 8027-WF 1mA Meter

I double checked it, it is working perfect in all modes except when there is no signal the base volt is not equal to zero volt more like -0,111 volts and thats why the meter goes below its normal rest position. I do not know if the meter will like this for a long time. Tommorow I am going to try other resistors in the pad maybe it gets to much voltage.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on June 17, 2013, 04:35:03 AM
Hi
R30 is omitted?
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 17, 2013, 07:46:19 PM
For the That chip build you do not need it. For vca200 build you need the 200R.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 18, 2013, 06:25:40 PM
Hi Abe,

Solved my issue with the meter with a schottky diode works perfectly. Now minimum is -40dB with no signal present.

The numbers:

distortion minimum 0.40% (silver can vca) is this OK?

Level calibration lowest possible 0.000VDC, is this a big problem?

Noise with balanced connnection -91.5dB peak, -103.5 RMS

Hum none (barely noticeble with 60dB extra gain and dynaudio's full open). I use the expat audio crc board for rectification and smoothing off board. works great!

RJ
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on June 19, 2013, 02:43:52 AM
Does someone know if it is possible to use DBX 260 vca's in this project?
Best from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on June 22, 2013, 08:56:34 PM
okay couple Qs


do i need Panasonic's in the film spots C9, C11, C17 C18, C19, C10,C20, will WIMAs sound good?


where is R125??? i can not fin it on the board....

... thats really all for right now while i finish populating...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 23, 2013, 02:59:02 AM
Quote
do i need Panasonic's in the film spots C9, C11, C17 C18, C19, C10,C20, will WIMAs sound good?
I assume when you say panasonic's you mean e-lytics.
This can be polyester, but I prefer polypropylene as some of those are in the audio path (yeah, film, like Wimas)


R125 is on top of the board, next to the 1:4 ratio trimmer and TL082
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on June 23, 2013, 09:53:51 PM
Quote
do i need Panasonic's in the film spots C9, C11, C17 C18, C19, C10,C20, will WIMAs sound good?
I assume when you say panasonic's you mean e-lytics.
This can be polyester, but I prefer polypropylene as some of those are in the audio path (yeah, film, like Wimas)


R125 is on top of the board, next to the 1:4 ratio trimmer and TL082


so i can leave the wimas in and be okay? i have panasonic polyesters in C12 and C21 did know how different it would sound with the Wima filsm in the other positions

ahh never mind i had already done it, must have been reading a different BOM
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on June 24, 2013, 09:48:17 AM
I finished 2 x 160
I had several problems
2 x TL071 dead
1 x TL082 dead

I can not calibrate R63 (I can not get .011 vdc)
Someone has done it?
if I try to use a larger value trimmer?
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 24, 2013, 10:58:43 AM
Hi Ilfungo,

I also cannot reach the -0.011DC. Changing the trimmer would not help I think because in my sitiuation the trimm is full open i.e. 0Ohm. so a different value it is the same situation??

How far off are you? Mine is at 0.002 VDC at the moment!
And what is your THD %?

all the best

RJ
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 24, 2013, 03:35:35 PM
guys, for that adjustement, don't forget to change the meter to i/p!
It's obtainable. Check if your i/p signal meet the specs
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 24, 2013, 04:45:58 PM
I tried it again with input switched in (good tip) but I do not get the value. With lots of trying I do know that had has someting to do with r107 and which risistor you have in place. With 10k I can do -0.011VDC, but I have a 0.1 amp meter and use a 1.5k resistor (I want to see a lot of movement on the meter, max -db is now -20db not -40db, for me better to see gainreduction) and lowest possible is now +0.004 VDC. With a risistor of 3k for example I got 0.000 VDC.

I do not know what exactly is adjusted (level calibration) with the -0.011DCV and if this is really a problem?

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on June 24, 2013, 04:50:45 PM
it's located in the GR section and I had the feeling it had to do with level to the treshold section bit thingy

but hey what do I know :D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: plektra on June 25, 2013, 03:37:24 PM
Hi,

I'm also having problems with the initial meter calibration and level calibration. I guess both TL071 chips are dead (identical results as what eparg had, both chips are heating quite a lot). Also with the level calibration, the lowest voltage on R79 with the kit components is about +62mV, which is still far from -11mV.

The unit is passing signal though, THD is 0.135% and noise level -94.5 dBA (using RME Babyface).

I'll fetch new TL071s and try with those, but do you have any suggestions on how to proceed debugging the level calibration issue?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 25, 2013, 07:02:10 PM
Hi Guys,

Just for sharing, my custom scale for max -20db gainreduction.

all the best!

RJ
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on June 25, 2013, 09:08:47 PM
RJ, Thanks for the Meter Scale.
Took file to Staples, it prints out real small.
Because it's a PDF file, the only way they could change the size was to adjust
the margins. It's a guessing game, so i have to take an orginal scale down to size it.
Any other advise?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 26, 2013, 05:05:07 PM
Hi Winetree,

The scale fits the hairball 8027-WF 1mA Meter and will measure around the 4.2 centimetres wide when printed. Is this correct or is it smaller? What meter do you use?
 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on June 26, 2013, 05:36:56 PM
I'm using same Hairball meter.
Prints on my b&w printer (orginal fit) at the right size.
However, I want it on heavier gloss stock with the blue print.
I have that on the other unit with the needles painted black.
Staples didn't know what they were doing. I'll find somewhere else.
Thanks

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 26, 2013, 06:06:57 PM
OK good! I attached a new version, I think it is nicer!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on June 27, 2013, 06:40:49 AM
I received these v regs

http://www.mouser.com/Search/m_ProductDetail.aspx?Texas-Instruments/LM317LCLPRE3/&qs=/ha2pyFadujltRttC1l4fmJT%252blEhQxqXcZt81pi8RQV4Nl2H%252bbAl7A==


They are in different housing that the  lm337 ie look like a typical transistor... Will they work or should I reorder?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on June 27, 2013, 08:27:40 AM
after several days of testing I discovered some things ...
on one of the channels I could not have the symmetry (R36 calibrtion)
the problem is related to IC CA3083 (exchanged between them can adjust it)

Same problem with R63, changing CA3083, I can get-11mV.

There is one thing I do not understand

I had problems with 2 x TL071 (dead)
1 x TL082 (dead)
1xCA3083 (not working properly)
Why?
I do not understand


After having calibrated the compressor, however at high compressions the waveform I get is not symmetric
Has anyone noticed the same thing?
is this normal?
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 27, 2013, 10:49:42 AM
I received these v regs

http://www.mouser.com/Search/m_ProductDetail.aspx?Texas-Instruments/LM317LCLPRE3/&qs=/ha2pyFadujltRttC1l4fmJT%252blEhQxqXcZt81pi8RQV4Nl2H%252bbAl7A==


They are in different housing that the  lm337 ie look like a typical transistor... Will they work or should I reorder?

Well the ones you ordered are only rated for 100ma....I would be on the safe side and just reorder the lm317 it can handle up to 1.5A
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 27, 2013, 10:52:15 AM
after several days of testing I discovered some things ...
on one of the channels I could not have the symmetry (R36 calibrtion)
the problem is related to IC CA3083 (exchanged between them can adjust it)

Same problem with R63, changing CA3083, I can get-11mV.

There is one thing I do not understand

I had problems with 2 x TL071 (dead)
1 x TL082 (dead)
1xCA3083 (not working properly)
Why?
I do not understand


After having calibrated the compressor, however at high compressions the waveform I get is not symmetric
Has anyone noticed the same thing?
is this normal?
thanks

Were the ICs inserted the wrong way round? Were some of them inserted before the voltages were adjusted to safe levels (+/-15v) also how were they handled? In the technical papers, sometimes they say to use static protection wristbands and stuff, usually with digital ICs but also some opamps/transistors. Could've been bad chips, or more likely could've been fried during installation/handling.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on June 27, 2013, 11:08:28 AM
thanks ABE
I was paying attention to everything ....
However, I am very happy with the sound
Great project!

Last question:
"After having calibrated the compressor, however at high compressions the waveform I get is not symmetric
Has anyone noticed the same thing?
is this normal?§"
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 27, 2013, 11:37:57 AM
thanks ABE
I was paying attention to everything ....
However, I am very happy with the sound
Great project!

Last question:
"After having calibrated the compressor, however at high compressions the waveform I get is not symmetric
Has anyone noticed the same thing?
is this normal?§"
thanks

Glad you got it going!
Yes, I've noticed if you change the gain of the waveform it becomes unsymmetrical. I haven't tried to compress a ton and see if it becomes unsymmetrical. I'll look at it with this next units I build, I wouldn't think it would be a problem though, as the symmetrical calibration is just to get all the units operating in the same window of range.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on June 27, 2013, 01:40:26 PM
Have any of you managed to get a compression reading correct?
I can not get proper tracking ...
Hairball 1ma meter with 3k3 resistor
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 27, 2013, 06:15:57 PM
Hi Ilfungo,

Interresting about the ca IC and reaching the -0.011VDC, I am going to order some to see if I can manage the -0.011VDC! Now I am at -0.004VDC.

For about the right amount of compression on the meter did you also calibrate the unit with trim R43 and did the last step mentioned in the official DBX calibration guide:

8. INPUT TRACKING
8.1 Place "METER" switch to "INPUT and step oscillator to -3ODB. Adjust R56
for a reading of precisely -30 on the DBX 160/161 meter.


Two more questions for Abe:

Is THD of 0.38% in the right ballpark;
Is it a big problem if you are a little bit of the -0.011VDC, -0.004VDC?

Thanx!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 28, 2013, 01:58:08 AM


Two more questions for Abe:

Is THD of 0.38% in the right ballpark;
Is it a big problem if you are a little bit of the -0.011VDC, -0.004VDC?

Thanx!

Hi!
The THD question is a little ambiguous...is that with no compression? Also are you still using a silver can VCA? Either way that reading seems pretty high for a THAT build unless your doing some serious GR.

No, don't get too hung up on these little tweaky calibrations guys, I've gotten the meters and readings and everything to track beautifully, it takes a little time and patience when setting up the meter but very possible. But really, who needs to know when they are slamming 30db compression if they are +/- a db or two?

Put your soldering irons down and go make some music ;D ;D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on June 28, 2013, 04:22:02 AM


Two more questions for Abe:

Is THD of 0.38% in the right ballpark;
Is it a big problem if you are a little bit of the -0.011VDC, -0.004VDC?

Thanx!



No, don't get too hung up on these little tweaky calibrations guys, I've gotten the meters and readings and everything to track beautifully, it takes a little time and patience when setting up the meter but very possible. But really, who needs to know when they are slamming 30db compression if they are +/- a db or two?

Put your soldering irons down and go make some music ;D ;D


my problem is that I read perfectly input and output
in GR mode:
meter says 4-5db but the reality is 25db ...
I have a problem in the calibration process:
I can not calibrate 4:1 ratio ...
I do not understand.
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 28, 2013, 01:23:55 PM

my problem is that I read perfectly input and output
in GR mode:
meter says 4-5db but the reality is 25db ...
I have a problem in the calibration process:
I can not calibrate 4:1 ratio ...
I do not understand.
thanks

I would trouble shoot around the 1:4 ratio pot, should get it pretty close from the get go.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 28, 2013, 07:27:28 PM
Hi Abe,

Yes still using the silver can! It is THD 0,38% with 20dB of gain reduction, with no gain reduction is about 0.03%.

And you are right about making music, just did!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on June 28, 2013, 10:25:53 PM
Hi Abe,

Yes still using the silver can! It is THD 0,38% with 20dB of gain reduction, with no gain reduction is about 0.03%.

And you are right about making music, just did!

I think that is about right :) I'm curious how do the silver cans sound? Good on ya for making music! :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on June 29, 2013, 02:49:37 PM
https://www.antekinc.com/pdf/AN-0215.pdf

will this work as my power tranny? i know its a little low...

or would this work

https://www.antekinc.com/details.php?p=645

was unsure because it is 50VA
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on June 29, 2013, 04:46:37 PM
Hi Abe,

I will post a couple of examples (in couple of days) with the silver can and the unprocessed version so you can compare it with the That version. I am also curious if there is a noticeble difference.

all the best!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on June 29, 2013, 07:44:33 PM
Nevermind :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: mrdarwin on July 01, 2013, 02:22:04 AM
A post not for a problem... but a success!!!
A variant of CLX 160.
Thanx to Abe
(http://studioevolution.free.fr/diy/clx160.jpg)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on July 01, 2013, 09:55:59 AM
Thats a nice thick heavy case! :) Where did you source that?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: mrdarwin on July 02, 2013, 02:34:29 AM
Thats a nice thick heavy case! :) Where did you source that?

Thanx!
the case is a HIFI2000 case, from Italy (but shipping worldwide)
vu-meters are oldies SIFAM with custom scale insert
home-made drilling, design front with lazertran and nices knobs!

no hum and perfect famous "snap"!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 02, 2013, 05:32:46 AM
just a note on the TL071 both of mine were dead. Symptoms were very hot chip and not enough deflection on the meter.
Seems like a common occurrence.

Also, the ratio thing, you are supposed to meter the o/p regarding a difference of 40dB input, not 30 :P
(the -10dBfs got me. I was only going from -30 to -10dBFs and there is no way the pot can give you the same amount of compression :)

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 02, 2013, 05:40:41 AM
Oh and the capacitor C11, which can roll off some low end to the sidechain, is quite a significant difference!
I would recommend people to socket and hear what they prefer.

Will be with a 160vU pretty soon and I'll compare which one is closer

Cheers!
J
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on July 02, 2013, 12:17:46 PM
https://www.antekinc.com/pdf/AN-0215.pdf

will this work as my power tranny? i know its a little low...

or would this work

https://www.antekinc.com/details.php?p=645

was unsure because it is 50VA

They both will work. I just got the AN-0220 because they are the only size they are stocking currently that will fit vertically in a case, I usually prefer the 18v ones though. Also the 25va size is plenty to power 2 clxs
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 03, 2013, 03:43:14 AM
2 dead TL071 here, one dead NE5534, one cold solder on a threshold pot and one above led acting wierd...  thats it so far :P

My power rails were good before put the chips in and I was pretty careful installing them ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 03, 2013, 04:07:18 AM
Cool! I guess that all builders should look out for the TL071 seems like a common thing.
I've had my rails solid on 15v for 1h before I installed the chips. Variation after the chips was <.1v and then adjusted back so I think they may have been dead from factory.

Although!! I had used 3.3k resistor initially when I needed 10k, but it should draw less current, right?

J
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 03, 2013, 09:01:36 PM
I was probing my threshold pot and I ground it out for a second by accident. There was a puff of smoke and it smells alittle burnt. Do I need a new one ? It still seems to work with the above and below leds.   

Mouser part number for that alpha pot ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on July 03, 2013, 09:14:01 PM
Hi

Here is snare sample with silver can. Ratio 6 and about -10db G.R.

I am interested to know how That 2180 chip sounds. Can someone do it with my snare track and same settings.

Unprocessed Snare
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/20579799/Unprocessed%20SN.mp3

Processed Snare (Silver Can)
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/20579799/Processed%20CLX-VU%20%28Silver%20Can%29%20SN.mp3

Unprocessed Kick
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3370162/GroupDIY/BD-original_01.mp3

Processed Kick (Silver Can)
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/20579799/CLX-VU%20%28Silver%20Can%29%20Kick.mp3
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 04, 2013, 05:03:23 AM
Snare:
processed with abe's suggested C11 cap:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3370162/GroupDIY/Processed%20CLX-VU%20(that)%20SN.mp3

Processed with original value C11 cap:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3370162/GroupDIY/Processed%20CLX-VU%20(that%20mod%20c11)%20SN.mp3

BD (about 10-15dB compression at ratio 1:6)
Original
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3370162/GroupDIY/BD-original_01.mp3

That chip, with abe's suggested C11 cap:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3370162/GroupDIY/bd-dbx(that)_02-01.mp3

That chip, with schematics' C11 cap:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3370162/GroupDIY/bd-dbx(thatc11original)_01-01.mp3

I've used a meter that I think it's slower than amperometers so that may be throwing the extra bit of reduction off.
There's definitely a difference, albeit small. Or i'm hearing things - I'll go grab my first cup of coffee and I'll have a second listen :P
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on July 04, 2013, 02:52:39 PM
That sound more cleaner. Silver can gives nice color and saturation. Btw your links are same file :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 05, 2013, 04:12:23 AM
edited the links. Sorry about that.
I've mixed a track last night with a pair of original 160vu. I did not open them or peaked around, but both of them sounded slightly different.

I did bring mine in case I could do some AB which I could. I guess I could have pressed record but I was a bit pressed for time.

160 sounded slightly faster. By a very, very small amount.

For some reason, I could get pretty much indistinguishable compression between the 2 units for the kick with the original value cap. But for the snare, (it was quite a deep snare with loads of detail - ghost notes and what not) Abe's suggested C11 value for that vca was much closer to the original 160.

I made an executive decision there and then :P I'm keeping the 2 sides different :P

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 05, 2013, 05:51:07 AM
@late, these guys a very different beast when compressing kicks. shall we do the same?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on July 05, 2013, 09:24:18 AM
@late, these guys a very different beast when compressing kicks. shall we do the same?

Sure. Post tracks and i do same things with your kick track?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 05, 2013, 01:58:53 PM
@late, these guys a very different beast when compressing kicks. shall we do the same?

Sure. Post tracks and i do same things with your kick track?

Game on! edited my previous post with BD samples.
Some spill, but that's the way I roll ;)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on July 05, 2013, 03:46:09 PM
Edited my old post too. What you prefer 2180 or silver can?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 05, 2013, 05:31:41 PM
on snare I have to say there's a difference. I feel it's the difference I heard yesterday with the originals
the extra distortion does give it a cool character.

On kick I'm not sure if I would go through the trouble or the extra £ for the slightly softer difference

All in all pretty close. Even to the originals. the original seemed to be a "tad" faster maybe because it would have an old cap and it could be off callibration (trim) or leaky due to age?

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on July 08, 2013, 04:45:44 AM
Someone should build one with all the original resistor values, completely bypassing the Ne5534 CV buffer and go straight into the THAT 2180 chip...I've wondered about doing this and think it might lead to some interesting results :) (I might do it soon when I get some time!)

I know the THAT2180 likes to be driven from a low impedance source, hence the ne5534, but the original RMS unit is driving from a 200ohm impedance, which isn't horrible and we aren't exactly looking for pristine anyway...hmmm, I bet the 2 resistors that set the impedance could even be modded some what too....been on my mind to try..something to think about...

great audio samples guys, I've been meaning to build up some with the silver cans too. I'm getting my hands on an original 160vu here in the next month or so, and I should run some in depth tests on it. Last time I had one, I only had time for quick audio analysis.

But I've found, that the CLX has been our studios go to snare and kick compressor, but we can only use it when the lights are blinking and meter twitching, it adds a really nice controlled snap to everything. The times I haven't used it during tracking, the drums never sounded as impressive. Also it is VERY easy to destroy drums during tracking if used like a regular compressor (having the meter move more than a twitch) because the meter has such a huge GR range, anything more than a twitch on a transient, your digging into -15 to 20db on aggressive peaks.

On bass and vocals and guitar, digging in is fun :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on July 09, 2013, 05:46:29 AM
Is C 39 (100pf) omitted or should I put a 100 pf in there?
Just to be sure, those resistors marked with a (T) on the pcb :

Should I use the value at the right side,when I use the That vca,right?

Best regards from Nick
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on July 12, 2013, 11:31:37 AM
Is C 39 (100pf) omitted or should I put a 100 pf in there?
Just to be sure, those resistors marked with a (T) on the pcb :

Should I use the value at the right side,when I use the That vca,right?

Best regards from Nick

On C39 you want to put the 100pf in there.  And yes you got it, use the value on the right side, next to the (T).
Good Luck!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nuclues on July 12, 2013, 07:25:30 PM
Thanks Abe :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 21, 2013, 12:55:02 AM
I just want to verify my above below led circuit is working correctly. When I input a +4dBu signal, threshold above lights up when fully CCW and turns off at about ".03" or a quarter of the way up. After that I cant get the below to light up. Not even fully CW.

If I have no signal the below led turns on from half to fully CW.

Does that sound right ? Also between the two dual units the led above and below set points are slightly off compared to each other. Anyway to adjust that in the circuit ?
 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 21, 2013, 10:16:45 AM
something is wrong. The anode of one and the cathode of the other go to ground, and the other leads follow the PCB writing.

With +4dBu the above light should be lit untill 1 (slightly above 1, technically, both LED will be off as this is the treshold +4dBu=1.23v). After that, the below light would take over
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 21, 2013, 05:50:34 PM
oops, pin 1 and pin 2 reversed on pcb connection. Led's working great now thanks jplebre

the threshold between the two units are slight off. I adjusted it with the knobs to match but is there an adjustment for this ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 21, 2013, 06:49:54 PM
Nope that's it! shoot 1.23v (+4dbu) turn treshold until both lights go off, unscrew the knob and screw it back so it points slightly above 1 on the faceplate
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 26, 2013, 10:29:49 PM
Ha, can someone help me troubleshoot. I was having an intermittent distortion on one dbx, only when I flexed the case or grabbed a knob a certain way. So I figured it was a cold solder somewhere. I first swapped all wiring from one board to the next. Problem stayed. Then swaps all chips, problem stayed. So it must be in the board. I pulled the board and reflowed all the joints. Now the problem is constant.

I have a scope and signal generator. I don't really know where to probe in the schematic ?

Right now I input a 1.22v sinewave and get out a lower volume square.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 26, 2013, 10:40:53 PM
R92 looks good sine, R83 good. R84 and R89 Squarewave

Readinng 2.6Vdc on one end of R85, and 27Vdc on the other end of R85. If i pull lm301 it goes back up to 21Vdc

voltages low on R86 and R87 too
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on July 27, 2013, 03:57:05 AM
R92 looks good sine, R83 good. R84 and R89 Squarewave

Readinng 2.6Vdc on one end of R85, and 27Vdc on the other end of R85. If i pull lm301 it goes back up to 21Vdc

voltages low on R86 and R87 too

Seems like your on the right track...If its the output stage, double check R85, and R95, make sure they are 2k2, measure at the LM301 opamp that the voltages are correct, you should see some voltage drop but not that much.

Also you can try to trace the signal on a leg of C21 see if its distorted there...if it isn't then you can rule everything before the output stage out...

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on July 27, 2013, 10:43:48 AM
Hi
I had distortion on the O/p stage because I was using metal stand offs. Was bugging the hell out of me because as soon as I lifted the board to make it easy to probe the distortion would be gone.
I ran it for a few hours w/ electrical tape under the O/p standoff hole and it was fine, just I just stuck a nylon washer there and good to go!

Abe, if you ever do a revision, can you give more space from the O/p, I/p and Power molex terminals? was very tight to use 1-4 nut sets to tighten it (in fact I don't think I managed to put it on the power hole.

Cheers!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 27, 2013, 12:29:39 PM
the metal standoff was grounding something?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on July 27, 2013, 01:05:51 PM
Bingo! that little TP that goes to C25 by the output standoff must have been grounding out. Thank you so much Jplebre. I would never have thought to test the board off the standoffs like that. I spent hours troubleshooting last night
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on July 28, 2013, 12:54:29 AM
Bingo! that little TP that goes to C25 by the output standoff must have been grounding out. Thank you so much Jplebre. I would never have thought to test the board off the standoffs like that. I spent hours troubleshooting last night

Glad you got it figured out. I always use nylon spacers so I never would've thought about it. Good call for next revision.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on August 12, 2013, 05:46:49 AM
Hi, sorry for the delay i've ben away.
Yes I use metal standoffs most of the time. I guess because it's what I've seen in a bunch of things and I just got used to it.
I had the exact same problem as the standoff/nut was touching the "via" pad and shorting it out through the standoff.

Thanks abe :D

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on August 14, 2013, 08:05:42 AM
hi everybody

i just finish to made a CLX circuit the audio have a lot of High frequence ( 8KHz) andi have some problems ...

1-  the THRESOLD pot not working
2- the ratio pot work as a Volum pots
3 - I heard no compression

And i have a question : if i have no Switwhes wire the compressor is engaged ?




Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on August 15, 2013, 12:42:51 AM
hi everybody

i just finish to made a CLX circuit the audio have a lot of High frequence ( 8KHz) andi have some problems ...

1-  the THRESOLD pot not working
2- the ratio pot work as a Volum pots
3 - I heard no compression

And i have a question : if i have no Switwhes wire the compressor is engaged ?


double and triple check your wiring against the wiring guide... and then check it again for good measure.  if it  doesnt get better its probably staring you right in the face, thats what it always does to me haha
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on August 27, 2013, 02:19:51 PM
Someone should build one with all the original resistor values, completely bypassing the Ne5534 CV buffer and go straight into the THAT 2180 chip...I've wondered about doing this and think it might lead to some interesting results :) (I might do it soon when I get some time!)

I know the THAT2180 likes to be driven from a low impedance source, hence the ne5534, but the original RMS unit is driving from a 200ohm impedance, which isn't horrible and we aren't exactly looking for pristine anyway...hmmm, I bet the 2 resistors that set the impedance could even be modded some what too....been on my mind to try..something to think about...

great audio samples guys, I've been meaning to build up some with the silver cans too. I'm getting my hands on an original 160vu here in the next month or so, and I should run some in depth tests on it. Last time I had one, I only had time for quick audio analysis.

But I've found, that the CLX has been our studios go to snare and kick compressor, but we can only use it when the lights are blinking and meter twitching, it adds a really nice controlled snap to everything. The times I haven't used it during tracking, the drums never sounded as impressive. Also it is VERY easy to destroy drums during tracking if used like a regular compressor (having the meter move more than a twitch) because the meter has such a huge GR range, anything more than a twitch on a transient, your digging into -15 to 20db on aggressive peaks.

On bass and vocals and guitar, digging in is fun :)


has anyone tried?
I would like to try but do not know how to do...
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on August 28, 2013, 07:04:21 PM
I did some more testing, and decided that as is, is the best 2180 chip implementation. The subtle differences between the 2180 and the 200 series vca I'm pretty sure I've narrowed that down to the VCA themselves and not how they are driven (I had a day of tweaking the circuits side by side an original 160vu a month or so back)

I am planning on somehow making 200 series VCAs again...maybe using THAT series npn/pnp transistor packages...stay tuned.....

I love the THAT VCA on stuff, but then the 200 series VCAs do have a certain charm for sure.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on August 28, 2013, 07:23:52 PM
Dumb question time.  I finally got my dual channel unit up and running, and was actually able to calibrate the meters and everything (WOO HOO!) 
1) i wasn't able to get down to the 0.011v in the calibration, any way around this or to remedy this?
2) i used spectra when dialing down the distortion, I got it down pretty low, but i notice a bit of bottom end missing when i start hitting the compressor harder than 2 to 1... is it possible I OVER did the dialing down?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Trench Recordings on August 28, 2013, 10:12:47 PM
I did some more testing, and decided that as is, is the best 2180 chip implementation. The subtle differences between the 2180 and the 200 series vca I'm pretty sure I've narrowed that down to the VCA themselves and not how they are driven (I had a day of tweaking the circuits side by side an original 160vu a month or so back)

I am planning on somehow making 200 series VCAs again...maybe using THAT series npn/pnp transistor packages...stay tuned.....

I love the THAT VCA on stuff, but then the 200 series VCAs do have a certain charm for sure.



did you remove the 5532 buffer circuit in your test  ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on September 12, 2013, 05:44:06 PM
hi evererybody !

after many check i don't find my problem ...

the audio cross the Clx with no problem but i have no compression
 
-The GAIN pot is ok !
-The Threshold pot not working
- The Ratio Pot work as a "reverse" Gain
-i can't test the Switch because the Vu meter is alway to 0 ....

I have check the voltage on the Pin of the Led (Above) and i have 3v it's Normal ?

i think i have ICE dead but i can't find it

do you have "Voltage" point for check it ?

thanks for your help

My channel strip project is soon finished :) !
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on September 15, 2013, 10:43:59 AM
Ok... I've hit a bump!
I've populated the pcb for CLX-VU Rev3 and everything is cool.
Now it's calibration. Dh...

I calibrated PSU and went without problems with RMS offset (used cubase as signal generator and it's multiscope for visualizing waveform). That went ok.

Than I probably did the distortion calibration done. I didn't understand it completely. I tried with RightMark, got varying numbers for THD. It all depends on what is the position of treshold. At 20db compression (max ratio and adjusted treshold to reach it) when I turn R34 trimmer I get gain change. When looking at FFT representation (used Smaart7 software to look and Cubase as sine generator) I see no difference in harmonic structure. 2nd and 3rd harmonic go up and down in relation with original signal (1rd harmonic) when I trim this resistor. Obviously, when I turn the R34 completely on the CCW i get lower THD measurements in RightMark, but also the signal is quieter. We're talking 10db range from CCW to CW on this trimmer. In RightMark I get like 3 or 4 value for THD. I assumed this was okay. But I don't know. Am I missing something here?

And the next step is really killing me. Level calibration.
Meter on input, 1.224vrms on input (balanced signal from my soundcard, measuring TIP signal on the input connector). At first I was getting random results on the right leg of R79 (usually too big values), but then I figured that if I set treshold CCW and R63 also CCW that it's allways -0.004vdc. So when I have treshold maxed high I can trim it to have -0.011vdc on R79. But as soon as treshold is lowered this value changes. It obviously depends on the treshold. And how can that be? Isn't it supposed to be independent of treshold position since we're calibrating INPUT voltage here? My switches are wired on 4x3 lorlin based on diagram posted by sr1200 on page 4 of this thread. And I double checked them. They seem ok.

Now when I want to proceed to treshold adjustment it makes no sense anymore! Since I had my treshold all the way CCW when adjusting (or trying to adjust!) level, I ended up with treshold point (both leds off) in that position. Makes no sense to put the treshold knob in this position since it cannot be turned more to the right. It's already CCW!

I stopped here. Didn't go through 1:4 ratio calibration and meter calibration. I wanted to ask first since it must have been my mistake in some step.

Any help?

Other than that, I think it performs great. Audio passes through, all controls respond, leds lit, it's clean (until extreme compression settings), noise floor sounds acceptable (didn't measure it yet). In all - super cool!

:)

Luka
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on September 17, 2013, 01:36:32 PM
Ok... I've hit a bump!
I've populated the pcb for CLX-VU Rev3 and everything is cool.
Now it's calibration. Dh...

I calibrated PSU and went without problems with RMS offset (used cubase as signal generator and it's multiscope for visualizing waveform). That went ok.

Than I probably did the distortion calibration done. I didn't understand it completely. I tried with RightMark, got varying numbers for THD. It all depends on what is the position of treshold. At 20db compression (max ratio and adjusted treshold to reach it) when I turn R34 trimmer I get gain change. When looking at FFT representation (used Smaart7 software to look and Cubase as sine generator) I see no difference in harmonic structure. 2nd and 3rd harmonic go up and down in relation with original signal (1rd harmonic) when I trim this resistor. Obviously, when I turn the R34 completely on the CCW i get lower THD measurements in RightMark, but also the signal is quieter. We're talking 10db range from CCW to CW on this trimmer. In RightMark I get like 3 or 4 value for THD. I assumed this was okay. But I don't know. Am I missing something here?

Yes...you just want to look at the screem with the 1k...the spectrum analyzer before you do any tests...you look at the 2nd harmonic of the bik 1k spike and adjust to lowest distortion. NOT A HUGE DEAL if you don't do this, I usually makes the 2nd harmonic go down a little bit.

Quote

And the next step is really killing me. Level calibration.
Meter on input, 1.224vrms on input (balanced signal from my soundcard, measuring TIP signal on the input connector). At first I was getting random results on the right leg of R79 (usually too big values), but then I figured that if I set treshold CCW and R63 also CCW that it's allways -0.004vdc. So when I have treshold maxed high I can trim it to have -0.011vdc on R79. But as soon as treshold is lowered this value changes. It obviously depends on the treshold. And how can that be? Isn't it supposed to be independent of treshold position since we're calibrating INPUT voltage here? My switches are wired on 4x3 lorlin based on diagram posted by sr1200 on page 4 of this thread. And I double checked them. They seem ok.


Ok, with this one, I only have luck with the meter on "INPUT" mode. Level should not fluctuate depending on how you have the controls. Make sure you are actually probing r79 and not the other one close to it, and the leg towards the output transistors.

Quote

Now when I want to proceed to treshold adjustment it makes no sense anymore! Since I had my treshold all the way CCW when adjusting (or trying to adjust!) level, I ended up with treshold point (both leds off) in that position. Makes no sense to put the treshold knob in this position since it cannot be turned more to the right. It's already CCW!


yea...something isn't right. Go back to your threshold adjustment... Also don't worry about it too much. If you can't get an EXACT reading of -0.011v for whatever reason, put a 0db signal on the comp turn the threshold knob like 1/8th of the way counterclockwise and set the trimmer so the GR lights go out.


Good luck!!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on September 17, 2013, 04:21:54 PM
Huh! I'll try it.
Thanks Abe!
I'll keep you posted after I try again.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on September 22, 2013, 03:43:22 PM
DAMN! I just had a disaster!
Two caps in the PSU section (C42 & C43) blew like firecrackers!

I went to try to calibrate the thing. It was working on a bench for few minutes, passing signal. All seemed ok. I don't know what precisely happened. In a moment, without me touching anything signal I was playing through the unit became very loud. And then those two caps exploded. One by one. I quickly unplug the main, and started visually inspecting whole board. Everything seemed ok. No solderleaks or anything. The board was on the wooden table with a piece of paper underneath it. No small metallic dust or debris under it. Very clean non conductive surface. So I guess it wasn't a short caused by something outside the board.

I cleaned out those two caps (what was left of them) and pulled out all the ICs. Then I replaced those caps and slowly visually checked the board for any obvious error. It seemed ok, so I plugged it again into mains power. Again one cap blew. This time only C42. I guess I unplugged the whole thing before it had time to blow the other cap.

What should I do now?
I tried continuity check with a DMM and as far as I can beep there are no shorts in the PSU section.
I guess I'll try to replace the positive regulator (both caps that went ka-booom are in the positive rail)... Is there a way to test if it is actually a regulator issue?
But what else!
Guys please help me out!
 :o
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on September 23, 2013, 03:41:38 PM
DAMN! I just had a disaster!
Two caps in the PSU section (C42 & C43) blew like firecrackers!

I went to try to calibrate the thing. It was working on a bench for few minutes, passing signal. All seemed ok. I don't know what precisely happened. In a moment, without me touching anything signal I was playing through the unit became very loud. And then those two caps exploded. One by one. I quickly unplug the main, and started visually inspecting whole board. Everything seemed ok. No solderleaks or anything. The board was on the wooden table with a piece of paper underneath it. No small metallic dust or debris under it. Very clean non conductive surface. So I guess it wasn't a short caused by something outside the board.

I cleaned out those two caps (what was left of them) and pulled out all the ICs. Then I replaced those caps and slowly visually checked the board for any obvious error. It seemed ok, so I plugged it again into mains power. Again one cap blew. This time only C42. I guess I unplugged the whole thing before it had time to blow the other cap.

What should I do now?
I tried continuity check with a DMM and as far as I can beep there are no shorts in the PSU section.
I guess I'll try to replace the positive regulator (both caps that went ka-booom are in the positive rail)... Is there a way to test if it is actually a regulator issue?
But what else!
Guys please help me out!
 :o


Caps will only blow if they have over-voltage or reverse voltage. I'll state the obvious and see if they are installed backwards?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on September 23, 2013, 06:35:09 PM
Yeah. I know. But I'm 100% sure I didn't insert caps backwards!
I still didn't get to debugging this situation. I work slow since I don't have a lot of spare time, so please bear with me :(

I haven't replaced regulator yet. I just tested power transformer and it's output is ok.
But what if regulator turns out okay? There are those diodes that are supposed to protect regulators (CR20 & CR21 on positive rail).
Thinking ahead - if regulator proves not faulty, my next step would be to isolate the PSU section and test it individually. Is there a way to do this? Cutting traces or just removing a component or two?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on September 24, 2013, 12:24:44 AM
Yeah. I know. But I'm 100% sure I didn't insert caps backwards!
I still didn't get to debugging this situation. I work slow since I don't have a lot of spare time, so please bear with me :(

I haven't replaced regulator yet. I just tested power transformer and it's output is ok.
But what if regulator turns out okay? There are those diodes that are supposed to protect regulators (CR20 & CR21 on positive rail).
Thinking ahead - if regulator proves not faulty, my next step would be to isolate the PSU section and test it individually. Is there a way to do this? Cutting traces or just removing a component or two?

Well....you shouldn't need to isolate it if you pull all the chips out...I would measure the voltage were the caps are blowing...very strange problem that can only be caused by over voltage, bad caps, or put in backwards. You aren't putting them in backwards. So maybe measure the voltage...see if somehow its over, or somehow the voltage is inverted??
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on September 24, 2013, 02:11:03 PM
It's always human error!!
(Abe is not to be considered human...he's from space! :))

I found what was the fault. I've put two heatsinks on regulators and forgot to install the isolator between regulator and heatsink.
When two heatsinks made contact that's when caps started popping.

Ok, I fixed that.
Now I have to fix the aftermaths. Unit is not passing audio and I don't have offset signal on RMS detector. Also, THAT IC is having -2v supply on pin 5 when inserted. When out, voltage is ok (-15v).
One of the IC went dead. I'll try to replace all ICs in RMS and see if it's one of them and if it is affecting THAT's v- supply.
Keeping my fingers crossed it's not THAT IC since they are hard to obtain in my country...

Keep you posted.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on September 25, 2013, 05:07:16 PM
It's always human error!!
(Abe is not to be considered human...he's from space! :))

I found what was the fault. I've put two heatsinks on regulators and forgot to install the isolator between regulator and heatsink.
When two heatsinks made contact that's when caps started popping.

Ok, I fixed that.
Now I have to fix the aftermaths. Unit is not passing audio and I don't have offset signal on RMS detector. Also, THAT IC is having -2v supply on pin 5 when inserted. When out, voltage is ok (-15v).
One of the IC went dead. I'll try to replace all ICs in RMS and see if it's one of them and if it is affecting THAT's v- supply.
Keeping my fingers crossed it's not THAT IC since they are hard to obtain in my country...

Keep you posted.

:) Glad you figured it out. Now that you have all the voltages correct, you could take all the chips from your working board and put them into your other board and double check its working. Then one by one switch out the chips to see which one(s) are fried. In my experience THAT chips are pretty sensitive to over-voltage/wrong voltage....but if you need one let me know I am ordering some and could send you some and any chips you need at cost, if that makes it easier. Also the CA3083 chip might have been blown.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on September 25, 2013, 06:21:56 PM
Thanks Abe!

I only have one board so I'm unable to do the swap test.
Today I bought all the chips except THAT but it's late night now, too late to test. I'll do that tomorrow.

Thanks for your offer on ICs! I hope it won't come to that. I'll let you know!
:) :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on October 08, 2013, 05:48:13 PM
Hi Guys,

Some pictures of my finished 160. What a compressor...!!!!

Thx very much Abe!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on October 08, 2013, 05:49:47 PM
Front!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: jplebre on October 09, 2013, 03:48:29 AM
now listen to how cool it is and build a second one :D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on October 09, 2013, 02:14:34 PM
Great work tfp!!!

where have you  find the  meter scale?
Can you share it?
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: plektra on October 09, 2013, 03:24:17 PM
I finally finished debugging, fixing and calibrating the first unit (I also had broken TL071s). Sound is pretty fantastic :)

I'm still having some issues with the another channel, input signal becomes too hot at some point. No matter how do i turn the knobs, above threshold led is always lit. I've swapped all ICs between the two units and gone through basicly all solderings but the problem persists. I also tried isolating the board from metal riser pads, but no bonus. Any tips where I could find the point of failure?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tfp on October 09, 2013, 06:52:41 PM
Hi Ilfungo,

I already shared the meter scale some pages ago. I made the scale myself and printed it on some light yellow paper!

all the best!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on October 09, 2013, 09:00:51 PM
 :(
Hi Ilfungo,

I already shared the meter scale some pages ago. I made the scale myself and printed it on some light yellow paper!

all the best!
Sorry...
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on October 11, 2013, 01:19:31 AM
I finally finished debugging, fixing and calibrating the first unit (I also had broken TL071s). Sound is pretty fantastic :)

I'm still having some issues with the another channel, input signal becomes too hot at some point. No matter how do i turn the knobs, above threshold led is always lit. I've swapped all ICs between the two units and gone through basicly all solderings but the problem persists. I also tried isolating the board from metal riser pads, but no bonus. Any tips where I could find the point of failure?

Try calibrating the threshold...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: trampo on November 12, 2013, 03:50:03 PM
Hi all

I have the same problem as plektra, one board no problems other board even with following the calibration procedure I cant get the above and below led to the off position, the above led is always on.

Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

Trampo
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on November 12, 2013, 10:46:29 PM
Hey, ive been using my dual CLX for a few projects recently, and i started to notice a weird buzz (the paz meter shows it as a small spike at 70hz and from 10K up theres a weird wavy signal happening)  ITS VERY minute, but would love a way to kill it if possible.  Any thoughts?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 12, 2013, 11:14:26 PM
Hi all

I have the same problem as plektra, one board no problems other board even with following the calibration procedure I cant get the above and below led to the off position, the above led is always on.

Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

Trampo

I would look at the RMS unit section. Try switching around the chips and see if that helps...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 12, 2013, 11:16:43 PM
Hey, ive been using my dual CLX for a few projects recently, and i started to notice a weird buzz (the paz meter shows it as a small spike at 70hz and from 10K up theres a weird wavy signal happening)  ITS VERY minute, but would love a way to kill it if possible.  Any thoughts?

Interesting. How do you have the grounding? Also what is very minute? -60db? -80db? -100db? that will help. Does it change with output gain?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on November 13, 2013, 12:14:42 AM
Followed the build manual to a tee, so however the grounding is there.  It DOES increase with output gain.  When set at 0 its gotta be below -60fs. But if i put a limiter on my mix bus it becomes pretty noticeable. (first i thought my monitors were humming since i recently re-located my power amp to the next room, thought maybe the cable run was too long)  Again, not a huge deal since it is REALLY low (but i tend to mix pretty low which brings my noise floor into play).  Has become a go-to comp on kick drum lately.  I've been told to use it on snare which i've gotta try soon, but its gonna take a lot to convert me from my 1176 revD's.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: plektra on November 13, 2013, 03:02:22 AM
We debugged this unit yesterday and there seems to be something strangely wrong with the another board. By an accident we discovered that the channel works well when following connections exist: oscilloscope measuring both input and output voltages between hot and cold wires and there is something connected to the output (in this case, output of CLX-VU was connected to a mixer input). When anyone of these is removed, signal is multiplied at an early stage so that above led is always lit. Odd is also that when one of the connections is removed, manipulating the output signal by turning threshold or ratio pots, it also affects the input signal measured straight from the input XLR connector...

The other channel is working and can be calibrated, so we swapped the boards (and also tried with one channel powered at a time), but the problem goes along the board, so this eliminates the possibility of broken/shorting wiring. Also it is not a grounding issue, because the another board works well with the same grounding schema. All chips have also been swapped between the units, problem persists.

I think next I'll go through the solderings once again and search for any possible solder bridges or dry joints. Any other ideas?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 14, 2013, 12:31:48 AM
We debugged this unit yesterday and there seems to be something strangely wrong with the another board. By an accident we discovered that the channel works well when following connections exist: oscilloscope measuring both input and output voltages between hot and cold wires and there is something connected to the output (in this case, output of CLX-VU was connected to a mixer input). When anyone of these is removed, signal is multiplied at an early stage so that above led is always lit. Odd is also that when one of the connections is removed, manipulating the output signal by turning threshold or ratio pots, it also affects the input signal measured straight from the input XLR connector...

The other channel is working and can be calibrated, so we swapped the boards (and also tried with one channel powered at a time), but the problem goes along the board, so this eliminates the possibility of broken/shorting wiring. Also it is not a grounding issue, because the another board works well with the same grounding schema. All chips have also been swapped between the units, problem persists.

I think next I'll go through the solderings once again and search for any possible solder bridges or dry joints. Any other ideas?

Super strange....hmmm so the problem follows the board? I would look for any solder problems/shorts, like you mentioned.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 14, 2013, 12:34:58 AM
Followed the build manual to a tee, so however the grounding is there.  It DOES increase with output gain.  When set at 0 its gotta be below -60fs. But if i put a limiter on my mix bus it becomes pretty noticeable. (first i thought my monitors were humming since i recently re-located my power amp to the next room, thought maybe the cable run was too long)  Again, not a huge deal since it is REALLY low (but i tend to mix pretty low which brings my noise floor into play).  Has become a go-to comp on kick drum lately.  I've been told to use it on snare which i've gotta try soon, but its gonna take a lot to convert me from my 1176 revD's.

Hmm -60fs seems pretty high. Does it do it with no input connected?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on November 14, 2013, 10:40:14 AM
I could certainly try tonight.  It's currently hooked up to the patch bay.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: plektra on November 20, 2013, 04:24:29 PM
Super strange....hmmm so the problem follows the board? I would look for any solder problems/shorts, like you mentioned.

Just went through all solder points but the problem still persists. If I could read the schematics any better, I could maybe follow the signal path and try to find any broken passive components.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on November 22, 2013, 03:02:38 AM
Super strange....hmmm so the problem follows the board? I would look for any solder problems/shorts, like you mentioned.

Just went through all solder points but the problem still persists. If I could read the schematics any better, I could maybe follow the signal path and try to find any broken passive components.

The parts numbers correspond to the original schematic if you find mine hard to read.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on November 25, 2013, 01:37:47 AM
Input in or not, buzz remains. At unity in protools, and the gain maxed on the CLX, im getting a peak signal at around -80.  If i crank the gain in PT its clearly audible, and depending on the situation, it's noticable in the mix.  I've put a link to the "noise"  its not a normal 60cycle hum. 

https://soundcloud.com/meistudio/line (https://soundcloud.com/meistudio/line)  PS (dunno what that sound is at the end. it's never done that before it didn't go out thru the compressor or come FROM the compressor though)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: trampo on December 10, 2013, 06:29:29 PM
Ok, so the problem seems to be with the calibration. I used a more accurate tone generator, followed the calibration procedure and every thing lined up great with both sides. I did not change any components nor did i have any solder problems, just something to do with the calibration caused the output to be increased on one channel, must have just got lucky on one side and unlucky on the other.

The unit sounds great across a whole mix, drum bus and individual drums.

Many thanks Abe for a great product!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on December 17, 2013, 08:38:13 PM
I have a problem with pin3 on the output.
There's almost no signal on it.
Output pin2 is ok, has full signal, but pin3 has signal so weak that it's almost non-existent.

I went tracing signal with probe around the output and found out that on the input leg of the R92 signal is full, but on it's output leg there's a big drop. Replaced R92 (22K1) in case it is somehow wrong, but that didn't fix the problem.
I then checked values of R103, R92, C35 and C32 and they all seem ok.
No cold solder joints also...

I don't understand...
help!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: insideout on January 06, 2014, 06:22:05 PM
Hi folks, assuming sufficient va, is there any reason I can't put my clx-vu in the same chassis and share the 25-0-25 transformer being used for an mnats 1176 as pictured (hoping my picture appears...):
thx, Mike
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: MANUAL!!
Post by: insideout on January 09, 2014, 05:11:55 AM
For some reason I can't find this diagram for using a rotary switch - can anyone point me to it?
appreciated,
Mike
Just an update on my diagram above. Just finished building it (the thing in the drawing). Works perfectly!!  CCW is INPUT. CENTER is GR.  CW is OUTPUT.

Awesome, and good diagram in case anyone else wants to use a rotary switch.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on January 09, 2014, 10:51:18 AM
Sorry forgot that was on my server.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on January 10, 2014, 05:14:10 PM
Hi Abe (and everyone).

Recently completed the assembly of two units, and true to form I rushed and did not read the manual, powered it up and blew the TL071 chips to pieces. Really, they both shattered. My rail voltages were -8/+27. After adjusting and replacing the TL071's, I'm having problems calibrating the RMS section. There is only a very feint waveform at the test point, which is not affected by the signal put onto the input of the unit.

I suspect that all other chips are damaged as well, so have put in an order to replace them all.
Only issue is, that the CA3083 chips are near impossible to find. Everywhere appears to be out of stock or discontinued. Help! Abe, where did you source yours from???

Cheers,
Anthony.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on January 10, 2014, 08:45:20 PM
Hi Abe (and everyone).

Recently completed the assembly of two units, and true to form I rushed and did not read the manual, powered it up and blew the TL071 chips to pieces. Really, they both shattered. My rail voltages were -8/+27. After adjusting and replacing the TL071's, I'm having problems calibrating the RMS section. There is only a very feint waveform at the test point, which is not affected by the signal put onto the input of the unit.

I suspect that all other chips are damaged as well, so have put in an order to replace them all.
Only issue is, that the CA3083 chips are near impossible to find. Everywhere appears to be out of stock or discontinued. Help! Abe, where did you source yours from???

Cheers,
Anthony.


you'll have to get the CA3083 on ebay. thats where I got mine
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on January 10, 2014, 09:43:42 PM
Of course. How silly of me.
Too easy.

Cheers,
Anthony.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 17, 2014, 01:27:09 AM
Of course. How silly of me.
Too easy.

Cheers,
Anthony.

Yea I've done that before and it sucks. I need to get a stash of them!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on January 17, 2014, 03:45:05 PM
Yea I've done that before and it sucks. I need to get a stash of them!

Picked up a few from a seller in the UK. Now just waiting....

Could you confirm a few things with the RMS calibration for me, just to make sure?
-60dB level signal, is equivalent to about 0.002Vp-p? My signal generator only gives Vp-p
The signal is then applied to pins 1 (ground) and 2 (hot) of the input connector.

At this point, I get an almost sawtooth wave out at the Offset Pin, which can be slightly adjusted by R36. Adjusting the signal generator - even turning it off - make no change to this.

Still have to replace the CA3083 chips, and THAT chips, which might be the cause of this issue.

Cheers,
Anthony.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 17, 2014, 07:07:41 PM
Yea I've done that before and it sucks. I need to get a stash of them!

Picked up a few from a seller in the UK. Now just waiting....

Could you confirm a few things with the RMS calibration for me, just to make sure?
-60dB level signal, is equivalent to about 0.002Vp-p? My signal generator only gives Vp-p
The signal is then applied to pins 1 (ground) and 2 (hot) of the input connector.

At this point, I get an almost sawtooth wave out at the Offset Pin, which can be slightly adjusted by R36. Adjusting the signal generator - even turning it off - make no change to this.

Still have to replace the CA3083 chips, and THAT chips, which might be the cause of this issue.

Cheers,
Anthony.

Yea my guess is some of the chips are blown. The square wave should completely disappear and actually there is only a small window it should appear. Something is probably blown so its showing full signal all the time maybe? Speculation. Good luck.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on January 24, 2014, 04:28:18 AM
Yea I've done that before and it sucks. I need to get a stash of them!

Also helps if I install C11....

Abe, in the parts kit you sent all the .33uF film capacitors as "185K", which implies 1.8uF. Is this ok to use?

Other than that, calibration is going smoothly.

Cheers,
Anthony.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on January 24, 2014, 09:23:25 PM
Hello again,

I've managed to get through most of the calibration process. It's compressing audio well.
Now to set the meter.

I have a question regarding the step of adjusting R124 and connecting R109. Should there be any signal on the input, and what are the meter switches and controls supposed to be set on?

Cheers,
Anthony
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on January 24, 2014, 11:35:23 PM
Yea I've done that before and it sucks. I need to get a stash of them!

Also helps if I install C11....

Abe, in the parts kit you sent all the .33uF film capacitors as "185K", which implies 1.8uF. Is this ok to use?

Other than that, calibration is going smoothly.

Cheers,
Anthony.

Yes, 1.8uf because the impedance is lower with the That chips :)

And with regard to the meter calibration, once you lift one side of R109, it doesn't "see" anything but the voltage that sets the "0" so to answer your question, it doesn't matter, it wouldn't change it one way or the other.
Happy compressing :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on January 25, 2014, 04:12:10 AM
Done! In the end it was a pretty easy build, though the calibration procedure is one of the most difficult ever.
It definitely has that signature DBX sound, and can be quite savage at high gain reduction. Sounds fantastic when put lightly over a drum mix.

I used the Hairball Lola knobs. They look pretty cool.

Cheers, and thanks for the help.

Anthony
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: hotel valkenburg on February 10, 2014, 01:06:45 PM
got one of those 200 series VCAs off evilbay curious about the pin configuration, all the pins align correctly to the board, except there is no COMPR pin or that is to say it is cut short and soldered to the VCA's can.  is this ok? or should i pop her free and hook it up? seems like it should be the ground pin thats connected to the can.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on February 10, 2014, 10:55:13 PM
got one of those 200 series VCAs off evilbay curious about the pin configuration, all the pins align correctly to the board, except there is no COMPR pin or that is to say it is cut short and soldered to the VCA's can.  is this ok? or should i pop her free and hook it up? seems like it should be the ground pin thats connected to the can.

Yes, its quiet strange the pins they sometimes have/don't have. I actually have never seen a 200 vca with all the pins (not that I've seen THAT many) but all those pins are spec'd in the engineering sheet. It should be just fine :)

I'm working on a simple discrete 200 vca using THAT corp transistor array that can pop into peoples PCBs....discrete is very fun...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: late on February 12, 2014, 04:21:32 PM
Hi Abe

Never have plans about to add attack/release pots like 165a have? Or is it too hard?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Baltazar on February 13, 2014, 11:44:33 AM
Hello!
A few years after i ordered I finally had the time to start working on these rev2 boards!
First unit is assembled first i tried it without any ICs, no smoke, adjusted voltage to +15 and -15v.
With IC's in, +15 is fine but i cant get the negative side to go above -11,45v. R100 is out of range...

I also notice that the two LEDs illuminates a little all the time and the VU is pegging "downwards" so to say.

Remove one IC at the time until voltage bumps up or what is you suggestions?

Best
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on February 13, 2014, 12:04:34 PM
Hello!
A few years after i ordered I finally had the time to start working on these rev2 boards!
First unit is assembled first i tried it without any ICs, no smoke, adjusted voltage to +15 and -15v.
With IC's in, +15 is fine but i cant get the negative side to go above -11,45v. R100 is out of range...

I also notice that the two LEDs illuminates a little all the time and the VU is pegging "downwards" so to say.

Remove one IC at the time until voltage bumps up or what is you suggestions?

Best

Yes I would remove the ics. Check make sure the regulator is getting enough voltage, and you have correct resistors around that area.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on February 20, 2014, 07:41:33 PM
I came back to this build after a month or so of waiting for some TLC...

I'm still struggling with calibration and I think I have one problem.
First of all, calibration..
- When I try to tweak R34 overall level just goes up and down. Second, third (and higher) harmonics stay always in same relation with first harmonic (100hz test tone). Their relation doesn't change for better or worse. I suppose this is not normal?

- Level calibration is out of range. When I first started on this project I wired Lorlin rotary switch and I was getting lots of strange readings from R79 voltage. I now replaced it with pushbutton switches and it is far more better. When the meter is in input or output position my readings don't respond anymore to panel pot's position. I get constant reading from R79 resistor's leg. But this reading is too high! When the unit is fed with 1.228VRMS signal (measuring between input connector's pins 1 and 2, ground and hot), lowest reading on R79 I can get is -0.105 VDC. Should I change R63 trimmer from 50K to 100K to go lower on targeted -0.011 V DC? I believe this is the crucial point to get targeted -0.011 since my next calibrations can't get where I want them!

- 1:4 calibration... I can't do it! Compression is very hard and it wont let signal raise by 10db when I raise up the input signal. Since I'm using my audio interface, I can't raise the input signal to +10db - my output converter won't let me. I tried with first signal -40db and raised it to 0db. On the output of the compressor there's merely 2db raise when it should be 10db. I'm guessing it has to do with the previous step of the calibration - I probably have to hot signal into the sidechain (R79), right?

- vu meter calibration. No problems with setting zero position on the input and GR. Input level is showing correctly. But GR level on vu meter is always showing less than it actually is. When I compare my input on the computer's analyzer (Smaart7), actual GR is let's say 20db but my vu meter is showing aprox 11db. I found out that if I tweak R56 I can get the needle to drop a bit to almost 16db of GR but not more. And this is still off from the actual 20db's! I tried rotating R59 and nothing happens. What are R56 and R59 for? They are before TL082 opamp connected to the vu meter compensation circuit. What do they do? (not mentioned in manual rev3). Will I get better readings when I successfully adjust R79's voltage?

And lastly, I have a problem with negative (pin3) output! It is dead! When looking at the schematic I can't understand it. I get a signal of about -20db on the input leg of R92 and after that signal is almost lost. Since R93 is 200R to the ground I guess the signal is draining to the ground. I didn't try it, but I guess if I pull out R93 there would probably still be low signal, definitely way too different than the positive (pin2) signal. I've checked component values if I maybe put a wrong one but they're all okay. Interesting thing is when I adjust output voltage between ground and positive pin2 to 1.228V my vu meter is reading -5.5db. I don't know if this has anything to do with it. Should I just put an 1:1 output transformer and feed the output to transformer and have the signal balanced that way?

I've listed a lot of my problems but other than that this unit is sounding very good! Ok, maybe to hard compressing but compression sounds great!

 :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on February 21, 2014, 01:04:12 AM
For level calibration you need 1.228V RMS between pin 2 and 3, not between pin 1 and 2
if I'm not mistaken....

Best
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on February 21, 2014, 09:22:25 AM
For level calibration you need 1.228V RMS between pin 2 and 3, not between pin 1 and 2
if I'm not mistaken....

Huh... you got me thinking... I believe it's beetween ground and hot...
Can someone confirm this?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on February 22, 2014, 08:09:10 AM
bump!
 :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: horizonsound on February 22, 2014, 04:53:25 PM
Ground (Pin 1) and Hot (Pin 2). Seemed to work for me.
Tell me if it's wrong.

By the way, this thing smokes on a kick drum and snare!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: mus1k_freak on February 23, 2014, 03:12:14 PM
how would i wire the switch section of the board if i want gain reduction only? i dont care to much about in and out, and for a clean simple build ide like to eleminate those switches, do i just jump pin four to pin 1?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on February 23, 2014, 07:22:57 PM
hi everyone !

I have question about the C11 caps on the horizonsound's pcb , it's not present ! It's normal ?



Please somebody can post a clear picture of the PCB mount ? i don't find the problem of mine ! it's just for compare

thanks !!!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on February 24, 2014, 11:33:24 PM
@shot
I believe the original DBX manual http://adn.harmanpro.com/product_documents/documents/607_1324058678/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure_original.pdf (http://adn.harmanpro.com/product_documents/documents/607_1324058678/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure_original.pdf) states between pin 1 and 2 and tie pin 3 to ground. Though Really, since your just are calibrating both to eachother its not *that* important as long as you have the same reference point to both. I would try to go through it again. If something isn't 100% on it probably OK as long as its in the ballpark.

@EmptymusicBox1

C11 can be either 0.33uF or 1.8uF it will effect the low end slightly (the sidechain will respond to the low end more with the 1.8uF so some people might just want to leave the 0.33uf in ) It is changed because the impedance around the VCA changed to optimize for the THAT 2180 chip and that of course changed the cut off frequency for a given capacitor value.

Also that would be fun to see how to change the attack and release times, though I haven't looked into it yet. Please share if someone experiments with this! :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on February 25, 2014, 11:32:21 AM
@shot
I believe the original DBX manual http://adn.harmanpro.com/product_documents/documents/607_1324058678/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure_original.pdf (http://adn.harmanpro.com/product_documents/documents/607_1324058678/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure_original.pdf) states between pin 1 and 2 and tie pin 3 to ground. Though Really, since your just are calibrating both to eachother its not *that* important as long as you have the same reference point to both. I would try to go through it again. If something isn't 100% on it probably OK as long as its in the ballpark.

My problem is that R79 is not in the ballpark! But I'll try again for sure.

And what about this situaton I have with missing signal on the minus leg of the output (pin3)? Positive signal is ok, but it's inverted counterpart is just missing... I have cca -20db on the input leg of the R92 and after that it's gone.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on February 25, 2014, 03:18:54 PM
@shot
I believe the original DBX manual http://adn.harmanpro.com/product_documents/documents/607_1324058678/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure_original.pdf (http://adn.harmanpro.com/product_documents/documents/607_1324058678/160-161%20Calibration%20Procedure_original.pdf) states between pin 1 and 2 and tie pin 3 to ground. Though Really, since your just are calibrating both to eachother its not *that* important as long as you have the same reference point to both. I would try to go through it again. If something isn't 100% on it probably OK as long as its in the ballpark.

My problem is that R79 is not in the ballpark! But I'll try again for sure.

And what about this situaton I have with missing signal on the minus leg of the output (pin3)? Positive signal is ok, but it's inverted counterpart is just missing... I have cca -20db on the input leg of the R92 and after that it's gone.

Thats fine. A lot of electrically balanced output stages aren't a perfect "out of phase" signal on the neutral leg. But it still balances perfectly.

ps also try switching chips around and different chips if you have them to see if the voltages clear up.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: mus1k_freak on March 02, 2014, 02:16:19 PM
i turned on my clx for the first time, got my power rails set right, put the ic chips back in but i have no output all i get is a loud hum, doesnt seem to change with any of the controls either, the gain reduction meter and below and above lights seem to be working correctly but i only get a constant hum out, any ideas?

upon first start up diode cr15 smoked so i replaced it and cleaned the board with alcohol and now it seems fine, i wonder if i burned out the 2n4037 transistor? i have 40v drop across r90 does that seem high?


Also looks like q8 and q14 are switched,  I'll order some new ones a day that might solve my problem
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: hotel valkenburg on March 02, 2014, 08:23:46 PM
 ;D soooo psyched got it fired up today. no smoke! it sounds awesome on bass cant wait to get some drums going tomorrow.
nice easy clean build. had some fun making a 1/2 width case from an old digi002r. its a little junky looking but i like it.
I might even do the wood panels.

thanks again abe for the support and your hard work!! and congrats on the new offerings!

Jordan
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 04, 2014, 02:37:02 PM
i turned on my clx for the first time, got my power rails set right, put the ic chips back in but i have no output all i get is a loud hum, doesnt seem to change with any of the controls either, the gain reduction meter and below and above lights seem to be working correctly but i only get a constant hum out, any ideas?

upon first start up diode cr15 smoked so i replaced it and cleaned the board with alcohol and now it seems fine, i wonder if i burned out the 2n4037 transistor? i have 40v drop across r90 does that seem high?


Also looks like q8 and q14 are switched,  I'll order some new ones a day that might solve my problem

Yes, lucky for troubleshooting, if you are getting no sound the signal path is pretty easy....one opamp the VCA then the opamps and output stage.. I would bet the new transistors will sort it out.
Good luck
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: usekgb on March 04, 2014, 10:50:28 PM
Quick question.  I have a pile of 15V-0-15V mains transformers sitting around.  They rectify up to 20V per leg, and after a couple volts lost to regulation, I should still be able to hit the target of 15V per rail.  Would I be cutting it too close?

Thanks,
Zach
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: usekgb on March 05, 2014, 11:28:36 AM
Scratch that last question.  I won't be able to get the 24V rails with my transformer.  Duh!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: mus1k_freak on March 05, 2014, 08:49:33 PM
I swapped out those 2 transistors and bazinga! works and sounds great! super squishy for sure! still needs to be calibrated as i dont have an oscilloscope, but even not calibrated it sounds pretty awesome! cant wait to get it dialed in!

(https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/t1/1899929_10151900940570946_1418510194_n.jpg)



i turned on my clx for the first time, got my power rails set right, put the ic chips back in but i have no output all i get is a loud hum, doesnt seem to change with any of the controls either, the gain reduction meter and below and above lights seem to be working correctly but i only get a constant hum out, any ideas?

upon first start up diode cr15 smoked so i replaced it and cleaned the board with alcohol and now it seems fine, i wonder if i burned out the 2n4037 transistor? i have 40v drop across r90 does that seem high?


Also looks like q8 and q14 are switched,  I'll order some new ones a day that might solve my problem

Yes, lucky for troubleshooting, if you are getting no sound the signal path is pretty easy....one opamp the VCA then the opamps and output stage.. I would bet the new transistors will sort it out.
Good luck
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: usekgb on March 05, 2014, 11:18:14 PM
Ok.  I have a question regarding my last question.  Assuming that I use a 15-0-15 mains transformer, and get +-20V instead of +-24, how much would this realistically hurt the performance of the two output transistors?  I read on here somewhere that Abe has used voltages ranging from 20V to 30V without any harm, but how was the actual performance at these different voltages?  Thoughts?

Cheers,
Zach
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: brewbacca on March 06, 2014, 07:01:11 AM
Hey everyone, I just finished putting my unit together and I've learned that I hate putting molex connectors together :). Here's what happened on first start up:

Lights came on, no smoke, no nasty noises, so far so good. I ran a bass through my clx and I was definitely able to get the compression working.

Here's my initial issues:

- There's a slight crackling/noise effect that gets louder when I add gain.
- The (standard hairball) meter seems backwards, but maybe it's supposed to be that way? In GR mode, the needle hovers around zero with no sound going in, and in in/out modes, the needle pegs. It looks like it's wired correctly.

Here's where the sadness begins: In channel 1 I, very stupidly, thought I would see what happened when I flipped the pots connector, and well, bad things happen. Now the above light is always on and when I use any ratio the sound cuts out. I'm assuming I blew a chip or transistor.

I should note that I left out R30 since it wasn't included in the BOM.

Anybody run into any of this? I've been reading through the thread while building this thing, but there's a lot in there, so please forgive me if I missed anything.

Thanks!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: brewbacca on March 06, 2014, 01:08:19 PM
Ok, after a couple hours of sleep, I tried switching out the IC between the boards, and got some good results when I switched out the LM301's from the RMS. I still need to calibrate, but both sides are now seemingly working. The meter still seems backwards and there's still some noise on the output. I do have R109 installed (didn't catch to leave that out). I took all the IC's out to calibrate the power rails, and found that R101 on channel 1 doesn't seem to be adjusting anything. Could I have blown out this trimmer when I switched the pot connector direction? R101 on channel 2 successfully adjusted the +15 rail.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: berkleystudios on March 07, 2014, 03:51:00 AM
I swapped out those 2 transistors and bazinga! works and sounds great! super squishy for sure! still needs to be calibrated as i dont have an oscilloscope, but even not calibrated it sounds pretty awesome! cant wait to get it dialed in!

(https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/t1/1899929_10151900940570946_1418510194_n.jpg)



i turned on my clx for the first time, got my power rails set right, put the ic chips back in but i have no output all i get is a loud hum, doesnt seem to change with any of the controls either, the gain reduction meter and below and above lights seem to be working correctly but i only get a constant hum out, any ideas?

upon first start up diode cr15 smoked so i replaced it and cleaned the board with alcohol and now it seems fine, i wonder if i burned out the 2n4037 transistor? i have 40v drop across r90 does that seem high?


Also looks like q8 and q14 are switched,  I'll order some new ones a day that might solve my problem

Yes, lucky for troubleshooting, if you are getting no sound the signal path is pretty easy....one opamp the VCA then the opamps and output stage.. I would bet the new transistors will sort it out.
Good luck


dude that looks awesome! turned out great!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on March 10, 2014, 11:12:41 AM
Got my pcbs, time to starting building!

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on March 10, 2014, 06:42:21 PM
hi everyone !

I have question about the C11 caps on the horizonsound's pcb , it's not present ! It's normal ?



Please somebody can post a clear picture of the PCB mount ? i don't find the problem of mine ! it's just for compare

thanks !!!
hi Guys !!

i have find my problem on the CLX board ! the CA 3083 was dead !!! n0w the Comp work ! :) !!!

- Question :

How i can wire an Asymetric Input fot he CLX board ? i wire the pin 2 to the pin 1 and i use the pin 3 for the audio ?

How i can adapt 2 VU LED meters and Where on the PCB : the first for the Input/ Output and the 2nd for the audio compression ?

i can use any VU led METER for that ?

for exemple :
(http://img15.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_266181IMG3542.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=266181IMG3542.jpg)

my project : http://groupdiy.com/index.php?topic=51894.msg708838#new

thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on March 10, 2014, 11:48:17 PM
I'm not sure I understand "asymmetric" but maybe you mean unbalanced? In that case you will just use pin 2 for audio.

To use a LED VU meter, just attach the input of the VU meter to the output of the PCB "meter" and it should work just fine. You might have to mess with the sensitivity but you should get it to work.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: brewbacca on March 11, 2014, 01:00:28 AM
Has anybody else had issues with the meter and/or threshold running backwards?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on March 11, 2014, 01:14:50 PM
I'm not sure I understand "asymmetric" but maybe you mean? In that case you will just use pin 2 for audio.

To use a LED VU meter, just attach the input of the VU meter to the output of the PCB "meter" and it should work just fine. You might have to mess with the sensitivity but you should get it to work.

Thanks  abechap024 for your answer ! yes when i write asymetric i think  unbalanced ( sorry i'm french .... )

I have just see a new problem on my CLX board : my INPUT is Unbalanced : audio IN pin 3 Ground pin1 + pin 2 BUT My OUTPUT is UNBLANCED ???? why ? i have no Sym to the OUTPUT of the CLX Board ?


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on March 12, 2014, 11:35:33 AM
Hi Quote !

i have the same problem of Unbalanced signal on my OUTPUT before R92 i have sound and after no sound ....

do you have fix the problem ?


I have a problem with pin3 on the output.
There's almost no signal on it.
Output pin2 is ok, has full signal, but pin3 has signal so weak that it's almost non-existent.

I went tracing signal with probe around the output and found out that on the input leg of the R92 signal is full, but on it's output leg there's a big drop. Replaced R92 (22K1) in case it is somehow wrong, but that didn't fix the problem.
I then checked values of R103, R92, C35 and C32 and they all seem ok.
No cold solder joints also...

I don't understand...
help!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on March 12, 2014, 02:32:44 PM
The Cap C35 was dead ....i change it, but after reboot the cap dead again ....

idea ?

i can leave the 1n Caps C32 ? it's optional ?



thx

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: miko on March 13, 2014, 04:55:15 PM
Hello fellow DIY folks. I'm stil pretty noob at diy projects and i dont know if this is the correct place to ask this, but what BOMS do i have to order to build this dbx? Because you have the main bom, the THAT bom etc. Wich ones do i need? Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: hotel valkenburg on March 13, 2014, 08:36:35 PM
Hello Miko.
i would start by reading the Rev 3 Manual abe made. its linked on the first page of this thread.
its got a lot of useful information. there are a few different options for VCA and RMS so its up to you to decide which BOM's you need.
there are also components that are on the main board that change depending on the VCA and RMS options you choose. (T) <--hint
read carefully, a couple times through and it should all make sense.

goodluck
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: miko on March 14, 2014, 06:42:56 AM
Wow i totaly missed that manual, it's so clear.
thank u verry much.
But then i wanted to order the THAT chips...
there are 3 kinds: the A,B, and C
what version do i need and what is the difference?
(sorry for al these noob questions  :-\)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: hotel valkenburg on March 15, 2014, 10:40:36 AM
if you dig through the data sheet a bit youll find they are very similar.
it appears the only difference is some cost, harmonic distortion and offset voltages.
i didn't dig too deep just a quick glance. i actually ended up using the original 200 series vca can on my build, so i didn't do any research in this area.
that being said a quick search on this thread reveals:

abechap024: " I offer the kits with the 2180A VCA, just cause - for 3 bucks more - why not. But on the same token I'm running the 2180B's in mine, cause I haven't measured very much different distortion between A and B variants and usually the 160vu is used when you want a little "color" or what have you. Not something like the stereo buss. Then again its very tricky to accurately measure different specifications in VCA's because by their very nature. Sound wise - granted this isn't a blind test by any means -but just the general impression of the different VCAs, The A sounded more transparent and while the B didn't sound bad, it maybe didn't sound quite as clear. Again, that could just be my bias of what I'm expecting the different parts to soundlike."
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on March 15, 2014, 10:57:16 AM
Hi All,

for C21 does it have to be exactly 4.7uf or could i get away with 6.8uf?

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on March 29, 2014, 10:08:42 AM
About to do some shopping from Mouser. What do you guys use to mount the switches from Hairball?

Cheers
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: MLAudio on March 31, 2014, 01:47:46 PM
Are these kits still available for order? If so, where? Thanks.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on March 31, 2014, 02:55:14 PM
Abe has the PCB's for sale here:
http://store.acsoundstudio.com/pcb/

I think the parts kit is out of stock though.
The case I have is from collectivecases.com
It's for a dual unit.

Bumping my latest question, does anybody know the name for those headless screws to
use when you mount the switch banks to the case, or something else that works?
I guess the size is 4-40?

Best
Magnus
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on April 02, 2014, 05:03:55 AM
Anyone help answer this please?

Hi All,

for C21 does it have to be exactly 4.7uf or could i get away with 6.8uf?

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on April 02, 2014, 09:14:43 PM
Anyone help answer this please?

Hi All,

for C21 does it have to be exactly 4.7uf or could i get away with 6.8uf?

regards

Spence.

Making it bigger will only extend the LF cuttoff so that would be totally fine. instead of 0.1hz it will be 0.01hz or something obscure like that. In practice no difference! :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on April 09, 2014, 03:11:25 PM
Hi guys,

Couple of questions regarding this build, the 4 gang switch I have for each channel has the power switch then the 3 other switches for in/GR/out, It seems that when you press the power switch in it stays depressed but when you press one of the other switches it will power off the unit?
 I can't work out how to latch these switches either separately or together!
Also I have run out of the LM301 chips but have read a NE5534 could work with something else connected?

I am at the stage of just finishing off filling the boards, so don't have a case yet or a power transformer, but need to sort out this little bits before I carry on.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on April 09, 2014, 03:47:04 PM
I'm sorry I can't help with the chips...
But the power switch stays in when it's off, you turn it on with any other switch,
and it stays on showing in/GR/out on the meter with the other switches.
I hope I was clear???

Best
Magnus
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on April 09, 2014, 05:56:30 PM
Hi,
And is this the same with the other 4 gang switches on the right hand channel which wouldn't be used for power it would be used for the link switch?
Is there any drawings or documentation to show how this is wired as I'm not getting how this is implemented for a stereo unit.
If there isn't any documentation would probably be a really good thing for people building a stereo unit like myself.

Also I've been told to build a stereo unit I should be able to get away with a 12va transformer 2 x 18v could anyone confirm this please?


Regards

Spence.

Still confused!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: beatnik on April 18, 2014, 09:56:15 AM
I've bought an original 160 VU from a studio closeout sale. Not working but price was too good to resist, worth trying to repair.

First thing to sort out is the power transformer. The panel says this unit is for 110V, and i need to wire it for 220V operation.

The transformer has five wires for the primary, but the schematic only shows four wires on the primary, without color coding.

If anybody has info on that power transformer and how to hook up the primaries for 220V operation, would be very appreciated.

My guess is i should connect the primaries in series, and the remaining wire would be for ground connection, but I am not really sure and I don't want to make mistakes here as I could fry the pt.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on May 15, 2014, 01:38:41 PM
hello

i try to use a LED Meter for the GR on the CLX

i think i need to find a other point to wire the Meter because the LED MEter work " reverse" on the "VU point of the Board   " ALL the LED = No compression " !!!

where i can find a Positiv voltage for my LED MEter GR

idee ?

thanks for your Help
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 16, 2014, 12:37:40 AM
hello

i try to use a LED Meter for the GR on the CLX

i think i need to find a other point to wire the Meter because the LED MEter work " reverse" on the "VU point of the Board   " ALL the LED = No compression " !!!

where i can find a Positiv voltage for my LED MEter GR

idee ?

thanks for your Help

Maybe perfboard an inverting opamp? probably the most simple way...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 16, 2014, 12:38:43 AM
Hello fellow DIY folks. I'm stil pretty noob at diy projects and i dont know if this is the correct place to ask this, but what BOMS do i have to order to build this dbx? Because you have the main bom, the THAT bom etc. Wich ones do i need? Thanks

USe the THAT one with the that 2180 vca chip
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 16, 2014, 12:39:53 AM
Hi All,

for C21 does it have to be exactly 4.7uf or could i get away with 6.8uf?

regards

Spence.

you could put 100uF in there and it would be fine. So yes :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 16, 2014, 12:41:23 AM
Abe has the PCB's for sale here:
http://store.acsoundstudio.com/pcb/

I think the parts kit is out of stock though.
The case I have is from collectivecases.com
It's for a dual unit.

Bumping my latest question, does anybody know the name for those headless screws to
use when you mount the switch banks to the case, or something else that works?
I guess the size is 4-40?

Best
Magnus

I forget what size I use...they are pretty long and then I use 1/2" nylon spacer. It would be nice to have cases with those kind of standoffs you are talking about though.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on May 16, 2014, 02:32:25 AM
Hi guys,

I've bought. 2 x 4 gang switch for use as stereo unit but I'm still none the wiser on how to use the power switch correctly Anne on the other channel to use the other switch as the stereo link.
Is someone able to post a diagram of how to do this please?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on May 16, 2014, 05:58:33 AM
I'd like to drop some feedback after building and using CLX comp.

Back in the day I used to work in a studio that had DBX160VU and it saved few of my mix sessions. It was my go-to for some male rap vocals that 1176 couldn't handle well (odd, isn't it!!). That is why I wanted to build this compressor.
With some ups and downs I built it. Calibration was total PITA, but I did it in a way to have it working to my taste. R79 voltage is different than in manual, but it works great.

This compressor is absolutely amazing on drums! This is pure essence of rock drums. No matter what kind of kick and snare you have, it will shape it the way you need them - punch punch punch!

I tried it on kick and on snare, and on both it isfantastic. But my main trick with this compressor was when yesterday I decided to put kick and snare on the same channel and insert them into mono CLX. It tied them together, gave them similar clicky transient and no matter how much you drop the treshold to hear the release suck sound in between kick and snare, it always joins them together in a fantastic way. It has a tons of character. This is it! After that I just brought the rest of the drums on two more channels without much fiddling with it. A-MAZING!

And the interesting thing is that on vocals it sucked! Pumping gets too obvious and it's hard to fine tune. Didn't try rap vocals yet...

:)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on May 18, 2014, 06:07:18 AM
sorry to keep going on about this but can anyone help with wiring in two of the 4 gang push switches for a stereo unit so i can use on the left channel, power on unit, in, GR, out and on the right hand channel stereo link, in, GR, out.
as it is not covered in the manual with the CLX-VU.

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on May 18, 2014, 06:12:37 AM
hello

i don't find the solution for my Unbalanced Output problem ...

i have 0,35v on R83 when i use 0,75v on input and after R92 to the output i have 0v ... no sound on pin3

but on R89 i have 0,75v !!!!!!! pin2

it's normal ?

i can split the audio signal at C25 more a resitance R22 for my pin 3

thanks for your help !
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on May 18, 2014, 06:00:58 PM
Have looked back through the thread and found this:

You need to wire the power switch like on the 1176, when you push the power button when you want to turn it off, and selecting a meter mode will turn the unit on. All you have to do is switch whatever pins you have the AC power on.


For the Stereo link, you have to press both the link and the meter function you want, I wish there was a more elegant solution than this, but it works.

Will wire up and calibrate.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on May 19, 2014, 03:43:03 AM
Have had a little think about wiring up the on/off config using the 4 gang switch and I'm going to go with a normal power switch far right for the AC and use the spare push button on left of 4 gang switch channel 1 for true bypass, the right hand channel will be the stereo link.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on May 24, 2014, 05:42:17 AM
hello

i don't find the solution for my Unbalanced Output problem ...

i have 0,35v on R83 when i use 0,75v on input and after R92 to the output i have 0v ... no sound on pin3

but on R89 i have 0,75v !!!!!!! pin2

it's normal ?

i can split the audio signal at C25 more a resitance R22 for my pin 3

thanks for your help !

i add a schamtic with voltage test point :
(http://img4.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_633251voltage.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=633251voltage.jpg)

about C32 why it's not wire on the Schema ? it's neccesary ?

thanks for your help
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: abechap024 on May 26, 2014, 06:19:41 AM
hello

i don't find the solution for my Unbalanced Output problem ...

i have 0,35v on R83 when i use 0,75v on input and after R92 to the output i have 0v ... no sound on pin3

but on R89 i have 0,75v !!!!!!! pin2

it's normal ?

i can split the audio signal at C25 more a resitance R22 for my pin 3

thanks for your help !

i add a schamtic with voltage test point :
(http://img4.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_633251voltage.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=633251voltage.jpg)

about C32 why it's not wire on the Schema ? it's neccesary ?

thanks for your help

Hi,
The way the circuit works is my understanding you don't see signal on pin 3 but it is still fully balanced....I think I read somewhere even better then fully balanced as it has some sort of "compensation" circuity in the output stage.

C32 should be connected to that line its close to, also cr14 isn't connected. weird. But its right on the pcb.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on May 29, 2014, 05:21:31 AM
hello

i don't find the solution for my Unbalanced Output problem ...

i have 0,35v on R83 when i use 0,75v on input and after R92 to the output i have 0v ... no sound on pin3

but on R89 i have 0,75v !!!!!!! pin2

it's normal ?

i can split the audio signal at C25 more a resitance R22 for my pin 3

thanks for your help !

i add a schamtic with voltage test point :
(http://img4.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_633251voltage.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=633251voltage.jpg)

about C32 why it's not wire on the Schema ? it's neccesary ?

thanks for your help

Hi,
The way the circuit works is my understanding you don't see signal on pin 3 but it is still fully balanced....I think I read somewhere even better then fully balanced as it has some sort of "compensation" circuity in the output stage.

C32 should be connected to that line its close to, also cr14 isn't connected. weird. But its right on the pcb.

thanks abechap024 for your help, i try to find my problem....

 if somene have a solution to testing i'm ready !!!!! :))))

thanks

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on May 29, 2014, 05:37:06 PM
I bought my supplies over a year ago and am finally getting around to putting it together.  I'm using DBX 200 black VCAs and was hoping to hear from anyone who has done this build with DBX cans successfully.  Is there anything that needs to be jumped, or altered aside from the things listed in the manual?  Thanks.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 03, 2014, 03:19:42 PM
HI Guys,

having an awful time trying to get +/- 15v ono the psu, the R100 and R101 dont seem to function?
There are a couple of very small holes near c7 and c8 but dont seem to connect to anything? is there something im missing here to adjust the psu?
i have built the pcb as per the instructions, must be something really simple!!!!

also the two diodes cr41 and cr42 seem to be open circuit? i have changed these twice but when taken both diodes out they are fine?

my mind is boggling!

any help would be fantastic please.

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 04, 2014, 06:00:28 AM
Hi all,

Getting correct voltages now, just gotta change the ic's as I fear I have blown some of them up!

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 07, 2014, 12:03:23 PM
Hi,

Getting input noise now, but a very muffled distorted sound, square wave type of sound.
Would the cuplrets be the output transformers? Or the ic'c?
Is there am easy way of testing this?
All voltages seem good now, I have changed the NE5534, TL082, TL071 but not the others.
Suggestions welcomed.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 07, 2014, 11:49:48 PM
Hi,

Getting input noise now, but a very muffled distorted sound, square wave type of sound.
Would the cuplrets be the output transformers? Or the ic'c?
Is there am easy way of testing this?
All voltages seem good now, I have changed the NE5534, TL082, TL071 but not the others.
Suggestions welcomed.

Regards

Spence.
Is it your source that makes that noise or is it independent?  If it's the source,  that can often be a solder joint.  IC can cause it too, among other things. I'd look for a schematic that lists test point voltages so you can try to pin down the general area of the problem.  Take a slow look at all the components to check joints, direction, values, etc.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 08, 2014, 01:22:45 AM
I ment the output transistors not transformers sorry! How can I test that these are good or bad ?
I'm using a mic on the input which is sounding awful, distorted and broken up.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 08, 2014, 04:23:42 AM
I ment the output transistors not transformers sorry! How can I test that these are good or bad ?
I'm using a mic on the input which is sounding awful, distorted and broken up.

Regards

Spence.
You can test to see if the voltages coming off it are correct (if you have a schematic to reference that tells you the voltages) or, since they're pretty cheap, just replace them.  If desperate, you can remove them one-by-one to see how far "downstream" it is.  If you're using a mic, I trust you have it hooked up to a preamp before it hits the DBX?  If not, the 160 can't properly drive a mic.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 08, 2014, 04:55:15 AM
Hi,
I'm getting 24v when connecting Gnd and touching the outer case of the transistor, so this seems fine.
I didn't however pre amp the mic!!! Let me test it with a sine wave.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 09, 2014, 05:18:54 AM

For the Stereo link, you have to press both the link and the meter function you want, I wish there was a more elegant solution than this, but it works.


Could someone please elaborate on the wiring of the stereo link?  I understand which switch to use and that it's the + side of the Tant cap but how exactly are we wiring the switch? I imagine that the "off" position returns the + leads back to each board, respectively, but what is happening when the link is engaged?  Thanks!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 09, 2014, 05:20:58 AM
I would very much like a picture of the link wiring as what Bowie has said if someone is able to draw it out please, if I get a chance and figure it out I will put it up.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 14, 2014, 05:02:19 PM
Hi,
When probing the offset pin setting up rms with no input I get 20khz oscillation anyone have an official word on how to fix this please?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 15, 2014, 05:47:35 AM
Unfortunately, the CT trace (at the PT connection) on one of my boards is defective or damaged, with no continuity to ground.  Could someone please recommend a way to repair it?  If there is no way to fix, should I jump the molex to the negative pin on C2, underneath the board?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 16, 2014, 07:10:51 PM
Hi all,

Have replaced  CA3083 and all lm301 chips and still get oscillation of 20khz when setting up rms!
Have changed the caps but nothing changed?
Anyone have any ideas?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 17, 2014, 06:01:05 AM
Hi,

Do I need to install the R1 100r 0.5w resistor?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 17, 2014, 07:27:48 PM
Hi,

Do I need to install the R1 100r 0.5w resistor?

Regards

Spence.
From what I've read, it's not needed if you're using an LED illuminated meter.
BTW, I PM'd Abe a couple days ago and asked him to check in on this thread regarding there stereo link, etc.  He's been responsive in the past so we'll hopefully get some info soon.  I'm still wondering to do about the dead trace in my board.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 17, 2014, 08:05:31 PM
Hi Bowie,

Where is your dead trace, maybe both my pcbs have the same problem?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 17, 2014, 08:13:24 PM
Hi Bowie,

Where is your dead trace, maybe both my pcbs have the same problem?

Regards

Spence.
I have 2 boards but the problem lies in only one of them, at the CT trace for the power trans.  I'm trying to find out if jumping a wire over to C2 is the best fix.
As far as your oscillation goes, I can't say but I would check the polarity of all relevant components, make sure none of your chips are backwards or wires are crossed, and that you have no stray solder blobs.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 18, 2014, 08:38:48 AM
hi all,

this is where im at with this project.

Well, at the moment both amplifiers behave the same. The RMS section of the design is oscillating at about 20kHz. The power rails are correct and appear to be noise-free. All the component values are correct (except the 27Meg resistors in place of 22Meg but that is not important) and assembly is fine.
 
I can stop it oscillating by introducing mods that reduce the gain of the LM301s but that will, I assume, stop it performing as intended.
 
I am at a loss to think of a way forward.

can anyone help please, pretty please :)

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 18, 2014, 05:05:55 PM
Stereo link:
See post #160 & 161 in this thread. Also mentioned in some other posts spread out in this thread.
You still need to set the controls similar in both channels.

Oscillation:
Did you populate C39 (needed for That chip build)?
And increaced C14 to 150pF?
No cold solder joints where the ceramic caps go in the RMS area?
If you put the lid on and probe the output, same problem?

I still haven't got as far as you guys have, and to be honest I don't know anything ;D
Just speculating....

Good luck!!!
//Magnus
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 19, 2014, 05:37:26 AM
Hi,

The oscillation advice is perfectly sound but would only make sense if the oscillation was at a much higher frequency. In this case the oscillation is at 20kHz.
 
Anyone else like to chip in with any ideas?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 19, 2014, 09:40:36 AM
Hi,

There isn't a cap in C39 but putting in the specified 100pF makes no difference.
 
C14 is a long way from the RMS section, so, unsurprisingly, it made no difference when increased to 150pF.
 
This is starting to be Lost cause!!!!


Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 21, 2014, 04:35:26 AM
Hi,

It's seems no one has anything to add about this rms unit 20khz oscillation.
The rms unit is self contained and taking out all other chips makes no difference to getting rid of this problem?
All components are correct, would really do with pointing in the right direction with this design it seems it is floored.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 21, 2014, 06:31:05 PM
Hi,

It's seems no one has anything to add about this rms unit 20khz oscillation.
The rms unit is self contained and taking out all other chips makes no difference to getting rid of this problem?
All components are correct, would really do with pointing in the right direction with this design it seems it is floored.

Regards

Spence.
Must be frustrating.  Maybe post a few pics?  Being that this isn't a common problem, and it exists in both of your boards, maybe someone can spot the error.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 21, 2014, 06:36:50 PM
I will take a picture of it, see if anyone can spot anything?

No word from abe yet either?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 22, 2014, 11:48:50 AM
This is where I'm at with this:

Well, to change the frequency I removed C2(10pF) and to stop it oscillating I reduced the gain of the first amplifier by putting a 68k resistor from output to input. However, although this is not going to alter the signal path performance, it will change the compression algorithm which claims to behave like the human ear(whatever that means). So it is best that the problem is solved without mods like these.

If someone could please advise on this rms unit mod please, as I would really like this unit to work how it should behave.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 23, 2014, 04:34:01 PM
Hi all,

I am still pulling my hair out with this rms unit!
Attached pic is the waveform from the offset pin without anything on input.
The rms unit is oscillating on its own?

Resistor wise the only ones that are different are the 27meg instead of 22meg, would this make much difference?
also the 6k04 ones measure 6.7k


Could anyone help me get this sorted please?

Regard

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 24, 2014, 04:18:01 AM
Hi,

This is a picture of my pcbs, have put in C39 since this picture was taken but not tested.
If you spot anything please let me know!!!

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 24, 2014, 09:59:58 AM
Hi,

Have cured oscillation by changing c80 from 5pf to 10pf on the rms unit.
When turning ratio pot it cuts out all sound now? Also led is always on and doesn't change?
One step forward 2 back!!
Any ideas anyone?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 24, 2014, 05:33:19 PM
Hi,

This is a picture of my pcbs, have put in C39 since this picture was taken but not tested.
If you spot anything please let me know!!!

Regards

Spence.
I took some time to compare this to mine and, without checking the actual resistor values, everything looks ok, save for the missing C32.  Are you sure that there's no solder blobs shorting underneath?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sage on July 24, 2014, 05:34:10 PM
Hi Abe

here we have both boards populated and ready to wire... I see thru the posts that R30 is sometimes installed and sometimes it is not.... from your pictures in the manual Rev3 it is installed but it's not on the BOM.... so here is the question that you have probably answered before .... IS R30 SUPPOSED TO BE IN or NOT ? And if yes is it 1 k ?

THANK YOU

Sage
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 24, 2014, 05:55:08 PM
Hi Abe

here we have both boards populated and ready to wire... I see thru the posts that R30 is sometimes installed and sometimes it is not.... from your pictures in the manual Rev3 it is installed but it's not on the BOM.... so here is the question that you have probably answered before .... IS R30 SUPPOSED TO BE IN or NOT ? And if yes is it 1 k ?

THANK YOU

Sage
I found this, posted a few years ago;  "the reason I was getting hardly any compression was that I had  R30 installed.  In the pdf coloured overlay it indicates to install it, but it difficult to read that it says omit it for that's builds on the overlay."
So, if you're using THAT then I would say to try it without.  Hopefully Abe will check the thread soon as I'm still awaiting an answer about where to jump my dead trace.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sage on July 24, 2014, 07:27:03 PM
Thank you Bowie I had seen that post but it is so old that it might be referring to REV 1 or REV 2... my boards are REV 3 so I just wanted to confirm that -
Every thing else in the PCB seems pretty clear...

THANK YOU

Sage
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 24, 2014, 08:40:46 PM
Checking my boards, you can jump AC Centertap to C2 minus(-). From there it goes to C3 plus(+).

Do you have continuity between C2(-) and ground (where you check power-rails)?

At first I was going to give an answer just reading the schematic but there it seems to be the other way around?? As far as I can read polarized caps the symbol for C2 shows + to ground. No???

I hope that wasn't confusing...

Best
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 25, 2014, 12:16:37 AM
Checking my boards, you can jump AC Centertap to C2 minus(-). From there it goes to C3 plus(+).

Do you have continuity between C2(-) and ground (where you check power-rails)?

At first I was going to give an answer just reading the schematic but there it seems to be the other way around?? As far as I can read polarized caps the symbol for C2 shows + to ground. No???

I hope that wasn't confusing...

Best
//M
Thanks, I was thinking the same thing, based on the schematic.  Just wasn't confident enough to go ahead w/ it w/o some confirmation.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 25, 2014, 05:25:33 AM
Hi,

Have put in c24 and c32 1nf and gonna check all ic's working as ratio pot when turned clockwise cuts all audio?
Brew baca had the same problem but can't exactly remember the fix, anyone else remember ?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sage on July 25, 2014, 11:13:02 PM
Hello there

almost completed the build - just double checking on a couple of things....

PARALLEL WIRING FOR TRIAD VPT 36-1390 115VAC :

INPUT : BLUE AND VIOLET TIED TOGETHER - GREY AND BROWN TIED TOGETHER

OUTPUT TO THE BOARDS: BLACK AND ORAGE TOGETHER - YELLOW AND RED TOGETHER

THEN YELLOW/RED and ORANGE/BLACK GO TO BOTH INPUTS ON PCBs AT THE SAME TIME INDIVIDUALLY


ALSO DOES ANYONE HAS  PICTURE ON HOW TO WIRE THE LINK BOTTON ?

THANK YOU

Sage

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 25, 2014, 11:29:48 PM
Hello there

almost completed the build - just double checking on a couple of things....

PARALLEL WIRING FOR TRIAD VPT 36-1390 115VAC :

INPUT : BLUE AND VIOLET TIED TOGETHER - GREY AND BROWN TIED TOGETHER

OUTPUT TO THE BOARDS: BLACK AND ORAGE TOGETHER - YELLOW AND RED TOGETHER

THEN YELLOW/RED and ORANGE/BLACK GO TO BOTH INPUTS ON PCBs AT THE SAME TIME INDIVIDUALLY


ALSO DOES ANYONE HAS  PICTURE ON HOW TO WIRE THE LINK BOTTON ?

THANK YOU

Sage
I used the Allied PT so I can't help there but for the link, just check continuity on the terminals when engaged and disengaged and wire accordingly.  1 page back there is a mention of where you can find the stereo link diagram.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 26, 2014, 05:55:52 AM
Hello there

almost completed the build - just double checking on a couple of things....

PARALLEL WIRING FOR TRIAD VPT 36-1390 115VAC :

INPUT : BLUE AND VIOLET TIED TOGETHER - GREY AND BROWN TIED TOGETHER

OUTPUT TO THE BOARDS: BLACK AND ORAGE TOGETHER - YELLOW AND RED TOGETHER

THEN YELLOW/RED and ORANGE/BLACK GO TO BOTH INPUTS ON PCBs AT THE SAME TIME INDIVIDUALLY


ALSO DOES ANYONE HAS  PICTURE ON HOW TO WIRE THE LINK BOTTON ?

THANK YOU

Sage

Looking at the data for your Triad transormer you are correct about the primary connection.
On the secondary you need to create a center tap by connecting red and orange.
So now you will have three wires to your board insted of two. BLACK, RED+ORANGE, YELLOW.
There should be 18V AC between your center tap(red+orange) and black wire.
The same goes for center tap - yellow wire.

Then you connect the two boards in parallel. That means you split your secondary AC wiring so
both boards get the same power. I use some kind of screw terminals to do this in the back of the case.

Don't forget to trim down your voltage to +/- 15V DC before you insert any IC's.

Link button: if you search this thread you will know where to connect the cables to the PCB.
Connect the two cables to the link button, one in the middle and one to the "engaged" (closest to PCB).
"Not engaged" (closest to front panel) left alone.
You have to press both link button and one of the other buttons (IN/GR/OUT) on that channel
to get a reading from the VU.
Set controls on both channels to the same.


Good luck!
//Magnus
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 26, 2014, 08:19:03 AM
I decided to cross my fingers and jump CTR to C2-.  Surprisingly, it worked great on start-up.  I was very concerned about this build because I used a DBX black can VCA and I haven't seen much success among those who tried it.  The black can gives that classic smack or "knock" to the attack, which is exactly what I was after.  The only obvious problem I've encountered so far is that the "above" light is constantly lit.  When I started up w/o the VCA installed, the "below" light was on.  So, I know the below light can work, I just need to figure out why the above is constantly lit.  Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!  Until then, I'm too to start populating the 2nd board.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sage on July 26, 2014, 11:11:46 AM
THANK YOU Dr GRIS - MAGNUM

that is very detailed and I will follow this am.... gonna try to post a clear picture for future users of the same trafo - this is a step that is essential NOT to make mistakes and even if we have done a dozen projects when it gets to the POWER I am always nervous....

Sage
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 26, 2014, 05:20:51 PM
Hi,

Bowie I get the same thing going on with led light, if you find out what it is let me know!!!
And if I do I will let you know.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on July 26, 2014, 06:32:00 PM
Regarding the LEDs lit, did you try to calibrate the unit? Maybe the treshold is not calibrated yet?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 26, 2014, 07:47:02 PM
Regarding the LEDs lit, did you try to calibrate the unit? Maybe the treshold is not calibrated yet?
Thanks for the suggestion.  I haven't calibrated in the proper way yet but I have tinkered with the pots enough that it's functioning close to normal and full CW gives no compression.  The Above light is on even when no signal is present.  Looking through the thread, this has been a problem for several people but I can't find a resolution.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on July 26, 2014, 09:41:57 PM
Thanks for the suggestion.  I haven't calibrated in the proper way yet but I have tinkered with the pots enough that it's functioning close to normal and full CW gives no compression.  The Above light is on even when no signal is present.  Looking through the thread, this has been a problem for several people but I can't find a resolution.

My unit also behaves that way, but I don't see a problem with that. Above LED is lit identifying that the gain reduction is not happening. If it is not having any signal or the signal is not loud enough is the same - the treshold has not yet been crossed. When you have your LEDs both off that is when the compression starts kicking in. That's the treshold level.
As long as it switches to below LED correctly everything is ok!
I don't know if it is different from the original unit, but I believe this is how LEDs should perform.

When I re-read your post i noticed that you say that "full CW gives no compression".
If your talking about the treshold potentiometer than this behavior is WRONG! Both LEDs should be off then your at aprox. 2 o'clock when calibrating with specified sine tone. And every different signal that you put into your unit will have a different treshold pot position where LEDs go off since it depends on the input signal's level or density.

Go through the calibration procedure. It is tricky and maybe you won't be able to get it first time (I didn't!), but it is very important. And if you get stuck, don't forget to check the procedure written in the original manual, not only Abe's. It might give you some ideas.
My unit is still not calibrated completely (it's showing real output level lower than it is) but I don't care since I allways use only GR meter. And it took me few days to calibrate it!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 27, 2014, 02:08:52 AM
Hi,

Well I'm gonna try and go through the setup procedure again and try and sort this ratio pot problem.
The unit passes audio with the ratio pot full CcW but if turned CW about 9-10 o'clock it cuts all audio.
I think the rms unit is working corrects now without oscillation, but I couldn't get 0.011v on r79.
Not 100% sure what all the trims do so maybe a simple fix.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 27, 2014, 02:47:16 AM
Hi,

By looking at the schematic looks as though I should be tweaking r43 to adjust ratio, and also to adjust meter better r59 and r56. I have no idea how these are set so will spend some time tweaking these.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on July 27, 2014, 06:07:22 AM
I also had problems with R79. Couldn't get even close to -0.011V. I was due to the fact that the unit varied voltage on this spot dependant on the position of the pots (and it's not supposed to do that). My fix was to remove the lorlin switch and go with pushbutton array. Even though there's a diagram how to use lorlin rotary somewhere in this thread, that didn't perform well.
After I got the correct voltage on R79 it all started performing better.

When you say that it cuts your audio on the ratio pot, does it really cut it entirely off or it lowers the volume but still passes a small bit? If it passes small amount of audio that would indicate that the ratio amount is huge, bigger than it's supposed to be. Or that the treshold point is very low.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 27, 2014, 06:09:05 AM
Ok, a few things that is good to know:
The below led is supposed to be lit up constantly with no signal.
It means it is operating below threshold, no compression is taking place.
The flickering of both leds means means you hit the threshold, compression is kicking in.
Above led constantly lit means you are above threshold at any time.
The threshold pot works like this: CCW: low threshold = it compress earlier, CW: high threshold.

If I'm unclear, look up the original "instruction manual" on the net.

Good luck!!
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 27, 2014, 07:01:21 AM
I'm about to calibrate this thing, hopefully in the near future.
My only signalgenerator is the one in Pro Tools thru my soundcard.
To get a proper signal I had to measure the output with a DDM.
To get 0 dBu I put my signal generator in RMS mode, and when it showed -16.0 dB
I had 0.775V AC RMS.

Since the 160 is a "new" toy and connected in a bridging way I guess dBu is correct.

Can anybody tell me how much VAC/RMS -60dB is?
One calculation gave me 0.00077459 (0.00219089 V p-p)

Cheers
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on July 27, 2014, 08:04:40 AM
Can anybody tell me how much VAC/RMS -60dB is?
One calculation gave me 0.00077459 (0.00219089 V p-p)

I've never went to calculate the exact value for that!
You've measured your computer is outputting 0.775VRMS when you set your fader at -16dbFS. That is 0db.
Now drop your digital fader by -60dbFS from that point - that would be -76dbFS on the fader (or on the output of your signal generator plugin).
You'll notice that it's not that important to hit -60db. It can tolerate -65db or -55db. The important thing is to have a healthy waveform read from the offset pin. Once you see it, just trim R36 for a symmetrical wave shape and you're done. Set and forget!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Harpo on July 27, 2014, 08:23:41 AM
I'm about to calibrate this thing, hopefully in the near future.
My only signalgenerator is the one in Pro Tools thru my soundcard.
To get a proper signal I had to measure the output with a DDM.
To get 0 dBu I put my signal generator in RMS mode, and when it showed -16.0 dB
I had 0.775V AC RMS.

Since the 160 is a "new" toy and connected in a bridging way I guess dBu is correct.
So measure AC voltage with your unit under test connected and set the level of your signal generator for a 0dBu=0.775VAC multimeter readout.

Quote
Can anybody tell me how much VAC/RMS -60dB is?
-60dB is a relation of any input voltage * 0.001, same as any input voltage / 1000.
-60dBu (u=0.774597VAC reference) is an RMS voltage of 0.000774597.
-60dBV (V=1.000000VAC reference) is an RMS voltage of 0.001.
-60dBFS is 1/1000 of the max.representable digital full scale level and has no relation to the analogue world without an analogue reference voltage.
If your digital scale ProTools meter would show -16dBFS with the unit connected for a 0dBu input voltage, this digital scale meter would show -76dBFS with the level attenuated by 60dB.
Maybe have a look at http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-db-volt.htm (http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-db-volt.htm)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 27, 2014, 09:37:45 AM
I'm about to calibrate this thing, hopefully in the near future.
My only signalgenerator is the one in Pro Tools thru my soundcard.
To get a proper signal I had to measure the output with a DDM.
To get 0 dBu I put my signal generator in RMS mode, and when it showed -16.0 dB
I had 0.775V AC RMS.

Since the 160 is a "new" toy and connected in a bridging way I guess dBu is correct.
So measure AC voltage with your unit under test connected and set the level of your signal generator for a 0dBu=0.775VAC multimeter readout.

Quote
Can anybody tell me how much VAC/RMS -60dB is?
-60dB is a relation of any input voltage * 0.001, same as any input voltage / 1000.
-60dBu (u=0.774597VAC reference) is an RMS voltage of 0.000774597.
-60dBV (V=1.000000VAC reference) is an RMS voltage of 0.001.
-60dBFS is 1/1000 of the max.representable digital full scale level and has no relation to the analogue world without an analogue reference voltage.
If your digital scale ProTools meter would show -16dBFS with the unit connected for a 0dBu input voltage, this digital scale meter would show -76dBFS with the level attenuated by 60dB.
Maybe have a look at http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-db-volt.htm (http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-db-volt.htm)

Thanks Harpo,

That link is great, it was the one I used to get my calculation.
When I set the level in my Pro Tools plugin to -75.5 dB I get really close.

I think it's worth mentioning because a lots of people can't get the correct V reading at R79.
The first time I calibrated a device using software and soundcard I was off because
I thought 0dBu was -18dBFS on my system insted of -16dBFS.
It wasn't until I put my DDM measuring Vrms on pin 2 & 3 I knew I was off.
I'm not implying people are doing it wrong, just a thing to consider.

It's my feeling this forum has an increaslingly crowd of newbies like me building kits
and it can be easy to overlook things like this, well it was for me ;D

Regards
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 27, 2014, 05:34:12 PM
Ok, a few things that is good to know:
The below led is supposed to be lit up constantly with no signal.
It means it is operating below threshold, no compression is taking place.
The flickering of both leds means means you hit the threshold, compression is kicking in.
Above led constantly lit means you are above threshold at any time.
The threshold pot works like this: CCW: low threshold = it compress earlier, CW: high threshold.

If I'm unclear, look up the original "instruction manual" on the net.

Good luck!!
//M
Thanks, that confirms what I was thinking based on having used a vintage one a while back.  What puzzles me is what causes the Above led to be lit constantly.  Is the led behavior a direct byproduct of compression and is there a component that calibrates the activation of the leds?  I can hear when the compression kicks in, releases, etc and it's all functioning normally.  As is the meter, even though I haven't calibrated yet.  Right now I'm just trying to understand exactly what triggers the LEDs.  Looking at the original schemo, are they fed off R62 or is that something else?

For clarity, my Below light was lit before I installed the DBX black can, so they both physically function, but with the VCA installed my Above is lit regardless of threshold, input, etc.
Thanks.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 28, 2014, 10:47:48 AM
hi all,

patience is starting to wear thin with this project as have spent 3 days faulting finding this. The documentation is pretty confusing as it isn't exactly clear which components should and should not be involved. would be much better to have a definitive BOM and revise instructions.

Anyways my unit still wont setup correctly, R43, R56, R59, R34 and R63 don't seem to do anything.
The meter on the left channel seems to setup correctly but the other one doesn't?

I put a sine wave into the input and get my scope on pin 1 and offest pin (not offset as silk screen is wrong) i get a nice sine wave which i can see on the scope.
when i adjust R36 there is a very small point where the wave appears, the shape of the sine only seems to get wider than the actual shape change?

rms symmetry i have no idea how to do?

level calibration doesnt seem to work?

threshold knob adjustment doesnt seem to work as threshold knob does nothing?

1:4 ratio calibration doesnt seem to work either?

is the thing im missing here that R109 should be disconnected before trying any of these?

as this sees to be the next step.

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on July 28, 2014, 11:44:56 AM
I put a sine wave into the input and get my scope on pin 1 and offest pin (not offset as silk screen is wrong) i get a nice sine wave which i can see on the scope.

when i adjust R36 there is a very small point where the wave appears, the shape of the sine only seems to get wider than the actual shape change?

I don't get it! Do you have rev3 board or older?
I used custom made probe (made out of old sharp screwdriver with 470uf cap in series) and insert it into Offset pin (hole with ring around it in the detector section).
It should be very straightforward to see wave on the oscilloscope (I used cubase's built in plugin "multiscope"), and wave should look like the picture Abe put in his CLX Manual rev3.
If you don't get this waveform shown right, I'd guess that is where your problems are. As a first take in troubleshooting, I'd swap all the ICs in the detector section. As a matter of fact, when I did mine, I noticed that out of 10 LM301 ICs one was faulty! So try to swap those - maybe you have a faulty one.

rms symmetry i have no idea how to do?

I found that this is super-confusing.
What I did - I took a different software to do it!
I couldn't get anything ot of RMAA software. So I took Smaart 7 and set it into FFT mode. When I sent sine wave into the unit I monitored output in Smaart. Distortion is very visible. Now the most important step is to set compression to 20db. I send -10dbFS signal from my computer, set ratio to none (CCW) and treshold to CW, and just adjust output to have -10dbFS on the input of my computer. That is unity gain without compression. Than as a next step I set treshold and/or ratio pots just to get -30dbFS on my input into computer. As the compression kicks in, distortion is more noticable on the FFT analyzer. And than it's time to tweak R34 to get the second harmonic at the lowest point.
I had a lot of problems here since whenever I tweaked R34 the level of the sine would go up and down. So it was unclear if I was reducing the second harmonic or just going up/down with the output level. In the end, I found a compromise with lowest second harmonic compared to third harmonic, without going too much off with the output level.
At some point I was like "damn, I don't care!"! That's when I stopped and decided that RMS is calibrated!

level calibration doesnt seem to work?

As I've said in previous post, all of my problems with level calibration were directly due to the wrong meter switch. I had lorlin rotary and it was impossible to get a good reading on R79. But when I got pushbuttons to replace rotary it was all good.

threshold knob adjustment doesnt seem to work as threshold knob does nothing?

1:4 ratio calibration doesnt seem to work either?

You won't get this part of the calibration if previous steps are not done properly! When you get them right, this will be a breeze...

is the thing im missing here that R109 should be disconnected before trying any of these?
as this sees to be the next step.

Yes! Keep it disconnected!

:)

Luka
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 28, 2014, 12:11:34 PM
hi,

i have 4 gang switches btw so these should be fine right?, i have double checked and treble checked the wiring is good and they do seem to switch between it all ok.

it does seem now i have disconnected R109 thats the RMS unit wave form sets up better now on the first stage of the setup

RMS symmetry i will try your way.

once these are set hopefully i can then move on through the setup, now i know that R109 has t be disconnected through out this.

I have twiddled everything in every which way but still cant get over LED to change or goto Under LED?

ratio when turned CW cuts all audio out at about 11 o'clock starting from about 7 o'clock, it does reduce the audio level in this range.

hopefully something positive will happen soon!!!

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 28, 2014, 01:13:32 PM
hi,

when i get back in the workshop tonight i'll take a picture of the scope wave form to see what you think.

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 29, 2014, 03:50:45 AM
Hi,

Here my picture of my scope.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on July 29, 2014, 06:52:20 AM
I'd say your input level into the detector is too high so you get this kind of waveform.
Maybe go and check all solder points from input to detector for a cold joint. Also check ICs in detector. Are you using CA3083 or NTE929?

I'm on my holidays now, away from home and studio (finally!!) so I can't measure the voltages on IC legs on my unit. That would be helpful perhaps.
Can someone who has working unit help Spence and measure voltages on all IC legs with -60db signal on input? That would maybe narrow down the problem.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 29, 2014, 07:20:23 AM
I'm an IDIOT!!!!
Checked voltages without chips then with chips. Then when putting it all together I managed to put
the Molex connector for the pots in a mirrored way....NOT GOOD!!!
It was quite a show. I managed to pull the mains quick but one of the pots caught on fire for a short while  ;D
Changed the Molex back to the right position and turned it on again.
The Ratio pot on one channel is not working and the Threshold on the other channel is not working.
Both gain pots are working.

I still managed to do some calibration to it, like RMS trim, RMS symmetry and level calibration.

I guess it's time for pot shopping.... ;)

Just wanted you to know you're not the only one struggling with this one  8)

Keep it up!!
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 29, 2014, 08:30:21 AM
Regarding the scope pic, like I've said before, I don't know anything about anything...but what I did was:
Making sure I had -60dB at input using a DDM measuring Vrms at input pin 2 & 3.
( In my case that meant setting my Pro Tools signal generator plugin to -75.5 dB in RMS mode)
When probing ( I also have an old Tek scope) I simply went for symmetry.
Switching V/div and Time/div so I could see the wave two times in the screen.

When trimming for lowest distortion I didn't notice much difference.
I could clearly see the 2:nd and 3:d harmonic but no big changes, if any to be honest...
I used a software plugin recommended by Mike at Serpent called Blue Cat FreqAnalyst.

A wild guess about your Ratio problem: check R41,42,45,46,48,78 for correct values and no cold solderjoints. Don't know how to check myself but I would also look at IC: 4558
I'm just looking at the original schematic and at the components close to the Ratio pot.

I wish I could be of more help!

Best
//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on July 29, 2014, 05:33:40 PM
I'm an IDIOT!!!!
Checked voltages without chips then with chips. Then when putting it all together I managed to put
the Molex connector for the pots in a mirrored way....NOT GOOD!!!
It was quite a show. I managed to pull the mains quick but one of the pots caught on fire for a short while  ;D
Changed the Molex back to the right position and turned it on again.
The Ratio pot on one channel is not working and the Threshold on the other channel is not working.
Both gain pots are working.

I still managed to do some calibration to it, like RMS trim, RMS symmetry and level calibration.

I guess it's time for pot shopping.... ;)

Just wanted you to know you're not the only one struggling with this one  8)

Keep it up!!
//M

hi Dr Gris if you have burn your pots and after change,  your treshold  control not work (as a gain) and your Ratio control not work you can change the CA3083 !

A had the same problem !


For My CLX i have a Small problem about the LED : BELOW & ABOVE :

When i have no sound in input the BELOW is ON fully ! but when i have a 0db sound in input the BELOW shutdown (TH and ratio 0)

After when i use the thresold pot with a ration the Below Led Switch ON

it's normal ?

 




Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 29, 2014, 07:58:55 PM
Thanks for the tip.
It worked after I changed the pots and now it's calibrated!!!!!
Everything seems ok except the meter tracking isn't very accurate.
The trimmer R56 is for setting the meter to track more accurate over the whole scale,
but after some trimming back and forth I decided to not give a.....

Insted I opened a session and patched it in on a kick and snare track and BAM!!!!
I built this for two reasons mostly, kick and electric bass, and on kick it was exactly like the originals
are famous for. A fat SMACK!!!!
It was also very good on the snare, will be a tough fight between this and the 1176....

EMB1:
No sound, below led should be fully on= constant light
Don' t understand what you mean about Threshold and Ratio...
Where do you have 0dB? On the CLX meter scale feeding it with a 100Hz +4dB (1.228Vrms) sinus wave?
Have you calibrated it?

Start with a +4dB signal on input. Rotate Threshold all the way to the right(CW) where it says 3V.
Ratio pot set to 1.
Meter should read 0 in all meterswitch positions (IN/GR/OUT) and below LED should light constantly.
If you now rotate Threshold to the left (CCW) slowly below LED goes out, and above LED is also dark,
thats the spot where your indicator on the Threshold knob should point at " a little bit more" then 1.
When turning Threshold more to the left, the above LED lights up. The meter still shows 0 because
Ratio is still fully to the left (CCW) at 1.
If you now turn Ratio to the right(CW) the meter still shows 0 on input but when you switch to GR or OUT
the meter shows a lower value and the above LED is lit.
With a +4dB signal and Threshold fully CW the Ratio should not make the above LED light up at any position.

For anyone in doubt, I think it's easier to think of the Threshold pot as a Voltage trimmer to set where the compression kicks in.
With a +4dB signal and Threshold at 3V no compression should take place because +4dB is 1.228V, and that's less than 3V.
And the LEDs indicate where the signal is in relationship to the Threshold

Oh boy, my longest post ever on any forum, I'm tired but I hope I made some sence....

Best regards
//Magnus
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 30, 2014, 01:48:10 AM
Hi guys,

Have figured my problem, r35 and r72 were 900R rather than 900k!!
Unit calibrates now, headache over! Time for some kick drum and bass!

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on July 31, 2014, 07:18:26 AM
Since I think the case is just a little bit to narrow I tried a different approach.
Yes, there's more hum in left channel but I think it will work under the circumstances I will use this.
Gonna try it in "real world" scenario.

Here's a pic. Will try to tidy up the wiring a bit and secure the LED's.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on July 31, 2014, 01:50:03 PM
Since I think the case is just a little bit to narrow I tried a different approach.
Yes, there's more hum in left channel but I think it will work under the circumstances I will use this.
Gonna try it in "real world" scenario.

Here's a pic. Will try to tidy up the wiring a bit and secure the LED's.
Hell, if it works, go for it.  I tried numerous ways to position it with the 25-25 Antec but the only way to eliminate hum was vertical mounting in one particular spot.  Unfortunately, that's 1/8" taller than the case.  Certain horizontal positions were acceptable but I decided to be neurotic and go for zero hum.  Did a little grinding and bent a small arc in the lid directly above the torroid.  I wouldn't sell one like that but I'm keeping this particular piece so it's not an issue.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on August 07, 2014, 05:19:28 PM
Hi,

I would like to ask a question. I am testing at 100Hz as instructed. When I look at the O/P of the RMS unit I am getting a DC level dependent on the input signal level and on top of it is added an AC signal, at 100Hz which looks like full wave rectified signal input. Is this added AC supposed to be there or should I be expecting just a DC level?

This added AC is causing bad distortion on the final O/P of the unit.

Any ideas anyone?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on August 10, 2014, 10:30:40 AM
Hi,

Problem solved after much tinkering, another wrong value resister.
All setup fine and compresses well without distortion.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Matt D on August 14, 2014, 11:45:55 PM
I'm getting this build together.  Question number 1:

the build manual indicates that R1 (100R) is not needed if using LEDs in the meter.  Does that refer to an LED meter vs a galvanic one or to the LED lamps in the recommended Hairball meter?

Similarly R 125 appears to be the CLR for the LED lamps in the Hairball meter.  It seems like I should add R1 since I'm using the Hairball meter and use R 125 as the CLR.  Is that correct?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on August 15, 2014, 03:22:11 AM
Hi,

As per the 12v lamp meter and what resisters to use for R1 and R125, I've just put 220R in R125 giving me 11v for the lamps.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on August 15, 2014, 07:39:34 AM
hi All,

have finally powered up my unit after much trials and tribulations and put some drums through it and it sounds amazing!!!
clean as a whistle, just gotta set it all up correctly, thanks again for all your patience with me!!!

I have only one issue that could be solved, the left channel has a sticky VU meter, i did change the Vu meter as i thought my other one was faulty but it seems its not the VU meter as this new one does it as well. any ideas anyone?
regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Matt D on August 15, 2014, 06:37:52 PM
Thanks Spence! Glad you got your unit up and running.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on August 16, 2014, 05:33:16 AM
Hello guys !

My clx work fin but i have problem with the Meter, i want t use a LED meter for (only) the Gain Reduction, But the Voltage to 0dbVu is Positiv
When i wire the LED i have many led switch On ...

How i can wire the Meter LED ? Exist a point special for wire it ? I have try a OPA invert but i have a Negativ Voltage ...

can you help me ?
 
thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on August 21, 2014, 03:28:30 PM
Here's a pic of the completed unit.  This configuration results in zero hum.  Still hoping to get an answer as to why the "above" LED is continuously it, regardless of settings and calibration.  Everything else works and sounds wonderful.
(http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l241/slightlydazed7/IMAG1202_zpsfa3186a1.jpg)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ruairioflaherty on August 22, 2014, 04:45:28 AM
Nicely done Christian!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on August 31, 2014, 06:02:36 PM
Hello guys !

My clx work fin but i have problem with the Meter, i want t use a LED meter for (only) the Gain Reduction, But the Voltage to 0dbVu is Positiv
When i wire the LED i have many led switch On ...

How i can wire the Meter LED ? Exist a point special for wire it ? I have try a OPA invert but i have a Negativ Voltage ...

can you help me ?
 
thanks
I have find the solution for the GR meter !

you can use a TL081 at remplacement of the TL071 !!!!!!!! idon't know why but it's Okay !!!! Magic

work great now !

My channel strip is Finish !!!! Thanks for your help !

(http://img15.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_784882Capturede769cran20140831a768234706.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=784882Capturede769cran20140831a768234706.jpg)

VIDEO -----> http://youtu.be/x6WfdjwAQu8?list=UUj7ce-6OHzNftRH6PXljZIQ

The project --> http://groupdiy.com/index.php?topic=51894.0
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: fred on November 02, 2014, 05:21:46 PM
Hi guys and Abe,
Would it be a problem to use the BC550B instead of  the BC550C...?
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ilfungo on November 03, 2014, 06:29:29 PM
Hi EmptyMusicBox1
Great piece!!!
I've built this comp but mine is too much fast and i can't use the same amount of compression...
Which VCA have you used?
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on November 09, 2014, 01:32:32 PM
I use a 2180A THAT VCA
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: diylan on December 22, 2014, 11:28:09 AM
A little off topic here, but...

Does anyone know what's going on with Abe? I ordered a few discrete opamp PCBs from him back in October, but never received anything. He hasn't responded to emails and it looks like his website is down now too.

I'm only out $18, so I'm not furious, but I also figure I can't be the only one. More than anything I just want to know what the story is.

Anyone know what's up?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: StevesSon on January 25, 2015, 11:33:51 AM
Sorry for of topic

My name is Anton, I am from Germany and first I have to say sorry for my bad english

but does someone know what happened to Ape?
I searched for a DBX VU last year and found this forum and get the connection to AC Sound.
I ordered 2 PCBs and part kits in September and still waiting for them...
Ape dooes not anwere on any email since Dec...
He told me that if I really want them I can reserve them if I order and pay for them immediatly, so I did.

I can proove my payment via PayPal (was in September), but maybe there is another reason why he does not answere?
I am really start worrying about this situation...
All other Parts already shipped last year and waiting to be completed.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dacapitan on January 25, 2015, 11:46:41 AM
Sorry for of topic

My name is Anton, I am from Germany and first I have to say sorry for my bad english

but does someone know what happened to Ape?
I searched for a DBX VU last year and found this forum and get the connection to AC Sound.
I ordered 2 PCBs and part kits in September and still waiting for them...
Ape dooes not anwere on any email since Dec...
He told me that if I really want them I can reserve them if I order and pay for them immediatly, so I did.

I can proove my payment via PayPal (was in September), but maybe there is another reason why he does not answere?
I am really start worrying about this situation...
All other Parts already shipped last year and waiting to be completed.

Hi Anton,

I am in the same boat and it seems that a few others are too - I pre-ordered $120 worth of PCB's from him in August, he said that upfront payment would ensure that I get a set from the order. I followed up with him a few months later as I had not heard anything and I didn't get a reply after emailing him again. He replied on 6 November saying that the order was in transit (on the way to him) and he was sorry for the delay. I was about to contact him the other day and I read that other people could not get in touch with him - which raised alarm bells as the same happened to me with IJ Research/Igor, I have sent him about 5 emails to all the email addresses on the site with no response, I have tried calling him, no answer - but you say you spoke to him in December, which is a bit more recently than me - I would love to know what is going on. I'm disappointed   that the prospect of getting these boards has fallen through and at a loss on my part

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: StevesSon on January 25, 2015, 11:59:12 AM
Hi Anton,

I am in the same boat and it seems that a few others are too - I pre-ordered $120 worth of PCB's from him in August, he said that upfront payment would ensure that I get a set from the order. I followed up with him a few months later as I had not heard anything and I didn't get a reply after emailing him again. He replied on 6 November saying that the order was in transit (on the way to him) and he was sorry for the delay. I was about to contact him the other day and I read that other people could not get in touch with him - which raised alarm bells as the same happened to me with IJ Research/Igor, I have sent him about 5 emails to all the email addresses on the site with no response, I have tried calling him, no answer - but you say you spoke to him in December, which is a bit more recently than me - I would love to know what is going on. I'm disappointed   that the prospect of getting these boards has fallen through and at a loss on my part

Ok, so I am not the only one...  :( I am disapointed too. I spend so many in this project ... taxes in Germany are intense.
He seemed to be a reliable person to me. I still hope that there is a reason for his behavior and we all get what we ordered.

Is there a thread or something else where I can keep me up to date if there is any change forseeable?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dacapitan on January 25, 2015, 12:25:52 PM
Hi Anton,

I am in the same boat and it seems that a few others are too - I pre-ordered $120 worth of PCB's from him in August, he said that upfront payment would ensure that I get a set from the order. I followed up with him a few months later as I had not heard anything and I didn't get a reply after emailing him again. He replied on 6 November saying that the order was in transit (on the way to him) and he was sorry for the delay. I was about to contact him the other day and I read that other people could not get in touch with him - which raised alarm bells as the same happened to me with IJ Research/Igor, I have sent him about 5 emails to all the email addresses on the site with no response, I have tried calling him, no answer - but you say you spoke to him in December, which is a bit more recently than me - I would love to know what is going on. I'm disappointed   that the prospect of getting these boards has fallen through and at a loss on my part

Ok, so I am not the only one...  :( I am disapointed too. I spend so many in this project ... taxes in Germany are intense.
He seemed to be a reliable person to me. I still hope that there is a reason for his behavior and we all get what we ordered.

Is there a thread or something else where I can keep me up to date if there is any change forseeable?

Yeah he seemed like a nice chap -  Maybe he is on vacation or out of reach of email - we can only speculate. I guess all we can do now is keep mailing him/wait for him to reply.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: leitmo on January 25, 2015, 05:09:27 PM
Hope all you guys will finally get PCB's from Abe...

I waited almost 3 months to get my PRR176 rev boards but i finally got them
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on January 26, 2015, 08:49:59 AM
Hi all,

Asked this before, I have a sticky meter, have swapped the meter for another which works fine in other equipment and still sticks?
Is there something to look for if a meter does this?
Could it be the diodes?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dacapitan on February 02, 2015, 03:55:30 AM
Great news! It seems as though Abe is back online... These are the comments on the AC sound facebook

"Sorry Everyone. We are working through the delays and have been in the middle of solving some personal issues. We will make sure everyone gets taken care of. Again sorry for the lack of communication and non response to emails."
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: StevesSon on April 21, 2015, 08:50:00 PM
Still nothing has changed... People waiting for their orders or their money...

Abes last update from facebook from 04/06:

Quote
Sorry guys. There is absolutely no excuse for whats been going on. Some serious sh*t hit the fan on this end
I know there is NO goos excuse for the time its taken but i did not get into this buisness to rip people off. Please you will be taken care of.

I do not believe in that. Not after all.

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on July 26, 2015, 05:59:14 AM
Anyone got any idea when the AC sound site is going to be back up so I can order a couple more of these pcbs? Or has anyone else got a couple of pcbs for sale?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on August 25, 2015, 03:37:50 PM
Anyone got any idea when the AC sound site is going to be back up so I can order a couple more of these pcbs? Or has anyone else got a couple of pcbs for sale?

Regards

Spence.
I see the site is back up.  I already have a completed stereo pair that I'm happy so I'm not looking for anything with but was curious if the issues others had got resolved.  Abe was very helpful when I was in-touch with him a couple years ago, sad to see that the business fell apart at some point.  Hope he's got it together as this is a great project.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: StevesSon on August 25, 2015, 04:11:16 PM
For me he is a criminal. He took the money from so many people.
It is now almost two years ago scine I ordered the pcbs and the part kits.

I also bought the case and all the other stuff. It takes about 400€ for nothing.
I do not mind about if he is in hell or not. He deserves it.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on August 26, 2015, 08:04:20 AM
I didn't realise he had taken a lot of peoples money???
I bought 2 pcbs off him a while back and have made a superb stereo compressor which is really useful on everything but great on kick, snare and bass D.I. straight in works nice.
was thinking about ordering another 2 pcbs but it would be preferable if someone else could do these pcbs now if Abe has taken a lot of money of people and not sent anything. we all im sure have some incredible personal circumstances to deal with but business is business, customers come first and should get what they pay for.

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: ejod on September 22, 2015, 01:28:27 PM
I finished stuffing the board and wiring one board. the +-15v calibration went ok and stuffed the ics. so far so good.
the unit passes sound but the threshold and compression pots are not responding, only the gain seem to function (below led is permanently on). any idea where\how to start to fix it?

from reading here I understand that many of the problems are due to bad ics. I do suspect tl071 to be bad (it gets way hotter than the others). how can I check if an IC is bad? also, does the same schematics go for both rev. 2 and 3?

any help would be greatly appreciated,

Tom
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on September 23, 2015, 02:33:16 AM
I finished stuffing the board and wiring one board. the +-15v calibration went ok and stuffed the ics. so far so good.
the unit passes sound but the threshold and compression pots are not responding, only the gain seem to function (below led is permanently on). any idea where\how to start to fix it?

from reading here I understand that many of the problems are due to bad ics. I do suspect tl071 to be bad (it gets way hotter than the others). how can I check if an IC is bad? also, does the same schematics go for both rev. 2 and 3?

any help would be greatly appreciated,

Tom
If it were me, I'd stuff and wire the other board very carefully and see what happens.  If you have no issues then it should be easier to find the problem in the first board. 
Regarding the above/below, I never got that to behave correctly but my units sound great.


BTW, heads-up to those who missed out on this and still want boards.  I heard that there may be another 160vu project coming up soon from a different member. 
:)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dacapitan on September 23, 2015, 02:55:25 AM
That's great news! after paying for these boards and never receiving them - I was more disappointed about not being able to have this unit, rather than losing my money
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on September 23, 2015, 03:37:53 AM
I've certainly been waiting for some more pcbs of this, was even considering making my own pcbs.

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on September 23, 2015, 10:03:06 PM
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on September 24, 2015, 01:51:32 PM
Hi!

How do the 160vu compare to the gssl?
Is it for dual mono? Or is there a stereo-link?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on September 24, 2015, 02:04:38 PM
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb

You rock Dan! Not only have I been getting gray hairs trying to figure out where to get the CLX-VU pcbs, but I also need a couple more Access 312 pcbs. You're a life saver!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Dr Gris on September 24, 2015, 02:38:26 PM
160VU: fixed attack/release, dual mono, linkable GR for stereo.

//M
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dacapitan on September 24, 2015, 02:52:53 PM
Got my boards shipped from Dan today - very happy that this project is available again as I thought this one was gone for good! Dan's service is always top, you wont be disappointed!

Check it out!
http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb

Thanks Dan!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on September 24, 2015, 07:32:34 PM
Hi!

How do the 160vu compare to the gssl?
Is it for dual mono? Or is there a stereo-link?
The 160VU's claim to fame is the way it 'knocks' on kick and snare.  Really classic sound that makes them groove, in the pocket.  It can do a number of other things well too.  The nature of the attack/release is pretty special. 
The SSL4K is more of a bus/mix comp, which gives you more control and versatility. 
I have both and tend to go w/ the DBX for individual tracks, or things that need to marry a bit.  SSL for busses and mix.


Got my boards shipped from Dan today - very happy that this project is available again as I thought this one was gone for good! Dan's service is always top, you wont be disappointed!

Check it out!
http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb

Thanks Dan!
Yea, his case is great too.  Anyone interested can check a page or two back in this thread to see my build using black can VCAs in a Deurloo case.
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb

Good to hear!  BTW, let me know if you got my last couple emails.  I figured you either got busy or they went to the spam box.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on September 25, 2015, 05:49:26 AM
Thanks! If a kit was available for 500-series mono, I'd jump in right now.
But, got me interested :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: HarthaX on September 25, 2015, 01:22:25 PM
could the pcb  for the 160 be fitted to this http://www.audiomaintenance.com/acatalog/blank_pcbs.html to make it compatible with the 51x racks?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on September 25, 2015, 03:14:26 PM
No they are much to big to fit into a 500 series thing.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on September 25, 2015, 04:36:03 PM
just ordered me a couple!!! thank you!!!  ;D

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on September 26, 2015, 09:43:45 AM
No they are much to big to fit into a 500 series thing.
PCB with the easy parts smd prefabricated?
http://www.7pcbassembly.com/PCB-assembly-price.php?d3=1&d5=0&c6=10&c8=50&c11=0&c13=1&c18=100&c20=50&c23=10&c25=0&send=Calculate&x=62&y=16
? :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tonycamp on September 26, 2015, 01:27:22 PM
No they are much to big to fit into a 500 series thing.
PCB with the easy parts smd prefabricated?
http://www.7pcbassembly.com/PCB-assembly-price.php?d3=1&d5=0&c6=10&c8=50&c11=0&c13=1&c18=100&c20=50&c23=10&c25=0&send=Calculate&x=62&y=16
? :)

"SMD, ruining sound since 2010 ;D "
I kidd.... kinda, i haven't found too many smd components that match TH from a sonic perspective, of course YMMV
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tonycamp on September 26, 2015, 01:39:46 PM
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb

 :o !!!! This is AWESOME NEWS! Dan at Collective Cases is a rock solid dude!
How many people didn't get their boards from Abe? is there a list or? As a community we should try to keep track of stuff like this, and try to help guys who got the short straw straightened out, we all go through heavy sh*t in our lives, it's just a bummer that decent, smart guys like abe and igor could turn like that ?? you'd have never believed it if you didn't watch it happen with your own eyes, i hold out hope that they will return someday and set things right by the good fella's here at GDIY
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on September 26, 2015, 01:51:53 PM
"SMD, ruining sound since 2010 ;D "
I kidd.... kinda, i haven't found too many smd components that match TH from a sonic perspective, of course YMMV
I'm just a newbie here, not knowing much :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on September 26, 2015, 01:55:11 PM
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb
bummer that decent, smart guys like abe and igor could turn like that ?? you'd have never believed it if you didn't watch it happen with your own eyes, i hold out hope that they will return someday and set things right by the good fella's here at GDIY
Which Igor?  The Igor I know on this forum (dirty1_1garry) seems to be a really great guy and is very active/communicative.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: tonycamp on September 26, 2015, 02:02:53 PM
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb
bummer that decent, smart guys like abe and igor could turn like that ?? you'd have never believed it if you didn't watch it happen with your own eyes, i hold out hope that they will return someday and set things right by the good fella's here at GDIY
Which Igor?  The Igor I know on this forum (dirty1_1garry) seems to be a really great guy and is very active/communicative.

Hey Christian, its this Igor as far as i know... http://groupdiy.com/index.php?action=profile;u=3241
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on September 26, 2015, 02:11:03 PM
I am now stocking the rev 3 PCB's.

http://collectivecases.com/?product_cat=pcb
bummer that decent, smart guys like abe and igor could turn like that ?? you'd have never believed it if you didn't watch it happen with your own eyes, i hold out hope that they will return someday and set things right by the good fella's here at GDIY
Which Igor?  The Igor I know on this forum (dirty1_1garry) seems to be a really great guy and is very active/communicative.

Hey Christian, its this Igor as far as i know... http://groupdiy.com/index.php?action=profile;u=3241
OK, different guy.  Thanks for clarifying, Tony.  :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on October 10, 2015, 04:58:02 AM
Hi guys,

Is there a way to switch  the metering with dpdt switches or using something else other than the 4 push button switches? Or even a lorlin? I also have some 3 gang 11 position switches us it possible with them?
Have I done this right?

Regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on October 29, 2015, 12:41:39 PM
Interested in this build.
A few questions:

Meter: Any alternative to Hairball? They charge $50 for shipping 2pcs, and with VAT it just gets ridicules costly.
Cost/parts: I need to check sourcing/prices. Much difficult and costly parts?
Sidechain HPF: Anybody done this? Easy? Would like 1-3 setting.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on October 29, 2015, 12:45:27 PM
You could have hairball ship the meters to me and I can ship the PCB's and cases and meters all at once.  I have done that a number of times for guys.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on October 29, 2015, 04:18:19 PM
You could have hairball ship the meters to me and I can ship the PCB's and cases and meters all at once.  I have done that a number of times for guys.
That could be very handy :)
Do you sell just the frontpanel, or do you only sell full cases?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on October 29, 2015, 04:30:53 PM
To you who has finished a unit:

Can you describe the sound and usability?
Would you say it fits some music-genres better than other?
Some instruments better than others?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on October 29, 2015, 05:23:23 PM
To you who has finished a unit:

Can you describe the sound and usability?
Would you say it fits some music-genres better than other?
Some instruments better than others?
Dan has the full cases.  I have one, they're awesome and look similar to the originals, but nicer, IMO.

  The sound is not a certain instrument/certain genre thing (then again, that's how I feel about any gear).  The sound is pretty much the classic DBX/VCA sound and even though the VU has fewer controls, it has the most musical vibe.  The vibe isn't so much a tonal coloration as it is the compression characteristic.  The auto attack/release has a groove to it that some call "knock".  It's been loved for decades on kick and snare.  I've heard several say that when they have a vocal that doesn't sound good on any  other comp, the 160 usually works.  I've found that they can be great on some types of acoustic guitars.  It's got a lot of uses. 
Tone is pretty transparent, relatively speaking, and the compression character is probably best described "lively".  Not invisible, but it starts with that 'groove' I referred to and can get intense.  You will hear it pump and breathe if you slam it, but the VU has a way of making that sound usable, rather than just cheap.

  I used the vintage DBX black cans in mine, which are a little more "loose" and vibey.  Finding a properly matched pair may be hard (I got lucky).  I've heard the CLX w/ THAT vca compared to an original and the CLX w/ THAT chip is tighter.

It's a fairly inexpensive and easy build and highly recommended.  There is plenty of documentation and the build butler is super-handy.  Calibration is complex but I got mine workable before even calibrating.  Fun vca comp that works on a lot of things.
(http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l241/slightlydazed7/IMAG1202_zpsfa3186a1.jpg)


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on October 29, 2015, 06:09:59 PM
...Tone is pretty transparent...

Of all the compressors I have, this is the last one I would say it's transparent! This is the rock'n'roll beast!
As soon as you dive into the signal with enough treshold it starts to knock signal. Loads of character!
This compressor is instant rock kick and snare! Incredible punch!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on October 29, 2015, 06:21:32 PM
...Tone is pretty transparent...

Of all the compressors I have, this is the last one I would say it's transparent! This is the rock'n'roll beast!
As soon as you dive into the signal with enough treshold it starts to knock signal. Loads of character!
This compressor is instant rock kick and snare! Incredible punch!
Please don't take offense at this but you missed what I said.  I stated that the compression character has vibe but the tone of the unit (the coloration that happens when passing a dry signal through it) is relatively clean.  "Relatively" being in relation to vintage compressor circuits.  The coloration you get from passing through the circuit and what results from the actual compression action are often two separate things.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on October 30, 2015, 03:56:05 AM
Have put together a couple more of these units, have made external Psu which outputs 2 X 18v, 0v and Gnd. I tweaked the +\- 15v and 24v rails sit at 25v, then I have put in IC's.
I have adjusted R36 and looked at offset with scope and looks good waveform.
The RMS symmetry is a different story, I haven't done this yet or the level calibration.
Does this all need to be done with R109  disconnected? As this isn't clear at this stage.
The way I've read it, you disconnected R109 after you have done all this?

Regards

Spence,
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on October 30, 2015, 07:45:11 AM
Thanks Bowie, shot and dandeurloo!

I'll pass this time,
saving up for a elysia xpressor.

If I was running a studio, building a CLX-VU would be a no-brainer,
but, I'm not, and I need to focus a little different.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on October 30, 2015, 09:47:46 AM
i'm not getting any response from R36, wave form stays the same where ever i go with the pot?
also not getting out put, only getting sinewave up to 100k R26 but nothing it seems after?
i need to trace whats happening and i think my problem lies with the THAT2181 that im using?

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on October 30, 2015, 10:15:11 AM
would probably help if i put the THAT2181 the correct way round!!!
getting oscillation on the output, at least something is appearing there now!!! lol.
i seem to remember changing some of the caps on the RMS unit and this got rid of the oscillation, will check.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on October 31, 2015, 03:23:51 AM
Changing C80 from 5pf to 10pf stopped the oscillation before. I am using the CA3083 and the other changes I've done are the 2N4037 and 2N3053. So hopefully this will work again.
Also I need to make sure I have the 1000pf caps on the output and not make the same mistake of putting in 900R.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on October 31, 2015, 05:40:53 AM
Had a quick look and have changed 5pf to 10pf and am getting output and compression, just meter and setup to do.
when doing setup i don't get any response from meter at all? hope my 3 gang switch pot wiring is ok? i always doubt what i do.
on the other unit ive done im pretty sure i blew all the LM301, so ive changed them and now get some sort of output, doesnt look good on either unit but signal is getting to the output.
The under LED seem to always be on? this is the case with my other working unit but is this correct? im questioning everything now!!!
when adjusting the threshold the over light does come on and on one unit i can clearly see on the scope that its compressing.
the other unit is a bit weirder and when i turn up the output the signal goes down? but it does compress as well.
ratio control seem to work as well.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 02, 2015, 02:11:07 AM
Vu meters seem to be responding now, and  I have the distortion software so I can test and setup.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 02, 2015, 03:32:53 PM
Getting hum on one unit no output apart from hum sound, going to replace TL082 IC's for TL072 or OPA2604.
Other unit passes audio to output, unit compresses but output gain when turned CW cuts out signal.
So need to get to the bottom of that?

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on November 02, 2015, 04:04:28 PM
 
Getting hum on one unit no output apart from hum sound, going to replace TL082 IC's for TL072 or OPA2604.
Other unit passes audio to output, unit compresses but output gain when turned CW cuts out signal.
So need to get to the bottom of that?

Spence.
I'd check my wiring on the pots.  Also, move the PT around to see if that affects the hum.  I was able to get pretty much zero hum by situating the torroid just right, though that may or may not help your specific problem.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 02, 2015, 05:05:15 PM
I'm pretty sure the hum is the fact that I have blown the TL082 IC's, once I change them I will hopefully get output rather than hum.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 03, 2015, 07:35:02 AM
The power txf is in a separate box so it won't interfere.
Changing the TL082 for the OPA2604 hasn't improved the problem, need to put a signal in and start tracing the signal to find out why it's making this hum.
On the other unit I had the output pot wired wrong, but now wired Correctly it works but I only get a beep out of it at about 3/4 CW, so also need to trace signal and see what it doing.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Deepdark on November 03, 2015, 08:42:25 AM
Hi guys

Is anybody know what happened to AC sounds? I just came through their Facebook and things don't quiet looks god :(
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 03, 2015, 09:45:58 AM
I think he has been having some quite serious personal issues.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on November 03, 2015, 03:07:56 PM
Hi guys

Is anybody know what happened to AC sounds? I just came through their Facebook and things don't quiet looks god :(
You can get the boards and cases through Dan Deurloo @ CollectiveCases.com.  He's 100% reliable in my experience so you don't have to worry about the issues AC sound had.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 16, 2015, 07:59:24 AM
Why did no one tell me I wired the switch wrong!,
Hopefully this is right now.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 17, 2015, 02:09:40 PM
i'm totally foxed by this switch now!!! can anyone suggest a way to wire it using a 3 gang 3 position switch please?

regards

spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 17, 2015, 03:03:21 PM
the only thing i can think of to come up with is this:

IN position seems to feed pins 1,2,3,5,6
GR positions seems to feed pins 1,2,5,6,7
OUT position seems to feed pins 2,3,4,5,6,7

so i'm trying to figure out how i can do this with only 3 gangs?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 17, 2015, 05:38:50 PM
using the 3 gang i've opted just to use IN and GR as i can accommodate this on there.
need to run through the setup procedure again.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 19, 2015, 02:06:11 AM
Matt Nolan very kindly drew this out, thanks Matt.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 19, 2015, 06:43:33 AM
switches wired correctly now, have found the problem with one of the units.
TL071 pin 2 is 5.52v and needs to be around 0.552v also pin 1 of 4558 is 0.817v and should be around - 0.177v
both led light are on with all IC taken out.
any ideas anyone?

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 19, 2015, 08:31:21 AM
missing diode fixed the 4558, still looking for why pin 2 of Tl071 is 5.51v?

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Deepdark on November 19, 2015, 08:55:28 AM
wrong resistor value? A short/bridge around?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 19, 2015, 09:21:57 AM
Swapped the TL071 and the unit works perfectly!!
Now to set them both up!!!

Regards

spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 19, 2015, 09:23:27 AM
Also a little note to everyone, the 3 gang switch arrangement works perfectly!!! Thanks again Matt Nolan, another great idea of his!!!

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 19, 2015, 12:25:23 PM
Has anybody compared this with an original DBX 160? One thing that caught my attention was that the power supply circuit has been updated and improved. I'm wondering how much this affects the sound.

Who knows if this has any merit, but I did find this quote on gearslutz:
Quote
"The 160VU enhances the attack of snare and kick by expanding 15 to 20 milliseconds before the onset of compression..(as revealed to me by LesTyler its' designer)...as a product of its poor powersupply..which also can be seen in the slight dimming of the lamps on every beat "

https://www.gearslutz.com/board/high-end/17460-dbx-160-vu-compressor-best.html (https://www.gearslutz.com/board/high-end/17460-dbx-160-vu-compressor-best.html) - post 15
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 19, 2015, 05:44:00 PM
I could use some help calibrating this. This is the most confusing calibration I've gone through on any of my compressors.  I've searched, but everything is hidden in stacks of math and I have no clue what applies to me. I have a signal generator, an oscilloscope and a DMM. There is no RMS setting on my DMM.

1) How do I measure to know the signal is -60dB? My signal generator has an attenuators that goes to -50dB along with an amplitude pot. There is probably some AC voltage I could read on my DMM right?

2) How do I set my oscillator to 100 Hz 1.228 VRMS? My oscope has an Cyc RMS measurement, but it just jumps from 1.1V to 1.4V constantly.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 19, 2015, 06:13:48 PM
I agree with you, the set instructions in the pdf are confusing, there are some points i dont have a clue about what they are talking about?
would be great to have a clear and up to date guide on setup.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 21, 2015, 05:37:15 PM
Well, even though I can't get through all of the calibration, I did try it. Seems like calibration is more for the meters? If so, I don't really care that much. I might be more happy with this compressor build than any of the other so far. It's exactly what I was looking for on kick and snare. I'm very glad I built this.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on November 21, 2015, 07:46:58 PM
Well, even though I can't get through all of the calibration, I did try it. Seems like calibration is more for the meters? If so, I don't really care that much. I might be more happy with this compressor build than any of the other so far. It's exactly what I was looking for on kick and snare. I'm very glad I built this.
I still haven't done proper calibration on mine.  Just got it "close enough for rock n roll" and it's fantastic.  Really knocks on kick and snare as well as other things.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 21, 2015, 08:23:56 PM
1. Calibrate RMS - insert -60db (whats -60db when measuring output with MM) 100hz sine wave on input, probe offset pin, adjust R36 until waveform is symmetrical.
2. RMS Symmetry - get right mark audioanalyzer software or distortion meter, set test tone to 100hz, start playback, adjust unit so its compressing 20db
adjust r34 until lowest distortion achieved.
3. Level Calibration - set tone to 100hz @ 1.228RMS (i set my MM to AC and adjust sine wave output to 1.228) set meter to input & turn R63 until voltage on end of R79 is -0.011 VDC.
4. Threshold Knob Adjustment - with 1.228VRMS on input turn threshold knob so both lights off, put knob on so it reads 1.2V
5. 1:4 Ratio Calibration - Adjust ratio to 4 and threshold CCW, input with -30db 100hz with no compression, adjust output for convenient reading on external VU meter (-30db) step up output of oscillator to +10db, output of clx-vu should be only 10db louder, adjust R43 until this is true.
6. Meter Calibration - confirm R109 disconnected, adjust R124 until meter reads 0, once done connect R109.
7. GR & Input Calibration - oscillator to 100hz @ 1.228VRMS, set threshold CW, Ratio CCW set meter to GR, adjust R51 until 0 on meter, Set meter to IN adjust R62 until 0 on meter, repeats until both set to 0.
8. Output Knob Adjustment - with 1.228VRMS on input set to output, adjust gain control so meter reads 0, attach output knob so it points to zero.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 22, 2015, 02:22:04 AM
The threshold and output knob adjustments are to adjust the actual knob (that you use), to set to the number out on the faceplate. You just loosen it and make sure it's exactly at the right marker. Seems kinda silly to include in a DIY version, but makes sense they would want to have them pointing correctly at the factory.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 22, 2015, 12:39:11 PM
getting weird oscillation from one of my units, think the 2181C is shot, there doesnt seem to much info on how to trim this 2181VCA, also im a little confused on the options of what resistors to use omit in both types.
On the resistor choice is it the ones on the left that you use if your using the 2181 or do you use the ones on the right?

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 22, 2015, 04:38:15 PM
Use the ones on the right. The (T) is for THAT.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 22, 2015, 05:05:57 PM
Thanks, I need to change a few resistors then!

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 23, 2015, 02:17:16 AM
I get it now with knob adjustment, the output knob is set in the middle so it's -/+ 20, i thought it started from 0.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 24, 2015, 05:16:18 AM
Now have correct resistors in units working much better, I still think that something is wrong with one 2181 as I'm not getting output but may be lm301 or tl081, will swap the IC about to find problem.
Hopefully they will both setup ok now.

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 24, 2015, 08:31:14 AM
If you check the schematic on page 1 (original is easier to read), the signal path is pretty short. You could send a sine wave through it with your oscillator and measure AC voltages at different points. The input on the 2181 is pin 1 and the output is pin 8. That will help you pinpoint where it's stopping so you're not going at it blind.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 25, 2015, 08:21:56 AM
after blowing a couple of 1n4007 diodes on the AC i've got the troubled unit back working again, it totally fried a TL071, loads of secret smoke coming out!! it blew some of the track at this point and ive had to rebuild it?
i have no idea why this happened as the voltages now to the IC socket check out fine?
when i put a new TL071 in it has dodgy voltages on pins 7 and 8?
i'm not getting any audio on the output?
the now strange thing on the working unit is that the Meter now seems to work backwards? the unit seems to setup fine but i cant quite work out why it works backwards, as reversing the leads to it results in no change, i suppose reversing the +/- of the diodes would. but the strange thing is it worked fine?
would anyone be able to help please?

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on November 25, 2015, 10:07:11 AM
I would take all of the ICs out and remeasure voltages. The voltages in the PSU are high enough to fry any of the ICs if it was powered up before calibrating to +/-15V. TL071 supply pins are 4 and 7 and has a max voltage of +/-18V. When in doubt, Google the IC number along with "pinout" or "datasheet". The supply pins will be labeled as -Vcc and +Vcc.

Quadruple check your wiring, solder joints and orientations (diodes, electrolytics). If you haven't cleaned your board with some rubbing alcohol, do it before moving on. Make sure there is at lease 1K ohms resistance between your power rails. Some clear pictures of both sides of the pcb along with the wiring would help.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 25, 2015, 10:09:49 AM
yes voltages are +/- 15v, i will give it a nice clean and look for any bad solder joints then post some pictures.
when i last built my other stereo unit i had some trouble but not like this!!!

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Patrick from Davis on November 25, 2015, 03:34:28 PM
Ilfuengo also had a CA 3083 IC go bad in his build, caused trouble with the calibration. Never read why it went bad, but something to think about.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on November 26, 2015, 08:30:31 AM
I'd just like to understand how the meter is working backwards but the unit is functioning fine.
In GR rather than the meter swing to left it swings to right, when switching to input the needle goes to the right and when I give it input the needle moves to the left?

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on December 01, 2015, 11:35:27 AM
well in changing over a few of the input and output IC's along with the NE5534 i have sorted both units now and they setup fine.
phew!!!

regards

Spence.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: critterkllr on December 01, 2015, 12:35:59 PM
Just in case anybody is looking for knobs for the CLX-VU. I used EH71-1C2S for the Threshold and Gain. EH71-2C2S for the Ratio. They are very high quality and look a lot like the originals.

http://www.newark.com/ehc-electronic-hardware/eh71-1c2s/round-knob-with-line-indicator/dp/95F6988

http://www.newark.com/ehc-electronic-hardware/eh71-2c2s/round-knob-with-line-indicator/dp/95F7000
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: EmptyMusicBox1 on January 04, 2016, 12:33:14 PM
hello everyone !!!

i'm now determinate to fix my problem on my CLx comp but i need you please
The problem is :
I don't have sound on the Pin 3 of the PCB

i use a transfer function with smaart to follow the audio on the board point after point... and i have check that :

After the LM301output i have 0db and positive phase ok for the pin2 correct ?

after C21 i have -6db and a positive phase

Before R83(10k) i have the -6db but after i have -15db and after R92(22.1K) i lost the signal for finish to my pin3 output....

i don't uderstand the process of the balanced signal and where is the problem ...

can you help me please
hello

i don't find the solution for my Unbalanced Output problem ...

i have 0,35v on R83 when i use 0,75v on input and after R92 to the output i have 0v ... no sound on pin3

but on R89 i have 0,75v !!!!!!! pin2

it's normal ?

i can split the audio signal at C25 more a resitance R22 for my pin 3

thanks for your help !

i add a schamtic with voltage test point :
(http://img4.hostingpics.net/thumbs/mini_633251voltage.jpg) (http://www.hostingpics.net/viewer.php?id=633251voltage.jpg)

about C32 why it's not wire on the Schema ? it's neccesary ?

thanks for your help

Hi,
The way the circuit works is my understanding you don't see signal on pin 3 but it is still fully balanced....I think I read somewhere even better then fully balanced as it has some sort of "compensation" circuity in the output stage.

C32 should be connected to that line its close to, also cr14 isn't connected. weird. But its right on the pcb.

thanks abechap024 for your help, i try to find my problem....

 if somene have a solution to testing i'm ready !!!!! :))))

thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: G-Sun on July 04, 2016, 01:49:01 PM
The FMR RNLA didn't work out so well for me,
so I maybe return to this project.

Checking out some the Stillwell Major Tom. RMS and Feedforward? Or Feedback?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: erquere on August 12, 2016, 05:00:39 AM
Hi everybody

I'm going to build a pair of CLX-VU Rev 3, is there an updated mouser for those little beasts ? I've found some but many parts are obsolete...

Best regards !
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: erquere on October 24, 2016, 01:58:19 PM
Another question : would Mullard C280, Philips C368 (both Polyester Film Capacitors) and Philips MKT368 (Metallized Polyester Film Capacitor) vintage capacitors fit for the build of the CLX-VU, instead of the big red capacitors that were in the CLX kit ?

Thanks for your answers !
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Hawkmoon on December 03, 2016, 01:38:16 PM
Hi! i see it today that Clx-Vu pcbs are in pre-order!

http://store.acsoundstudio.com/pcb/ac-sound-clxvu-compressor-pcb.html

i'm going to buy a pair :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on December 03, 2016, 02:42:34 PM
Yeah! Seems Abe may be coming back. But let's see...

I got an email from acsoundstudio few days ago. They are selling CLX in promo price.
I replied saying something like "how can we be sure you're going to ship it if you're off the radar for so long".
And surprisingly I got reply few minutes after. He said he had some real-life issues and that he's slowly getting back into his diy business with the help of his brother and that everything is going to be all right.
My reply was "good luck and please stop by on groupdiy to help with some projects, especially Pye compressor"
I gambled - maybe I'm stupid - but I ordered one CLX board.
We shall see...
It still concerns me that I went to check if abechap user recently logged in on this forum and he didn't. Last active was in 2014.
Maybe I've lost my 25 bucks...
I'll keep you posted!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: bungle on December 06, 2016, 10:33:10 PM
Hello folks!! :)

I ordered 2 boards from Abe before learning of the trouble.   Today I received an email from Jacob saying they'd been ordered from the fab so hoping they turn up!  I also got a set from Collective Cases on the way, so I'll probably end up building one with THAT VCA's and one with the DBX cans, looking around for a unit to source the DBX cans from now.

This is actually my first build, a little confused by the BOM about which resistors to order.  Any pointers would be greatly appreciated :)

thank you,
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on December 07, 2016, 08:15:30 AM
This is actually my first build, a little confused by the BOM about which resistors to order.  Any pointers would be greatly appreciated :)

thank you,

Most builds use metal film 0.25W resistors as default. When needed, BOM will note that certain resistors should be higher wattage. But considering today prices, you can easily buy all resistors in 0.6w metal film, since they are almost same price as 0.25w ones.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: StevesSon on December 19, 2016, 10:59:51 AM
WTF?!?!

I also received the mail from Abe some days ago...

I am still waiting for my PCBs and parts. Now for almost for two years now!
He has taken all my money and till now I got nothing from him!

Please beware of this criminal guy! Do not order from his store!
There is no excuse for what he did to a lot of customers in 2014!

edit: It was about 200$ he has stolen from me. And the other parts I can't use that I ordered two are not included!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Jeremy.Starseed on January 06, 2017, 07:33:04 AM
Well, things are stirring...I have been contacted several times and everything seems to be moving forward...he has received boards from the manufacturer and is ready to ship.

I look forward to digging in, once things begin coming together.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on January 28, 2017, 05:34:00 AM
I built one of these a couple of years back and it's been great for guitars.  I've ordered some more boards and it's great to see that they are on their way to a rather wet and cold UK. Another project to get started then, after I have ironed out the glitches on my EQ.

Cheers

Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: redmojosteve on February 04, 2017, 05:45:28 AM
Boards arrived yesterday and the sun is shining! Time to start getting the components together
Thank you
Cheers
Steve
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: peskado on March 04, 2017, 12:04:47 PM
Hello
I finished my stereo unit and have questions

1
My meters in Input mode  going below 20db(look like a lot negative voltage coming)
I  adjusted it to 20db with r124 and after this i can't adjust 0db in GR mode.
How is yours units work in Input and GR mode?

2
Can i calibrate Meter for 20db Gain Reduction scale? 40db to much

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Zaibach on March 23, 2017, 04:51:53 PM
Hello,

I am in the process of building two and I am almost finished. I am waiting for some ICs, but I could fire up one board already to check if everything is ok. But I have a question:

Now, my 24V rail is about 29V, which is acceptable as I read somewhere in this thread (and cannot be trimmed down like the +/-15V rails?). But then while checking the power pins of the IC sockets I found that the LM301 in the output section receives about +23V/-23V. I haven't inserted this IC yet, because the datasheets of those LM301 variants I could find state that the maximum input voltage was +/- 22V. Schematics show that this IC is powered by the +/-24V rails (which is higher my case). Should I increase R85 and R95 (both 2.2k, they are the resistors between the power rails and the IC) a bit to make sure the LM301 doesn't get more voltage than it can handle? Or is there a variant of LM301 which can deal with higher supply voltage?

I hope someone could shed a light. Also, my first post on this forum  8)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: aladan on March 29, 2017, 06:34:23 PM
I pre-ordered two CLX-vu PCBs from AC Sound a few months ago, and they turned up safe and sound in the post last week.  I have a couple of the PI boards on pre-order too, so I'll report what happens there.  I've also had a few helpful email responses from Abe.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: patroche on May 04, 2017, 01:05:48 PM
I have a problem with switchs . When you pull the power switch or stéréo link ,  the 3 osers cut
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: synthlink on May 09, 2017, 06:00:47 AM
Hi everybody !

I've ordered the CLX PCBs, I'v received them very fast.
Then I order the CLX parts kit, a pair of PIE PCBs and kits, and a few stuff.
I've still received nothing !
Now there's no answer to my mails or Facebook coments and nobody answer on phone.

Hopefully I've paid thru Paypal, so I'll ask for refund a few days before limit, but it's sad...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: aladan on May 09, 2017, 08:04:19 AM
I think the PIE PCBs are probably still being manufactured, since the pre-order only finished recently.   That's probably why you haven't received them yet.  You may have to wait a few weeks, or even months.  This is single-person operated amateur DIY, where things often take weeks or months, not a high volume commercial multinational company with dozens of employees where you might get overnight delivery and an instant response to your emails (I realise Abe's site might lead you to think otherwise, but unfortunately that's the way it is...)

If you do need a PIE compressor quickly then my best advice is to buy a pre-built commercial one (with a commercial price markup!)

I too am waiting for a set of PIE boards.  I'm sure they'll turn up eventually.  My CLX PCBs took a few months from pre-order to delivery and there was no problem there.  I guess they're in stock now, which is probably why yours arrived so fast.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Patrick from Davis on May 10, 2017, 06:03:52 PM
And if you are not in the US, then there is also the international mail thing which just adds time to everything.  It is not uncommon to wait 2-8 weeks depending on which sets of organizations you are dealing with.
Patrick

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Shteff on May 10, 2017, 09:12:04 PM
Hello to all supporting this builds, this is a fantastic unit
i recently managed to finish mine and it sounds pretty darn good, i managed to calibrate the RMS unit with no problems.
I have an issue with the CLX160 build and i was wondering is anyone here had the same problem as mine.

After trying to calibrate the VU meters for a stereo unit and by the test procedure this should be fine, but after i stopped the OSC input the above led lights up and the vu slams in to +20.  i found out that the output for the VUmeter are going negative as well and something weird is happening, it goes down to -40 at 0V then it should be half way. the R124 trimmer has two "0" points, one at +0,7V and one at -0.7V, this is with R109 lifted.
I used the CLX calibration notes and referred to the original, 160/161 manual for this issue,

the Above and Below leds dont behave as should, only the GR mode on the VUmeters seems to stay in margins
all wirings are good double checked those, all OPAMPS are good.
the thing is both units have the same problem
Meters are 1mA, i tested other VUmeters, same deal

i started retracing all components on one board and all values to match the (T) mark and values

i used CA3083 HARRIS and THAT2180 for VCA

thanks


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Shteff on May 10, 2017, 09:52:29 PM
and the other channel

Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: morbank on June 23, 2017, 01:46:35 PM
Hi All,

I was trying to stay positive while waiting for my V3 CLX-VU parts kit to arrive but with no replies from Abe and the AC Sound website now out of commission I am having to face the reality that my parts kit (which I already paid for) is not going to show up.  If anyone has any info suggesting otherwise please let me know.

In the meantime, I was hoping to start ordering parts myself but I can't seem to find any working links to the 'Rev 3 Manual' or any AC Sound documents online.  Does anyone happen to have a copy they could share with me?  Any help is greatly appreciated!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on June 23, 2017, 03:54:19 PM
As far as I know abe has gone to ground with a lot of people's money, he owed Dan at collective cases a lot of money and gave him the remaining pcbs to pay back some of the cash.
I'm looking into small claims court as should everyone else, he's obviously fell on dark days but with no info it doesn't leave us any other option.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: morbank on June 24, 2017, 02:15:57 AM
Thanks for the info Spencerleehorton.  Bummer. 

Any chance you have a copy of the V3 Manual or BOM?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: KrIVIUM2323 on June 24, 2017, 07:35:07 PM
Wayback machine (web.archive.org) is your friend! ;)

http://web.archive.org/web/20161207023603/http://store.acsoundstudio.com:80/pcb/ac-sound-clxvu-compressor-pcb.html

click on link "The AC Sound Complete CLX-VU Build Manual". Done.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: morbank on June 24, 2017, 09:03:44 PM
Hey look at that!

Thanks KrIVIUM2323


Can anyone here recommend a IEC connector for the Collective Cases stereo CLX-VU case? 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: mattmartin831 on August 11, 2017, 01:47:18 PM
Is it possible to fit a stereo DBX 160VU build in a 1U rack case?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: sr1200 on August 11, 2017, 04:19:01 PM
Yes, I had that for a while, but the PS was external.  Used a lorlin to switch meter modes. 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: dandeurloo on August 11, 2017, 09:15:14 PM
IEC – Schurter 6200.2100 (Mouser Part # 693-6200.2100)

Hey look at that!

Thanks KrIVIUM2323


Can anyone here recommend a IEC connector for the Collective Cases stereo CLX-VU case?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nebula on December 29, 2017, 12:21:33 AM
Does anybody have a copy of the rev. 2 build guide and BOM?  If you can send me a copy I'd be happy to mirror it.  I seem to recall it has some special grounding requirements.

No luck from Wayback machine!

Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on December 30, 2017, 08:48:32 AM
I've sent you PM with link to ver2 docs.
It was too large to attach it to a post here
:)

Luka
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Winetree on December 30, 2017, 04:28:08 PM
Could you P.M. me the REV 2 link also.
Thanks
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: nebula on April 04, 2018, 09:00:01 PM
Thanks to shot I have almost all the rev.2 files, except the rev.2 build guide.  I have mirrored the files here:

http://juggernautmusic.com/2018/04/clx-vu-build-documents/

... meanwhile if anybody has the original rev.2 build guide please let me know. I could really use it, and I'll happily mirror it here, on the same page.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: MountCyanide on May 22, 2018, 08:40:25 PM
I grabbed a DBX 122 on ebay a few years ago for under 20 bucks.
Makes a very fine enclosure for this project!
Almost done.  PSU is running nicely. Wiring up the switches and pots comes next.
I'm just waiting on some molex to get here because I've had it with screw terminals.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: emtee on July 05, 2018, 07:04:47 AM
Hi folks, after a looong absence, I'm digging out some old projects. Can anyone let me know where I can get hold of the build documents for the Rev3 CLX-VU project please?

Edit - tried the waybackmachine link above and no dice.

Thanks!

Edit again - After turning the house upside down, I've found a print out of the document.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: frederickalonso on September 30, 2018, 02:13:00 AM
I just ordered 2 PCB's from Collective cases.
In case other people want a few pcb's...

http://collectivecases.com/?product=clx-vu-pcbs (http://collectivecases.com/?product=clx-vu-pcbs)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 15, 2020, 06:53:25 AM
Does anyone have a diagram or can they draw an image of how to use a lorlin for the meter and is there a way to power it on and off with just one lorlin as well?
I did have my meters wired up to a 3 gang switched pot but stupidly didn’t look at how I had it wired!!
If it’s not possible to do the power from as well from one lorlin I can just wire up a dpdt. Switch.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Rob Flinn on February 15, 2020, 11:54:07 AM
Does anyone have a diagram or can they draw an image of how to use a lorlin for the meter and is there a way to power it on and off with just one lorlin as well?
I did have my meters wired up to a 3 gang switched pot but stupidly didn’t look at how I had it wired!!
If it’s not possible to do the power from as well from one lorlin I can just wire up a dpdt. Switch.

Is this info not in the build manual here http://collectivecases.com/?product=clx-vu-pcbs
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 16, 2020, 12:37:36 AM
Nothing about using a lorlin in the manual? It uses push  button switches same as 1176.
I will try and work it out again but I find it very confusing for some reason?
When these switches are not engaged is the switch from the middle pins to the pins nearest the button?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: shot on February 16, 2020, 09:04:45 PM
There was a drawing made by someone that I saved on my hard drive.
Seems to me that it's correct, though I used pushbuttons so I never tested it.
You should try it.

Credits to the author of this drawing (not me)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 16, 2020, 09:45:30 PM
Ah ok, I will try that, I wanted to try and work it out but my head goes fuzzy every time !!!

To me that doesn’t look right?

If the lower contacts on the switches are off then it would connect as follows:

IN = 6-1, 3-2, 1-5
GR = 7-6, 2-1, 5-1
OUT = 7-6, 2-3, 4-5

Just need to draw that out on a switch.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 17, 2020, 08:09:05 AM
If it’s the bottom contacts which are off on the switches the meter switch will be wired as per the picture I hope!!?

Could someone verify please?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 18, 2020, 11:07:30 AM
Ah ok, my version doesn’t work but it’s all round the wrong way as per the other pic. Will try reversing and hopefully will sort!!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 19, 2020, 01:28:04 AM
Is there a way of using a 0.5ma Vu meter for this?
What would the resistor config be?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 19, 2020, 01:35:47 AM
Looking at R107 it says 3.3k for 1ma meter and 10k for 0.1ma so if I replaced R107 for 10k trimmer I should be able to set about 5-6k and that should be 0.5ma?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Spencerleehorton on February 21, 2020, 11:18:17 AM
Well I’m not sure the other wiring image works or not!! As I didn’t have the plug in the correct way and then changed it!!
Getting compression but having difficulty setting up correctly.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 09, 2020, 12:46:52 PM
So, where can I find 'CA3083 or NTE929' ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 16, 2020, 04:27:03 AM
So, the IC I found now,

I see we need a 1.29M Ohm resistor, that doesn't exist off-coarse, so how did you guys fixed this ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on August 16, 2020, 01:20:53 PM
So, the IC I found now,

I see we need a 1.29M Ohm resistor, that doesn't exist off-coarse, so how did you guys fixed this ?

I would just use a 1.3 Meg instead (readily available).  That’s still within tolerance — heck, your 1.29 M might have shown up on your doorstep measuring 1.3 anyway.

If you’re truly set on getting 1.29 precisely, I guess you could connect two smaller value resistors in series to get it, but I don’t really think it’s worth the hassle here.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 17, 2020, 01:06:18 AM
Ok! Thanks for the tip!

For all other components.
Has are their some tips?
I see people using some Orange Drops in some builds.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on August 17, 2020, 01:45:37 AM
I guess you could use orange drops and see what they sound like, but I think what you’ve probably noticed are actually the big poly caps that sit in some of the larger footprints.  They are kind of reddish-brown in color and they are fat, and look a bit like orange drops.  The build guide recommends polypropylene caps in the audio path, I believe, so that’s the place to start, but there’s nothing wrong with trying out different flavors and seeing what you like.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 17, 2020, 09:55:34 AM
Ok, thanks for the info,
When I look at mouser, the brownish are Panasonic ones.
But what are the things I have to look at when selecting ones ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on August 17, 2020, 12:49:11 PM
I'd say don't overcomplicate it for yourself.  The only things you really need to pay attention to are the following:

-the type of capacitor (e.g. film, ceramic, electrolytic, tantalum) -- these are specified in the BOM
-the capacitance value -- in pF, nF, uF - use an online converter tool if you need it, as sometimes you will be looking, for example, for a 100nF cap and only finding 0.1uF, and you need to know that these are the same value
-the voltage rating -- this is pretty simple, whatever the DC voltage is at a given point in the circuit, you'll want the cap to have a voltage rating that is equal or higher than that.  It's likely that any cap you buy that will go into the audio path will have a sufficient rating (though it doesn't hurt to check), but make sure that you pay attention to the voltage ratings in the power supply section.

If you want to go a little deeper, you can look in to the ways that different dielectric materials impact the sound of the audio in the circuit (although this is always a bit subjective and can get a little tricky depending on the cap's role in the circuit).  Really, I don't think you're going to go wrong using the recommendations in the build guide.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on August 17, 2020, 11:20:43 PM
Ok! Thanks for the tip!

For all other components.
Has are their some tips?
I see people using some Orange Drops in some builds.
When it comes to component selection, you get familiar with the sound of certain components by doing comparisons. If you don't want to do that then I recommend going for parts with good specs (which tend to be more linear/transparent). I personally wouldn't see the point of going with orange drops here but maybe that sound works for you. Most of all, you're going to need to go with components that fit the PCB so the opportunity to experiment will be somewhat limited.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on August 18, 2020, 01:16:27 AM
When it comes to component selection, you get familiar with the sound of certain components by doing comparisons. If you don't want to do that then I recommend going for parts with good specs (which tend to be more linear/transparent). I personally wouldn't see the point of going with orange drops here but maybe that sound works for you. Most of all, you're going to need to go with components that fit the PCB so the opportunity to experiment will be somewhat limited.

I agree with Bowie. 

I will say that the PCB does offer quite a few footprint options on a number of key capacitors, so if one were so inclined, this might actually make experimentation easier than some other boards. 

I'm not sure I see the point of orange drops either, but who knows, maybe that's the secret sauce.  You could always try sticking some sockets in and swapping out different caps until you find what you like, but truly, if I'm reading your questions correctly -- and perhaps I'm not -- you might be trying to run before you can walk.  I'd say build it as it is intended first, and then if you feel like a new cap will really be the thing to take it over the top, go for it.  (I say that having a stereo unit sitting built-but-uncalibrated on my bench waiting for my attention for the last 6 months now, so take my advice with a grain of salt).
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 18, 2020, 11:52:40 AM
Hi,
thanks both for replying, it's not I want to go for Orange Drops, but on a not so sharp picture I thought it was them. :)

I ordered the PCBs first an then will source the components for it.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on August 18, 2020, 01:01:30 PM
Ah, understood.  Have fun with your build!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 18, 2020, 01:11:00 PM
@JMan, thanks!
@Bowie: are you willing to share you're components list so I can compare with mine ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on August 18, 2020, 10:04:35 PM
@JMan, thanks!
@Bowie: are you willing to share you're components list so I can compare with mine ?
I looked up my Mouser BOM from over 6 years ago and most of the caps are no longer made. I won't share the resistors because I recall a lot of the Vishays I got were over-sized and did not fit so I don't want to recommend parts that don't fit. Here are some of the series types of caps I used;
https://www.mouser.com/Panasonic/Film-Capacitors/ECQEB-Series/_/N-1yzvjj0Z9x371Z1yzn81f (https://www.mouser.com/Panasonic/Film-Capacitors/ECQEB-Series/_/N-1yzvjj0Z9x371Z1yzn81f)
https://www.mouser.com/Cornell-Dubilier/Film-Capacitors/160-Series/_/N-1z0zlgfZ9x371Z1z0seay (https://www.mouser.com/Cornell-Dubilier/Film-Capacitors/160-Series/_/N-1z0zlgfZ9x371Z1z0seay)
https://www.mouser.com/Murata/Multilayer-Ceramic-Capacitors-MLCC-Leaded/RPE-Series/_/N-1z0zlftZbkrdjZ1z0yn0i (https://www.mouser.com/Murata/Multilayer-Ceramic-Capacitors-MLCC-Leaded/RPE-Series/_/N-1z0zlftZbkrdjZ1z0yn0i)
https://www.mouser.com/Vishay/Film-Capacitors/MKP419-Series/_/N-1z0zls5Z9x371Z1yzumc1 (https://www.mouser.com/Vishay/Film-Capacitors/MKP419-Series/_/N-1z0zls5Z9x371Z1yzumc1)
https://www.mouser.com/Nichicon/Aluminum-Electrolytic-Capacitors-Radial-Leaded/UKL-Series/_/N-1z0zlbmZ75hqwZ1yi2vyo (https://www.mouser.com/Nichicon/Aluminum-Electrolytic-Capacitors-Radial-Leaded/UKL-Series/_/N-1z0zlbmZ75hqwZ1yi2vyo)


Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 30, 2020, 12:59:18 PM
So, another question, the NTE929 I can't find it here in Europe.
In the US, it's $45 shipping costs, and that for 2 chips.

Is there an alternative for this chip ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on August 30, 2020, 02:27:07 PM
The NTE929 is offered in the BOM as an alternative to the CA3083.  Look around the web for those — Mouser and the usual suspects won’t have it, but you’ll surely be able to find some.  Here’s one auction currently available on eBay (it’s a US seller, but you can look for sellers more local to you):

https://www.ebay.com/itm/4-PC-RCA-CA3083-GENERAL-PURPOSE-HIGH-CURRENT-NPN-US-SELLER-FREE-SHIPPING/254579703994?epid=1500558920&hash=item3b462200ba:g:DbEAAOSw3adepJP5
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on August 31, 2020, 12:58:44 PM
Thanks for the tip, I ordered them from you're link :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on September 02, 2020, 01:16:56 AM
There is a need of 3X LM301, labeled LM301A, LM301B, LM301H
I guess these are all just LM301?

The only one I found is the:
LM301AH-NOPB

https://www.mouser.be/ProductDetail/Texas-Instruments/LM301AH-NOPB?qs=X1J7HmVL2ZGmBxYIZrEViA==

Will this one just be fine?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: scott2000 on September 02, 2020, 07:59:28 AM
There is a need of 3X LM301, labeled LM301A, LM301B, LM301H
I guess these are all just LM301?

The only one I found is the:
LM301AH-NOPB

https://www.mouser.be/ProductDetail/Texas-Instruments/LM301AH-NOPB?qs=X1J7HmVL2ZGmBxYIZrEViA==

Will this one just be fine?

Ouch...spensive.... Should work nice but if the pcb is for PDIP, just be mindful of the orientation etc....

Maybe an online seller has good feedback and some pdip versions.... I'm still hesitant to buy from thee bay but have had good success more times than not if everything seems in line...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on September 02, 2020, 12:26:44 PM
yup, they are expensive... but it will do the trick I guess then :) going to use DIP sockets any way :)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on September 10, 2020, 04:11:55 PM
So,

There is no need for C1? Between the two big alu caps?

And for the power supply, I have one with two Secundairy 18V, how do I need to connect it ?
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on September 14, 2020, 12:46:28 PM
So,

There is no need for C1? Between the two big alu caps?

And for the power supply, I have one with two Secundairy 18V, how do I need to connect it ?

I think you do need C1, although maybe someone knows something I don't.  Did you see/read somewhere that it wasn't necessary?  That's in the power supply section, if I'm remembering correctly.  I have it installed -- it's a rather tight space, so just make sure you don't buy one of those fat Wimas or something, which may not fit.  (Also, as I mentioned before, my unit has been sitting on the sidelines for awhile and still needs the final steps completed, so there may still be some surprises in store for me.  I want to be helpful, but there's always the possibility that I am wrong).
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on September 14, 2020, 04:57:29 PM
So, I re-read the whole topic.
C1 needs to be installed.
Just on the photo’s in the manual it isn’t soldered.

I went for KEMET ones, those are small enough.

The transfo is ok now 😊
The PSU is now trimmed to +/- 15V so Ican start putting other components in it.

Just the 24V rail was giving me  around 55V.
But I guess it has something to do with no ‘grounding’ yet
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 12, 2020, 06:05:41 PM
Hi all

I just finished my built of the CLX (stereo) but it doesn't seem to work as it should. I get sound through but no compression. The meters are not responding either.
I get +15VDC on the rails and +54V on the second connection where it states +24V. Possibly this has got something to do with the PSU (toroidal 50VA 18-0-18). I tried grounding and ungrouding but this didn't make any difference (@BerndVP: I read your comments too... :) ).
When I want to set the RMS the trimmer seems not to be responding though when I measure it (power off mode) it seems fine (resistance wise). The response I get on the oscilloscope is a very symmetrical waveform though. Also when I take the output I can read the response from the sinewave (on SMAART). So sound is going trough.
My panpots are somewhat responding (gain and threshold is, ratio doesn't seem to be responding but I'm not sure of this). The LED's (above and below) is only responding on the above side. And as I said no meters whatsoever...
Both PCB's do the same thing and I measure on both the same values...

I built the VCA kind, not the discrete one...

There will be quite a few problems instead of just one and I am aware that this might be over my head. But I've built other beautifull compressors before without any issues like these (LA2A, 1176...). I also found a few errors in the 'manual' like most of you did I suppose but anyway I'll give them once again.
C1 is not mentioned though it should be in there (this forum says so). What about C13? I've put it in anyway (don't know if it does make a difference for now). I also suppose they just were forgotten in the BOM-list.
There is no mention of grounding except for the XLR and even that I find hard to grasp (because of the 'chassis' for me is the case and instead they speak of the XLR itself). I tried without grounding and with grounding everything that says 'G' or 'GND'. I hope I'm not making groundloops... But I tried them one by one and untill now it doesn't make any difference on my measurements which I can do.
A few of the trimmers are not mentioned anymore further on in the manual, if they need to be trimmed and how (or what value it should read)?
The LM317's get quite hot too...

I also found an addendum where it says that Q8 is misprinted on the board and that you have to change C14 (from 22 pF to 150 pF) if you use a THAT chip, but this is from REV2? So maybe in REV3 this is corrected? Does anyone know?

I also don't know where to start looking for the error(s)...
I tried the web but this is the most I found (like any of you I suppose).

I think I have all the info there is to find (manual rev3 and a picture from someone here years ago)
Is there anyone out there who got his working (with this kind of buildtype: stereo AC CLX-VU)?

 I'll post some pictures too and hope someone can help me here... I also post the addendum I found (I can't remember where so maybe it is from somewhere around here but hey there you have it...)

 
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 12, 2020, 06:06:29 PM
second pic
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 12, 2020, 06:06:59 PM
third pic
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 12, 2020, 06:14:57 PM
and the addendum I found
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on October 13, 2020, 06:59:35 AM
Hi Roel,

I haven't finished the project yet, I ordered too few of the 'POLYPROPYLENE FILM CAPACITOR' 1nF.
So 1 board isn't finished yet and I ordered a bi-polar for C21 but going to put an POLYPROPYLENE in it.

I see we used the same PP film caps I see on you're pictures.

I don't have the case, switches and VU yet for further finishing of the project.

I see you got some LM301 on DIP8, I had to go with an other type of LM301: 926-LM301AH/NOPB

An for C13, that's a good question, at this point, I haven't solder it, but the manual is not telling you need to, but that was the same for C1....
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 13, 2020, 07:37:45 AM
Hi Bernd

I got the rest from Collective cases, Hairball and Don audio...

Btw, I'm from Belgium too, Heusden-Zolder.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: BerndVP on October 13, 2020, 07:42:50 AM
Ow, nice to know, I sended you a private PM 😊
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on October 13, 2020, 10:55:33 AM
Hi all

I just finished my built of the CLX (stereo) but it doesn't seem to work as it should. I get sound through but no compression. The meters are not responding either.
I get +15VDC on the rails and +54V on the second connection where it states +24V. Possibly this has got something to do with the PSU (toroidal 50VA 18-0-18).
You should be hitting the brakes right there and resolving that basic issue before letting the unit run for any additional testing of the audio. You can fry components if your voltages aren't in the ballpark, then troubleshooting becomes a real nightmare.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 13, 2020, 11:54:41 AM
I know... That's something I had to be aware of...
But I stopped now  :-\

Problem is that the manual only speaks of the 15V rail and not of the 24V as if it isn't used. There are more things left unused and I assumed that the 24V was for that purpose (or not...).
But I think I didn't burn anything yet and hope to keep it that way. Now my next problem is what makes the 24V rail be so high?

I'm gonna find it and I hope someone here can help with the troubleshooting. I'm good with the solder and can read a good plan but I'm not an electronic engineer, just a thing I really love to do. But if the manual is poorly made...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 13, 2020, 12:56:58 PM
Hy Roel
You have pcb for rev 3.
Read manual for rev 3. In rev 3 is more explain.
Check the wiring for switch. Maybe you have switch gr and out switch.
Also first make sure without chips that your power rail is +15 and -15 v
Check your c11 c12 and c21 of je polarization good is
I have 2 ca chips and 3 lm301 burned for one board. Troubleshooting is nightmare
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 13, 2020, 01:13:30 PM
Hi

I do have the manual and by now I almost know it by heart... ;D

I did the wiring of the switches accordingly to the manual. Isn't this correct?
power rail is perfectly +15V. There is no -15V as far I can tell. Where should I measure -15V?
Only the +24V side of the power rail is about 54V...

C11, 12 and 21 are non polarized or bipolar, not?

I'm trying to check each IC individual now but I'm learning...

Thanks for the reply though
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 13, 2020, 01:21:01 PM
By the power rails you-have label 15v -G+ pin - and G must be -15 pin G and + must be +15v
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 13, 2020, 01:36:50 PM
Okay, thank you very much . Indeed I was measuring between + and - ...  Now it's fine. On the 24V rail I get 25V but that's ok I think (no IC's inserted and so).

I'll start again from here
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 13, 2020, 02:02:10 PM
Yes 25v is ok
You set black probe from mm to G and rode probe first to - you must see -15v at your mm
Then rode probe to + you must see +15v at your mm
This is very important

Rail for 24v is not so important
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 21, 2020, 04:50:19 AM
Oh yeah 8)

The beast is alive...
Found all the problems and even figured out the calibration (with a little help).

A few pics... :D
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Roel on October 21, 2020, 04:52:09 AM
Even did some A/B/C with Waves and Behringer Wing...
Awesome how the beast sounds
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 21, 2020, 11:12:09 AM
Hallo
Have anybody good dbx vu scale from -40 till +20db.
In wite background with blue letters and numbers?

Something as in this picture


Please upload if you have. Thanks in advance.
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: Bowie on October 21, 2020, 06:48:00 PM
Hallo
Have anybody good dbx vu scale from -40 till +20db.
In wite background with blue letters and numbers?

Something as in this picture


Please upload if you have. Thanks in advance.
No, not in white/blue. But, if you're willing to do the work you can just alter the colors on this one;
https://www.dropbox.com/s/4msld0s4yzl27sh/160VU%20Meter%20Scale.png?dl=0 (https://www.dropbox.com/s/4msld0s4yzl27sh/160VU%20Meter%20Scale.png?dl=0)
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 22, 2020, 04:08:38 AM
Thanks
This one I had.
He is to big and in black.

I will check of I something in photoshop can make...
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 22, 2020, 06:54:26 AM
I make this one. Same size for Hairball/Don Audio meter
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: JMan on October 22, 2020, 03:12:03 PM
I make this one. Same size for Hairball/Don Audio meter

Hey, awesome!  Thanks for sharing this with the group!
Title: Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
Post by: znjamznjam on October 22, 2020, 03:56:57 PM
You are welkom.
Here also pdf. This one you can print direct.