abechap024

CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) UPDATE: REV 3
« on: March 14, 2011, 03:11:31 PM »
Rev 3 Manual: is 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.



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)
Complete BOM for THAT chip build
Complete BOM for Just the Main Board
Complete BOM for RMS Unit
Circuit Board Layout
Discrete VCA BOM
Original Schematic (easier to read)
Original Calibration Procedure (Very Important)
Original Owners Manual
Unique Meter Scale
2RU Rackmount Case Cutouts for Hairball type Meter.



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
« Last Edit: April 29, 2013, 07:20:35 PM by abechap024 »
AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards


Songguy

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
« Reply #1 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
« Last Edit: March 15, 2011, 09:03:54 PM by Songguy »

kazper

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2011, 01:14:21 AM »
In the case cutouts are those sized for the stocked 1176 switch mechanism?
Intentionally left blank

abechap024

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
« Reply #3 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
« Last Edit: March 16, 2011, 01:56:15 AM by abechap024 »
AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
« Reply #4 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!

abechap024

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
« Reply #5 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
« Last Edit: March 28, 2011, 08:44:31 PM by abechap024 »
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abechap024

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread
« Reply #6 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

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

« Last Edit: April 12, 2011, 02:45:29 AM by abechap024 »
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abechap024

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #7 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



AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards

slowbass

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #8 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 !

abechap024

Re: DBX 160Vu Build Thread - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #9 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
AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards


nielsk

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #10 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
« Last Edit: April 16, 2011, 02:28:48 PM by nielsk »

Winetree

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #11 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.

abechap024

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #12 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

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



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abechap024

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #13 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
AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards

slowbass

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #14 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 !

abechap024

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #15 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.**
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abechap024

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES! PLZ READ
« Reply #16 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
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
AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards

Songguy

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
« Reply #17 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

abechap024

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
« Reply #18 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
AC Sound - some DIY circuitboards

nebula

Re: CLX-VU Build Thread (DBX 160VU ) - UPDATES
« Reply #19 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!