audio qualia 2


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big problems with this site.

Posted by cat's squirrel on September 17, 2012 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (0)

there are currently big problems with this web site provider, and Audio Qualia may go down at any time. I have saved all the scripts from this site, if not all the graphics, and I intend to open a new site as soon as I can find a stable platform for free.

See you there.

big problems with this site.

Posted by cat's squirrel on September 17, 2012 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (0)

there are currently big problems with this web site provider, and Audio Qualia may go down at any time. I have saved all the scripts from this site, if not all the graphics, and I intend to open a new site as soon as I can find a stable platform for free.

See you there.

rotary encoder

Posted by cat's squirrel on August 9, 2012 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (2)


I've just received my rotary encoder from Hong Kong, it will be used to measure the rotational speed of my Lenco turntables, by connecting to the spindle with a Michell clamp and CNC coupler.


Readout will be from a 5 digit rev counter. The problem is, all the necessary info is in Chinese, but I'm sure I can work it out.


Here's a pic:



Inside the encoder is a disc with 1000 slots in it. For each revolution of the turntable platter, it outputs 1000 pulses, which are counted with a rev counter, so 33.333 revolutions/minute should produce 33,333 pulses on the rev counter.

I have  received the tachometer, and hooked it up to the encoder. First look gave a result of 33457, not bad at all. I just need to fit a load resistor, and construct an arm to steady the encoder.

Had a problem with the setup, it would work for about 30 seconds, then the readout would blink. Eventually, I realised that the battery I was using as a power supply was dipping to too low a voltage. Replacing it with a wall transformer (12v 1.2A) kept everything working perfectly. Should be working by the end of the week.

much work ahead!

Posted by cat's squirrel on June 17, 2012 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (0)

a few things, this week.

First up, I've  decided not to connect my troughline tuner to the stereo decoder in the Hitachi FT5500 I have, but to built a separate decoder from scratch.  Sourcing some of the capacitors wasn't easy 'til I looked at Digikey, what a range! The decoder ic will come from Cricklewood Electronics, and all, including de-emphasis amplifiers, will be put in a nice octagonal die-cast box, from Rapid (online).

I want to connect up my receiver/dvd player, with 5.1 output, so I was looking at loudspeaker cable to do the couple of lengthy runs to the side 'speakers. Settled on two pairs (bass/mid and treble/super tweeeters) of Van Damme cables, one especially for L/S's, one a silver coated copper cable, for the tweeter and super-tweeter (ribbon). For my main 'speakers' tweeters I've ordered (some time ago) some ptfe covered silver plated copper wire, which had to be wound especially. Nobody buying this kind of wire?

Bought some (20!) loudspeaker 4mm banana plugs for the whole setup, and 10 pairs of Neutrik phono's for interconnects, together with Van Damme XKE instrument cable, which is supposed to be the bee's danglies.

With an eye to testing materials for support feet, I bought some 10mm thick rubber washers, and some 50mm s/s and zinc plated steel penny washers, together with other materials. Lots of work to get on with.

party on....

Posted by cat's squirrel on May 24, 2012 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)

been buying some more hifi this week. Instead of upgrading, I've gone sideways!!

I've bought another Denon DR-M30HX cassette deck, like the one I already have. It's so that I can transfer from deck to deck, some of the 300 or so tapes I made in the late 80's from Radio3, of unusual or rare symphonies.

I also bought a second Cambridge Audio 640Av2 amplifier, to drive my Usher 604 floor standers. The room layout has my main 'speakers each side of the central chimney breast, meaning long lengths of 'speaker cable to one of the speakers. The cost of new cable is nearly the same as the second amplifier, so a no brainer, really., and 200 watts per channel of biamping, with switchable ribbon supertweeters. Party on.8)8)8) [nephews 21st at the end of the month........]


Posted by cat's squirrel on April 3, 2012 at 6:10 PM Comments comments (0)

the last couple of days has seen my vinyl collection increase by another 40, well not strictly accurate, as seven of those are boxed sets. They came from the Oxfam shop and a outlet which is basically selling what people have thrown away, literally.


Some exceptional finds include a complete set of Beethoven symphonies, Karajan on DGG, for just £6! All six Bach Bradenburg Concerti on Decca, and his Christmas Oratorio on the Telefunken label, which not only has the words, but a second booklet with all the music. Fortunately, I can follow an orchestral score, so look forward to listening and reading this one! 8)


One real curiosity was a copy of Poulenc's 'Dialogues des Carmelites', kind of 'Sound of Music' for intellectuals. When I bought it, I thought it was on HMV, but when I got it home, I realised it was a French copy, on 'La voix de son maitre'. merde! :/


It has dawned on me that I am a label snob, most of my purchses are on DGG, Decca or EMI/HMV, but they do seem to have the best bands and conductors, although it does tend to suggest that I am a music lover, rather than an audiophile, as my record collection is worth a lot more than my hifi  :P


The only down side to shopping in a hurry in Oxfam was that I bought one LP twice, a copy of Falla pieces on HMV/EMI, still it will be good for A/Bing turntables. Must be the onset of 'oldtimers'! :roll:


Posted by cat's squirrel on March 14, 2012 at 7:30 PM Comments comments (0)

on a birthday break last week, in Cornwall, and ended Monday at a slate quarry in Delabole. What a quarry, the biggest hole in Britain!

Did I buy any slate? You bet I did.

Did I make a plinth with it? No!!

I put it in the front garden, where it belongs.......

the cold and damp

Posted by cat's squirrel on February 28, 2012 at 7:50 AM Comments comments (0)

as some of you will know, I've moved house again, and I am finally back home in Glorious Devon, UK

It means I have to set up my work shop (if I can find all my things, currently in the garages) before anything can be done, and  the weather gets a bit better.

Things to do include:

investigating more damping compound recipes, and use the most suitable to put into some panels I'm going to use to make a couple of  hifi racks. The plan is to cut out circular holes and fill with the damping compound, then face top and bottom with hardboard. The wood in the middle (with the damping compound filled holes) will probably be chipboard, but that needs looking into as well. I'm going to use 20mm studded steel rod (5) to support the shelves, the rods wil be spaced in a w-shaped configuration.

I'll need to break in a new 3 axis accelerometer I've just purchased, as I think I have worn the old one out (z-axis no longer functions).

I need to finish building an SME arm (3009) which is going on my partner's turntable (Michell Focus1).  It has a completely new straight wand I made from carbon fibre (non-weave), new counter weights, arm rest, bias wire and a detachable headshell made of an aluminium and polyalkene composite. It means I can try other headshell materials, like titanium, and a new material which is a sandwich of stainless steel plate with a steel wool core. As strong as steel, but the weight of aluminium.

all 4 now

tails from the wood

Posted by cat's squirrel on February 28, 2012 at 12:40 AM Comments comments (0)

hello everyone, and a belated Happy New Year.

This is a new blog for me to keep you all up to date on what I have been doing, and what I have planned. Hope you enjoy it.

Feel free to comment, you'll have to become a member here, too, though!

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