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2 x 1084 EQ clones - Bluzzi EZ1084 EQs
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che_guitarra
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#1
23rd February 2013
Old 23rd February 2013
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Thumbs up 2 x 1084 EQ clones - Bluzzi EZ1084 EQs

Just thought i'd keep a running diary of this build. I've got a pair of 1084 EQ's in the pipeline, based around the Bluzzi designed PCB I came across on the Group DIY forum. Parts are still coming in, but with a fresh start tomorrow i'll make a start filling out the PCB's.

I tell ya what - hat's off to Bluzzi, these PCB are incredibly solid - they're certainly designed to last a lifetime. 6.5" x 13.5" x ~1/16" thick. Faultless build quality.






I'm also concurrently building an LA-2A, so I have to sort through the Mouser boxes and see what is for project A and project B, and what parts i've forgotten. It's probably the most complex project i've undertaken with multiple parts lists sourced from multiple vendors on multiple continents. But that's half the fun! One thing's for sure, there will be no cut corners and the word 'budget' won't be found in in this build thread. I may build for fun, but I expect audiophile results.

Hit me up if you have any questions as I go, no doubt it'll take a month (or two, or three...) until the unit is built and fully functional. Hopefully not too many headaches in the meantime
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25th February 2013
Old 25th February 2013
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Phew - it took me all of Sunday to solder in the 250-odd resistors used in the EQ pair. But progress stops there for a while as I have a week long refresher course in the city to deal with. Nevertheless, one by one the parts are rolling in - today the mini chicken-head knobs turned up on my doorstep. Not sold on the blue ones - luckily I ordered a few spares.

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25th February 2013
Old 25th February 2013
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I'll try anything twice
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25th February 2013
Old 25th February 2013
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Nah I missed them... but no matter, I think I prefer the chicken-head knobs - even though the blue ones are darker than i'd hoped. At the end of the day if they look out too kitsch I can always swap them out.

I guess that's the beauty of DIY - anything goes
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28th February 2013
Old 28th February 2013
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Great success! I got a package from Dan @ Collective Cases today. 2 x 1084 enclosures and an LA-2A.


Should end up looking something like this:




Every Gearslutz dream - 100% genuine Rupert Neze 1084 EQs





I'll plough through my training/assessment then I can have another crack at building these boxes
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5th March 2013
Old 5th March 2013
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Another delivery today - a cap kit from TAW Electronics... I think it's just the power supply kit to go now.

Gotta give a pat on the back to TAW Electronics here. Super impressed with the received goods, everything is clearly labelled in a pair of plastic compartment boxes (which I can use again). Always nice to find operators like this, guaranteed i'll be back for more with the next DIY project.



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5th March 2013
Old 5th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by che_guitarra View Post
Another delivery today - a cap kit from TAW Electronics... I think it's just the power supply kit to go now.

Gotta give a pat on the back to TAW Electronics here. Super impressed with the received goods, everything is clearly labelled in a pair of plastic compartment boxes (which I can use again). Always nice to find operators like this, guaranteed i'll be back for more with the next DIY project.



Hi Tim,

Nice work on the build thread. That is first time I see the TAW kit. I worked with them to do this and mine was just in plastic bags when they came in. They really bent over backwards to do this for the DIY community. So glad to see the results.

At first I wasn't crazy about the chicken knobs but I have to say when I saw them on the panel they came to life! Nice.

You will love these EQs!

Happy DIY

Cheers

Jim
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Build your own 1084 EQ....it's easier than you think!

"They are truly incredible. Thank you so much for this project. I am in love!"

For more info you can email me at: ez1084eq@proaudiokits.com
che_guitarra
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5th March 2013
Old 5th March 2013
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Running costs as per request - I haven't bothered to keep a tab so far, but i'll update as I check the receipts again. Prices are in $AU, which is close enough to parity with $US. Remember - this costing is for a pair. I've also omitted postage costs, as I live in a far flung corner of the world where it's always incredibly expensive.

$220 - Bluzzi PCBs
$100 - TAW capacitor kit
$280 - Collective Case enclosures
$330 - Mouser bits and pieces (i'll double check - this may include parts for my LA-2A build)
$500 - AML UK (transformers and pots)
$20 - Chickenhead knobs
$75 - Five Fish Audio PSU
-------------------------------------
$1525 TOTAL
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14th March 2013
Old 14th March 2013
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Also excited to see your progress on this project. I've just recently received a stereo pair of these pcbs and am in the process of sourcing all components. Those chicken knobs look pretty cool. Good luck with the DIY!
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16th March 2013
Old 16th March 2013
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Update time. Still got a course assignment eating most of my free time, but I had a day off from this to pick up the soldering iron. Both boards are mostly populated now, but i've since discovered i've been sent something random rather than the 2N3055 transistors I had ordered, and a line of capacitors are off the mark too (i'll have to investigate that as the values may be in range)... but heck - that's DIY - there's always some hurdle to overcome.

Also finished my LA-2A board which is in the pic too:

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19th March 2013
Old 19th March 2013
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where did you get the 1084 pcbs? I'm very interested in getting a couple.
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24th March 2013
Old 24th March 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doulos30 View Post
where did you get the 1084 pcbs? I'm very interested in getting a couple.
Try here @ GroupDIY: NEVE 1084 EQ EZ1084EQ boards (taking pre-orders) All the information you need will be found in the OP. I think Bluzzi has currently out of boards, but i'm sure he'll soon have more on the way.


I had another day on the soldering iron today - I managed to load up the power supply PCB's from Five Fish Studios. They've sent me enough for two loaded boards, i'm not sure if that's a boo-boo on their behalf, or if you need a PCB for each 1084 EQ unit... hmmm. I'll have to do my homework on that.




Almost done, but I gotta do a second Mouser order for a few loose parts, and get a housing for this power supply. I'm going to verge from the stock build too and install an on/off/on switch and LED, rather than an on/off switch and a bypass on/off switch - i'll try to integrate it all into the one switch.


Anyway, work will see me gone for a few weeks. Gives me time to order parts and I should be able to finish this off when I get back. So far it's ben a super easy project - let's hope it continues this way.
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28th March 2013
Old 28th March 2013
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No, you only need one board. One powers 2 1084 easily.

Cheers

Jim
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15th April 2013
Old 15th April 2013
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Wondering how you are doing on the build. Having problems obtaining 2N3055 transistors? Let me know. By photo it looks like you are almost done with build.

Cheers

Jim
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2nd May 2013
Old 2nd May 2013
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Hi Jim, unfortunately work has seen me floating around in the middle of the ocean for the last five weeks, and the EQ's will stay on ice until the middle of May when this project i'm working on comes to an end. I'm just waiting on a handful of capacitors I believe - a pair on each board, and a pair of female 4-pin xlr type plugs.
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2nd May 2013
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Hang in there sailor.

Cheers

Jim
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5th May 2013
Old 5th May 2013
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23rd May 2013
Old 23rd May 2013
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Back in town. I've spent the day fixing odds and ends - mounting the transformers in the case, dremelling the heat sink for the 3055 transistors, and installing the range pins into the pots (awful job!). Still waiting on a couple of capacitors - i've been sent 56uF/25V rather than 68uF/35V @ C53 & C54 - I want to correct this value. I've also ordered some 390uF caps for C83, even though I have some 460uF's that'll be OK for the position. I'll A/B for difference.

Right now i'm trying to get my head around the power supply - i'm a monkey see, monkey do kind of builder, but I can't find any photos of a completed and enclosed power supply. Maybe a good sleep and it'll all become clear.

Anyway some pics:


Coming together nicely.




I want to try and source some smaller nuts for aesthetic reasons - the ones supplied with the pots are some big boppers. If I can track down some more streamlined nuts it'll look better with the chickenhead knobs.




A few mods needed with a dremel to get the heat sink fitting nice and flush on the PCB.




Trafos mounted to the case. I never received a mini PCB to run with the 10-pin trafo so i'll have to work out a solution. Maybe some 1mm ferrules will do the trick.




Anyway, that's progress so far. Now... time to nut out how I run two 4-pin XLRs from this bunch of options.

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24th May 2013
Old 24th May 2013
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Looking good!

In my BOM C53 & C54 are correct at 56uF/25V. Also C83 is at 390uf or 470uf (original was 400uf).

Are you following my BOM and my Build Guide? The heatsink for the 2N3055 in the BOM fits perfectly.

Not sure if its only in photo but the input XFR should be left of the output XFR when looking from front to back of enclosure. You can solder wires to the pins if you don't have the pcb. Some prefer that anyway. Pay attention to the pin numbers if you do solder wires to pins.

I'm guessing you meant range pins on the rotary Grayhill switches not the pots. Inserting the pins is described in detail in the Build Guide. If you make a mistake they can be a bitch to remove.

If you somehow did not get the BOM and Build Guide let me know.

The power supply is often a pain for most DIYers including me. But once you build a few it gets easy.

Please feel free to ask me any questions if you get stuck but you seem to be doing fine though.

Cheers

Jim
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24th May 2013
Old 24th May 2013
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All good Jim - thanks for keeping an eye on my build progress too.

I realise now the caps are correct, but I was reading the part values off the build guide and not the BOM. I didn't want to install the 'stray' values just in case. I have the parts coming so i'll A/B and see if i can observe any difference... or maybe I won't bother at all.

The heatsink must have been a slip up on my behalf - I thought I ordered all the parts, but no heatsink in the received boxes. My bad. I found these ones at my local parts store - not super pretty but with my mods they should work just fine.

The trafos are arranged properly, although the picture seems to indicate they're mounted to the same piece - the black of the panels doesn't show up the two separate pieces.

As for the Grayhill switches (not pots!) - i'll make sure to do that job on a white table and put down a white sheet if I ever use them again. Those stopper pins are tiny, and if you happen to drop them you don't stand a chance of finding them again... lucky they supply a few spares in the packet.


I'm still lost on the power supply. The AC side I understand, but i'm not savvy on how to tap 2 x 24VDC supplies off this board. The +48 pin on each of the four DC banks is throwing me - i'm not sure if that's phantom power for any mic pre that may attach to the power supply, or if it has it's own purpose. If it is phantom power i'm guessing it's redundant with the 1084s? Yet there's still four pins going into each of the 1084s?

What I need to reference is how each of the four taps (within DC1, say) get sent to the EQs. Any pics or links on what to do here would be much appreciated.
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28th May 2013
Old 28th May 2013
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Almost done.



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28th May 2013
Old 28th May 2013
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Absolutely beautiful! Neater than I made mine!

Sorry I forgot to answer you on the power supply. Here is some info if you still need it.

I'm displaying your picture of the power supply below. It shows 4 sets of power DC outputs. They are all the same.

Don't forget to set your trim pots to adjust the output voltages before you hook it all up. Wind the trim pot gently counterclockwise until you hear a slight "click". That is the minimum setting.

Connect your VOM between 0v and the V+. Now start turning the trimmer for V+ clockwise while watching the voltage rise until 24v. If you are fussy you can fine adjust when you have the EQ on as the voltage will drop slightly. It won't make an audible difference but I do it (it doesn;t hurt).

You can leave the V- adjustment alone. V- is not needed here.

You ignore all the V- solder pads. Just connect as follows:

0v of the EZ1084EQ to the GND pad on power supply.
+24v of the EZ1084EQ to the V+ pad on power supply.


Yes the +48v is for phantom. If you need info on how to connect phantom let me know. It is very simple involving 2 resistors and a switch of course. Be careful you don't accidently feed 48v to the EQ! It won't be too bad but you can blow a cap or two.

The reason I don't go into explaining how to hook up power supplies in the Build Guide is because I can't anticipate every power supply design and hookup out there.

In the future I will be designing one with case etc. I'm also in the middle of designing a mike pre board like the one you have but with on board PAD, Phantom, Phase, Impedance, Mike-Line switches as well as Hi-Z instrument DI. Always faithful to original schematic but with added features for convenience.

If you are still unsure about the power hookup drop me an email. I can't wait until you plug this baby in and hear what it does!

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28th May 2013
Old 28th May 2013
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Thanks Jim - yeah they've turned out pretty neato. I don't want to jinx myself, so i'll keep my confidence in check. Let's just say every value has been measured and double checked before install, soldering is all solid, no shortcuts have been taken, so there's a good chance the unit's should fire up straight away.

Now I have the 1084's power/switch wiring all sorted the Five Fish PSU pretty much explains itself. But thanks for the quick write up so I can confirm what needs doing... now I just gotta find a suitable enclosure to house it all and it'll be go time
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28th May 2013
Old 28th May 2013
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Another quick question.... this FF PSU will be used exclusively for the 1084s. That being the case - is there a reason why I can't/shouldn't drop the 4-pin XLRs for 2-pin adaption of some sort (like a guitar pedal 9VDC style adaptor, or even a Neutrik adaptor & mono 6.5mm lead to PSU)??

I'm yet to buy/make the power leads and adaption plugs, but it seems 4-pin XLR style adaption is a very expensive and complicated way to go when two pins will be immediately and permanently redundant.
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31st May 2013
Old 31st May 2013
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Power supply complete, 24V being registered, custom power leads made, and units are powering up - looking good.

My only concern is the most I can screw out of the PSU when the unit's are fired up is 23.3V... that translated to 28.8V with the EQ's off... i'll sit and wait for a reply if that should be an issue. Otherwise, both EQ's have been fired up for 10 minutes now - I can smell warming resin in the new trafos, but no burning smells or hot spots on the board. Great Success!

Now I just have to wait until I get to my recording rig so I can test each unit's function.








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#26
31st May 2013
Old 31st May 2013
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And the reality check of DIY is hammered home. I plugged both into my RME UFX. One is seemingly OK (wow! sounds just... wow!) but the noise floor is a fair bit higher than i'd expect to be normal, the other only passes noise unless you flick the bypass to red led mode. On both units the noise floor gains some when you flick the bypass from middle to green led mode. Time for some troubleshooting.

So my theories at this stage are that I need to investigate grounding on one or both units, and perhaps the trafo locations in respect to each other - that might account for noise floor. The non-signal-passing unit potentially has a trafo miswiring or a cold solder, but at this point i'm just not seeing it.

A new observation - as I flick through bypass modes (with unit 'on') i'm blowing out fuses @ V+ on the PSU. Not all the time - but i've just blown 2 in the last ten minutes.

Hmmm... I'll give it another 24 hours and approach it with a fresh head.

Last edited by che_guitarra; 1st June 2013 at 03:40 AM.. Reason: Updated observations
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5th June 2013
Old 5th June 2013
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Well troubleshooting just got a little bit exciting for a second - I just had my first capacitor blow up! Out of curiosity I thought i'd try hook up the second PSU PCB I was sent... flick it on and ten seconds later a strange sizzling noise made me look a little closer for the source, then BANG! It popped so high it hit the ceiling! Now I have a hairy little monster on the PCB!

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10th June 2013
Old 10th June 2013
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I've given the internal layout a rethink. Trafo's moved further away from each other and the XLR in/outs to reduce possible noise contamination. All wire ends given a good lick of solder so screw connections are completely rock solid. Looking neato - one last photo opportunity before the lid goes on

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26th June 2013
Old 26th June 2013
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Any new updates? Were you able to get them up and running? I bought a pair of these boards myself a while ago but haven't gotten going on them yet because of $. A new baby in our home! Thanks for posting your progress reports along with photos. They will be invaluable to me I'm sure. Did you finish the Drip la2a? I built one of those and love it!
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26th June 2013
Old 26th June 2013
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I've still got some bugs to iron out. Bluzzi has been great with communication and the core issue was resolved by trimming the bias pot into a neutral position. Right now, I have one EQ working and it sounds flipping fantastic. But as I try to flick through the bypass settings on both i'm blowing fuses like crazy - i'm confident that's a just a power switching issue. We'll see.

Currently have guests staying for a couple of weeks so this project is on ice until I have the house to myself again. Come next week i'll be back on the case.
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