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1uf film capacitor choices
Old 16th October 2013
  #1
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1uf film capacitor choices

I know I know, it has been discussed over and over. And I do not intend to start this hair splitting one more time. But after long searches I still have questions that I do not find answers to...

For recapping 20+ years 1uf electrolytics what would you choose?

Specifically:

1uf 50V radial caps with lead spacing 2.5-5mm

and

1uf 63V axial caps with lead spacing 12-14mm

Here are some points I need some input on:

1. I understand that one of the best choices would be polypropylene film caps with most common recommendations being Wima FKP4, MKP4, MKP10. The problem here is that the lead spacing here starts at 22.5mm

2. Wima MKS series has lead spacing of 5mm. Would be a good replacement for radial caps, but I find these metallized polyester caps are not recommended for audio.

3. Actually I could not find any polypropylene caps with narrow lead spacing. Does that mean I have to use other type of film caps? Would Wima MKS still be an improvement over electrolytics? Other choices - ceramic caps?

4. Maybe I should just replace them with quality electrolytics (Nichicon HE, Panasonic FC, Silmic Elna II)? The problem here is that in most cases 1uf 50V caps are bipolar (either they just had overstock of these caps or there is a good reason they were used). Guess I still have to choose some film caps for replacement. Would Wima MKS be a decent replacement for bipolars?
Old 17th October 2013
  #2
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hymenoptera's Avatar
 

Panasonics are pretty easy to bend the leads to whatever spacing you need. The dark red ones. Voltage ratings on these are usually 50v or more so they're good just about anywhere except PSU and tube circuits. If lead spacing becomes a problem, go up a size in voltage and the leads will be wider spaced.
Old 17th October 2013
  #3
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I use polyproylene film or foil caps for 1uf situations. Lately been using Wima MKP4 and EFC. In some cases you need to bend the leads to make them fit. Some polyproylenes come in voltages as low as 50v which makes them reasonably small. Chinese polypropylenes and mylars tend to be the smallest. If you are against bending then use an electrolytic. Brands have been discussed here ad infinitum. Use the search key.

And in some cases mylars work better, especially for vintage gear. My favorite mylar caps: Sprague 225P and NOS Ajax Blue Molded caps when you can find them. Both are foils rather than films.
Old 17th October 2013
  #4
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Quote:
Panasonics are pretty easy to bend the leads to whatever spacing you need. The dark red ones.
I read Panasonics are not good choice for film caps. And these are 500 hours @ 85°C which is not very promising. If you mean the ECWF(L) series.
Would these be better than Panasonic electrolytics where polar 1uf caps are needed?

Quote:
Lately been using Wima MKP4 and EFC. In some cases you need to bend the leads to make them fit.
I guess MPK4 series lead spread is too wide to force them into 12mm spread holes even if bent.

Quote:
Chinese polypropylenes and mylars tend to be the smallest.
What do you have in mind - Wima counterfeits or smth else? Many recommend against those, too.


What about Wima MKS series?

Arcotronics R46 series?
Old 17th October 2013
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alia View Post
What do you have in mind - Wima counterfeits or smth else?
Chinese dealers sell cheap film caps on ebay all the time. Usually they are unbranded. They work OK in restricted space situations. Perhaps not as well as larger caps but not exactly horribly either. It's a tradeoff.

Quote:
Many recommend against those, too.
Then follow their advice. I could care less.

Quote:
What about Wima MKS series?
They are mylars. I thought you don't like mylars.

Quote:
Arcotronics R46 series?
You're overworking the problem. Try some and find out. Maybe also try some Rifa EVOX caps. Similar in performance to Wima but less expensive.

Top of the line modern electrolytic caps have come a long way in the past 20 years. Panasonic FR series caps are rated for a MTBF of 10,000 and that's at a constant temp of 105C and at full voltage. If you run them under less severe normal conditions, they might last 30-50 years. Electrolytics these days are not necessarily the big bad bogey man they used to be. In many cases, electrolytics with low ESRs outperform cheap mylars. Only use mylars if you are specifically looking for the mylar sound which is a smeared sound with less detail and less high end. Sometimes that is exactly what is needed. There is no "one cap fits all" rule.
Old 17th October 2013
  #6
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Quote:
You're overworking the problem. Try some and find out.
I am just trying to find out what are people using when you have to batch recap 1uf electrolytics. Not just one or two - in which case some esoteric bulky cap selection would make sense. I am talking of those instances when you have to recap 10 or 20 1uf electrolytics - both polar and bipolar.

And, by the way, the choice is not that huge when you start searching... at least with Farnell. Any suppliers recommendations?

Quote:
Then follow their advice. I could care less.
No offence, just trying to figure things out. Since I plan to order quite a few of them, I am looking for a choice that would not be too expensive and would be an improvement over the electrolytics.
Old 17th October 2013
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alia View Post
Any suppliers recommendations?
Mouser Electronics
Newark Electronics
Digikey
Parts Express
Parts ConneXion
Michael Percy Audio
Angela Instruments
Ebay

Among others.
Old 17th October 2013
  #8
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Matt Nolan's Avatar
 

Farnell? Are you in Europe? Have a look at Radio Spares - www.rs-components.com
Old 18th October 2013
  #9
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Quote:
Farnell? Are you in Europe? Have a look at Radio Spares - www.rs-components.com
Yes, Europe. Thanks, will check Radio Spares.
Old 18th October 2013
  #10
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hymenoptera's Avatar
 

It would help a lot to know exactly what you are recapping. Certainly if it's anything worth repairing, then someone else has gone before you and recapped the same or similar model.

The location and function of a capacitor matters here, too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alia View Post
I read Panasonics are not good choice for film caps. And these are 500 hours @ 85°C which is not very promising....
Temperature life isn't a real issue with film caps. I've never seen/heard of a film cap dying from getting too hot (within reason).

Temperature becomes an issue with electrolytics.
Old 19th October 2013
  #11
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ruffrecords's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by alia View Post
Yes, Europe. Thanks, will check Radio Spares.
Farnell have a wide range of the Panasonic film caps. I use them all the time and have never had a problem with them.

Cheers

Ian
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