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Toft ATB updates?
Old 11th November 2009
  #181
Gear Maniac
 
voidtunes's Avatar
 

Hey Jim,

Thanks for telling us all how to "pimp our toft atb's".

I was just wondering 1 thing thou>
In your mod you say to replace IC1 with AD8512A in the master strip.

Alan tells me that all the IC's are all socketed but I can only find the AD8512A in a surface mount kit.

Did you manage to source a socketed type? Or did you go to the trouble of removing the IC socket and addapted the pins?

Any help with this would be much appreciated.

Thanks. Joel
Old 11th November 2009
  #182
Lives for gear
 
BradM's Avatar
I just want to publicly thank Jim for sharing his wealth of circuit knowledge. I personally have learned a lot about circuit design, troubleshooting, and gear modding just by reading and digesting Jim's countless posts on the subject over the last few years. I've applied his approach to many pieces of equipment in my studio (lastest project was modding my Studer A807) and the results have always been outstanding.

If anyone is contemplating doing this stuff themselves here's some lessons learned from my own experiences and random Jim Williams' posts:

1. Get a Hakko 808 desoldering tool. Otherwise you'll want to kill yourself.
2. Always measure the DC offset at the output of op amps to determine if you can bypass coupling caps. Also some coupling caps may have their polarity reversed.
3. Make changes in groups and test to make sure you haven't screwed something up before moving on.
4. An oscilloscope is a huge help to troubleshoot oscillations and instabilities.
5. Choose coupling caps for a 2 Hz corner frequency to avoid phase shifts in the audio band.
6. Always use a fan when soldering.

Brad
Old 12th November 2009
  #183
Gear Maniac
 
voidtunes's Avatar
 

Yeah, Thanks Jim.

Have to admit I was sceptic @ 1st but seems you make the recording world a better place
Old 12th November 2009
  #184
Lives for gear
 
Rednose's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by dick swifter View Post
Ok, here ya go. It's an MP3 though. And for the record, I have many issues with the Toft.
Untitled Document
Hey Dick, sounds great!
Could be because I just had to listen to some crap mixes that a group sent me to see If I could remix them, ha! I just got through listening to the crap mixes and stumbled across this thread.
My ears feel better.

Nice job.
Matt
Old 12th November 2009
  #185
Lives for gear
 
memphisindie's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
Thanks.
Like the Blues Brothers, I'm on a mission from God. There are far too many audio pieces out there that I'll never see so I figure maybe some of you can pick up the slack and DIY.

It would also be nice if the manufacturer's would also pick up and use some of these ideas so I wouldn't be so busy.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
It shows, I won't forget Jim Williams as long as I live.
Old 12th November 2009
  #186
Lives for gear
 
Kris's Avatar
That's funny because I always feel 'blessed' when using my Jim Williams modded km84s and u87.
Old 20th November 2009
  #187
No reply from email to PMI, so posting here.

Hi folks,

Hoping the PMI folks might chime in to answer my questions here, and maybe other Toft users will have some insight too, as I didn't get a response to emails I sent to PMI directly:

Two issues with my TOFT ATB16:

1) The ch 8 signal present (green) LED is stuck on, and has been on since first power-up almost a year ago.

2)VU meter calibration/ballistics issue. The ATB16 VU meters do not seem to react to music programme at the same level as other calibrated VUs in the room here. For example, with a 1k tone sent to a pair of ATB16 channels and hardpanned, I use the gain / faders to get 0VU on the ATB16 VU meters. This corresponds to 0VU on every other piece of gear downstream, ie compressors and my tape machine connected to the ATB16 main outs are also reading 0VU. All is good. However, if I now send music through the ATB16 at 0VU, the compressors and tape machine downstream are reading -5 to -6 VU. I tested this with a steady pink noise signal with the same result, when the Toft reads 0VU everything else is reading in the -5 to -6VU range. Can you explain this discrepancy? Note this is not a wiring problem, as everything lines up fine with tones. It seems to more an issue of the Toft VU meter ballistics. Thanks for your help.

Best,

- J.
Old 20th November 2009
  #188
Lives for gear
 
BradM's Avatar
I know many of us forget that there are other forms of communication besides email and instant messages in this internet age....but have you tried just calling them during normal business hours? It's pretty cool. A real live person will pick up the phone and answer your questions.

Brad
Old 20th November 2009
  #189
Lives for gear
 
alanhyatt's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLaPointe View Post
Hi folks,

Hoping the PMI folks might chime in to answer my questions here, and maybe other Toft users will have some insight too, as I didn't get a response to emails I sent to PMI directly:

Two issues with my TOFT ATB16:

1) The ch 8 signal present (green) LED is stuck on, and has been on since first power-up almost a year ago.

2)VU meter calibration/ballistics issue. The ATB16 VU meters do not seem to react to music programme at the same level as other calibrated VUs in the room here. For example, with a 1k tone sent to a pair of ATB16 channels and hardpanned, I use the gain / faders to get 0VU on the ATB16 VU meters. This corresponds to 0VU on every other piece of gear downstream, ie compressors and my tape machine connected to the ATB16 main outs are also reading 0VU. All is good. However, if I now send music through the ATB16 at 0VU, the compressors and tape machine downstream are reading -5 to -6 VU. I tested this with a steady pink noise signal with the same result, when the Toft reads 0VU everything else is reading in the -5 to -6VU range. Can you explain this discrepancy? Note this is not a wiring problem, as everything lines up fine with tones. It seems to more an issue of the Toft VU meter ballistics. Thanks for your help.

Best,

- J.

I am not sure why you waited a year to say anything about a problem, but you can still call us if you want.

As for your other issues, the ATB internal operating level is + 4, meaning that if you return a + 4 signal ( 1.229 Volts AC ) into the 2 track return you will see roughly 0-VU which is standard throughout the industry, but I do not know how your setup is and what you are reading on other meters. I also do not know how your setup is wired, so something could be interfaced as an unbalanced signal...not sure.

Either way, I cannot speculate about your set up, and we have not had any level issues with the meter bridge, so there is not much we can do on line for you. I suggest you contact your dealer first to investigate your setup. Any technical issues with the console can be remedied, but you need to call us.
Old 20th November 2009
  #190
Lives for gear
 
Faderjockey's Avatar
 

AIM Glow Core

Jim, Since you hate Lead Free.. If you haven't already you really should try AIM (Glow Core).

We started using it and it's better for wetting/rework.. And way cheaper then Kester.
Plus the Glow Core is made for better flow through hole.. Works great. Feels little more like Lead then the Kester Lead Free did.
Old 20th November 2009
  #191
Lives for gear
 
Faderjockey's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
I only use Kester 48 for new product that is under RoHS directives, we have them here in California too. They will get around to enforcing it as soon as they round up all the illegal aliens, legalize gay marriage and balance the budget.

For rework I use lead. SN62 Ersyn multicore or Kester SN62 2% silver. That flows like water. Getting that pasty lead free out of the plated through holes is a bitch, usually it's faster to pre wet with SN62.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Agreed... We can't cause our stuff goes over seas.. Has to be lead free.. Plus I miss the Lead smell when working. But things like amps that stay in the states we do lead.
It's so weird. Once an item is on the used market it's ok to ship over seas.
It took us some time to get to were Lead free is use able.. Figured out to use the little afro's for cleaning.. Wet sponge mixed with lead Free solder killed the solder tip in one day.
Old 20th November 2009
  #192
Lives for gear
 
BradM's Avatar
Jim,

Something tells me you wouldn't have much of a political career in San Francisco.

Brad
Old 21st November 2009
  #193
Gear Maniac
 
voidtunes's Avatar
 

HEY ALL! Finished the mod on the ATB today! I have to admit I havent spent any time mixing on it yet but from my 10 min test I have already noticed a huge difference. I did the master bus and all the subs. HOLY COW what a difference. The 1st thing I noticed was a defined tightening of all the transients and the massive amount of clean headroom. The noise floor has all but gone. I can now run it right into the red with no apparent distortion. Heaps of nice high end. JUST REALLY GOOD CLEAR SOUND

Have to say it wasn't the easiest mod but with a mates help we got it done in a day

BTW: If anyone is interested I have enough parts to do the master strip mod again. Obviously I don't need the spares so there up for sale $100 and ill throw in some Linea tech LT1355CN8's.

DO THIS MOD IT CHANGES YOUR ATB FOREVER!

Thanks again JIM.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #194
Lives for gear
 
memphisindie's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by voidtunes View Post
HEY ALL! Finished the mod on the ATB today! I have to admit I havent spent any time mixing on it yet but from my 10 min test I have already noticed a huge difference. I did the master bus and all the subs. HOLY COW what a difference. The 1st thing I noticed was a defined tightening of all the transients and the massive amount of clean headroom. The noise floor has all but gone. I can now run it right into the red with no apparent distortion. Heaps of nice high end. JUST REALLY GOOD CLEAR SOUND

Have to say it wasn't the easiest mod but with a mates help we got it done in a day

BTW: If anyone is interested I have enough parts to do the master strip mod again. Obviously I don't need the spares so there up for sale $100 and ill throw in some Linea tech LT1355CN8's.

DO THIS MOD IT CHANGES YOUR ATB FOREVER!

Thanks again JIM.
To be clear, this is Jim's nontransformer mod, correct?
Old 22nd November 2009
  #195
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by voidtunes View Post
HEY ALL! Finished the mod on the ATB today! I have to admit I havent spent any time mixing on it yet but from my 10 min test I have already noticed a huge difference. I did the master bus and all the subs. HOLY COW what a difference. The 1st thing I noticed was a defined tightening of all the transients and the massive amount of clean headroom. The noise floor has all but gone. I can now run it right into the red with no apparent distortion. Heaps of nice high end. JUST REALLY GOOD CLEAR SOUND

Have to say it wasn't the easiest mod but with a mates help we got it done in a day

BTW: If anyone is interested I have enough parts to do the master strip mod again. Obviously I don't need the spares so there up for sale $100 and ill throw in some Linea tech LT1355CN8's.

DO THIS MOD IT CHANGES YOUR ATB FOREVER!

Thanks again JIM.
How did you mod the subs? Has this mod been published?
Old 22nd November 2009
  #196
Gear Maniac
 
voidtunes's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by memphisindie View Post
To be clear, this is Jim's nontransformer mod, correct?
Its actually the pimp your toft mod just up the page a bit..whatever its called.



thumbsup
Old 22nd November 2009
  #197
Gear Maniac
 
voidtunes's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by qtuner View Post
How did you mod the subs? Has this mod been published?
OH yeah the subs were not part of Jims mod..... I got my hands on some of the linear tech chips listed above and swapped them out for all the TL07's also put caps on all the chips to keep it smooth. My mate did some other stuff to them as well, I'm not sure on the exact detail but I think he had to change some other caps out to make it all work.

I also pulled out alot of the IC10's in the channel strips;I replaced some with more LT chips(not sure you should do that last one?, I gotta check that is was the right thing to do 1st) Jim? Or if your like me just take the risk.......one thing for sure is that it sounded a hell of alot better than with the 072's and it didn't blow smoke!

I took my time to milk as much info from the pros and other slutz then peiced all the different mods together into one plan of attack. Called in a mate (who happends to be a qualified micro engineer and went for it!

The difference is huge, way beyond my expectations
Old 2nd December 2009
  #198
Lives for gear
 
Kris's Avatar
Jim, I'm going to do your mod in a few weeks when I get all the parts in.

There is one question I have. You say, "Change C39/42 to a ferrite bead."

Can you get a bit more specific as to what part(s) to get? There seems to be a ton of ferrite bead options at digikey.com and I'm not sure what to get.

Thanks!
Old 3rd December 2009
  #199
Lives for gear
 
Kris's Avatar
Thanks again Jim.

At the same time, I think I'm going to pull out a few of the subgroup modules to send your way. That is if you are still modding these! (or you could just publish your mod here for me to try as well, if you don't want to deal with the gummy solder ;-)
Old 22nd December 2009
  #200
Lives for gear
 
Kris's Avatar
Did the mod and yes it is GREAT!!! Jim description of it's benefits is on point. The console still retains it's character. The first thing I noticed was a LARGE improvement in low end impact and clarity. Headroom galore.

Don't do this mod yourself just to save a buck. Sourcing these parts individually cost me somewhere around $75, give or take....

One of the main reasons I like to do this stuff (aside from the sonic improvements and the learning experience) is to hang with my Dad, a retired Engineer and Soldering Expert. Good times!
Old 22nd December 2009
  #201
Lives for gear
 
memphisindie's Avatar
 

Whenever I do a William's mod it's with my best bud, Lee (Bluesman), dad's an accountant.
Old 22nd December 2009
  #202
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Kris's Avatar
Jim, I'm convinced you would get along famously with my Dad. Merry Christmas to you as well!
Old 22nd December 2009
  #203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kris View Post
One of the main reasons I like to do this stuff (aside from the sonic improvements and the learning experience) is to hang with my Dad, a retired Engineer and Soldering Expert. Good times!
kris that is awesome man. You have to take advantage of times like these when it comes to parents.

I hope you all have a good Christmas with your families. I was supposed to fly home from maui last week to spend time with my dad and my flights got canceled because of the storm. I had a small window of time and could not get re-booked. I was really bummed.
Old 14th January 2010
  #204
Gear Nut
 
midy's Avatar
 

hello
i am going to mod the master of a atb 24 with the Jim mod ,so for soldering i think it will be ok but i am not a éléctronicien so
can somebody tell me more about the npo cap 's ( brand , vcc,.... ) the digikey would be a must !!!!


excuse me for my bad english
thank's
thierry
Old 15th January 2010
  #205
Gear Nut
 
midy's Avatar
 

please ....come on
can you help me to choose these npo caps ( serie , manufacturer ,voltage rated ,tolérance ) or give me a digi-key part number as exemple
thank 's
thierry
Old 22nd January 2010
  #206
Gear Addict
 
delasoul's Avatar
 

Hey jim any chance we could get the channel mods? hehe any way i emplore you guys ( did i spell emplore correctly?) to try getting a tkd ko-on stereo fader for the master. it seriously does something great to the sound, starts to get real if u know what i mean.
Old 22nd January 2010
  #207
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memphisindie's Avatar
 

He posted them earlier in the thread.
Old 22nd January 2010
  #208
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Space Station's Avatar
I would really like to hear before and after demos of these mods.

Can anyone actually play me the difference?

I normally have to AB things many times before I can make any kind of desicion. Which is pretty hard to do with an extensive desk modification unless you have two side by side.
Old 22nd January 2010
  #209
Re-fitting TKD faders requires grinding out a slot for the end of the fader to fit down into the frame. It's slotted now for the Chinese faders, but is too narrow for the TKD or P+G faders.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 22nd January 2010
  #210
Gear Addict
 
delasoul's Avatar
 

im pretty sure he only explained the master channel mod in full detail, the channel mod would include mods to the eq, preamp.. other stuff i dont know about anyway, ya know i didnt mind tacking a hacksaw to a small portion of my toft, i really like the way the new faders feel, like melting butter i think jim said, it was probably something for explicit . anyway i thought, like most mods, it was worth putting in those faders.
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