DiyMobileAudio.com Car Stereo Forum banner

1 - 20 of 34 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
433 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Any update to the amazing DCX2496 upgrades mentioned
here ?

The left woofer on my current system has died, so I need to start on my new system sooner than expected. I want one of these units no matter what, so if they wont' be avalible for a few months, I will plan a v1 of my system that uses amp x-overs and no EQ for now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Microcontroller code is not finished yet. The design work is all completed. Just waiting on the code, and then a chance to debug it.

Here is a copy and paste of my post 2 weeks ago:

"Output stage replacement with selectable true balanced or true single ended output (if running balanced, you have the option of not installing the extra 8 opamps, saving costs) The single ended output uses an opamp to sum the channels, so you can use it with any non-balanced amps without signal loss or special cables

Input stage replacement with digital input selection: 3 coaxial inputs, 3 toslink inputs (replaces aes/ebu), upgraded ASRC with the AD1896 for incresed jitter reduction and input capable of recieving 192k. Optional full range output for use with external processor or amps with internal xovers for sub use. Why waste an xover setting on your dcx with simple sub bass xover. This way you can run a true 3-way front stage, and use a bass cube, max bass, epicenter.... whatever cheap sub processor or the internal xover of your amp to do the job. The dac section is on the input board and the output section is on the output stage replacement, and will have the balanced or single ended option, same as the other 6 output. (dac used is identical akm 4393)

I have a version of the output board that has a wolfson wm8816 inserted before the opamps. This is the best volume control chip on the market. I have the hardware desgin done for this, but am waiting on someone to finish the micro code (sorry guys, i cant program worth cr*p). This will be controlled via rotary encoder and or rocker switch, will have an lcd readout for volume level, and incorporate mute and input selection from the input board. Currently, the volume will have 256 step for fine tuning, but i will have the code make this easily changable if that proves to be too many. Inputs will be labled Coax 1, Coax 2..... Optical 3. Hopefuly, a service will be available where i can custom label your inputs for you for a nominal fee.

Seperated the "interface" board from the output stage. It is now a seperate, optional board, and will still contain the 2 RJ45 and DB9 connections.

Clock upgrade module for the dacs using a 5pps source and twin shunt dedicated powersupply.

Power supply will be similar to that of Rob M. 's design, but will have an isolated 12v pre-supply so there should be no noise. Pricing has yet to be determined, as i still have yet to build a production version, and havent gotten a quote from the board house.

Upgrades will be provided as a send-in service with the excpetion of the power supply, it will be plug-and-play. I have sent out the face of the dcx to be 3d-scanned, and will be offering custom, remote mountable face kits for the dcx front pannel. Also a new chassis will be available with room to stack the innards and upgrade boards of either one or two dcx units. Power supply will be external on the new chassis for maximum noise rejection, and connect via an 8pin conductor (possibly cat 5/6, performance of this small of a wire has yet to be tested on this power supply)

Each unit will require its own power supply, but a "Y" cable will be offered so only one power connector will be required to power both units.

All the new connectors will be quality neutrik connectors. They will be pannel mounts, not board mounts, so no undue stress will be put on the boards. If you have a preference to another brand apart from neutrik, i will install them for you if you send them with your dcx for a nominal fee. Connecting cable has yet to be chosen, but will probably be a high quality 99.999% copper, if you want your own favorite brand installed, send a 3ft section in with your unit.

As a final note, i work a normal full time job, so i am dedicating as much time and resources that i can towards this project. Also, the only person thus far to test any of these circuits has been myself. Once the boards are completed, i will send out "samples" to several key member of the car audio community for testing. They have been chosen for the knowledge of products and what good sound should sound like, and also geographic location. I want to make sure the components i selected are stable in all the enviorments found here in the states. I am allowing at least 2 weeks for these sample trials before i order a first run of boards. So, they will be available soon, but not immediately. I am also still waiting on my code for the input selection and volume control, so as of now, the wait is out of my hands."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
UPDATE

I have provided the pic coder with all my requirements, and have paid a deposit on the code. It will use a small lcd display as of now a 15x2 character green backlit display to match the face of the dcx. It will use twin rotary encoders, one for volume, one for source selection. The volume rotarty will be a dual function, so you can mute by pressing the decoder in like a button. Also, the microcontroller board will have and additional plug for you to run rocker switches for volume and source selection for custom steering wheel mounts, or external controls for competition. The unit will also be controllably via remote using the sony ir codes. The following buttons/functions will be enabled:

Volume up/down
Channel up/down (next/previous source)
1,2,3,4,5,6,7 (source direct access)
Mute (unfortunately the micro we will be using for ir control does not natively support the sony mute code, so it will be assigned to button number "0")

The display will always show what input is selected in the top line of the display, and the volume level or mute status will be shown in the second line.

The rotary encoders, ir sensor, and/or rocker switches will all be remote mountable, and attaced to the micro board by cat 5 cable and rj45 connectors, so you can easily make cables as long as you want, for custom installations. A wiring diagram will be provided for maximum noise rejection.

Final details on the digital input section are as follows:
3 optical inputs
3 coaxial inputs
1 AES/EBU input

It will also still retain 3 analog-multipurpose inputs.

The volume control chip has been set in stone now, and it is the wolfson wm8816 chip being used in the new marantz reference gear. It is by far the most superior volume controller out there, and it has no internal opamps to color the sound. I have setup the board to use the burr brown op2227, but they will be socketed for use with any dip-8 dual opamp package.

The power supply has been the biggest challenge of this project. I simply have not found a cost effective isolated method. The only real answer is a SMPS similar to that of what behringer used in the firstplace. However, smps design is a long, difficult, and dangerous process that i honestly dont have the time or the skills to undertake at this time. I am going to recomend Rob's power supply. I have built one, and it functions flawlessly with this exception: garbage in = garbage out. If you have dirty power/ground in your car, it will show. To solve this problem, i suggest using an isolated 12v dc-dc converter, such as those offered by Cosel. I will be supplying an isolated upgraded power supply, but it will be expensive. It will be fully isolated, and the bipolar section will be seperated and adjustable so you can crank up the voltage to the opamps over 20v if you want higher voltage outputs. I know what my costs are on this piece, as i have already built 2, and this "premium" supply will be over $150, but less than $200. I havent decided what to charger for it to help cover the development costs. The "Rob M" supply, can be built DIY for under $60, and with his permission, i will be offering bare boards, and assmebled units.

As far as the physical form factors of the board, all the upgrade boards stack ontop of the DSP board inside. There will be a total of 3 boards: 2 full size that will stack, and a thin board that will hold all the digital inputs, and interface ports. All the outputs will be left bare on the board. The board will have a phoenex style screw terminal, so you can install any pannel mount connectors you want. I will have a good supply of neutrik connectors here, and will install or supply them with the unit. If you want a different connector, you can send them to me and i will install them, or it will be an very simple installation for you to do at home. Using the onboard screw terminals will let you change out your jacks at anytime you want. This will also let people using balanced amps to install the correct connector for that amp, so no adapter cable is necesary, or mix and match outputs for different amps/processors.

I have not started on the custom cases yet. I need to get all the boards back from the board house, put them through some rigorous testing, and make sure there will be no changes needed. Then i will need to measure all the common jacks that people may want to use, and design the case around them. As it is now, the foot print will be VERY small, probably 7"X4" with a height around 4", or i may lay the boards out horizontaly instead of verticaly, and have a 14"x4" chassis, about 2" tall.

I will post when i have the first version of the micro code back.
Thanks
Hans
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
433 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Any posibilites of the following?

- Optional single ended analog inputs

- changing eq-preset from the volume encoder box
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Its kind of late to add single ended inputs, but i can do it. As far as preset selection, i am making the entire faceplate of the behringer remote mountable, so it can be mounted in the dash or center console, so that feature will not be needed.
Thanks
Hans
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
I was saving my update post until the units were back in stock at Parts Express, but due to popular demand, the post is early. The original firm i contracted to do final layout and micro code fell through, but i was able to have my deposit refunded. I have found a new firm to do the work. Final details have yet to be concluded, but everything looks promising, and they are willing to sign a contract with a delivery date of production boards with microcode already pre programmed by the end of december, but are thinking they should be done before Christmas. Unfortunately, current availability of the DCX has been limited because of a part supply problem. Stock should be back in at PE and other fine retailers by mid December, and hopefuly so will the upgrades. There is good news in the delay though. My orginal contract was for through-hole mount boards that would require me to hand solder all the components, or sell it as a diy kit. These boards weren't huge, but larger because of the components. The new firm is offering complete turn-key service, including a re-desing using SMD components for all the digital circuits. This shrinks the board down considerably, and the boards will be almost ready to go when they come to me. I am retaining the through-hole mount devices on the analog side, so people can swap out capacitor/resistor value and brands to suit their taste, allowing an unlimited and cheap tweak potential. You would be suprised how much differnce there is between caps in the output stage of an audio circuit. Also, the opamps will remain socketed to allow easy change out. The power supply is ready and available if there is interest. This is a pre-production version, so its not pretty, and is on bread-board. Production versions will be available with the rest of the boards in december. I have spent a lot of time on the power supply of these units. I have come up with 3 basic power supplies. There is the super economy supply that is non-isolated, and only supplies +/-12v to the opamps. The stock JRC 4580 will work on this voltage, but not output as much voltage. It should be more than sufficient for most, if you are concerned, check out the white paper on it, page 4: http://www.ampslab.com/PDF/njm4580.pdf then there will be an isolated version of the above. Both the standard and super economy PS are farily small, and will fit in the new chassis i am desinging. Then there will be a "premium" unit that will be larger, and outboard to the new chassis. It will feature an adjustable opamp power supply that can supply just about any bipolar output up to 20v for very hungry units. This unit will be considerably more expensive, and will be a custom unit depending on which opamps you want to use, 2 bipolar supplies may be necessary. Most of the new opamps out there run hapily on +/-12v so the standard PS will be fine for most people in conjuction with the new board and the socketed opamps. The new boards will ship with the efficient Burr Brown OP2227 unless requested empty. According to those requests, the inputs have been modified to accept single ended inputs. If there are any other feature requests, i may be able to squeeze them in, but the middle of next week is the deadline. Post any questions you have.
Thanks
Hans
 
A

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Hi Hans,

sorry if I missed it in your previous posts (too lazy to read ;) ), will the volume control have IR capability so that the entire unit could be used at home (with wireless remote). Also the volume is after the D/A converters and before the analog output stage to maximize resolution, correct?

Cheers,

AJ
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Yes, ir will be supported using sony ir codes for use with any universal remote. Volume control is via wm8816 volume chips, best in the business, and is after the dac in the analog domain. This is a preamp replacement program, so it would be perfect at home.
Hans
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,847 Posts
Hey mbcouple....ever heard of paragraphs :D

So what would be the price on the whole mod and such, i don't have a 2496, but i'd love to have one, just trying to figrue out how much better it is with all of these mods.

What would be a quick breakdown of the mods, and overall price points and such. This looks too good to be true..so much flexability.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
I cant give prices till i know what i will have in production costs. But will post when i do know. Everything adds up. To give you an idea, my cost on the wm8816 volume chips fluxuates between $6 and $8 each (british firm so goes by the value of the dollar), and each board requires 8.

I wil work on my paragraphing.

Hans
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
36 Posts
i imagine a lot of people couldn't care less if you write in paragraphs, pig latin, binary code, etc. .... as long as they get their dcx modded ;)
good news comes to those who wait. thanks hans.
 
A

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
input capable of recieving 192k
Now if I could just figure out how to get my DSD into the digital domain.. ;)
(curses be to Sony and their paranoia).

Cheers,

AJ
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
174 Posts
can you please expliain in simple terms what your upgrade does?

lets say I have a standard DCX2496 and a typical car setup (hu -> amps via rca's) how does your upgrade help me install the DCX2496 in my car?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
If I may take what Hans has written and whittle it down to almost nothing:

He has made it work in a car--with digital inputs optical and coax, analog inputs, provided the necessary 12-volt power supply, added a volume control for those who used the digital inputs and modified the face to be remote mountable and as user friendly as it can be (which is great in a moving vehicle)!

Much better than even Behringer would have done should they get their heads on straight and market this to the car audio community. Props and big applause to Hans, the mod master!

Hans, my apologies for over simplifying. I hope I can take advantage of your mods someday (sigh).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
757 Posts
I'm waiting for pricing, outside of a carcpu, this would probably be one of the most powerful tools we could have in the car for tuning.......I want one!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Thanks for the simplification... I may have not typed in structualy correct paragraph form ;) The plan was to make an affordable device that would be a complete audio solution for us DIY'ers. I am not looking to make a huge proffit on these from the DIY crowd, so expect introductary pricing, maybe we can even work it out with dang, that we can sell them through his store at a discount to DIYM mebers that have a certain ammount of posts (dont want people to take advantage). I am looking to recoup some of my investment. Two other things i would like to add:

The unit still retains its stock aes/ebu digital input,

The unit adds a 4th pair of outputs that are full range, post ASRC so it is a clean D/A conversion.

I do have a solution available for digital domain high-resolution audio, but it is a grey area legaly, and i need to investigate that aspect before I say anything else about it. It may be a diy project, where i supply a "project hobby board." I will let you guys know when i do about that.

Thanks for the support,
Hans
 
A

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
I do have a solution available for digital domain high-resolution audio, but it is a grey area legaly, and i need to investigate that aspect before I say anything else about it.
That's why my smiley face is winking when I mentioned 192k Hans :) .
I am already aware of such "remedies", but if you stumble across one, I'd be looking out for a PM :) .

Cheers,

AJ

p.s. ( I refer to DSD as Damn-Sony-Dammit! )
 
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
Top