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    Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

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    BigHead

    Posts : 4
    Join date : 2013-11-07

    Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by BigHead on Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:23 pm

    Hello,

    I have been using tube headphone amplifiers for a few years and really enjoy them.

    I have been watching and reading about Bob's kits for a while and think I am ready to take the plunge, but I was wondering what I can expect using any of the kits st70/120/m125 with my speakers which are Paradigm studio 100 v5's.

    Will any of these amps pair well with my speakers?

    My dad had an st70 when he was in his 20's, id like to build an amp with him so I thought one of these would be perfect for the nostalgia it would add.

    Thanks for you input!

    peterh

    Posts : 641
    Join date : 2012-12-25
    Location : gothenburg, sweden

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by peterh on Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:37 pm

    BigHead wrote:Hello,

    I have been using tube headphone amplifiers for a few years and really enjoy them.

    I have been watching and reading about Bob's kits for a while and think I am ready to take the plunge, but I was wondering what I can expect using any of the kits st70/120/m125 with my speakers which are Paradigm studio 100 v5's.

    Will any of these amps pair well with my speakers?

    My dad had an st70 when he was in his 20's, id like to build an amp with him so I thought one of these would be perfect for the nostalgia it would add.

    Thanks for you input!
    Go for it ! You have the opportunity to do something with your father, and he'll love it.
    Buy a vta-70, give it to your father as x-mas gift ( or give it to yourself but a note to your father that he has to help you building it).
    This will be a memory for you both. ( maybe you should buidl 2 kits ??)

    A vta-70 will have enough power for your speakers.

    Bob Latino
    Admin

    Posts : 2374
    Join date : 2008-11-26
    Location : Massachusetts

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by Bob Latino on Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:16 pm

    Hi,

    The Paradigm Studio 100's are 93 dB speakers which make them slightly above average in efficiency. In an average sized room you would have no trouble driving them with a VTA ST-70 as Peter has mentioned.

    Bob

    BigHead

    Posts : 4
    Join date : 2013-11-07

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by BigHead on Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:37 pm

    Well now im getting excited!

    Ill definitely be ordering 2, as I doubt after the build is done either of us will want to go without.

    Is there a guide to tools that will be required?  My dad has electronics tools and experience but I do not so I would like to confirm we have everything before hand.

    Peter, your exactly right I think this will be a great experience for both of us

    Kevin

    Bob Latino
    Admin

    Posts : 2374
    Join date : 2008-11-26
    Location : Massachusetts

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by Bob Latino on Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:49 pm

    Hi Kevin,

    You will need a soldering pencil, some rosin core solder, a wire stripper/cutter, a flat head screwdriver, needle nose pliers and a pair of flat nose pliers.

    For an inexpensive soldering station you could use the soldering station below. It's not that expensive and has variable power. You would use about 1/2 power for doing the driver board and then full power to make the chassis connections.

    Velleman variable soldering station on Ebay

    Bob

    BigHead

    Posts : 4
    Join date : 2013-11-07

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by BigHead on Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:51 pm

    Now that couldn't get any simpler!

    Thanks, ill be in touch.

    If anyone else has something to add im all ears

    sKiZo

    Posts : 1285
    Join date : 2013-04-01
    Location : Michigan USA

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by sKiZo on Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:24 pm

    Probably best to first tie those ears back or wear a hat ... tongue 

    I just finished building one of Bob's kits and couldn't be happier with the results.

    Tools I used for the build ...

    - Soldering station. I got a Weller WES51 analog that's never let me down. Almost instant heat and recovery, nice light iron, self grounding, and easy to adjust.
    - Solder. Kester 60/40 flux core is good. Stay away from the "green" varieties as they're harder to work with.  
    - Flux paste. Good for keeping your tip clean and improving heat transfer.
    - Solder wick or desoldering tool or both. For the minor mistakes. The RatShack desoldering tool is cheap and da bomb.
    - Needlenose and flat nose pliers are handy for the tight spots.
    - Xcelite 170M sheer cutters. Best snip you can get for the money. Great for close trims on sockets and zip ties.
    - Small screwdrivers for mounting hardware. You can get a "jewelers" set at most any hardware that will give you a good variety.
    - A ceramic screwdriver is nice for adjusting the trim pots.
    - A small hand drill is great for twisting wires. Just chuck them up, put the other ends in a vise or tape them to the bench, and give er a spin. Not too much ... 3-4 turns per inch is plenty, and you don't want to stretch the wire.
    - Nutdrivers are handy, but you should be able to get away with the flat nose pliers if you don't want to spring for those.

    GOOD LIGHT! Even and no shadows, and a bench light is a big plus. Bonus points if you get one with a magnifying lens. More important for us old timers, but you really need to be able to get up close and personal with your work!

    Other than that, a good spot to work and stay organized, patience, and attention to detail ...

    Oh. And PRACTICE. If you're new with an iron, good idea to play with it first to get a feel for what a good joint should look like. I always clean and pre-tin the parts before making the actual connection. Don't be afraid to use enough solder either - most common problems are joints that are too dry. You don't want too much, but you want a good shiny blob with good flow all around the connection - no spikes or sharp edges allowed! You should have to look real close to see where the solder ends on the metal. You'll want to dress the tube sockets especially well as those go thru a lot of hot/cold cycles over time which can cause a weak joint to crack or shrink.

    Most of all ... this is supposed to be fun. If something's not going right, back off and come back another day. A time out will solve most problems. I mentioned attention to detail already, but good to know Bob's kits have taken care of a lot of that for you. Parts are all bagged and tagged, and all you really have to do is follow the line by line instructions and check them off as you go along. Once it's done ... go over that checklist again to verify everything's where it's supposed to be, taking a good close look at each connection to make sure it's right and tight. If you work yourself into a corner, ain't no dumb questions ... post em up ...

    And I can't stress this enough ... ALWAYS WEAR PANTS WHEN SOLDERING!! geek

    peterh

    Posts : 641
    Join date : 2012-12-25
    Location : gothenburg, sweden

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by peterh on Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:30 am

    BigHead wrote:Well now im getting excited!

    Ill definitely be ordering 2, as I doubt after the build is done either of us will want to go without.

    Is there a guide to tools that will be required?  My dad has electronics tools and experience but I do not so I would like to confirm we have everything before hand.

    Peter, your exactly right I think this will be a great experience for both of us

    Kevin
    You might need some glue to fasten heavy components, in particular the 4 coupling caps, they are quite heavy and might make contact with the chassie if disturbed. Securing them with "component-glue" will keep them in place.
    I don't know the brands in us i used "silicon sealant" from "crc industries europe.

    BigHead

    Posts : 4
    Join date : 2013-11-07

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by BigHead on Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:06 pm

    Thanks a lot for the info skizo, that's a great list you made ill be sure to pickup what I don't have before I begin.

    PeterH, thanks ill look for something like that. I assume a hot melt glue wouldn't be sufficient?


    sKiZo

    Posts : 1285
    Join date : 2013-04-01
    Location : Michigan USA

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by sKiZo on Fri Nov 08, 2013 3:48 pm

    Hot glue gun ... forgot to put that on my list ... I used that for the coupling caps, and a few other odd places.

    (and anyone who followed my build knows I got a few odder places than most) tongue 


    peterh

    Posts : 641
    Join date : 2012-12-25
    Location : gothenburg, sweden

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by peterh on Sat Nov 09, 2013 4:10 am

    BigHead wrote:Thanks a lot for the info skizo, that's a great list you made ill be sure to pickup what I don't have before I begin.

    PeterH, thanks ill look for something like that.  I assume a hot melt glue wouldn't be sufficient?

    hot melt glue is all right !

    arledgsc

    Posts : 330
    Join date : 2012-11-30
    Location : SF Bay CA

    Re: Amp selection and what to expect with Paradigm Studio 100's

    Post by arledgsc on Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:03 am

    Be careful with silicon sealants.  General tub and tile calks will corrode electronic circuits.  You need something like GE RTV162 which is designed for electronics.  But is generally expensive.   Besides hot melt glue I have used with good results double sided sticky tape to secure components to boards but the tape may not work for the supplied Russian PIOs due to the cap mounting requirement to be suspended off the board.    And on repair jobs hot melt glue is tough to remove once applied, however, silicone sealant and double sided sticky tape are removed quite easily with a little circuit board cleaner to get the last remaining bits.  Good luck with your project!

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