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Analog Console Modifications

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by UTS, Jun 1, 2001.

  1. UTS

    UTS Guest

    Hello there,

    my first post in this forum, though I've been reading it for quite some time already. The best recording forum on the net, wthout a doubt!

    So, I've just purchased a Trident series 65 32/16 Console for a bargain ( appr. $5000). The console is working well except some minor flaws, which are easy to sort out anyway.

    I've read on several other places that replacing the OpAmps with Burr Brown OpAmps will make the board sound alot better, as well as recapping the modules will help.
    Any thoughts on this anyone?

    Also I've heard that you can mod the EQ, so that the Low EQ Frequency is 80Hz instead of 100Hz, which would be cool on some channels. Buw how's that done?

    Generally how good is the Trident 65 Console? For me it's a dream come true and my expereinces with it so far have been excellent (warm pre-amp, nice eq, sexy look), but then again, I am coming from a Behringer MX 8000(yeh, I know) so any other console would have been a big step up.

    Ok, I'd be pleased to read some replys. Keep this forum going!
     
  2. Bear's Gone Fission

    Bear's Gone Fission Active Member

    Espescially before messing with rechipping the thing, try upgrading the power supply to have more available current. Most stock power supplies are barely adequate for the board they came with, and that's before we start worrying about increasing the current draw. The typical bonus tonally is bigger, tighter bass and a more dynamic sound.

    I think some folks hanging here have redone their 65's, so I'll defer to their wisdom. I do imagine you need a recap, though, and you might want to check the reisistors for drift and possibly replace some with higher grade parts to help nuke noise. I believe Fletcher came to the conclusion for the 80B that the stock TL072 chips were the best sound for that board, noise be damned, but YMMV.

    Bear
     
  3. UTS

    UTS Guest

    Hi Bear,

    thanks for your reply. I will have to upgrade the power supply. I did a little research on that topic in the net and heard that some people used a Mackie 8 Bus Power Supply for their 65's. Any good?

    As for recapping. I am the third owner of the desk, while the second owner never used it (since he wanted to open up a studio but did not manage it), so I will have to check that. Quite honestly, I am a very lousy tech and so far my (non existing) talents in this field are maybe good enough for making cables and rechipping, any other that that I need information and knowledge how to do...but having this old desk now, I think it's time to improve in this field. Anyone knowing a good site (or book) about audio electronics??

    Replies highly appreciated.

    Regards,

    Markus
     
  4. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Originally posted by UTS:
    I will have to upgrade the power supply. I did a little research on that topic in the net and heard that some people used a Mackie 8 Bus Power Supply for their 65's. Any good?

    No, they rather suck. Something like API 650A supplies will work rather nicely. You only have to worry about the bipolar 15 volt rails [which you can often run up to about +/-16.5v for a little added headroom.

    As for recapping. I am the third owner of the desk, while the second owner never used it (since he wanted to open up a studio but did not manage it), so I will have to check that.

    Do one thing at a time...start with the PSU, then ^#$% with some chips...don't do all the channels at once, maybe get a variety and do them in pairs and listen to the differences [just a thought]. The recapping thing is usually just the electrolytics in the actual audio path, though you may want to look at the filter caps in the PSU.


    Quite honestly, I am a very lousy tech and so far my (non existing) talents in this field are maybe good enough for making cables and rechipping, any other that that I need information and knowledge how to do...but having this old desk now, I think it's time to improve in this field. Anyone knowing a good site (or book) about audio electronics??

    You might want to 'lurk' the usenet group rec.audio.tech as well as here and a few other places. As for basic electronics, there is probably a "night / trade school" somewhere near you, they can most likely give you the basic knowledge you'll require...after that it'll be mostly trial and error. Remember, experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted the first time. As you blow $*^t up and fix it, you'll get a bunch of experience.

    Best of luck.
     
  5. UTS

    UTS Guest

    Fletcher,

    thanks for the comments!
    Yeah, I think it's a great idea to rechip channel by channel, always A/Bing with the original chips. I will start with that in two weeks, next week I will do all the cabling (yawn!)and that sorta stuff, also checking to upgrade the PSU.

    On more question, how can I mod the EQ so that the low frequency is 80Hz instead of 100Hz - especially for Drums and Bass guitar this would be alot better - so on some channels this would be a good idea I think.

    Thanks agin and as always, replies much appreciated.

    Markus
     
  6. MPlancke

    MPlancke Member

    Originally posted by UTS:
    Fletcher,

    Yeah, I think it's a great idea to rechip channel by channel, always A/Bing with the original chips. I will start with that in two weeks, next week I will do all the cabling (yawn!)and that sorta stuff, also checking to upgrade the PSU.


    The only thing I'll add to this is that you should always start your modifications upstream and work your way back. In other words do the master section first, after all everything passes through there one time or another and then the channels.

    I would suggest searching rec.audio.pro on the deja.com archive for specific recommendations on the Trident 65 upgrades. A few of the contributors there have gone through the process already.


    On more question, how can I mod the EQ so that the low frequency is 80Hz instead of 100Hz - especially for Drums and Bass guitar this would be alot better - so on some channels this would be a good idea I think.


    For that you will need a schematic and an understanding of how the circuit works. I would suggest seeking the advice of someone who knows.
     
  7. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    UTS- Mark has made some excellent suggestions. There is one guy in particular who has "hot rodded" his Trident 65 to sound remarkably good. His name is Steve Meyer [his studio is called 'Executive Suite'], and he hangs on rec.audio.pro on a regular basis.

    If you search the archives [is it 'google' now?], I'm sure you'll find a bevy of suggestions. I'll email Steve and see if I can convince him to contribute to this thread.
     
  8. StudioSteve

    StudioSteve Guest

    Originally posted by Fletcher:
    UTS- Mark has made some excellent suggestions. There is one guy in particular who has "hot rodded" his Trident 65 to sound remarkably good. His name is Steve Meyer [his studio is called 'Executive Suite'], and he hangs on rec.audio.pro on a regular basis.

    If you search the archives [is it 'google' now?], I'm sure you'll find a bevy of suggestions. I'll email Steve and see if I can convince him to contribute to this thread.


    Hi Fletcher,
    In response, I'd like to say that much good advice has been already given here. My own upgrade path started with a complete recapping of all the electrolytic caps in the board. This at least got me back to "as new" or as close as could be. I then set about rechipping the board, eventually settling for BB OPA 134 chips in all the channels and a few 2604 chip in the master module. This was accompanied by an extensive rebuild of the power supply (much needed) that included new caps, quadrupling capacity, new voltage regulators, in large radial heat sinks... I also added a low noise fan and a front panel ammeter. The board is solid and punchy now, well worth the effort. Keep in mind the tone of the console will change, becoming tighter, harder and a little more precise. You may or may not like the change as some of Trident's sound has been due to the subtle compression given by the TL071 chips, so audition the change before comitting fully to it. Good luck!

    _________________________________
    Stephen Meyer Mac support NY
    Bringing Analog warmth to a Digital world
     
  9. Twist Turner

    Twist Turner Guest

    I did alot of upgrades to my series 65 over the years I was using it. The thing that probably made the biggest difference was changing the line in chip to a Burr Brown OPA132,and also most of the master section as well. Another thing you will find is simpily replacing your current TL071's with new ones will make a large improvement. Apparently they have improved the chip in the last 15 years, it will sound more detailed and with a tighter bottom end. Next easy thing to do is bigger power supply caps. I think I more than doubled mine and it really tightened up the bottom end. I also recapped all my channel strips and master section. This takes quite awhile and is a pain in the butt to do, but it also really tightened up the sound. When I was was done I ended up with a much improved sound and at not that great a cost. I dont' think it cost over $200 to do.
     
  10. UTS

    UTS Guest

    Hello guys,

    I've been three days away (playing on a festival with one of my bands) now I am back and there are alot of great suggestions. I definitely know now what I will have to do first and what will have to wait a little. THANK YOU VERY MUCH for your thoughts on that matter.

    Best,

    Markus
     
  11. Does anyone know of any resources for upgrades/mods for an older ('86/'87) Neotek Elan? (Specfically, something to "smooth" out the shelving EQ.) I would think that Mike Stoica at Sytek would know of a few things, but I'm hesitant to bother him just yet.

    mb
    mb@theecholab.com
     

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