Equipment Upgrades

Getting the best performance from any HiFi component is very much about  optimizing the design & component choice. Often commercial &  marketing pressures work against this optimizations. Subsequent  technical developments also occur from time to time. For these reasons  there are many possibilities to upgrade your existing equipment which  are more cost effective than buying something new.

We use our experience and expertise to offer upgrades that give value for money improvements.

There are 4 areas where most CD, DVD & SACD Players can benefit from  upgrading, Master Clock, Output Stage, Power Supply & Chassis  Resonance control. We offer upgrades for these areas in 3 packages and  with 2 Master Clock options, so there should be a combination to suit  your needs:-




Tentlabs Shunt Regulators

These are used to replace integrated series regulators fitted in the power  supplies of most HiFi equipment. They are an effective way of improving  sound quality. Find out more at Tentlabs Shunt


Std Clock

The Tentlabs XO clock is used with a very low noise Chevron power supply.  The small size and screened construction of the XO clock allows it to be mounted very close to the players clock input circuit. All this gives a much lower jitter clock than standard players resulting in a all round  improvement is sound quality.



As with the Std Clock the Tentlabs XO clock is used but run from an even  lower noise Chevron power supply which uses its own mains transformer  for maximum isolation of power supplies. This is a development from our  previous UltraClock2 for even lower noise. Lower noise in the clock  power supply means lower jitter from the clock itself


Output Stage

The opamps in the players audio output stage are replaced with very high  performance alternatives and circuitry added to bias them into Class A  mode. Additional power supply decoupling is added to ensure they work  well. We use various types of opamps as suits the particular player. We  don™t use adapters to accommodate the different physical designs of  opamps because these can degrade performance.


Power Supply & Chassis Control

Additional selected capacitors are added to ensure low noise over a very wide band of frequencies at key points in the players power supplies. Materials  are laminated to the inside of the players case to ensure that  vibrations are dissipated in a sympathetic manner. Not available as an  upgrade on its own.





























Players suitable for the above upgrades include:- Arcam CD62 CD72, Cambridge  Audio, Denon, Linn Karik, Marantz CD17 CD63 CD5400, Meridian 208,  Myryad, Naim CD3.5, Pioneer DV565 DV575 DV747, Phillips DVD963, Rega  Planet, Roksan Kandy, Rotel 965 991, Sony RCD-W3 XB790, Teac VRDS7  VRDS10, Yamaha CDX396 CDX496.


Trichord Dino Phono Preamplifier Upgrade  - I was given a Dino2 to repair with Burson Opamps fitted in place of  the standard output opamps. The problem was just with dip-switch  settings. I was impressed with the sound quality using my Denon DL-304  MC cartridge. The Dino2 with burson opamps was not far behind my  VacuumState FVP5 phono preamp which is a very high performance valve  unit designed by the late Allen Wright.

I was also given a Dino1 to upgrade so evaluated various options for the  upgrade. The final upgrade consisted of replacing SSM2019™s for  THAT1510™s (as used in Dino2), replacing Output opamps (AD744 with  discrete class A stage) with LME49710HA™s with class A bias and DC  servo, replacing power supply opamps with LT1128. This Dino now sounds  better than the Dino2 with burson opamp.

Cost of upgrade for a Dino1 - £170  or for a Dino2 - £70 (Dino2 is just an output opamp change).

Shanling CDT100 - A very special upgrade package is offered for this CD Player. The  unmodified player uses many opamp stages to process the analogue signal  after the DAC chips mostly filtering ultrasonics. Following the opamps  is a valve buffer stage which does not do anything to improve the signal but some people like the effect it has on sound quality.

We  could have done a conventional upgrade and replaced the opamps with good ones but even the best will have some negative effect on sound quality. With those nice glowing valves sitting there not doing much the  possibility of eliminating all the opamps and just using a valve output  stage came to mind. The first test was to take the DAC analogue output  direct through a single high quality opamp, this worked very well and  established that little ultrasonic filtering was needed, but some gain  required in the output stage. The existing valve stage has a gain of one but the circuit could be reconfigured to get the required gain. Several valve circuits were tried and eventually a 2 stage configuration was  settled on, the final stage being cathode follower to give a lowish  output impedance. The original dual triode valves are used with an  uprated HT supply. Ultrasonic filtering is done passively with  negligible phase shift in the audio band. There is only one very high  quality coupling capacitor in the direct signal path and of course no  opamps.

To  complete the CDT100 upgrade our standard very low jitter masterclock  using the Tentlabs module is installed. 8 additional selected capacitors are also installed to clean up the digital power supplies. Though not  rivaling the best players for neutrality and resolution the upgraded  player does make music that is enjoyable to listen to and in out opinion is very much better than the standard player.

The  upgraded CDT100 has an audio output which is 7dB below red book cd  standard (about 0.9V) just turn the volume up a little to allow for  this. Best sound is had with the headphone output disconnected but it  can be connected if you wish. Optionally a phase switch can be fitted in place of the headphone socket, this works in the digital domain. Some  recordings sound slightly better with phase reversed but there is no  standard so you have to decide for yourself which phase is best for each disc.

The cost of upgrading the CDT100 is £240 + £30 for the phase switch + return postage.

Creek T43 & Cambridge Audio T500 - we can upgrade these FM Tuners with a new output stage and low noise power supply for £150.

dpa Digital Ltd(Deltec) - We can repair & upgrade many of these products. We can also  convert some CD Transports and CD Players to operate as Deltran clock  linked transports with most of the dpa DAC™s for £180.

We guarantee the work done for 12 months but can™t guarantee against faults which develop unrelated to the upgrade or repair.

Return delivery is charged at cost.

No need to send money with the equipment this can be sorted out once we have seen the equipment and agreed the work to be done.

Turnaround is normally within 3 weeks but occasionally its longer, we don™t rush  things and that includes the all important listening tests.

To send your equipment we suggest one of these  Interlink   Interparcel   Pharos 



Chevron Audio