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gold

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Posts: 1,468 Member Since:27/01/2011

#63 [url]

Aug 25 15 10:46 AM

dcollins wrote:
If your tech is brave and has good health insurance, he could put a three position toggle in the same hole and have both types of bypass.

Bonus points. Extra credit. Double overtime.

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gold

Platinum Blonde

Posts: 1,468 Member Since:27/01/2011

#65 [url]

Aug 31 15 12:54 PM

I saw a new build eight band stereo monster on Friday. It wasn't installed but we popped the top. No idea if it works but I was pleasently surprised with the build. Although obviously hand build everything looked pretty solid and secure. One of the frequency select switches was slightly loose but everything else was buttoned up pretty well. Some thread locker would probably fix that.

I can see the problem with that face plate. It looks like they started with 1/8" and milled down from there leaving the face plate something like 3/32". Not good. There is a mounting plate for the switches that bolts to the side of the case. This undoubtedly helps, but the entire weight of the unit is still supported with that thin faceplate. I would have started with 3/16" or 1/4" stock and ened up with 1/8".

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aleatoric

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Posts: 258 Member Since:01/02/2012

#66 [url]

Aug 31 15 5:01 PM

So parts package came from Digikey.  Just waiting on the PSU from Parts Express (could not find the right power supply from Digikey) which should be here tomorrow.  Ultimately we decided to just use an external 12v linear PSU (wall wart style) instead of piggybacking off the Sontec’s PSU.  This (gasp!) does require another hole drilled in the rear of the EQ’s case for the 12v DC jack but ultimately I feel more comfortable having the relay card’s PSU not dependent on the Sontec’s PSU, just too much that could potentially go wrong.  I.e. If I have an issue with the Sontec down the road it would be much harder for (at least for myself) to determine if it’s related to piggybacking with the relay cards or something unrelated.  Just best in my mind to keep the two separate in my opinion. 

The tech I’m working with is FAR more knowledgable than I initially expected.  Not that I ever had any real doubts but he has very little (if any) online presence so I did not know what to expect.  He went out of his way to come over to my studio and check out the EQ in person before we arrived at our desired method for doing this and he took it on his own to come up with a detailed parts list for me to order to get it all done.  

I ended up going with the C&K subminiature switch which I really like the looks of (ordered two so I have a backup).  Very small footprint and coincidentally it will be the exact same height as the current two push button switches on my 250EX once mounted so it should look pretty slick and like it was meant to be there once all is said and done.  I’ve also picked up a small precision ruler and fine white tip sharpie so I can mark the location for the switch hole myself to take the stress of that off my tech (I’m very picky about symmetry, would bug me to all end if it’s even a 1/16” of an inch or so off from where I want it).  

Will update with pics once all is finished.  Should be dropping it off and picking it up this coming weekend.  

 

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gold

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Posts: 1,468 Member Since:27/01/2011

#67 [url]

Aug 31 15 5:44 PM

aleatoric wrote:
I’ve also picked up a small precision ruler and fine white tip sharpie so I can mark the location for the switch hole myself to take the stress of that off my tech (I’m very picky about symmetry, would bug me to all end if it’s even a 1/16” of an inch or so off from where I want it).  


 

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zmix

Aqua Marine

Posts: 3,892 Member Since:20/01/2011

#68 [url]

Aug 31 15 10:10 PM

gold wrote:
I saw a new build eight band stereo monster on Friday. It wasn't installed but we popped the top. No idea if it works but I was pleasently surprised with the build. Although obviously hand build everything looked pretty solid and secure. One of the frequency select switches was slightly loose but everything else was buttoned up pretty well. Some thread locker would probably fix that.

I can see the problem with that face plate. It looks like they started with 1/8" and milled down from there leaving the face plate something like 3/32". Not good. There is a mounting plate for the switches that bolts to the side of the case. This undoubtedly helps, but the entire weight of the unit is still supported with that thin faceplate. I would have started with 3/16" or 1/4" stock and ened up with 1/8".

I've always referred to the look of a sontec in a horizontal rack as "the EQ with the built-in 'smiley curve' (literally, physically,etc)"

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gold

Platinum Blonde

Posts: 1,468 Member Since:27/01/2011

#70 [url]

Sep 1 15 1:39 PM

I suggested that the Sontec owner put a 1/16" steel sheet behind the face plate. Do the cutouts large enoough in the steel sheet so that the switch shafts mount the way they are without adding the extra 1/16" to the switch mounting. You'd also get the benifit of ferric shielding on the faceplate side.

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aleatoric

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Posts: 258 Member Since:01/02/2012

#71 [url]

Sep 1 15 1:51 PM

Faceplate sag seems to be a pretty common thing with the MES series Sontec’s.  All the ones I’ve seen in person have suffered from this.  Fortunately for me the 250EX does not get this.  They really should use a thicker faceplate for the MES models. 

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aleatoric

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Posts: 258 Member Since:01/02/2012

#72 [url]

Sep 11 15 10:01 PM

Finally got this done!  Dropped off yesterday, picked up today.  All went smoothly outside of one minor hiccup (a terminal on one of the relay cards not making contact), but that was quickly resolved.  

I was present for the drilling of the front panel switch which was slightly nerve wrecking but went extremely well.  I had placed the location of the pilot hole myself with a small precision ruler and very fine tip white marker and the switch location ended up exactly where I wanted it.  I don’t remember how many drill bits we used to reach the final destination of 3/16th’s of an inch but it was at least 4.  Props to my tech for the exceptionally clean work and patient attention to detail.  

Happy I went with the three switch setup instead of just replacing the two current soft bypass switches with hardwire relay switches.  Just as I expected the true hardwire bypass switch produces a much more audible click than the soft bypass’ with optos.  So having both is definitely nice.

Pictures below.  I apologize for the poor quality.  I think there was some dust in my iPhones lens.  Too lazy to unrack and retake though..

True hardwire bypass relay switch:

image
Under the hood.  Relay cards were mounted in the back left corner of the unit:

image
Rear panel.  4 new screws in there for mounting the relay cards as well as a DC jack for the external 12v power supply to power the relay cards.


image

So the project was a great success!  Happy to say all of my processing gear now has a true hardwire bypass.  And actually out of my three analog units this EQ is the one that benefits most from having hardwire bypass as it has the most sonic footprint as well as the highest noise floor.  Nothing crazy noise floor wise but with it engaged I’m at -86dBFS, with it hardwire bypassed my noise floor drops to -92dBFS (with BPEQ and FCS P3S ME still engaged).  

Lastly I want to say it's great to have finally found a compentent and awesome to work with local tech!  I’ve been in Philly for 6.5 years now and asked all around and outside of your typical guitar amp repair types I could never find anyone I could trust locally with this type of gear.  So another welcomed plus from this whole endeavor!

Big thanks to all in here who helped me along the way!  

 

Last Edited By: aleatoric Sep 11 15 10:05 PM. Edited 1 time.

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aleatoric

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Posts: 258 Member Since:01/02/2012

#74 [url]

Sep 12 15 1:48 PM

zmix wrote:
I'm curious to know if you wired the relays to be in bypass mode when energized or when "off"?
 

With the toggle switch in up position the relay cards are off and not powered, the EQ works as it always has.  With the toggle switch in down position the relay cards are powered on and the EQ is hardwire bypassed. 

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waltzmastering

Platinum Blonde

Posts: 1,587 Member Since:02/02/2011

#75 [url]

Sep 12 15 5:22 PM

As a habit, I always have the gear in bypass when powering on or off. Probably doesn't matter much, but I've always been a bit superstitious.

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zmix

Aqua Marine

Posts: 3,892 Member Since:20/01/2011

#76 [url]

Sep 12 15 5:39 PM

aleatoric wrote:

zmix wrote:
I'm curious to know if you wired the relays to be in bypass mode when energized or when "off"?

 

With the toggle switch in up position the relay cards are off and not powered, the EQ works as it always has.  With the toggle switch in down position the relay cards are powered on and the EQ is hardwire bypassed. 

That's good. If a subsequent owner loses the additional power supply they won't be completly fucked..!

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aleatoric

Gold Finger

Posts: 258 Member Since:01/02/2012

#77 [url]

Sep 12 15 6:09 PM

zmix wrote:

aleatoric wrote:

zmix wrote:
I'm curious to know if you wired the relays to be in bypass mode when energized or when "off"?


 

With the toggle switch in up position the relay cards are off and not powered, the EQ works as it always has.  With the toggle switch in down position the relay cards are powered on and the EQ is hardwire bypassed. 

That's good. If a subsequent owner loses the additional power supply they won't be completly fucked..!

Yup.  I can unplug the 12v power supply (that powers the relays) and still use the EQ as if the relay cards didn’t exist.  I really like that we wired it this way.

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