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DIY vs Branded

Home Theatre Systems

prepress

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I was thinking to get a Yamaha AX-900, 130W per channel, weight is around 18kg. Its specs seems similar like Yamaha's new model A-S3000 (VU Meter model).
YAMAHA AMPLIFIER LINK
I had a DIY amp which was lying in store for few years. Assembled in 2008 (I remember) used DEXA assembled kit 650W (transistor based, with controls, sockets, transformer 30-0-30, quality components) but NEVER USED. So hooked that TODAY with speakers and found it has very strong output, very loud, clean, seems it need 15" drivers :D I am using 12" now.

Anyway my question is; before investing in AX-900, I should keep DIY or go for Yamaha AX-900? Is this fair price? What kind of quality difference would be in that DIY and Yammy? (I know there is but still need reasons to make my mind to spend that amount) :D
 

GeorgeO

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Bottom line, if t sounds good to you, its good. To re check, call a good friend who may be knowledgeable and do a comparison. Then decide.
 

prepress

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If anyone did the comparison with DIY vs similar wattage Branded can explain better. I own another Yamaha which is less in wattage (55W) so can't make the perfect decision.

Yes, it sounds good to me and another thought is IF THAT Yamaha is better than DIY in sound quality then how the sound quality would be.
 

GeorgeO

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It's not a simple A Vs B comparison. For example a VW Polo 1.2 TSI is certainly not comparable with a Hyundai or Maruti entry level 1.2. The same way without knowing more design, components, power supply etc, one cannot simply say one is better. Regretfully I have some travel coming up for a week, with limited internet access so may not be able to continue posting on this thread till I return.

In general, DIY costs components but little else, whereas mfrs cost a lot of other overheads- R & D, advertising, shipping,handling and inventory, dealer margins etc, all of which are factored into the selling price, and may total about 40-50% of final price.

No doubt other knowledgeable members can also add their views.
 

magma

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there are advanages and disadvantages to both

for me purely DIY is done plainly as a hobby
the time spent is your fun too....
you enjoyed the journey

chances of something turning out as well as a branded product are 50 -50
(though no diyer normalyy admits this and always tends to blow his own bugle)

when youre doing DIY
do it for the passion
to learn something
as a hobby
now if it turns out good
Super!!

but if you are going to DIY purely just to save money thinking you WILL 100% outperform its branded counterpart - man youre not being truthful to yourself


Look at the Naim amps
if you see the inards youll have a heart- attack
bloody so simple
componets are pretty cheap too
Yet they get everything to work so well
Thats no coincidence


as i said
Do DIY for the above mentioned reasons in addition to trying and building something superior
But not solely with the aim of beating a branded item
 

sarith

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^Very true, here is the link of DIY amp/kit images.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/vmqwglf9rqfzixd/AAAlNnZYBFguR7cimItzjUiTa?dl=0

Looks very simple but sounds great.

I was willing to get an amp (as I already mentioned) Yamaha AX-900, but want to make sure that Yamaha is DEFINITELY an upgrade over THIS DIY amp.

I normally use TIP142/147 amp and I like the sound. The tone section in your amp is transistor based. I use op-amp based tone pre. I was advised long time back, not to use more than 27vac centre tapped trafo if using 4ohm speakers on a TIP based board. It can output a max of 50-80 watts I guess.

I have a pcb where one can use 2 pair of TIP transistors (4 nos) per channel. I can use +/-30vac or more on this amp board. It might give 100 or more watts per channel.

Your Dexa is cleanly built though the trafo doesn't seem quite meaty and I wonder if the heatsink will do the job when power demanding speakers are connected. I see a chance for tweaks :)

Philips BC and Nichicon gold caps are a good thing in your amp
 
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prepress

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^ you can see in the pics, there is a cooling fan behind the heatsink. The fan is running on 12V (seems like 5V computer fan) but it runs very fast, not silent but its cooling job is awesome. No heating issues :) Sound of this amp is good too, doesn't sounds below 100W

Reasons of opening this thread were.
1. I was almost ready to buy Yamaha AX-900
2. But when I hooked my DIY amp which was lying idle in store (see Dropbox images, mentioned 650W and sounds good too), It made me to take a step back.
3. This Yamaha is 130W per channel and definitely circuit is great as well. I was afraid if I buy this Yamaha it would be definitely GREAT upgrade over DIY sound.
4. Another doubt is price. Is Yamaha worth for $500? see link and below images.


 

prepress

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Another update: DIY amp sounds like pure direct mode when we set controls at 9-10 o'clock (specially Treble) and Bass 9-12 o'clock.
 

prepress

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Thanks Sarith, now I can go ahead and finalize the deal. I hope it would be upgrade over DIY.

My less wattage Yamaha is melodious and this DIY is loud, powerful in every manner but still I feel something is missing (I guess control over sound, like I have in Yamaha). However I am happy with DIY amp as well.

Anyway I am ready to pull the trigger :eek:hyeah:
 

omishra

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That YAMAHA Amp is way ahead of your DIY Amp. No offense meant! But you DIY Amp has basic PS and pre stages.
 

prepress

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^Agree, but it (DIY) sounds far superior than how it looks and worth every penny according to cost. :)

By the way, another Yamaha is on the way :D
 

iaudio

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Prepress, I used to have a yam ax 1070 for a while. It had gobs of power, nice orange lights :) and the trademark moody source selector. The amp was good but the Mids were not to my liking. ( I am used to slightly warm tone)
 

prepress

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I guess AX 1070 doesn't have MID control. Yes?

But 900 has one additional control MID which is missing in mostly Yamaha amps.
 

Audio_Freek

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Prepress,

Kindly share the Photos and Impression with Yamaha.Since its Old Amp better to give a Air Bath and some Pot cleaning, since it has Lot of Knobs :)

I do like to have Amps with lot of Knobs Button, Now a Days love Only 2 Knobs (I hate switches) One for Volume control another for Selector.

The Model seems to be so Heavy and what the Size of the Transformer its almost capturing 2/4 Of the Whole Cabinet :).. So make sure your Stands bare them.

One Small comment on DIY vs Bands. If you are good enough to replicate the design and components of a Brand, then Cost wise it should be better and sound wise equal.

Waiting for you Post
 

prepress

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Used that New (for me) Yamaha for few minutes and definitely it sounds awesome. Its all controls (Bass, Treble, Balance are good, but Mid and Loudness are FANTASTIC) WOW!!! what a combination. using both make sound perfect. However I keep mostly all on flat but some songs has less bass than it should be, then I increase that and few songs has more (high) vocal then here MID control does his job perfectly. I am happy for my purchase.
DIY vs Yamaha : DIY amp has similar power, loudness but as I already mentioned it doesn't has control over sound (it increases everything simultaneously with Volume level), sometimes lack of sweetness which we can get in Yamaha by using adjustment controls.
Yamaha is like a tank, very heavy, transformer is super cool. But it runs hot in winters :) Definitely I have to use silent cooling fan in summers, by the way I already ordered second fan (I am already using one for my AVR, you can see that in picture and other machines :D)
HERE IS THE IMAGE
If we say Yamaha is perfect 10/10 then DIY is around 8-8.5/10
Definitely I would like to keep that DIY, I love that as well.
 

liv1234

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prepress, I have Yamaha AX-900. I can thell you , i had more models from Yamaha including vintage and newer . Yamaha generally have a great reputation for a great quality construction and good sound; some say the sound is somewhat to analitycal(?), but we know: the opinions are subjective. Anyway, what I want to say honestly, in my opinion, Yamaha AX-900 is one of the best amplifier from Yamaha. This beast have not only a very good construction but the sound is much higher like others top brand amplifiers much newer and more expensive. The sound is not only clear, dynamic and full bodies but very natural so the logo "natural sound" is real :clapping:
So if you like the Yamaha sound the AX900 definitely worth to keep it.
 

prepress

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Yeah, This is my third Yamaha amp and all were Natural Sound :clapping: Definitely it is much better than today's expensive high-end brand's amps.

I am very much satisfied my 900 :yahoo:
 

liv1234

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I agree with you prepress :) because , for ex.even I listen classical , ambiental, jazz, or others genres like dance or electronic music, Yamaha AX900 feel all this music very well, I mean excellent touch, neutral sound(generally I listen in "CD direct" or "Source direct" mode). Corse my Focal speakers have a major contribution on Yamaha sound :) and I think this is a great combination. But Yamaha is OK with a lot of speakers. For ex. I had a great sound with ADS, Heco, Tannoy, Kef or Celestion speakers. For the sources I liked a lot of players, but prefer the english CD players like Nad, Arcam or AudioLab, but also Marantz or Philips I think is a great choice for Yamaha.
 
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