My first ever DIY DAC with 4 x TDA1541

Home Theatre Systems

santoshmanivannan

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Hello everyone!
I have fallen in love with the TDA1541 tonality from the time I bought a used DAC from a fellow FM that used the chip. I researched about it a lot and I recently acquired 4 TDA1541 chips and an old board that Lampizator called the Bloodac board from the Netherlands. I'm very new to DIY (I know this might not be completely DIY) and am looking forward to post my progress here and get help from fellow DIYers. Please excuse me if I ask very basic questions, I'm trying to get started in DIY with this project.


Link to Lampizator's post about the board: http://www.lampizator.eu/lampizator/REFERENCES/DAC Four_TDA/fourTDA_dac.html

I will update the thread and ask questions as I make progress. Thanks for reading!

Edit: link to drive folder with progress pictures - https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/15ctpaY7T6W4I5Vw2_yQx-Nqpsay1-Vbt?usp=sharing
 

Sonicmasala

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Hi Santosh, do check out the AYA 5 dac poll. It’s based on the TDA1541A chipset.https://www.audialonline.com/blog/usb-interface-and-aya-2021-editions-poll/
 

santoshmanivannan

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On the board there are inputs for SPDIF and I2S. I haven't decided on the actual input conversion board / method but will probably start off with an Allo Digione for SPDIF to get everything working and then maybe look into an Amenero board or any other DIY USB to I2S board later. The links from @manniraj and @Sonicmasala have some information about some board options.

As cost, I don't have any in mind. I want to use this project to learn about DAC design and improve on the board design as I learn more. I think initial costs involve replacing parts, toroidal / power transformers and an output stage. I want to research on a SS and a tube output stage with a manual switch to choose either because I want the best of both worlds.

I am still a beginner so please do correct me if I'm wrong anywhere. Thank you!
 
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Sonicmasala

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I find the Philip chipset sounds nice in simultaneous data mode. The Aya dac caters to that. Pricing for the bare pcb board or completed board is in the link I have indicted a few post back. Currently I‘m using the Aya 4 dac in my main system and and Aya 2 2014 edition pcb board to tinker with.
 

santoshmanivannan

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But the Aya dac is a single chip dac correct? or do they have multiple chip options as well? I have signed up for their USB board and DAC board BTW, thanks for the link!
 

Sonicmasala

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It’s a single dac board. you Can connect to boards for a balance out connection. I don‘t think Pedja the designer has multi chipset on a same board in mind. All his commercial Dacs has been single dac chipset.
 

santoshmanivannan

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Update time!
Thanks to @manav24 for introducing me to @Prodigy. He has been an amazing help in every step of my progress. I have pestered him for information and he was always kind and responsive.

I have received the parts from the board that was missing, one capacitor, and a bunch of heatsinks. I have soldered the cap in place but the heatsinks were bigger than I wanted so I might visit a local electronics shop with the board to pick proper sized ones with screws.

Thanks to @Prodigy, I'm now in touch with Torotrans for a toroidal transformer that I should also be getting soon. Once all the parts are here, I'm going to put everything together WITHOUT the TDA chips to check for voltages on all pins (just so I don't burn these expensive and hard-to-find chips). And then go from there. Again thank you for all the amazing support!
 

deafbykhorns

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Have you tried a 1794 yet?
I have a DIY version of this thats transformer coupled using a Nelson Pass style buffer, I can hardly distinguish the difference between my Graham Phantom/Dynavector XV-1S vinyl rig vs. my digital now.
Using 5 Salas shunted power supplies on a homegrown DAC developed by a friend (ex GE Engineer) in St. Augustine.


http://www.dddac.com/ This is the commercial version, takes several stacks to properly drive a transformer.

https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/dig...ddac-pcm1794-output-coupling.html#post3886791
 
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santoshmanivannan

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I actually haven't.. The only BB chips I've tried are from IFI and I've tried none of the PCM line of chips. I have read a lot about the 1704 but they very expensive to buy + import. But after reading your comment I want to try a 1794.. I'll start researching, thank you!
 
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