boinger

Interested in building a kgsshv don't know where to start.

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Hi new to the forum and I am interested in building a kgsshv or kgsshv carbon. 

I have done other projects from amb.org built a beta22 / lcdduino / volume control system. 

I am unaware if there are any guides or published places to get information on where to start these builds / parts lists? 

I have found the circuit board gerber files and I am guessing I have to send those to get my pcbs manufactured? But I am a bit confused as there are many versions and variations of build files.

For example I see Kgsshvcarbon v1-6 and along eith them left / right / servo / ground.  

Any advice would be appreciated. 

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We don't even know what half those circuit boards are so no wonder you are confused.  I tried to make some sense of the GRHV boards and no...just no. 

Best step would be to start reading the classic KGSSHV thread and work your way over to the Carbon one. 

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Welcome to Head Case Boinger!

Coming from my own experience of building a KGSSHV as my first KG ES amp and later built  the HV Carbon and others, I would say the HV Carbon is the easier build with current production parts that are much easier and less costly to source and probably a better sounding amp overall. 

I have the Carbon V5 and V6 amp boards and the biggest difference is that the V6 has ground plane while the V5 does not. Many here have built both versions successfully. I built the latest KGSSHV off-board heatsink version but don't recall its version but can find out if you like me to.

I cannot help you with the amp boards but PM me if you are interested in the GRHV and GRLV PCB. I have a few spare sets on hand.

Good luck with your DIY ES amp journey! It's lots of fun!

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I recently answered a similar "how to get started" question here: 

Definitely build a Carbon in lieu of a classic KGSSHV, unless you really don't want to deal with off-board heatsinks. I prefer my Carbon to my KGSSHV in every way. I'm sure someone has extra boards.

No written full guide to a DIY electrostatic amp build exists, but all the knowledge you need is available on various threads here. I linked to the densest ones above. It's a lot of reading, and some has to do with debugging problems fixed in subsequent circuit and board revisions, but teaches a lot. Perhaps one day someone will write up something. I thought about doing it, but just don't have time now. Too many projects. :D

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Yes, I agree about building the carbon.  It is an awesome amp for Stax, and it components are readily available.  I too built it as my first KG ES amp, and it was such an awesome experience with so much fun

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On 7/15/2017 at 7:37 PM, boinger said:

For example I see Kgsshvcarbon v1-6 and along eith them left / right / servo / ground.  

Might be difficult for some, anyways: 
Original KGSShv PSU was one board, having everything: HV +/-, LV +/- and BIAS supply (you can find a couple of version in the "I'm on a roll KGSShv" thread.
Kevin did a similar one for the Golden Ref. edition, but due to capacitor size it was split into a LEFT and RIGHT and is called "split" as the full version does require a great deal of real estate. 

GR RIGHT is HV+ and BIAS
GR LEFT is HV- and LV +/-

There are two different "split" version: a "FAT", which is squarish in size, and a "SKINNY" which is rectangular in size (3" x some length).
Later Kevin added the "Switch", an option for keeping the regulated high voltage low for a while (mainly for use with Tube amps), those has added "SW", or "SWS" to the name.
If you get "old" boards and want the "switch" option, it can be added quite easily.

Some prefer the Golden Reference low voltage to the standard 78xx one used in the FAT or SKINNY boards. Thus they use GRLV either a full board or a split version.

As for amp boards the v.6 or 6g is the latest one. the latter has a full ground plane on top, which requires mounting components a bit raised.

Most components can be found at Mouser except for lt1021 (Digi-key) and LSK389 or 2x LSK170 (matched Idss) can be had either directly from Linear or Trendsetter.
mwl168 made a Mouser BOM you can find in the Carbon building thread. 
If you haven't found boards, I can probably help you out.
 

 

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Hi thanks for all the replies,

I don't have any boards as of yet. So basically I will need 2 kgsshv boards and the grv full board to get started?

I did see a thread with the mouser project and a bom but there was several version of the bom so I am not sure which one to use for what board. 

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Sorta. You will need 2 Carbon amp boards and a GRHV PSU. As Soren explained, there are several options for the GRHV: single-board, split fat (two boards), and split skinny (also two boards). The right choice for you depends on how you plan to case up the finished product. I think the split fats are the most up-to-date since most people used those, but they should all work and one of the others may make more sense for you. Laying out the PCBs inside the case is part of the challenge if you have specific dimensions in mind. Keep in mind that all boards have several devices which must be attached to large external heatsinks. Look through the various build threads to see how others have done it for ideas.

The board silkscreens are well-labeled, so you don't really need the Mouser BOMs, but they'll save you time figuring out what you need. You should always cross-reference the BOM with your board and make sure you order exactly what you need. Some things aren't super-obvious (like the exact LEDs you need), and the BOM will help out here.

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I see, 

What is the difference between the GRHV / GRLV? I see some people use the GRLV but do you need the GRHV in addition to the GRLV? 

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The GRHV is high voltage. Must have. It apparently contains a low voltage PSU using 7815/7915 chip regs on it. Instead of using the low voltage section of that, some people use the GRLV low voltage regulator.


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Is there a significant advantage to the GRLV or is it simpler to just use the low voltage section on the GRHV?

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No significant advantage, and onboard LV is certainly simpler.

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Not sure on the stat amps, but the GRLV is an excellent LV supply, and a step up from others such as Amb's sigma22, etc.

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GRLV is very simple, it is worth a little more time spending on it for sure, and technically it is just pure awesome :D

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I consider this is a fact.

21 hours ago, GeorgeP said:

No significant advantage, and onboard LV is certainly simpler.

 

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