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Offline tgakidis

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sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« on: January 15, 2011, 10:25:09 AM »
I have a tekkeon and 2 DVD batts in series as options to power the sonosax.  The 2 DVD batts = 18v and the tekkeon can supply 14, 16 or 19v.  What is the "ideal" voltage since the sax can take 14-24v, or does really not matter.
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Offline JD

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2011, 10:59:19 AM »
I have read here on the TS that the higher the voltage the better with the sx-m2, don't recall the reasons why though.
That said, I have run mine from one extreme to the other and have noted no difference in quality or performance.
I most often run it on 18vdc.
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Offline tgakidis

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2011, 01:00:22 PM »
Thanks, I remember reading that also.  Obviously I would like to run it at the lowest optimal voltage to extend run time but want peak performance.
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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2011, 02:21:31 PM »
Thanks, I remember reading that also.  Obviously I would like to run it at the lowest optimal voltage to extend run time but want peak performance.

it matters for headroom. The differences between 16v and 19v were about 1.5-2db (when fed tones to measure). At 16v it overloads sooner.  :-\
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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2011, 05:47:54 PM »
Thanks, I remember reading that also.  Obviously I would like to run it at the lowest optimal voltage to extend run time but want peak performance.

it matters for headroom. The differences between 16v and 19v were about 1.5-2db (when fed tones to measure). At 16v it overloads sooner.  :-\
Woah, didn't know that.  I'll feed my Sonosax 19 volts from now on.   Oh, and the Sonosax requires very little power (after 12 hours my Powerizer 16/19 volt battery still shows 4 bars) so I'd suggest 19 volt as the difference is probably negligible.
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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2011, 06:05:47 PM »
Thanks for all the input gentlemen!  I have built both a tekkeon and DVD cable already and will most likely opt for the tekkeon leaving the DVD one for festivals.  One thing that sucks is that both "m" and "n" tips fit but neither seem to stay in snuggly.  I guess that is what gaff tape is for.....
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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2011, 06:26:56 PM »
Thanks, I remember reading that also.  Obviously I would like to run it at the lowest optimal voltage to extend run time but want peak performance.

it matters for headroom. The differences between 16v and 19v were about 1.5-2db (when fed tones to measure). At 16v it overloads sooner.  :-\
Woah, didn't know that.  I'll feed my Sonosax 19 volts from now on.   Oh, and the Sonosax requires very little power (after 12 hours my Powerizer 16/19 volt battery still shows 4 bars) so I'd suggest 19 volt as the difference is probably negligible.

Yeah, in my experience (at 16v) it's pulsing at first and then it just lays into the channel if you push it any further (as "normal"). I thought I was going crazy and then flipped it back to 19 and it went away at that gain setting (and just materializes as normal when I add a little more gain, no pulsing that I could discern). I don't have anything that will feed it more then 20v so I don't know how much 19v falls short of it's top end of 24v, but I suspect it's not much.
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Offline ellaguru

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2011, 03:45:55 PM »
wow..i was totally unaware of all of this too...when not on 2x9v battery power i use house power.  the wall wort that was given to me w. the sxm2 is a 15v.  i think its for some sort of ibm product.  the tip of it is actually snug vs. the tekkeon ones i have.

power light flashes like crazy when i try to power it with the tekkeon..wasnt too sure what that meant on a full battery feeding it 14v.   

is there a correct sonosax wall wort for this thing?

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2011, 04:11:28 PM »
wow..i was totally unaware of all of this too...when not on 2x9v battery power i use house power.  the wall wort that was given to me w. the sxm2 is a 15v.  i think its for some sort of ibm product.  the tip of it is actually snug vs. the tekkeon ones i have.

power light flashes like crazy when i try to power it with the tekkeon..wasnt too sure what that meant on a full battery feeding it 14v.   

is there a correct sonosax wall wort for this thing?

1) I don't think there is an "official" wallwort, didn't see any in the literature.
2) The low battery light effect (uber flashing) comes on around 14 or 15v. The tekkeon's seem to slightly undervolt in my experience by maybe 1/3 to 1/2 a volt (selecting 12v on the tekkeon yeilds a 722 read out of 11.6v for example) so the 14v setting may be enough to push it into that territory.

Thanks for all the input gentlemen!  I have built both a tekkeon and DVD cable already and will most likely opt for the tekkeon leaving the DVD one for festivals.  One thing that sucks is that both "m" and "n" tips fit but neither seem to stay in snuggly.  I guess that is what gaff tape is for.....

A "B" tip is the closest I can come with the tekkeon provided tips, and it's sort of snug, but it's rather shallow, not sure if it would matter (I didn't fire it up to check). I'm not sure there is a tip that is truly intended for this device...

edit: it does matter, it will work as long as you don't breath on it. It shorts out/off with any movements including rotation. Either M or N tips are probably a better bet.  :-\
« Last Edit: May 13, 2011, 10:59:15 PM by page »
"This is a common practice we have on the bus; debating facts that we could easily find through printed material. It's like, how far is it today? I think it's four hours, and someone else comes in at 11 hours, and well, then we'll... just... talk about it..." - Jeb Puryear

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Offline ellaguru

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2011, 04:46:11 PM »
the tip on the cable i was given fits quite nice, but there's no tekkeon tip that is even close to it...hmmm...has anyone ever contacted sonosax to see if there is/was a proper wall power cable for it?  i run off of house power 75% of the time so id like to have the real deal if possible.  + im only sending the sax 15v so im under powering it and causing less headroom?  yikes!

Offline it-goes-to-eleven

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2011, 05:14:59 PM »
There are various laptop batteries that are 18, 19 volts... and more.   Some of those are available surplus/cheap.  Though you always have to watch out for age and heat induced capacity reduction.  There are also power tool batteries.

Given that the 'sax is picky about voltage, I'd also be concerned that it is picky about how clean that power is. Just because a device outputs a certain voltage does not mean that it is 'clean'.

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2011, 05:59:23 PM »
the tip on the cable i was given fits quite nice, but there's no tekkeon tip that is even close to it...hmmm...has anyone ever contacted sonosax to see if there is/was a proper wall power cable for it?  i run off of house power 75% of the time so id like to have the real deal if possible.  + im only sending the sax 15v so im under powering it and causing less headroom?  yikes!

Based on my experiences, it seems so, but I think you're working in the margins at that point. I could get the red light to come on and stay on (it actually pulsed in brightness in time to the distortion), but I could do that at both voltages I tried.

Given that the 'sax is picky about voltage, I'd also be concerned that it is picky about how clean that power is. Just because a device outputs a certain voltage does not mean that it is 'clean'.

Also a valid point, there are somethings in my tests that I didn't try and control for; quality of the DC current at 16v vs 19v. Second, I didn't try a different battery which would have different DC/DC converters. I read here that someone tried using the sax drawing on a power source that was shared with another object and that introduced noise, and they thought it was a bad grounding mechanism on the sax end.

If you're looking to eek out that little be extra headroom from your sax, I recommend sitting down and feeding it tones to see where distortion occurs and then test it by voltage there.
"This is a common practice we have on the bus; debating facts that we could easily find through printed material. It's like, how far is it today? I think it's four hours, and someone else comes in at 11 hours, and well, then we'll... just... talk about it..." - Jeb Puryear

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Offline ellaguru

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2011, 06:19:40 PM »
i can't claim that ive ever been let down by the sx-m2, no matter how ive powered it.  i just wonder what im missing, if anything by only feeding it the 15v..

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2011, 04:38:05 PM »
i emailed sonosax yesterday and got a reply:

Dear Mr Rees,

thank you for your kind message, I am glad to hearing that you still enjoy your SONOSAX SX-M2.

Almost any good - well regulated - Main adapter can be used with the SX-M2. As you know it accepts DC Voltages form 12 to 24 Volts
We strongly recommend you to use a 24V DC adapter as 24 volts offers a higher Dynamic range and a higher headroom than a 12Volts adapter.

I hope this answer your question

Kind regards

Pierre Blanc
SONOSAX
Sales and Customer Support


Le 16.01.2011 22:48, chris a écrit :
> Hello.
>      I've been a very happy user of the sx-m2 for many years now.  I was wondering if there was a proper sonosax wall power cable for it?  Can you recommend one?
>
> Thanks for your time
>
> Chris Rees
> Milan MI USA

Offline it-goes-to-eleven

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2011, 12:36:50 PM »
So I have been thinking about this a bit more...   The sax is far from a cheap pre-amp.  They could have included a regulator to increase the input voltage to 24v.  However, they chose not to.  The question is, why?

Was it because doing it cleanly is difficult, and they wanted to give serious users the option of providing really good 24 v power?  If so, is the performance compromised by the regulators included in the various batteries?  I mean, there is a difference in designing a power supply optimized for a high end pre-amp vs. a variable output pre-amp built into a battery.

If I were a sax user, I'd be looking into providing it really good 24 volt power.

I have previously observed the impact of power quality on pre-amp performance by comparing the noise floor of the pre-amp via a detailed FFT spectrogram.  Baudline, under linux, is an excellent tool for that.

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2011, 05:15:12 PM »
^^  and why cant they seem to even recommend a specific wall wort for the thing..puzzling.  the proper tip situation is making my head spin too...

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2011, 05:21:07 PM »
^^  and why cant they seem to even recommend a specific wall wort for the thing..puzzling.  the proper tip situation is making my head spin too...

not sure there ever was one. No space in the box and it's not mentioned in any documentation. The tip issue is fuxt though, Try B, M, and N and see what works best for you.  :-\
"This is a common practice we have on the bus; debating facts that we could easily find through printed material. It's like, how far is it today? I think it's four hours, and someone else comes in at 11 hours, and well, then we'll... just... talk about it..." - Jeb Puryear

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Offline it-goes-to-eleven

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2011, 05:49:17 PM »
I  can tell you that wall wart design and quality vary greatly.  First, you have your transformer based designs, and your switched designs.   Many people with squeezeboxes replace the wall wart supply with something better.  A friend just gave me a really nice one.

You might try researching 24v wall warts that are good for audio apps.

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Re: sonosax sx-m2 ideal voltage?
« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2011, 01:21:56 AM »
Proper tip specs:

5.5mm OD
2.5mm ID (I think it's actually 2.1, but I have a 2.5 that works)
12mm in length or longer (all of the delivered tekkeon plugs are 10mm)

Tekkeon makes a special plug that will work but it's not sold with the batteries, it's for a Panasonic laptop, part number PA-S5F on their site. My existing plug which is ok is that spec so per tekkeon support, that should be fine (I haven't had my 12mm L/2.5mm ID tip fall out or produce noise when rotated which the 10mm length plugs seem to). I put in to support to see if they had a 12mm length w/ 2.1mm ID and I'll edit this post when they get back to me (last reply was at 12:30AM on a weekend, kudos).

If you're using the 16/19v powerizer laptop dvd batteries, you're already using a 2.5mm ID/12mm length tip (its the only one I could get to work with mine).

edit: they don't have a 2.1, but did say you can shave the black plastic some to achieve it. The 2.5 that is linked above works (arrived today) and is solid enough for my own comfort, it won't fall out by any means but I wouldn't want to try and hang the sax by it level of solid.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2011, 06:18:09 PM by page »
"This is a common practice we have on the bus; debating facts that we could easily find through printed material. It's like, how far is it today? I think it's four hours, and someone else comes in at 11 hours, and well, then we'll... just... talk about it..." - Jeb Puryear

"Nostalgia ain't what it used to be." - Jim Williams

 

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