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Hammond AO-29 Frequency Response

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  • stefanv
    replied
    Originally posted by Roger Memphis View Post
    Nice work, Stefan ! So nice that it really deserved its own thread.
    I especially like the fuse panel; that oughta' save some iron and copper!
    Also, nice enough that I gotta' ask... do you hire out for preamp and amp rebuilds?

    Roger Memphis
    I'm not sure I want to tackle this again any time soon. I've probably got about 40 hours in this rebuild so far (I'm replacing a few other components in the rest of the organ too).

    Originally posted by geoffbrown View Post
    So the question is what components have you changed from the original amp now in the rebuild?, also what equipment did you use to take these measurements?
    All the components are new except one resistor (a 10K 2W resistor, because when I ordered the replacement, I didn't realize it was 2W), and one ceramic capacitor (forgot to order that one). The one modification (besides the fuse block) was to insert a 3.9M resistor in series with 20pF capacitor C20. This changes the feedback in the initial part of the output amplifier and flattens the frequency response.

    I spent some time building a white noise generator, but never got one working whose noise was white enough (they all generated blue noise). Finally, I just gave in, generated a 60 second white noise .wav file, and used my phone as a test signal generator (can't use .mp3 for this, as it messes up the spectrum). I built a couple of custom cables that plugged into the phone, terminated with either an RCA plug for line-in, or alligator clips for "A" and "B" in.

    To measure the response, I fed the output (via a line-out that I'd built into the organ long ago) into the input of my laptop, running Audacity to record the 60 second long noise burst, and generate the spectrum. I exported the spectrum data to .txt files, and imported those into a custom program I wrote that generates the graphs you see. The program can compute the difference between two spectra (that's how I generated the "relative effect" graphs), and for the non-difference graphs, I actually generated the difference between the measured signal and the raw signal to adjust for any non-flatness in the noise. That's one advantage to using a recording of white noise; it's identical every time.

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  • geoffbrown
    replied
    So the question is what components have you changed from the original amp now in the rebuild?, also what equipment did you use to take these measurements?

    Leave a comment:


  • Roger Memphis
    replied
    Nice work, Stefan ! So nice that it really deserved its own thread.
    I especially like the fuse panel; that oughta' save some iron and copper!
    Also, nice enough that I gotta' ask... do you hire out for preamp and amp rebuilds?

    Roger Memphis
    Last edited by Roger Memphis; 05-15-2016, 03:47 PM. Reason: added a word "copper"

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  • RogerRabbit
    replied
    That is going to be very useful Stefan when I rebuild my M100. It'll also help when rebuilding my C3, the amps are very similar.

    roj

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  • stefanv
    replied
    The rebuilt amp works! Here's the end-to-end frequency response with pedal loud and volume loud, with the old one faintly overlaid in light blue:

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    You can see that the overall response is pretty similar below about 17kHz.

    Here are the curves for the first and second stages alone:



    The first stage seems to drop off a little more rapidy, and doesn't bounce back after 12kHz (which is beyond the range of frequencies produced by the organ anyway).

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    The second stage clearly shows my mod to improve the high end. The drop after 2kHz is gone, and in fact the goes up slightly instead. The response is now flat within 4dB from 50Hz to 20kHz, so anything fed into the line input will be reproduced with reasonable fidelity.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by andyg; 09-19-2018, 04:49 PM.

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  • geoffbrown
    replied
    The extra fusing is a great idea ,something which I will do to my amp next time it's out,my m102 had a fuse in the reverb amp but nothing in the main amp,I'll be watching this thread with great interest

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  • stefanv
    replied
    A Break from the Graphs

    Earlier today, I completed the rebuild by installing the power and output transformers from the original amplifier into the rebuilt one. Here are a few photos. First is the underside, where you can see that I've done away with the turret boards, and wired everything point-to-point, using terminal strips:

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    One mod I made to the amplifier is to fuse everything. There are fuses in all three pairs of transformer output leads (320V, 5V, and 6V), as well as a fuse in the hot input lead:

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    Here's a top view of the completed amp, ready to be reinstalled. The multi-cap is new:

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    After I reassembled the amp, I bench tested it with an old hi-fi speaker, and Klaus Wunderlich piped into the "A" input:

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    Last edited by stefanv; 05-14-2016, 08:10 PM.

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  • stefanv
    replied
    Geoff, the graphing is primarily so I can see I can compare the performance of the new amp with the old to ensure everything is working as expected. I am making one small change, which is to increase the high end response of the output amplifier. This will brighten up the organ a bit, and also make the signal path from the line-in to the output a bit more hi-fi, so that if I feed my synth input into it, it won't muddy up the synth sound.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Time for a few more response curves. These show the input (up to and including the volume pedal) and output (line-in to speaker out) stages of the amp separately:

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    Combined, they give the overall response that I posted in my original post.

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  • geoffbrown
    replied
    Ok I was assuming, going by your graphs that you were trying to change the characteristics of the amp.

    A year ago the PT my M102 blew and due to my location, spare parts are non existent, so I used a substitute PT from a fender bassman guitar amp, this has resulted in vastly improved bass , a less muddy sound and much more pronounced percussion.
    So I think there is considerable scope to experiment and make improvements to the original amp.
    I'm currently building an adjustable voltage regulated power supply for my m102 ,like many guitar amps have.

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  • stefanv
    replied
    Originally posted by geoffbrown View Post
    What are you trying to achieve with your rebuild ? is it to give a more B3 like sound or something else?
    The old amp is very noisy (scratching and rumbling noises), I suspect due to old resistors. Rather than replace them one at a time, I just decided to bite the bullet and start from scratch.

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  • geoffbrown
    replied
    What are you trying to achieve with your rebuild ? is it to give a more B3 like sound or something else?

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  • stefanv
    replied
    Vibrato

    All the results above have been from the "A" input to the speakers (equipped with a line-out tap). I also did some testing from the "B" input, which feeds into a preamp much like the "A" input, but then passes through the vibrato system before entering the intermediate amplifier. The following thus include the "B" input preamp, the vibrato delay line, and the scanner.

    Please keep in mind that my vibrato delay line is modified, so a stock M-100 will have slightly different results. I wish I'd had the foresight and equipment to do these tests before the modifications.

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    The last one is interesting. The Celeste settings feed some of the output from the terminated end of the delay line back into the input. Because of the delay, this means that some of the fed back signal will be exactly 180 degrees out of phase with the original, resulting in cancellation. The effect is a comb filter.
    Last edited by stefanv; 05-13-2016, 01:34 PM.

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  • Wes
    replied
    Excellent methodology! Nice to have you back aboard, Stefan.

    Wes

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  • stefanv
    replied
    Volume Soft

    Here we have the response with the pedal loud, and the Volume Soft switch down (on),

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    and this is the relative effect that the Volume Soft switch has:

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    Last edited by stefanv; 05-13-2016, 09:34 AM.

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  • stefanv
    replied
    Originally posted by Wes View Post
    Signal generator or tonewheel generator input?
    White noise, piped into the "A" input terminal. I wanted to measure the characteristics of the amplifier, not the organ as a whole. The tone generator of course gets louder as you go up in frequency, to compensate for the amplifier's roll-off.

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