New (to me) amp: McCormack DNA-125

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Comments

  • Viking64
    Viking64 Posts: 5,751
    kharp1 wrote: »
    Man, you almost made it out alive!
    I made it out of Florida alive. That's what counts the most, I guess. :p

  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 11,100
    Kerry, I double dog dare you to!
    kharp1 wrote: »
    I've seriously considered it...

  • kharp1
    kharp1 Posts: 3,453
    Clipdat wrote: »
    Kerry, I double dog dare you to!
    kharp1 wrote: »
    I've seriously considered it...

    Oh, I have to now :)
  • gmcman
    gmcman Posts: 1,667
    Clipdat wrote: »
    Kerry, I double dog dare you to!

    Oh Yeah.....


  • Tony M
    Tony M Posts: 10,621
    The Triple Dog Dare! :o
    Most people just listen to music and watch movies. I EXPERIENCE them.
  • kharp1
    kharp1 Posts: 3,453
    Don't ever triple dog dare a guy that looks like a serial killer...
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 11,100
    I keep hearing this from various people, you're gonna have to just post up a pic already.
    kharp1 wrote: »
    Don't ever triple dog dare a guy that looks like a serial killer...

  • lightman1
    lightman1 Posts: 10,709
    Clipdat wrote: »
    I keep hearing this from various people, you're gonna have to just post up a pic already.
    kharp1 wrote: »
    Don't ever triple dog dare a guy that looks like a serial killer...

    I've met him......gave me the heebie-jeebies....
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 11,100
    Kerry did you order it yet?

    Then you could send your current DNA-125 to SMc Audio for upgrades!
  • dkfreebird
    dkfreebird Posts: 1,153
    That's saying a lot from a guy that specializes in animal husbandry.
    zzdqy1iuwegr.png

    Why do I think Russ needs to put one of these on every time he logs into this forum? :p

    2 Channel
    Polk 1.2tl's Fully modded with dreadnought

    Musical Fidelity M6Si
    North Star Intenso Dac
    Auralic Aries Mini Streamer
    Marantz UD 7007
    Pangea PC
    Wireworld Equinox 7 interconnects
    Wireworld Equinox 7 Speaker Cables and Jumpers

    Backups 2.3tl, 3.1tl, Crs+ pin/blade with stands.Monitor 5 peerless,Monitor 4 peerless,Polk R200,McCormack Dna 0.5 Deluxe McCormack Dna 1,Dared Sl 2000A,Dayens Ampino Rogue Magnum 66 pre
  • ken brydson
    ken brydson Posts: 8,293
    kharp1 wrote: »
    lightman1 wrote: »
    Clipdat wrote: »
    I keep hearing this from various people, you're gonna have to just post up a pic already.
    kharp1 wrote: »
    Don't ever triple dog dare a guy that looks like a serial killer...

    I've met him......gave me the heebie-jeebies....

    That's saying a lot from a guy that specializes in animal husbandry.

    Well yeah....

    1tmsyfau4icy.jpg
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 11,100
    It's not on their site anymore. Someone BOUGHT IT!
  • Tony M
    Tony M Posts: 10,621
    Clipdat wrote: »
    It's not on their site anymore. Someone BOUGHT IT!

    Interesting.... ;)
    Most people just listen to music and watch movies. I EXPERIENCE them.
  • kharp1
    kharp1 Posts: 3,453
    Clipdat wrote: »
    @kharp1 was it you?!

    No, I was seriously going to grab it and give it a listen after talking with them, but, saw a PS Audio Directstream and Memory Player that I thought I was going to buy and didn't want to tie up a grand on a test.
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 11,100
    oooo PS Audio! Fancy!

    Probably for the best anyway. Hopefully the new owner is happy with it, or we'll see it back up on the TMR Audio site in a month.

    FWIW, my new amplifier(s) don't hum at all. Literally silent... glorious. :)
    kharp1 wrote: »
    No, I was seriously going to grab it and give it a listen after talking with them, but, saw a PS Audio Directstream and Memory Player that I thought I was going to buy and didn't want to tie up a grand on a test.

  • linnex
    linnex Posts: 2
    Clipdat wrote: »
    I tried to carefully listen to the amp again, in an attempt to figure out where the hum was originating from. It does not appear to be coming from the middle front center of the unit where the power transformer is located. It was directional in the sense it seemed to be coming from the left and right sides about midway back. Maybe these things circular things that have power cords running into and out of them that are mounted to the heat sinks? Not sure what they are.

    tk1ev1ndm1kh.jpg
    11tsteve wrote: »
    And even before the upgrades, it was a dead quiet amp.
    I have an NAD 2150 I just had rebuilt with that transformer hum, and frankly it drives me nuts. The tech insists he didn't hear it when he had the amp. I would like to know what the issue is and how to fix it.

    Thanks for your thoughts and for having a civil discussion with me. Regarding this particular mixer, I chose it because I've used it several times hooked up to powered monitors and I know through my own personal experience that it does not appear to color the sound.

    Still, you have a point about build quality, I'm sure it was built to a budget. I've personally tried 11 different DJ mixers and could comment about each of their sound qualities. In my opinion the Tascam is extremely neutral. It does seem to have some redeeming build qualities as described in the user manual:

    "The oversized power supply of the XS-8 offers plenty of headroom at the inputs and outputs.Therefore a high dynamic range and output volume is achieved, without affecting audio quality. Let's compare: Normally, standard bipolar power supply outputs are 7.5 or 9 Volt (rarely 12 Volt). An input voltage of 9 Volt must be internally spitted into +/- 4.5 Volt. In contrast, The XS-8's internal power supply outputs +/- 18 Volt which means a total 36 Volt! This difference implies a much higher audio quality with a higher output level and better dynamics."

    All that being said, I'm in no way tied to using this as a preamp, it was literally just to try to give a neutral preamp/frontend so I could attempt to judge the power amp.

    I can certainly hook up the Schiit Saga or even my Rane MP2014 mixer that has "Line-input to Line-output dynamic range of 113 dB (A-weighted) with vanishingly low THD+N of 0.001%"
    gmcman wrote: »

    I don't know anything about the build quality of the Tascam. I have to assume for the sake of this discussion, that a DJ mixer is not a fair comparison to a NAD integrated preamp.

    In theory, I see your point. But again, for the sake of this discussion, just because it's an "all analog" design...that doesn't necessarily mean it's doing the best job of trying to maintain sonic purity as it passes through it.

    I personally don't feel that taking the clean sound from your Marantz, through a DJ mixer is going to aid you in assessing the SQ of your McCormack amp.

    Cables currently in use is Kimber Kable Tonik from the Marantz to the preamp and Audioquest King Cobra from the preamp to the power amp.

    Becoming slightly concerned that others have said that their McCormack amps run quiet and mine has this slight hum emanating from the chassis.

    Thanks for the power related upgrades that could be done, certainly worth considering.
    tonyb wrote: »
    That can be a variety of things. You could have an impedance mismatch going on, a poor quality cable in the mix. That DJ mixer certainly isn't helpful.

    Regarding the noise issue, something isn't right if the amp has a hum to it. These amps run quiet, and don't produce transformer hum or hiss in the tweeters. Either something is screwy with the circuit it's plugged into, or the amp itself.

    A good non current limiting power conditioner could help as your in an apartment and limited to what you can do. You could also change the wall socket to a hospital grade at least, if that's possible.

    Haha, I was actually thinking something similar to myself and felt like I was going crazy about not hearing the difference. I was like "Well I could save a lot of money, I'll just stick with the NAD. Might as well just sell all my fancy ICs and go back to Monoprice cables since I can't tell the difference!"

    I agree that it's possible that the amp might need some upkeep. Thanks for the tip about leaving it on, I noticed it gets only slightly warm.

    It's the stock power cord with a molded non-removable ground pin. I don't have access to one of those cool Pangea ones with the removable ground.
    kharp1 wrote: »
    I tend to agree with Tony here, there is considerable difference between the NAD sound and McCormack. No offense to anyone, but, sone people don't hear differences and you may be one of those people. I wish I was at times.

    Hum could be related to a couple of things...transformer going bad, though I doubt it. I think, THINK, the McCormack uses a pretty good torroid, so I'd start looking elsewhere first, like grounding issues. Take the ground lug off the amp cord first and see if that eliminates all, or part, of the hum.

    I'd just leave the McCormack on all the time, it'll draw practically nothing while idle and won't build up heat.

    Hm, interesting, another experience that points to the fact that mine should be silent while powered on. :(
    MrBuhl wrote: »
    Have to agree with others here, I have two McCormack's (one is 11Steve's formerly) and both are silent running

    Tony, I got it here: http://tmraudio.com/components/power-amplifiers/mccormack-dna-125-stereo-power-amplifier/
    tonyb wrote: »
    Where did you buy the amp from ?

    I agree that they are thermal protection relays that will activate and shut the power supply down if the amp gets too hot.. This can happen if the dc offset is to high out of balance and positive and negative sides of the transistors are not equal. i notice the DC offset and Bias adjustment with the two blue adjusters on the back of the amp at each side.
  • linnex
    linnex Posts: 2
    Clipdat wrote: »
    I tried to carefully listen to the amp again, in an attempt to figure out where the hum was originating from. It does not appear to be coming from the middle front center of the unit where the power transformer is located. It was directional in the sense it seemed to be coming from the left and right sides about midway back. Maybe these things circular things that have power cords running into and out of them that are mounted to the heat sinks? Not sure what they are.

    tk1ev1ndm1kh.jpg
    11tsteve wrote: »
    And even before the upgrades, it was a dead quiet amp.
    I have an NAD 2150 I just had rebuilt with that transformer hum, and frankly it drives me nuts. The tech insists he didn't hear it when he had the amp. I would like to know what the issue is and how to fix it.

    Thanks for your thoughts and for having a civil discussion with me. Regarding this particular mixer, I chose it because I've used it several times hooked up to powered monitors and I know through my own personal experience that it does not appear to color the sound.

    Still, you have a point about build quality, I'm sure it was built to a budget. I've personally tried 11 different DJ mixers and could comment about each of their sound qualities. In my opinion the Tascam is extremely neutral. It does seem to have some redeeming build qualities as described in the user manual:

    "The oversized power supply of the XS-8 offers plenty of headroom at the inputs and outputs.Therefore a high dynamic range and output volume is achieved, without affecting audio quality. Let's compare: Normally, standard bipolar power supply outputs are 7.5 or 9 Volt (rarely 12 Volt). An input voltage of 9 Volt must be internally spitted into +/- 4.5 Volt. In contrast, The XS-8's internal power supply outputs +/- 18 Volt which means a total 36 Volt! This difference implies a much higher audio quality with a higher output level and better dynamics."

    All that being said, I'm in no way tied to using this as a preamp, it was literally just to try to give a neutral preamp/frontend so I could attempt to judge the power amp.

    I can certainly hook up the Schiit Saga or even my Rane MP2014 mixer that has "Line-input to Line-output dynamic range of 113 dB (A-weighted) with vanishingly low THD+N of 0.001%"
    gmcman wrote: »

    I don't know anything about the build quality of the Tascam. I have to assume for the sake of this discussion, that a DJ mixer is not a fair comparison to a NAD integrated preamp.

    In theory, I see your point. But again, for the sake of this discussion, just because it's an "all analog" design...that doesn't necessarily mean it's doing the best job of trying to maintain sonic purity as it passes through it.

    I personally don't feel that taking the clean sound from your Marantz, through a DJ mixer is going to aid you in assessing the SQ of your McCormack amp.

    Cables currently in use is Kimber Kable Tonik from the Marantz to the preamp and Audioquest King Cobra from the preamp to the power amp.

    Becoming slightly concerned that others have said that their McCormack amps run quiet and mine has this slight hum emanating from the chassis.

    Thanks for the power related upgrades that could be done, certainly worth considering.
    tonyb wrote: »
    That can be a variety of things. You could have an impedance mismatch going on, a poor quality cable in the mix. That DJ mixer certainly isn't helpful.

    Regarding the noise issue, something isn't right if the amp has a hum to it. These amps run quiet, and don't produce transformer hum or hiss in the tweeters. Either something is screwy with the circuit it's plugged into, or the amp itself.

    A good non current limiting power conditioner could help as your in an apartment and limited to what you can do. You could also change the wall socket to a hospital grade at least, if that's possible.

    Haha, I was actually thinking something similar to myself and felt like I was going crazy about not hearing the difference. I was like "Well I could save a lot of money, I'll just stick with the NAD. Might as well just sell all my fancy ICs and go back to Monoprice cables since I can't tell the difference!"

    I agree that it's possible that the amp might need some upkeep. Thanks for the tip about leaving it on, I noticed it gets only slightly warm.

    It's the stock power cord with a molded non-removable ground pin. I don't have access to one of those cool Pangea ones with the removable ground.
    kharp1 wrote: »
    I tend to agree with Tony here, there is considerable difference between the NAD sound and McCormack. No offense to anyone, but, sone people don't hear differences and you may be one of those people. I wish I was at times.

    Hum could be related to a couple of things...transformer going bad, though I doubt it. I think, THINK, the McCormack uses a pretty good torroid, so I'd start looking elsewhere first, like grounding issues. Take the ground lug off the amp cord first and see if that eliminates all, or part, of the hum.

    I'd just leave the McCormack on all the time, it'll draw practically nothing while idle and won't build up heat.

    Hm, interesting, another experience that points to the fact that mine should be silent while powered on. :(
    MrBuhl wrote: »
    Have to agree with others here, I have two McCormack's (one is 11Steve's formerly) and both are silent running

    Tony, I got it here: http://tmraudio.com/components/power-amplifiers/mccormack-dna-125-stereo-power-amplifier/
    tonyb wrote: »
    Where did you buy the amp from ?

    I agree that they are thermal protection relays that will activate and shut the power supply down if the amp gets too hot.. This can happen if the dc offset is to high out of balance and positive and negative sides of the transistors are not equal. i notice the DC offset and Bias adjustment with the two blue adjusters on the back of the amp at each side.
    Clipdat wrote: »
    There is a hum originating from the actual amplifier itself when it is powered on.

    There is a slight white noise/hiss originating from the tweeters of the speakers when the amplifier is powered on.
    I am missing something here. Is it a hum through the speakers or a hum from the actual transformer?
    if you have very sensitive speakers a little hiss can be normal. I have the Mc Cormac DNA125 and it hums slightly when my ear is right against the case. Sounds like normal amount of transformer hum to me. In fact compared to some Naim stuff a lot less. My speakers are silent though.. They are Magnepan LRS with a REL X7 Sub. Which by the way the McCormac sounds great using the High Outputs from the sub.
  • jdjohn
    jdjohn Posts: 2,408
    I wonder if giving the transformer a fresh bath of tarnish/shellac would have helped. I have a DNA-125 that runs quiet, but then a 225 will the hum ailment.
    "This may not matter to you, but it does to me for various reasons, many of them illogical or irrational, but the vinyl hobby is not really logical or rational..." - member on Vinyl Engine
    "Sometimes I do what I want to do. The rest of the time, I do what I have to." - Cicero, in Gladiator
    Regarding collectibles: "It's not who gets it. It's who gets stuck with it." - Jimmy Fallon
  • pitdogg2
    pitdogg2 Posts: 21,000
    jdjohn wrote: »
    I wonder if giving the transformer a fresh bath of tarnish/shellac would have helped. I have a DNA-125 that runs quiet, but then a 225 will the hum ailment.

    I've seen the same with the Carver TFM transformers. Some really hum on start up but then dissipate. Others do have a slight hum but never above barely noticeable. You got to get pretty close to a tweeter to notice.
  • skipshot12
    skipshot12 Posts: 85
    Why not send it to McCormack and have a going over.

    One of the reasons I buy preowned gear.
    Allows me a cushion just in case.
  • Clipdat
    Clipdat Posts: 11,100
    Cool post bro, welcome to 5 years ago.
  • jdjohn
    jdjohn Posts: 2,408
    I called SMc Audio awhile back regarding the hum in my DNA-225, and had a long conversation with a helpful guy named Patrick(?). He gave me all kinds of things to try before resorting to sending in my unit for servicing. Nothing worked, and I still have the amp...really need to do something with it.
    "This may not matter to you, but it does to me for various reasons, many of them illogical or irrational, but the vinyl hobby is not really logical or rational..." - member on Vinyl Engine
    "Sometimes I do what I want to do. The rest of the time, I do what I have to." - Cicero, in Gladiator
    Regarding collectibles: "It's not who gets it. It's who gets stuck with it." - Jimmy Fallon
  • la2vegas
    la2vegas Posts: 414
    jdjohn wrote: »
    I called SMc Audio awhile back regarding the hum in my DNA-225, and had a long conversation with a helpful guy named Patrick(?). He gave me all kinds of things to try before resorting to sending in my unit for servicing. Nothing worked, and I still have the amp...really need to do something with it.

    Try the for sale section, you never know.
  • skipshot12
    skipshot12 Posts: 85
    Sucks to hear the hum's still there. That would bother me a ship-ton and I would need it gone.

    That should be dead quiet. McCormack builds great amps.