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Author Topic: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??  (Read 5318 times)

aivoryuk

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is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« on: September 09, 2006, 12:54:26 pm »

got my Benchmark the other day  and was rather pleased with the sound of it.

however i've started to test it today and have come across something, the left channel seems to output slightly higher than the right. its amount of about 0.2-0.3 of a dB which i know does not sound a lot but its really bugging me

I tried what i was previously using out but and there is no problem it seems to be as normal.

so i played a track in mono and monitored the Benchmark output it was still showing that left side was slightly higher than the right.
With the other equipment all the peaks were pretty much the same

just to note that on the benchmark i haven't used the xlr output yet (haven't got the right cables as yet), this result is taking the output from the rca and the headphone output and it was the same for both.

this just doesn't seem right to me and as i've spent a lot of money on it (for me anyway) im a but miffed. is there anything i am missing
i know there is adjustable calibration pots for the left and right and the left looks like it has been altered slightly, but as far the manual states they are 2dB adjustment each time they are turned.

any ideas or have i bought a turkey
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OTR-jkl

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2006, 01:10:48 pm »

Easiest way to see exactly what's going on is to run a tone thru it (1k) and route the output back into the DAW so you can monitor the levels. Don't know the unit, but I wouldn't expect the headphone out to be very "accurate". I also would hope the XLR outs give the best results...
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Luke Fellingham

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2006, 02:20:26 pm »

aivoryuk wrote on Sat, 09 September 2006 17:54

got my Benchmark the other day  and was rather pleased with the sound of it.

however i've started to test it today and have come across something, the left channel seems to output slightly higher than the right. its amount of about 0.2-0.3 of a dB which i know does not sound a lot but its really bugging me

I tried what i was previously using out but and there is no problem it seems to be as normal.

so i played a track in mono and monitored the Benchmark output it was still showing that left side was slightly higher than the right.
With the other equipment all the peaks were pretty much the same

just to note that on the benchmark i haven't used the xlr output yet (haven't got the right cables as yet), this result is taking the output from the rca and the headphone output and it was the same for both.

this just doesn't seem right to me and as i've spent a lot of money on it (for me anyway) im a but miffed. is there anything i am missing
i know there is adjustable calibration pots for the left and right and the left looks like it has been altered slightly, but as far the manual states they are 2dB adjustment each time they are turned.

any ideas or have i bought a turkey


Hi Alex

What are you using to measure the output level of the DAC?

If you are running the outputs into two channels of an Analogue to digital converter and looking at the meters on your DAW then how do you know if the channels on the ADC are properly calibrated?

Assuming you've already thought of this and whatever method you're using is giving you correct results I believe you can still adjust the outputs to compensate. The manual does say 2dB per turn, however I think the pots are continuously variable and it's quite possible to make less than a whole turn. This should give you any adjustment that you may require.

Hope you get it sorted!

Noah Mintz

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2006, 02:57:21 pm »

Are you using the front panel attenuator? If so, it won't track L&R correctly till you get to half way (12 oclock). If it's too loud at half way then set your internal jumpers to a lower output. Better yet bypass the front panel attenuator and get the SPL volume knob.

Not sure why it's like this but it's been confirmed with Benchmark. I suppose a higher quality attenuator would have pushed the price higher and many people who use the DA don't need it.
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prozak

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2006, 04:05:48 pm »

If you are not using the calibrated output mode, I doubt you will get very acurate L/R tracking.

Send a tone to the DAC and measure the output with a RMS Voltmeter. That will give you an indication of your L/R error.

The DAC 1 trim pots are usable for very fine adjustments

greets

Tim

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Jerry Tubb

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2006, 05:03:10 pm »

prozak wrote on Sat, 09 September 2006 15:05

If you are not using the calibrated output mode, I doubt you will get very acurate L/R tracking.

Send a tone to the DAC and measure the output with a RMS Voltmeter. That will give you an indication of your L/R error.

The DAC 1 trim pots are usable for very fine adjustments


Ditto & Absolutely... it's just part of the process.

Recently adjusted all our Studios' DACs and ADCs with a Voltmeter

It's fun actually, do it on a regular basis, nothing like knowing that your L/R level and balance is right on.

JT
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aivoryuk

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2006, 01:03:59 pm »

thanks for the replies i managed to sort it out by adjusting the pots at the back.

what was quite nice was that i had a very personal reply from benchmark themselves who i contacted about it. so good to know they are on the mark

thanks again
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ammitsboel

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2006, 12:00:52 pm »

aivoryuk wrote on Sat, 09 September 2006 18:54

the left channel seems to output slightly higher than the right. its amount of about 0.2-0.3 of a dB which i know does not sound a lot but its really bugging me

Does it still bug you when you turn off the LCD/CRT monitor?
If not then what's the point?
aivoryuk wrote on Mon, 11 September 2006 19:03

thanks for the replies i managed to sort it out by adjusting the pots at the back.

what was quite nice was that i had a very personal reply from benchmark themselves who i contacted about it. so good to know they are on the mark

thanks again

Sorry to be such an arse, but who says you didn't waste valuable time that instead could have been spent on making good sound?

Regards
Henrik
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aivoryuk

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2006, 01:07:18 pm »

ammitsboel wrote on Tue, 12 September 2006 17:00


Sorry to be such an arse, but who says you didn't waste valuable time that instead could have been spent on making good sound?

Regards
Henrik


im surprised you wasted valuable time replying to my post
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EliasGwinn

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2006, 02:21:34 pm »

Hello ProSounder's...

I am an engineer at Benchmark, and caught wind of this thread.  I'm glad to see that the problem got resolved.

Please don't hestitate to call or email ANYTIME you have questions regarding your Benchmark products.  

See you all at AES - San Fran...keep an eye out for our new 'Unit'!!
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Elias Gwinn

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carlsaff

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Re: is my benchmark dac-1 broken??
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2006, 08:00:27 pm »

Noah Mintz wrote on Sat, 09 September 2006 13:57

Are you using the front panel attenuator? If so, it won't track L&R correctly till you get to half way (12 oclock). If it's too loud at half way then set your internal jumpers to a lower output.


Wow. This was handy info. I adjusted my jumpers today and am much more satisfied with the L/R tracking now! I often monitor at low levels, and now I have finer control over low level volume settings -- really nice. Wish I'd noticed that part of the manual sooner.
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