[Build thread] J. Haible's Son of Storm Tide Flanger

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Zaibach
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[Build thread] J. Haible's Son of Storm Tide Flanger

Post by Zaibach » Fri Jan 01, 2016 1:42 pm

I'm taking the liberty to open a build thread for this awesome project, having built one over the holidays. It just sounds awesome – the wailing when you crank up the resonance is something I have never heard before.


Last time I checked Random*Source still has the rare parts kit with to AA143 germanium diodes and the two TDA 1022 BBDs – get them while they last, I saw banzaimusic also has the BBDs, but for 20€ a piece!

http://randomsource.net/haible/son_of_s ... de_flanger

I want to share some of my build experience here. It's not a particularly difficult project, but it's a big board with many parts and a substantial amount of wiring, but thanks to Mr. Haible's excellent documentation it was not that hard.

http://jhaible.com/legacy/sonofstormtid ... mtide.html


Now, this is not quite the typical pcb for Eurorack you slap behind a panel and put it in your rack – the pcb measures 6'' by 4'' - of course, if you have a 4U or 5U system, that's less of a problem. Basically, the pcb fits between the rack rails of a 3U system and runs at 12V (well, it's intended to run at +15V/-15V), but it would require almost a 42 HP panel if you would mount the pcb in parallel. I have built mine in a separate wodden enclosure behind a 42 HP panel in 'half-rack' format, if you will. I already combined the Oakley sound SE330 Stereo Ensemble/Human voice module behind a panel in a separate enclosure, and I will also stuff the Tau Pipe Phaser along with the SOST behind the same panel.

Image

It's kind of crowded, but still doable (well, I wanted the big-ass frequency knob in the middle...). I ditched the bypass switches, also the 1V/Oct pot. Notice that I accidentally forgot to add the Fine tune pot – I was looking at Mr. Haible's front panel and thought his Fine tune pot was the 1V/Oct-pot, so I left it out. But I don't really miss it – I put a trimpot on the fine tune header of the pcb to adjust if need be.

Originally I wanted to power this with a toroid transformer and the on-board power supply. I had the transformer and already put it in the case, but when I powered the board up for the first time (without ICs) two transistors evaporated and I immediately unplugged it. I had the voltmeter ready to see if I had the correct voltages at the IC sockets, but I was not going to plug it in again to check what went wrong, afraid of further damage to the components. So I took a Frequency Central PSU I had lying around (with power regulators for +12V/-12V) and used that instead. Now, this is kind of embarrassing, but after I had removed to components for the on-board power supply (necessary if you want to power it with directly with +12V/-12V or +15V/-15V) and exchanged the two transistors (Q2 and Q3), I noticed that they did not emit magic smoke because something with the power supply went wrong, but because they were installed backwards! :doh: Well, I didn't have spare parts to build the on-board power supply again, so I went with what I had.

Long story short: Mine runs at 12V fine without any changes, but I don't have any expertise to say for sure if it would not be better to change some resistor values, neglecting the fact that the BBDs, according to the datasheet, expect -15V.

I will post pics of my build soon, but I'm curious in what format/enclosure some of you guys will build it!

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Post by leterell » Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:54 am

just the other day i was thinking of hacking together a euro panel for the tau phaser, but kind of gave up on the thing b/c of the width of the pcb. stacking it with the SOST horizontally is a very nice idea indeed, i think i might need to grab those pcb's while they last and start working on a panel!

very interested in how your build ends up looking, keep us posted :tu:

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Post by Zaibach » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:36 am

Here are some pics of my finished build... The only things missing are the two big frequency knobs (still on backorder...) and two DPDT switches with round lever. I installed two with flat lever for now, but... you know... it doesn't look right.

Image

And here's the rat's nest of wires behind the panel... I soldered the wires directly into the pcb, which is not the best idea. I was feeling lucky, and in the end I just wired two pots the wrong way round. The pcb is attached to the bottom of the case with spacers. I didn't bother with rack rails, I mean, just for four screws? Little pieces of wood in the corners and small wood screws do the trick. The panel is made from sheet aluminum, painted with white acrylic. Then I printed the panel graphics on a self-adhesive inkjet foil. The inkjet foil is not waterproof, but I think if you spill a cup of coffee over your modular, you have way bigger problems. The only thing left to do is the Tau Pipe Phaser pcb, which I still need to order...

Image

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Post by Zaibach » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:49 am

leterell wrote:just the other day i was thinking of hacking together a euro panel for the tau phaser, but kind of gave up on the thing b/c of the width of the pcb. stacking it with the SOST horizontally is a very nice idea indeed, i think i might need to grab those pcb's while they last and start working on a panel!

very interested in how your build ends up looking, keep us posted :tu:
Stacking the pcbs horizontally and putting them into my rack like this was my first idea as well, but then there was the power supply issue (I thought at the time that +/- 15V was mandatory (edit: I have a eurorack system)) and I dropped the idea. But keep in mind when doing this, that there is very little space left between the pcbs and the rack rails, and you have a lot of wires going from the pcbs to the panel. I would put the SOST Flanger behind the panel first, and behind that the Tau Phaser, because it has less connections to the front panel.

I'm looking forward to see your panel design!

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Post by the bad producer » Tue Jan 05, 2016 11:14 am

Really nice Zaibach!

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Post by Donpepperoni » Fri Apr 01, 2016 2:25 pm

Nice build! I am just about to try this one also but I'm going to put in a rack or desktop unit.....

I notice the wiring 'instructions' are in schematic form... I think there will be some figuring out for me as I'm not used to reading schematics.

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Post by GryphonP3 » Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:51 pm

Looks great! Waiting for mine to arrive in the mail.. Going to be my first "real DIY" project outside of kits where I will have to do my own faceplate.. Not sure whether it will work (need to see the physical boards first) but I'm hoping I can fit it behind a Modcan A format panel, as I have a few spaces open in my A series rack, and it seems like it might be a good size for the feature set of the Haible circuits.

Looking forward to seeing more of your builds here! Probably going to be stumbling my way through this one quite a bit, and seeing what yours put together is always very helpful and inspiring :sb:
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Post by LektroiD » Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:48 pm

That's a really nice design... I built a single SOST inside a hammond enclosure...

Image
Last edited by LektroiD on Sat Feb 10, 2018 10:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by neandrewthal » Sat Apr 02, 2016 9:15 am

Looks great!

Have You seen these chips on Aliexpress?

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/TDA1022/ ... 4.1.az32gg

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Post by PWM » Sat Apr 02, 2016 12:32 pm

Lovely design, Zaibach!

I'm still contemplating on how I want to panel my SOST, Tau pipe and Triple Chorus. I like the idea of putting them in a 19" 3U with a stereo mixer/x-fader and a cleaver way of normaling in- and out-puts.
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Post by sduck » Sat Apr 02, 2016 6:06 pm

neandrewthal wrote: Have You seen these chips on Aliexpress?

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/TDA1022/ ... 4.1.az32gg

Too good to be true?
Probably. But you never know...

I just found some at Banzai in Germany, and UTSource has them. They were still a fairly common item when I bought mine maybe 5 years ago - I was able to buy maybe a dozen of them cheap. I forget where now, maybe Allied, but they don't have them anymore.
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Post by Zaibach » Sun Apr 03, 2016 2:21 am

Donpepperoni wrote:Nice build! I am just about to try this one also but I'm going to put in a rack or desktop unit.....

I notice the wiring 'instructions' are in schematic form... I think there will be some figuring out for me as I'm not used to reading schematics.
The wiring is not really difficult, but takes up some time. I had wired some pots the wrong way round at first, and is the first thing to look at when a pot behaves funny while testing.

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Post by Zaibach » Sun Apr 03, 2016 2:29 am

neandrewthal wrote:Looks great!

Have You seen these chips on Aliexpress?

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/TDA1022/ ... 4.1.az32gg

Too good to be true?
Probably. I bought mine from eBay - a spanish seller had some in small quantities which were NOS (and is sold out now AFAIK). I don't know - if someone has about 1000 of these I get sceptical. They are not that rare yet, but you see offers like this on many vintage ICs. I just ordered two MN3009s for another project, and I am not sure If they are legit...

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Post by Zaibach » Sun Apr 03, 2016 2:41 am

LektroiD wrote:That's a really nice design... I built a single SOST inside a hammond enclosure...
Nice! I was thinking about something like that as well, but since I have like five projects in separate enclosures now, I decided to make the stackable by mounting the panel vertically.
PWM wrote:Lovely design, Zaibach!

I'm still contemplating on how I want to panel my SOST, Tau pipe and Triple Chorus. I like the idea of putting them in a 19" 3U with a stereo mixer/x-fader and a cleaver way of normaling in- and out-puts.
Decisions, decisions, decisions...
[/u]
Yeah, that's another thing that's crossed my mind. I wanted to put stuff in a 19" rack for some time now, but simply don't have the space for a 19" rack. Maybe if I move the couch out of the room.... :hihi:

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Post by jules » Thu May 05, 2016 5:37 am

Hello there,
So I have been banging my head against the bench the last few evening, not managing to have the SOST working.
Are you guys using the pot values from JH schematics?
I learn painfully that the input are more likely to deal with high impedance.

Then my main problem: when looking at the "compander" schematics, on the right there's 2 diodes D13 & D14. Before these (out of U11s), I've got a good clean signal. After these, it's chaos and I've got a massive offset of 10V... Shortcut somewhere one would say. Well if there's one, after 4 hours I still can't find it. Not on the TL074 down the line (U12, same offset at pin3 when removed), not a wrong component value, I've changed D13 & D14, and I've reflowed pretty much everything and checked for continuity around there...

Any bright idea?
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Post by the bad producer » Thu May 05, 2016 5:53 am

Hi Jules,

Which PCB are you using?

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Post by jules » Thu May 05, 2016 6:53 am

I got it from thonk, so the "random*source" version I guess.
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Post by the bad producer » Thu May 05, 2016 8:16 am

That's odd, I've built that version and it works fine - though I had one of the prototypes which had an error around the germanium diodes which was fixed on the production run (not that I would have thought that would be the error anyway!)

Is the offset still there if you remove the 4007? Wait, it's still there when you remove U12? Are you 100% about the TDA's?

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Post by jules » Fri May 06, 2016 4:25 am

Thank you very much for the answer.
Now: what is more infuriating than not finding why something's not working?
Simple: it starts working without you understanding why or what you have done...
I'm stewing in my own rage. I don't know what I have done (swapped some ICs around, something I had done 20 times already plus other stuff), or what happened, but it's working.
Thanks again for trying to help.

By the way, this module is wild.
Last edited by jules on Fri May 06, 2016 5:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by the bad producer » Fri May 06, 2016 5:24 am

Ha, great news! Yes, it's very very fun!

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Post by Zaibach » Fri May 06, 2016 10:37 am

jules wrote: I'm stewing in my own rage. I don't know what I have done (swapped some ICs around, something I had done 20 times already plus other stuff), or what happened, but it's working.
Great you got it working! Usually when I have to troubleshoot, It involves days to weeks of staring at the schematic, re-ordering and swapping parts and so on plus frequent outbursts of rage - I wish for once that a problem would just go away in the process. Every time the problem finally stares at me the realization how stupid I am also comes along :hihi:

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Post by HipDestroyer » Sun May 08, 2016 11:42 am

I really want to build this soon - as a standalone. How do you guys power it as a standalone?

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Post by thermionicjunky » Sun May 08, 2016 1:03 pm

HipDestroyer wrote:I really want to build this soon - as a standalone. How do you guys power it as a standalone?
You can install the optional AC-to-DC circuitry and connect a 16-18v AC wall-wart.

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Post by sduck » Sun May 08, 2016 1:05 pm

As above - look on the last page of the schematics for further info.
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Post by HipDestroyer » Sun May 08, 2016 1:49 pm

sduck wrote:As above - look on the last page of the schematics for further info.
Ou, hadn't seen that. Thanks guys

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