1. Time for some upgrades in server hardware and software to enhance security and take AK to the next level. Please contribute what you can to sales@audiokarma.org at PayPal.com - Thanks from the AK Team
    Dismiss Notice

How balanced is balanced?

Discussion in 'Tube Audio' started by Sleigo, Oct 13, 2018.

  1. Sleigo

    Sleigo New Member

    Messages:
    10
    I have a Mcintosh c2600 tube pre-amp. I have noticed of late that the output gauges occasionally vary between left and right; is this a feature of the source (ie the record or CD) or is this a problem with my pre-amp? Sorry, newbie question with no tech savvy
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  2. kward

    kward AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,408
    Location:
    Utah
    Rig up or purchase a Y adapter and drive both preamp channels from the same source. That will tell you if it is the preamp or the source.
     
  3. triode17

    triode17 Super Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    If you are monitoring a stereo signal, then the signals will vary from each other on the meters.
     
  4. Yamaki

    Yamaki Not For Hire Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,031
    Location:
    Hillsboro, Oregon
    The frequency production is not the same across both channels.

    You'll notice the needles "bounce" at varying levels. That represents not only the the volume level of the music in that channel, it also reflects what is being produced at that moment on that channel.

    It's called "separation" which provides the distinct sound of each instrument and voice reproduced by the music. Those levels are separate and they vary as the material was mixed to place certain instruments on specific channels during the recording process.
     
  5. Sleigo

    Sleigo New Member

    Messages:
    10
    Thanks. This is what I thought... some confusing info from someone.
    It is just variation from the original recording.
    Appreciate you.
     
  6. kward

    kward AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,408
    Location:
    Utah
    Just understand it could be possible there is an issue with the preamp. Driving both channels from a single source would identify that. But yes, apologies for not being clear. stereo signals are not supposed to be identical.
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  7. Sleigo

    Sleigo New Member

    Messages:
    10
    Thanks kward, if anything looks crazy off I will try your method with a Y
     
  8. 4-2-7

    4-2-7 Smart Ass Sponsor Subscriber

    Messages:
    27,949
    Location:
    San Francisco Peninsula
    You don't have to go through any cable changes from the source. Both channels should be different as Michael said above in stereo. However if you want to see if both channels operate the same, you have a mono switch on the preamp. If you set that to mono it should show the meters moving the same output at the same time.
     
  9. frahengeo

    frahengeo AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    815
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    As a sanity check, you can always swap the left and right to see if the lower VU follows. Of course, this assumes that there are particular passages or sections of a song/album where the differences were observed.
     
  10. crispycircuit

    crispycircuit AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,417
    Location:
    near Buffalo NY
    The Vu meter circuit may have an adjustment & need to be calibrated it self. A repair service manual would have the info.
     

Share This Page