ipod tube dock


Kurtis Berry sent in his response to all the ipod speaker docks out there. Instead of buying one, he built one. It’s really a combination of several projects, and it looks great. He used a monoblock tube amp kit to provide 8 watts of excitement to a well known diy speaker design, all encased in oak. He’s hit that wall we all know – that point where we quit because it’s working so nicely as it is. Still, I’m not sure that adding a second channel would add too much to the sound experience with his speaker unless he wants to build a matched set. (I can’t give him too much grief, I’m jealous.)

Comments

  1. ex-parrot says:

    FSM iPod skin! yeah!

  2. trebuchet03 says:

    ^^ beat me to it… hell yeah fsm!

  3. blip says:

    Cool! But it seems like a lot of effort for mono.

  4. Tom Parker says:

    Now thats nice… I just bought a iPod nano 2 dock… tried making one but it didnt go very far

  5. farris says:

    Does any company make an iPod cover that looks like oak? I think that would be sick in this project… hmmm… (*looks up price of blank stickers online*)

  6. steve says:

    1 chanel? plz, hackaday nedds some real hacks, my 5yrold culd build that it needs mor leds

  7. You have a child, Steve? I didn’t know they let trolls breed.

    I love this hack. I’ve been thinking about screwing together a tube-amp’d iPod dock for a few months now and this just gave me a serious kick in the butt.

  8. fred says:

    From the tube amp website:
    “These Amplifiers may be operated as
    supplied, however voltages in excess of 200 volts
    are present on the board and the tubes get
    very hot. It is advised that the amplifier be mounted in a well-ventilated metal enclosure to reduce the potential of fire or shock.”

    Hope that beautiful wood enclosure never catches fire.

  9. Scruge says:

    Speakers look good.

    But I don’t understand the need for tube amp on an ipod?

  10. jay says:

    The company sells a stereo tube amp: http://www.s5electronics.com/tube12.html

    I have built it and it sounds nice. I’ve been using it quite a bit. It does get very hot so I have to make sure the cats stay away from it.

    I bought mine here:

    http://www.tubesandmore.com/

    they have the same kit for less money.

  11. ... says:

    am I the only one that doesn’t see the point of hooking the pos daq in an ipod into a $100 worth of tube amp? I seriously doubt that he is using lossless compression on a nano…

    on the other hand I do agree with the mono, as the speakers are so close to each-other that you wouldn’t get any stereo separation anyway. I just hope that he correctly combined the 2 stereo channels into the single mono one.

  12. jim says:

    it’s brilliant – i don’t mind mono in such a small design because i’d be wanting to use this as a portable or second stereo, and setting up stereo speakers for proper separation isn’t as easy as just placing them a foot apart – well it is nearly that easy, but considering that most stereos aren’t really that stereo, and it doubles the work and price, i’d build mono.

    as for valves? i don’t have any, but even with mp3 they’ll sound so much more alive and natural. i imagine the bass is beautiful.

    best hack yet – pity there aren’t more details.

  13. n3rrd says:

    The source of the sound isn’t necessarily all that important… the tubes will color (warm) any signal passed through them, from a DAC or a record player. It’s no more stupid than running a CD player through a tube amp.

  14. Dan says:

    “…” if you read about the construction of the dayton 3 loudspeaker you will see that it is actually a 2 mid-woofer 1 tweeter setup with a crossover circuit built into it, rather than a stereo setup. the guy that designed the d3 is incredibly knowledgable about speaker construction.

  15. agent420 says:

    “Hope that beautiful wood enclosure never catches fire.”

    Bet you drive a Volvo.

  16. Chris Grier says:

    I too built the stereo kit from tubesandmore.com, about five years ago, and it’s an amazing amp.

    I made four small improvements, though:

    1. I subbed out the stock capacitors with slightly better ones, for a total cost of about $4.

    2. I put the whole kit and kaboodle under a Marantz-style cage, which I bought from Hammond (prob from angela.com).

    3. I re-mounted the RCA inputs to a more user-friendly location on the chassis.

    4. The PCB-mount tube sockets that came with the thing are some sort of plastic, and started to deform and turn brown within a month, so I subbed ceramic ones at a cost of about $8.

    The bass on this thing is pretty good. Eight watts is plenty loud for home listening.

    I also have what the audiophile geeks call a “single-ended triode” amp, which is supposedly the bees nuts as far as accuracy, euphonious distortion, killer sound, blah blah blah, are concerned, but this thing is every bit as good, the bass is a little stronger in the sub 50Hz range, and the eight watts pushes my not-very-expensive speakers better. I like it.

    There’s also a fair amount of web pages devoted to modding the thing; google K-502, which is the number given to the kit when I bought it yrs ago.

  17. Jay says:

    So, I’m also wondering about the safety of surrounding the tubes with wood… is this generally a risk for fire?

  18. agent420 says:

    “So, I’m also wondering about the safety of surrounding the tubes with wood… is this generally a risk for fire?”

    No more than a hot cup of coffee on your end table. (but you probably use a coaster)

    Funny to see these reactions, goes to show 1] how ignorant people are about tubes these days, and 2] how nervous people are… your toaster is much bigger threat than this!

  19. La Rotta says:

    Is Beautiful!!!! IGorgeous!! I dont have any words. I love the sound, but I love more the old-school style, and MUCH MORE the mix between old and new school!!!!

  20. Kurtis Berry says:

    the only part that gets warm is the wood directly behind the tubes. it isn’t as hot as my coffe cup.

  21. Matt says:

    Transistors > tubes.

  22. Matt says:

    tubes are so much better than transistors if a bit more expensive. The warm sound and bass you can get out of a good set of EL34s or KT-88s is unrivaled.

  23. P says:

    Hi! Wonderful work! I’m gonna build one of these too, as soon as I find a cheap kit on the web! Thanks for sharing!

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