• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are many reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

First impressions after first dip into class D (2x Hypex Nilai 500 Mono)

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
I had a bit of an experience in ordering and getting these amp kits assembled and working. The amp modules themselves seemed to have been damaged in shipping (vibration caused several caps legs to fatigue via vibration and break off). Hypex (and my retailer, Deer Creek) did a great job taking care of the problem, totally painless. They sent back either my repaired modules or new ones (I can't tell).

If you can assemble a PC, you can put this kit together. I was prepared to do a bit of soldering for speaker terminals, but they have done away with that in this generation (perhaps earlier, I don't know). After seeing some thermal camera shots of the modules under heavy load producing a fair bit of heat, I decided to carefully clean both mating surfaces (alcohol) between the modules and the base plate of the amplifier chassis and apply some thermal paste. It's neither suggested or mentioned in the manual, but decided even if it's not necessary or effective, it should be harmless.

Medium gain set on amp modules. MiniDSP SHD operating as my preamp. Pair of KEF LS50 Meta (additionally 2x KC62 subs). 110Hz High pass on to speakers (ports plugged). While I haven't yet ran any further room correction or crossover/eq adjustments yet, the output volume seems like a pretty good match. At -10db on the SHD it's about as loud as I can stand. Not going to attempt pushing it to distortion as it's ridiculously loud for me.

I'm finally moving on from my Parasound hca-1500a I've had since the late 90's. It is rated for about 205W @ 8 ohm. Nilai 500 is rated for 260W @ 8 ohm. Unsurprisingly the Nilai has significantly more output at volume levels I often used with my previous amp.

Whether or not "break-in" is a real thing in amps, I'm going to listen to them for a week or two before saying too much about what I think. I will say that if they never change a bit they are already as enjoyable as my Parasound is. I am moving to class D primarily for practical reasons (heat, size, power draw, etc) so if they sound as good as that old honker, then this is a success for me.

Anyway, for others thinking of trying these out, ask me anything. I'll update this with anything I think is useful as it occurs to me.
 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
Power usage graph (10s update frequency) at high output.
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2023-02-10 at 10.16.03 AM.png
    Screen Shot 2023-02-10 at 10.16.03 AM.png
    176.5 KB · Views: 347

Matias

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Jan 1, 2019
Messages
5,141
Likes
11,082
Location
São Paulo, Brazil
So a 5W delta between low, where it is probably idle, and the peaks of "high output" listening. Goes to show how the 5W power level Amir chose for SINAD is relevant. :)
 

ROOSKIE

Major Contributor
Joined
Feb 27, 2020
Messages
1,944
Likes
3,553
Location
Minneapolis
I'm finally moving on from my Parasound hca-1500a I've had since the late 90's. It is rated for about 205W @ 8 ohm. Nilai 500 is rated for 260W @ 8 ohm. Unsurprisingly the Nilai has significantly more output at volume levels I often used with my previous amp.
Howdy, out of curiosity why do you think the Hypex has significantly more output?
This doesn't quite make sense to me.

The difference between 260 & 205watts per channel on a pair of speakers is nominal at best.

The 260watts per channel can drive a pair of speakers slightly less than 1db louder vs 205watts
This would only be available at the maximum output levels.

So something like 104db vs 103.1db at typical fairfield listening distance for 85db sensitive speakers(like the LS50's).

If you still have the Parasound this would be a good time to carefully measure and level match the two amps and see if there is any difference that way. Even have an assistant help you do a short 'blind' test.
 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
Howdy, out of curiosity why do you think the Hypex has significantly more output?
This doesn't quite make sense to me.

The difference between 260 & 205watts per channel on a pair of speakers is nominal at best.

The 260watts per channel can drive a pair of speakers slightly less than 1db louder vs 205watts
This would only be available at the maximum output levels.

So something like 104db vs 103.1db at typical fairfield listening distance for 85db sensitive speakers(like the LS50's).

If you still have the Parasound this would be a good time to carefully measure and level match the two amps and see if there is any difference that way. Even have an assistant help you do a short 'blind' test.

I've been thinking about the level difference as well because in addition to your points, the hypex is on medium gain, and the parasound has the gain turned all the way up (not sure of numeric gain values, this is all anecdotal). It's possible my parasound wasn't performing like new anymore. I've never had it recapped or anything like that. Also I've switched from singled ended output on the SHD to balanced, so perhaps those outputs are a little hotter on the SHD?
 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
With what device did you measure that please?
I would love to get my hands on one of those:)
Thank you
I use the 18 port version of this: WattBox WB-800VPS-IPVM-18

It provides power values as well as power control of each outlet. This is in a rack where I keep all my gear.

That device has an API you can connect to and control all of it, as well as pull all the power status. It does NOT record data usage internally, I wrote a custom piece of software to do that (software engineer by day). So out of the box you just get a web UI with current values, no graphs/history. Let me know if you want any more details.
 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
I've noticed in some other reviews people mentioned after long listening sessions their cases were only slightly warm to the touch. I will say that my cases are quite warm, bordering on hot. I have a thermal camera but the case is aluminum so its emissivity probably won't provide useful values. I'll look for a thermocouple of some sort to give useful data.

I'm wondering if this is similar to what others are seeing and I just classify this as hot, or if the thermal paste I put between the amp modules and the case is involved.
 

Killingbeans

Major Contributor
Joined
Oct 23, 2018
Messages
4,150
Likes
7,687
Location
Grønhøj/Karup, Denmark.
I have a thermal camera but the case is aluminum so its emissivity probably won't provide useful values.

 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
When plugging this amp in it enters low power mode. You then have to power it up either via the front panel button or trigger inputs. I decided I wanted it to always be on when AC power is supplied (in my case I control it via a power controller). This can be accomplished by bridging pins 3 and 9 on J2 header. Afterward the amp powers up within probably 2-3 seconds when power is applied. Cutting power the power supply detects immediately and deactivates the amp module, and the power supply blinks it's status light for 15 seconds or so as the caps discharge. No audible sounds through speakers entering either state.

PXL_20230214_192850176.jpg
 

Attachments

  • PS500DIY 01xx R2-1.pdf
    1.1 MB · Views: 141

Hapo

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2022
Messages
464
Likes
322
...where/how does one acquire the kit...???...$$$...???...

...are the parts from multiple sources...???...would you post links to them...???...(please)

...I built the expensive PC I am posting this with so I want to try it...
 

JSmith

Master Contributor
Joined
Feb 8, 2021
Messages
5,372
Likes
13,957
Location
Algol Perseus
...where/how does one acquire the kit...???...$$$...???...
No stock of these for a month or so though;


JSmith
 

Lawhaus

Member
Joined
May 2, 2020
Messages
48
Likes
111
Location
EU
I've been thinking about the level difference as well because in addition to your points, the hypex is on medium gain, and the parasound has the gain turned all the way up (not sure of numeric gain values, this is all anecdotal). It's possible my parasound wasn't performing like new anymore. I've never had it recapped or anything like that. Also I've switched from singled ended output on the SHD to balanced, so perhaps those outputs are a little hotter on the SHD?
This is the answer. SHD outputs higher voltage over XLR than RCA. Its actually one of the reasons why you would want to use XLR over RCA with such sn amp, you get bettet performance in the end.
 

AndreaT

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 19, 2020
Messages
617
Likes
1,197
Location
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
I use the 18 port version of this: WattBox WB-800VPS-IPVM-18

It provides power values as well as power control of each outlet. This is in a rack where I keep all my gear.

That device has an API you can connect to and control all of it, as well as pull all the power status. It does NOT record data usage internally, I wrote a custom piece of software to do that (software engineer by day). So out of the box you just get a web UI with current values, no graphs/history. Let me know if you want any more details.
It looks like WattBox sells only to certified installers...How do you get a new one as a private citizen?
 

Hapo

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2022
Messages
464
Likes
322
...looks like these are made out of an unobtainum alloy...
 
D

Deleted member 58421

Guest
The unobtanium alloy is everything they say it is, but you’ll never know.
 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
since the case is black anodized an has a kinda rough or matte surface (on a microscopic scale),
it should work quite well, or not ?
I finally got around to taking a look. I left the amps on for a little over 2 hours listening to music and tv at moderate volume. The face plate, left and right sides, were 95f in a 70f room (still air). The top was 96f. Bottom 98f (amp module screwed to baseplate with a small amount of thermal paste between). This is a flir camera on black anodized aluminum, so take with a grain of salt.

These feel warm but never what I would call hot, and aren't even in the same league as the heat output of any of my class AB stuff (unsurprisingly).
 
OP
S

sgshanaf

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2022
Messages
20
Likes
25
It looks like WattBox sells only to certified installers...How do you get a new one as a private citizen?
Find a dealer that will sell it to you. I have seen them in hifi shops before.
 
Top Bottom