Parasound Volume Pot part two

O

ousi00

Audiophyte
So, you reversed the cable, at one end, or at both? Did you try another cable? If you only reverse the cable at one end, you verified that the power amp's input controls are set the same, but didn't do anything to verify the preamp's output. You would need to use only one cable, connected to one channel of the power amp- this eliminates one variable (the power amp's other channel) and you still need to remove the other variable (the cable for the second channel).

The imbalance being more noticeable at low levels is natural- try one cable from each channel (or a completely different pair) and see if it still does this.

If you can find an example of the integrated amp having these problems, let us know- I doubt they have been a problem.

BTW- the pot isn't sloppy, but it may not be tracking properly. Unfortunately, art manufacturing isn't perfect and end users as well as equipment manufacturers are at the mercy of chance or human failings.
I did all combinations actually yesterday, headphone (on the P5 preamp),single cable, different cables, I even swap power amp (putting the output to the Krell); before I phoned AA and returned them. I let the sales folks know about this issue and asked him to try it on their demo unit. No idea where it will lead to though.
 
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A

Ace Deprave

Audioholic Intern
I received mine back from Parasound last week, and so far it's operating as it should...keeping my fingers crossed that it stays that way.
 
E

ellbunda

Audiophyte
Yesterday I received my P5 from service.
Noise/Hiss while turning the volume up is gone, but unbalanced L/R still an issue.
Left channel is louder than right channel.
Sound P5 is excellent, but twice been repaired twice exchanged potentiometer.
Unhelpfully replace cables or headphones etc.
It's a big problem with this preamplifier, in service told me that it is a normal thing.
 
A

Ace Deprave

Audioholic Intern
Well, I'm disappointed to report that the problem has returned with my unit. It isn't as bad (yet) as it was previously, but it's getting louder as time passes. Ugh.
 
ematthews

ematthews

Audioholic General
I ended up getting another P5 in exchange for a P7 that I never used. I honestly missed the sound of the P5.. I have used the new unit twice with zero issue. I hope this one holds up as I love this preamp. Mine shipped with the updated Pot FYI.
 
A

Ace Deprave

Audioholic Intern
It's been 5 months since mine was repaired...I thought I could hear some faint static a week or so ago, and today it has gotten louder. I really love the features and sound of this preamp, and don't want to have to start shopping for something else. I emailed Parasound, and received a reply from Richard, saying he would talk to the techs and get back with me.
 
ematthews

ematthews

Audioholic General
Keep us posted. They may end doing some sort of replacement for all the owners if the new updated Pot is still failing.
 
A

Ace Deprave

Audioholic Intern
Keep us posted. They may end doing some sort of replacement for all the owners if the new updated Pot is still failing.
They have offered to replace it, and I'm going to take them up on that offer!
 
ematthews

ematthews

Audioholic General
Mine that I got directly from Bob at Parasound in August has the update in it. My original that had the pot replaced went bad a second time. I hope they made a little more adjustment to the issues. I am keeping my fingers crossed that this one stays clean for years to come. It's a wonderful sounding product.
 
ematthews

ematthews

Audioholic General
You guys are diehard fans. :)
Yep. Its a fantastic Pre. To me it sounds like my Marantz gear but a little more neutral. I don't get to listen to all this stuff much anymore. Almost using my headphones all the time in this new house. It keeps the yelling to turn it down to a minimum. Kinda sucks.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Yep. Its a fantastic Pre. To me it sounds like my Marantz gear but a little more neutral. I don't get to listen to all this stuff much anymore. Almost using my headphones all the time in this new house. It keeps the yelling to turn it down to a minimum. Kinda sucks.
I don't think those units are as good as you think. All preamps should be straight wires with gain, and there is no way any decently designed preamp should sound different from another.

There is some audiophoolery and anti digital agenda at the bottom of this debacle.

There are now only three manufacturers, that I can find of analog pots still around. Alps seem to be the best of them, but in quality they are a far cry from the quality of those made in years gone by. Compared to what we used to have the current generation of non indent pots are junk. On the Spec sheet the manufacturer claims a 20% tolerance on the resistor. So there could be a 40% error between the two channels! They claim a maximum number of cycles to be 15000 before it wears out. For a volume control that is not a lot. Worse yet the manufacturer warns against any DC leakage through the pot as it will cause premature failure.

I don't know what the circuit is , but the best for this type is the Peter Baxandal circuit, as I have stated before. This circuit is designed to circumvent or at least ameliorate the shortcomings of these pots.


My hunch is that the P5 circuit is something other. More audiophoolery could be at the bottom of this because of audiophools fixation on the evils of capacitors like C1 in the signal path. I have a hunch that they have some type of odd direct coupled circuit, which is not fully blocking DC and causing premature failure of the pots.

The biggest piece of audiophoolery though, is avoiding a digital volume control. The advent and ascendancy of the superiority of the digital volume control is the reason there are only a few relatively poor analog pots available now.

In John Atkinson's measurements there was more noise at the upper end of the audio spectrum than there should have been. But like he pointed out, I doubt this is audible. It is though probably a harbinger of the problems that develop with these units.

The performance from the digital inputs though was far from stellar. His comment was that these inputs should be regarded as "a convenience." This was a polite way of saying the quality of the unit is not up to snuff.

You can hope and keep you fingers crossed all you want on this troublesome unit. My advice is to get over it and move on to something better. This unit is obviously a poor investment for nearly a grand.
 
ematthews

ematthews

Audioholic General
Good thing I didn't pay anywhere close to retail for this. However I will continue to enjoy the fantastic sound of this unit.... Bad design or not the guys over at Parasound are great and stand behind everything.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Good thing I didn't pay anywhere close to retail for this. However I will continue to enjoy the fantastic sound of this unit.... Bad design or not the guys over at Parasound are great and stand behind everything.
They need to! I would be fed up with the hassle by now. I can tell you that.

One other area of concern about that unit is the bass management. The crossover is 12 db (second order) high and low pass. Conventional practice is 12 db high pass and 24 db (fourth order) low pass. The main speakers will already be rolling off close to crossover so 12 db makes sense.

However it means that on the low pass being second order then with a crossover at 80 Hz the sub will only be 12 db down at 160 Hz and won't have totally insignificant output until 320 Hz.

There are several problems with this.

1). This will excite port resonances on larger powerful subs that have long slot vents..

2). Many woofers will be into break up and have rising output at these frequencies making room issues a bigger concern and leading to a rise in output just where you often don't want it unless the main speakers have inadequate BSC.

3). This lower order is bound to make sub and main integration more difficult.

4). This is going to increase the likelihood of sub localization.

Bottom line is that the bass management is not equivalent to a receiver's or AV pre/pro's bass management.
 
ematthews

ematthews

Audioholic General
I have to agree with you on this point. Integrating the sub with my main's have been a bit difficult.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
I have to agree with you on this point. Integrating the sub with my main's have been a bit difficult.
Does the sub not have its own crossover, or are you using a dedicated power amp for it/them?
 
A

Arvante.

Audiophyte
Guys you might find this interesting;

I,m having the same problem with my P5, a hiss sound on the volume when using the remote control, so I came to this forum to try to find the answer to my problem, and this is what I found by purely accident. First I moved manually the volume knob left and right for a couple of times to see what I have read here and see if it was only hissing with the remote, manually it was dead silent, but once I came back to the remote the hiss was gone. Next I put up another record in my tt and tried again with the remote and the hiss was back, went down to move the volume knob manually and back to the remote and it was gone again, COULD THIS MEAN ITS NOT A HARDWARE PROBLEM BUT SOME EXTERNAL INTERFERENCE??
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Guys you might find this interesting;

I,m having the same problem with my P5, a hiss sound on the volume when using the remote control, so I came to this forum to try to find the answer to my problem, and this is what I found by purely accident. First I moved manually the volume knob left and right for a couple of times to see what I have read here and see if it was only hissing with the remote, manually it was dead silent, but once I came back to the remote the hiss was gone. Next I put up another record in my tt and tried again with the remote and the hiss was back, went down to move the volume knob manually and back to the remote and it was gone again, COULD THIS MEAN ITS NOT A HARDWARE PROBLEM BUT SOME EXTERNAL INTERFERENCE??
I doubt it. I strongly suspect DC leakage as the cause of all these premature pot failures.
 
D

Dkudo

Enthusiast
I'm so glad my p5 nightmare is over, this was by far the worst piece of audio gear I've ever owned, horrible. I feel sorry so you guys dealing with this crap, just get a refund if you can.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
I'm so glad my p5 nightmare is over, this was by far the worst piece of audio gear I've ever owned, horrible. I feel sorry so you guys dealing with this crap, just get a refund if you can.
Well that is one way of solving a problem, to deep six it!

However I think Parasound should be more forthcoming about this.

In a way this highlights a prevalent general industry wide problem and not just electronics.

It is all well and good to say that Parasound are great guys as they support their customer, and service the units no questions asked. However this is not as great as it seems. Their five year warranty is not transferable to a new owner. So how is the new owner supported or the original owner when the clock runs out on the warranty?

Manufacturers should be forced to make service manuals readily available. There is not service manual that I can find for this unit. This therefore creates a problem in that it lowers the value of the unit and deprives all owners ultimately of access to repair apart from the manufacturer. Worse in repair of units running on software courts have ruled unauthorized service a breach of copyright.

All owners should have the right to not only self repair, but also have service performed by a tech of their choosing.

That is why we should ALL get behind right to repair legislation.

As far as I'm concerned Parasound are NOT nice guys.

I have said before, and I will say it again now. It would be in Parasound's interest to release the circuit and service manual. If they had there is every likely hood someone would have solved their problem for them by now.
 

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