Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by foderaman, Sep 21, 2013.
Does anyone know what power module James uses in the Minnie 800D ?
I don't think anyone has posted a pic but if they could it would tell us in a second. I'm going to hazard a guess and say ICE Power 500A
Most likely ICE, my guess is one of the 1000 watt versions. So many versions of these boards, hard to know. The Minnie800 gets VERY good reviews on the site. I have a DeMonique on order, which uses the guts of the Minnie800 as power.
In all my years of using these SMPS driven amps, I've found that the designers' skill with voicing and power management is at least as important as the actual module regarding output and 'tonality'. I would think that James Demeter would be pretty good at that part
I have noticed a pattern in class D/SMPS amps that have super impressive, non compressed, open, low end capability that they use higher wattage boards (based on the power module manufacturers' websites) to achieve their lower published power specs (I assume through various power management limiting. Examples are the Glock Blue Soul and the Aguilar TH heads. I would guess Demeter is doing something similar.
Several gut shot pics have been posted on TB. It appears to be some variant of the 250ASX2, which is used by many microamp builders with various proprietary mods.
The 500A needs a separate power supply, didn't see any sign of that in the pics. The 500 ASP is a little big to fit into a really compact format, the 1000ASP even more so.
Ah, didn't realize the power supply was not included in the 1000ASP spec.
Cool. Per my post above, it is really something how a different designers can use the same module (in this case, used in the Aguilar500 and the 9 series Genz amps, and probably more), and come up with quite different performance, etc. While lots has to do with preamp voicing of course, those different limiting, heat reduction and power management tweaks really allow a designer to sculpt that basic unit.
Same thing with the smaller 125x2, used in the GK MB500 series, the Genz 6 series, and the Aguilar TH350, based on that 'guts' thread. Interesting!
ASP = single channel w/onboard switchmode supply. A = single channel, no onboard supply. You can "hang" an A board on an ASP one to power it, or roll your own supply.
ASX2 = dual channel, onboard supply, bridges at 8 ohms in standard spec, bridges at 4 with some extra attention to cooling, limiting, etc.
There's a picture in the online manual. It shows an ICEPower module
Just because you see an amp module doesn't mean it isn't customized.
It is entirely possible to change the behavior of these modules in the feedback path.
GB has a patent on feedback they've added in the feedback with the ICEPower modules.
Also Demeter transformer couples the pre-amp to the amp module.
Ice modules don't have to be modified to accurately amplify, but to squeeze out the maximum power for MI use it's entirely possible to enhance the feedback path. Demeter might have done this.
It looks like it's an ICEpower 250asx2.
As I expected, the module itself it rated at 500W but the manufacturers have been marketing them as 800-900 Watts depending on their own external power / heat management systems.
The Aguilar Tonehamer 500 has the same module but is marketed as a 500W amp at 4 ohms. The online documentation on the 250asx2 states power output at 1% distortion to be 500 Watts but 8 ohms min. There must be some clever impedance matching circuit to get that module to run below it's designed minimum impedance.
Ya'll gonna make me break out a screwdriver aren't you?
Yes it appears to be an ICE 250ASX2.
You cannot see it in the photos, but there is also a tiny cooling fan under that metal shield that can be switched on or off.
There is a single lead taken from the Pre-amp board to the Jensen then onto the input of the ICE. It is not taken from the same point as the other outputs. Also, there is a small board under the Jensen that might have something on it. But there is certainly no specific filter/compression circuit that I can identify.
Anyway, I have not noticed any clipping front-end distortion whatsoever.
As far as sound goes, hell, it sounds great. It sounds better than any other Power-amp I have ever plugged the VTBP-201 into but then I never knew what that little screw inside was, so I was probably mismatching input half-the time.
WOW I didn,t realize so much can be changed to effect how a power amp cans operate and sound even with the same manufacture of the power module?The reason I originally posted is I have a Monique and use it with a Puma 900 and read where nostatic said he like his Monique with Minnie over his Puma 900?Just thinking could there be that big of a difference or is it subjective to how your ears personally hear it?
Lot more going on with all these great sounding amps than just sticking a power module on chassis for sure!
We have tested numerous class-D heads which employ the same output modules, but which perform quite differently on the bench (and on the gig), based upon the other design elements (such as the approach to limiting, heat management, power supplies, line filtering, etc).
Big reason for why I've never been a fan of running my pre's into the Effects Return of an integrated amp. You may be getting unexpected coloration from the amp. On the other hand, that could be a positive thing for some.
+1 More importantly, to your point, running an external pre in the effects return is not really a valid way to 'compare power sections', since there is additional circuitry, and the input impedance, input sensitivity, etc. can widely vary across effects loops designs (the more extreme example being the Markbass designs, where the effect loop is 'pre almost everthing' in the signal chain.
Excellent point about the input impedance and sensitivity KJung!
As an experiment, I once ran the line out of a GK MB200 into the Effects Return of a GB Shuttle 6.0. The result was not good IMO. Loss of lows, and even a loss of much of the GK "sizzle".
I prefer to stick with a dedicated power amp like the Minnie, or in my setup, a Peavey IPR1600.
This is probably the biggest misconceptions that people have. in most players' minds the class D integrated bass amp has a preamp designed and tuned by whatever designer/company then a power amp unit that is just a 'plug in'.
...which is very far from the actual truth. There's a whole lot of massaging of these off the shelf units' and their signal AFTER the preamp stage. Its why you can plug into a bunch of the returns on a bunch of different amps that use the same module and they all sound different.
I don't know all the details, but evidently James spent a lot of time working on the filtering with Minnie (and probably other aspects as well).
I'll also add that my Monique (to my ears) sounded considerably better with the Minnie than with the power section of my Puma (in the effects loop or before the pre.) I still love my Puma and thought that the Powersoft amps with Monique would be the end all...Minnie wins out for sure - also like Minnie better than the few PA style power amps Ive tried with Monique (Crest & QSC)
The form factor and aesthetics also help too!
I would guess so, since input level, impedance, etc. are designed to work together. My guess is, if you choose to use the Puma with the Monique, running it into the front of the amp with the level quite low would be the better way. Running a preamp into an effects return just adds too many other variables, especially variables that the amp designer didn't really feel the need to deal with, for the most part (most likely). Those effects loops are in different places in the signal chain across different amps, etc.
That being said, the Powesoft versions (old two space Puma) have a very different voiced preamp, different power management circuits, different hi passing (to my ear), etc., so those are other variables that can make this quite complex, and again, don't really represent an A/B comparison of power sections.
+1 That the Demeter and Monique are the unique situation of 'component pieces' from two manufacturers literally designed to optimally work together. Anyone with a Monique... get ye a Demeter Minnie800!
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