M2Tech Evo Set | Part Two - Evo Supply and Evo Clock

04.10.2012..

To the first part of this article


With Evo DAC and hiFace Evo we have analyzed the basic chain of a system that puts together streaming music coming out from a PC to a traditional equipment. Now we have to consider the last two “magic cubes” by M2Tech: Evo Supply and Evo Clock.

They are sold separately from the DAC and the hiFace and have to be considered as an upgrade of the basic system.

 

Evo Supply

The Evo Supply is an external power supply studied to provide current “in the best possible way” to Evo DAC, Clock and hiFace. It features a Li-Ion battery, which, when full charged, guarantees “clean” current to the two Evo at least for 7 hours. It follows that the devices are switched off from the mains. Actually, the Supply can operate in two modes: only battery (Battery) or battery plus mains (CHG/REG)

 

The Battery mode supplies the Evo devices by using the battery charge only. Substantially, it isolates the system from the mains. Moreover, if you want to use this operation mode to eliminate any interferences, just disconnected the wall adaptor. When the level of the battery charge goes down beyond a precise voltage threshold, a protection circuit switchs on OFF the current supply to increase the duration of the battery.

On one hand, the Battery mode assures the best performances to the Evo devices plugged in by eliminating all the inconveniences coming from the use of the mains. On the other hand, the current-supply is time-limited as it relies on the battery charge.

 

The second mode is the CHG/REG. When this mode is selected, the battery remains the main power source, till the reaching of the low voltage threshold. At this point, the battery charge is automatically engaged and a low noise regulator is connected in its place to ensure continuity to the output supply. Substantially, the battery behaves here like a current “buffer” for the current. Once the battery has been recharged, the system automatically switches on the battery supply mode. In this operation mode the Supply works as it were “virtually” separated from the mains. It is a less performing mode, but it guarantees a continuous current supply.

 

The Evo Supply is provided with its 15V/2A wall adaptor and just one – sigh – detachable power cord. The case is the same for all the modules of the series although here the connections are on the front side of the small chassis. We find the supply LED that turns on when the Supply is connected to the mains, the switch for the charge mode - Battery or CHG/REG - the charge indicator LED, the output switches for the Evo models and the ON/OFF switch.

 

Evo Clock

The Evo Clock is the last magic cube I have tested. But why an added clock? Because, -the hiFace interface has a pair of internal quartz oscillators that the same M2Tech considers quite budget if compared with the price of the hiFace! Therefore, they are a bit less precise than the oscillators adopted for the Clock. This one has also a power supply stage with low-noise regulators whose task is to decrease strongly whatever “intrusion” of the notorious jitter that the Clock should finally defeat.

 

The Evo Clock has two BNC outputs at 75 ohms: one Master Clock dedicated to hiFace Evo, and a Word Clock to match to any digital device capable of accepting an external clock with BNC connector. I warn who has some old but blazoned CD Players… The Evo Clock could “resuscitate” them to renewed sonorities.

The WLCK connector can be set to deliver 75 ohms at high impedance or as a low impedance connector. To change the operation modes there is a switch on the front panel. In order to avoid any unpleasant electric surprises make first a low impedance test.

 

As I told before, the Evo Clock can be used as external Clock of a digital device, but the right setting is quite complicate and depends on the sampling frequency that the device will play.

The first thing to do is setting the frequencies of the Master Clock according to the frequencies of the file you want listen, by operating via MCLK switch put on the front panel:

position 22.5792 MHz for files that have the sampling frequency based on greatest common denominator 44,1 kHz = 44,1 kHz - 88,2 kHz - 176,4kHz

position 24,576MHz for files that have the sampling frequency based on greatest common denominator 48 kHz = 48 kHz - 96 kHz - 192kHz

 

The second thing to do is operating on the WCLK output to select the exact frequency that the digital device will play. The selector is subdivided in couples of frequencies: one with base 44,1 kHz and the other with base 48 kHz. We must select the correct couple.

The couples of frequencies of the selector determinate the “multiplier” which will be applied to the selected MCLK: 44,1-48 (MCLK x 1), 88,1-96 (MCLK x 2), 176,4-192 (MCLK x 4), 352,8-384 (MCLK x 8), and so on till values used by amateur radio operators.

For example, to drive as a Word Clock an external device which has to play files at 192 kHz, you have to position the low frequencies at 24,576 MHz and the frequency selector at176,4-192 kHz.

 

You have also to take into account that if the Clock has to drive a digital machine for “streaming music” with a file collection with patchy frequencies, the listener should regulate the clock continuously!

Instead, if the Clock is connected as a WCLK to a CD player, the regulation would be only one: the MCLK on position 22.5792 MHz and the WCLK on position 44,1 kHz -48 kHz.

 

When the Evo Clock is employed for clocking the hiFace Evo, the operation is definitely easier: just operate on the MCLK output positioned on the front side and set the clock depending on the frequency of greatest common denominator GCD of the file you intend to play: 22.5792 MHz by GCD 44,1 kHz and 24,576 MHz by GCD 48 kHz.

 

Both outputs can be connected at the same time, or we could drive with just one Clock both the hiFace and a CD player with an input for World Clock.

The Evo Clock is provided with its 9V 2A power amp and, useless to say, in the same shape and colours of DAC, hiFace and Supply.

No cables are provided. As the necessary 75 ohms BNC cable could give some problems, it is better, considering the importance and the sensitiveness of the connection, to buy it at a dealer that you already know and trust.

 

On the front panel are the WCLK OUT Mode switch that allows the selection of the WCLK output, the WCLK out Select that allows the selection of the frequency couples of the file that will be clocked and the MCLK switch that selects the base that will be applied to the WCLK and MCLK outputs.

 

On the back panel are the LED that indicates the operation of the Clock when turned on, the input of the power supply and the MCLK and WCLK outputs.

 

As happened for the others elements of the chain, also this time, I would like to amicably provoke Mr. Manunta and push him to start new projects and/or upgrades. In my opinion, the M2Tech should insert in its catalogue, as an accessory, a 75 ohms BNC cable suitable for Word Clock and Master Clock. Secondly, as a technician, I think that he should find a way to make communicate the hiFace with the Clock in order to automate the switching of the MCLK and outline the base from 22.5792 MHz to 24,576M Hz and vice versa. This last point would turn the Evo hiFace and Evo Clock from the good match as it currently is to an excellent match!

 

 

Official technical specifications:

Evo Supply

Supply voltage: 15VDC

Power consumption: 2A peak, charge in progress, 1A peak out

Output voltage: 9.5-11.5VDC battery, 9VDC low noise regulator

Output current: 500mA continuous both outputs, 1A peak both outputs

Output noise: TBD battery, TBD low noise regulator

Output regulation: TBD battery 0-500mA output current, TBD low noise regulator 0-500mA output current

Battery duration: min. 7hours at 240mA output current

Battery charge time: 3hours +/-30 minutes

Battery charge cycles: 1.000

Operative temperature range: 0-40°C

Size: 105x50x104mm cabinet, 105x50x150mm with connectors (WxHxD)

Weight: 450g

 

Evo Clock

Supply voltage: 9VDC

Supply current: 150mA

Word Clock Frequencies: 44,1, 48, 88,2, 96, 176,4, 192, 352,8, 384 kHz

Super Clock Frequencies: 5,6448, 6,144, 11,2896, 12,288 MHz

Master Clock Frequencies: 22,5792, 24,576 MHz

Output voltage: 3.3Vpp on 75ohms BNC matched line master clock, 3.3Vpp on 75ohms BNC matched line or hi-Z line word clock

Phase noise at 10Hz: -100dBC/Hz min.

Phase noise at 100Hz: -130dBC/Hz min.

Phase noise at 1kHz: -145dBC/Hz min.

Precision: +/-1,5ppm 0°C to 50°C

Temperature stability: +/-1ppm

Vcc stability: +/-0.3ppm

Operative temperature range: 0-50°C

Size: 105x50x104mm cabinet 105x50x150mm with connectors (WxHxD)

Weight: 400g

 

Official Italian dealer: to Marantz Italy website

Official current price in Italy: Evo Supply 369.00 EUR, hiFace Evo Clock 369.00 EUR

Associated equipment: to Matteo Noli's system


2 out of 2

 
by Matteo Noli
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