The Acoustic Guitar Forum  

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Amplification (Electrified!!!)

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 06-06-2010, 01:43 PM
wal wal is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Derbyshire, UK
Posts: 5
Default Headway EDB-1 Review

Hello all,
I had quite a few issues with my EDB-1 and quite poor service from Headway in the UK generally. As a musician and an electronics engineer, I've done a fairly extensive review of the Headway EDB-1 Including some shots of the internals of the unit, which I think other EDB-1 owners might find quite interesting: http://www.strum.it/index.php/page,66.html
I have also drawn up a rough block diagram which may be quite useful.
Regards to all,
Wal...
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-06-2010, 02:02 PM
leehwd leehwd is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 142
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wal View Post
Hello all,
I had quite a few issues with my EDB-1 and quite poor service from Headway in the UK generally. As a musician and an electronics engineer, I've done a fairly extensive review of the Headway EDB-1 Including some shots of the internals of the unit, which I think other EDB-1 owners might find quite interesting: http://www.strum.it/index.php/page,66.html
I have also drawn up a rough block diagram which may be quite useful.
Regards to all,
Wal...
That's very interesting and alarming too... So, do you or do you not like the preamp? I had to return one unit that I purchased from an online retailer since its noise level was too much and it picked up radio signal, which was cancelled by lifting the ground loop.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-06-2010, 02:14 PM
wal wal is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Derbyshire, UK
Posts: 5
Default

Hi leehwd,
Thanks for the reply.
I actually do like the EDB-1 generally, but I will be making some modifications to it. I haven't published the full story of my experience with Headway HQ yet, as it is still on going!..
How do you find yours?
Best wishes,
Wal...
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-06-2010, 03:45 PM
alohachris alohachris is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 1,887
Default You Get What You Pay For!

Aloha,

Thank you WAL for shining light - literally - on yet another heralded, but cheap POS in the world of budget amplification! These sad pictures tell the whole story, don't they?

Most of us players are always trying to amplify on the cheap, thinking the next new cheap thing will fix the problems of the last cheap new thing.

Certainly, this inside look reveals the sad truth in following such a flawed strategy.

Hey WAL, are you sure that the guy you talked to wasn't Jack Campbell?

Jack? Jack? You Dere?

alohachris
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-06-2010, 05:17 PM
leehwd leehwd is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 142
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wal View Post
Hi leehwd,
Thanks for the reply.
I actually do like the EDB-1 generally, but I will be making some modifications to it. I haven't published the full story of my experience with Headway HQ yet, as it is still on going!..
How do you find yours?
Best wishes,
Wal...
I am really looking forward the follow-up story. Well, I just returned the faulty unit since I was not much impressed. I think it was just me, but the unit that I got had too much noise I couldn't bear. I agree there could be something that I did wrong, e.g., not adjusting the gain etc.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-06-2010, 05:19 PM
Rick Jones Rick Jones is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Jersey UK Channel Islands
Posts: 1,468
Default

Oh man talk about timing!
I think my Output XLR socket has come away from the board inside tonight.
Someone stood on my lead to the PA, no more output.
People knock the PADI, but mine has done years of rough treatment and constant use, and is going strong.

I have to use two boss eq pedals and neutrik inline impeadance matchers 'till I can get hold of something else.
Any reccomendations?
__________________
Avalon L32, in these vids;
Me flatpicking.

Me fingerpicking.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-06-2010, 05:25 PM
DrDavid DrDavid is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Northern Green Mountains
Posts: 1,101
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Jones View Post
Oh man talk about timing!
I think my Output XLR socket has come away from the board inside tonight.
Someone stood on my lead to the PA, no more output.
People knock the PADI, but mine has done years of rough treatment and constant use, and is going strong.

I have to use two boss eq pedals and neutrik inline impeadance matchers 'till I can get hold of something else.
Any reccomendations?
Ouch, Rick. Sorry to hear about the crunched XLR socket.

As for recommendations, I've had a Radial Pz-Pre for a short while now, and have been very pleased with it.

You might want to check out the Radial's specs and see if you could make it do for you.

..
__________________
Sursum corda
Tógaigí bhúr gcroíthe in airde


David
Páirc Thoir Thuaidh



Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-06-2010, 07:27 PM
hann hann is offline
I miss the USA!
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Singapore
Posts: 2,348
Send a message via MSN to hann Send a message via Skype™ to hann
Default

Wow.. Wal looks like you've been in a rut..

however it looks more like a disappointment in the service and QC of the product rather than the quality of the sound it produces itself.

Not sure how it is in the UK.. but talking with the US distributor was a breeze and supremely friendly. Gordon's a pretty stand up guy and my preamp came in perfect condition so it's hard for me to criticize them heh.

I guess there's always compromise in the quality of the internals involved.. for economic/efficiency reasons, but I do believe they did what they did to keep it affordable for people, and convenient enough for people. For example if they had used the higher end opamps like u described that need a power supply, I prob wouldn't have considered it much. I'm sure many others would feel the same.

I've not experienced all that much noise either surprisingly...maybe it's my ears....

this microDI thing looks pretty interesting though.. care to share more about it?
__________________
Present:
2006 GSRS w PWM/Wavelength
1992 Taylor 410
Headway Audio EDB-1 Preamp
Countryman Type85

Past:
Alvarez MF80C (was sad to see this one go...)
K&K XLR preamp
K&K powermix trinity
Zaolla
Baggs PADI
Stillwater acoustic amp

Future:
1940s D45
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-07-2010, 04:36 AM
ukejon ukejon is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Milwaukee
Posts: 3,151
Default

Sorry to hear about your troubles with this unit. On a related matter, did you ever see this video of an LR Bagg Venue getting run over by an SUV:

http://www.lrbaggs.com/venuevid/proj...nue-video.html
__________________
My YouTube Page:
http://www.youtube.com/user/ukejon

2009 Pono koa parlor (NAMM prototype)
2007 Pono mahogany short scale nylon string
2014 Hatcher Greta 13 fret cutaway in EIR/cedar
1973 Sigma GCR7 (OM model) rosewood and spruce

....and about 5 really nice tenor ukuleles at any given moment
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-07-2010, 12:30 PM
GanAinm GanAinm is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 79
Default

Hello, interesting scenario Wal, I'd like to hear about your progress and experiments. Cheers
Too bad about the xlr jack etc. Is there something that can be done to mitigate the problem? I remember with the Edirol HR09 recorder they had a problem with a faulty input jack for a few months, and I think they corrected it by securing them properly or perhaps gluing them down (I think with epoxy - hazy recollection). Could some glue be added to an edb1 as a preventative measure?
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 06-07-2010, 05:22 PM
wal wal is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Derbyshire, UK
Posts: 5
Default Headway EDB-1 Acoustic Preamp DI

Hello chaps,
Thanks for the replies.
I've heard zilch from Headway. If they don't get in touch with me soon, I may digress further on the 'little arrangement' they came up with regarding their product and my well propagated website reviews!!

Since I sorted out the problems with the EDB-1, I have been quite pleased with it. Though it is a tad noisy still. I do think that they should have gone with 072s or better op-amps rather than the low currant 062s, though it probably wouldn't have been a battery powered unit. But there again, I suspect that not many users like the idea of having to use two 9v batteries either! I'm also not to keen on the included (noisy) switched-mode wall wart PSU!.. Like many things in life, I've found that the best way to do it, is to do it yourself.. I managed to design and hand build a clean (and quiet) 072 op-amp hi z preamp design to run from phantom power or battery at +- 4.3 volts, complete with a TI rail splitter to maintain a very symmetrical balanced output, even at low battery level, with plenty of headroom for those piezos which incidentally, can generate several volts if the bridge is banged against something! (a voltage clamping diode is required!). As Texas Instruments were kind enough to send me some free samples (including free priority UPS delivery from Thief River Falls, Minnesota), I also built the same design with a superb TI Burr-Brown OPA 2342. But this had to be powered from a battery, as the pitifully low currant provided by phantom power is not enough. Hats off to Baggs for designing the Para DI to run off phantom. But I'm guessing that this too, must be full of those noisy, low currant 062 op amps?
Regards to all,
Wal...

Last edited by wal; 06-08-2010 at 05:50 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 06-15-2010, 08:36 AM
desertguitar desertguitar is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 114
Default loving my edb-1

Hi Wal,

I'm sorry you've had trouble with your edb-1, (sounds more like a customer service issue from your posts). I've spoken with the US distributor before I bought the unit and they were nothing short of super friendly and excited about this product. I hate to sound like a kool-aid drinker, but I have zero complaints about the edb-1. The eq is powerful, and the general sound coming from the unit is very detailed and articulate. I'm using it with the K&K pure western mini, lr baggs passive M1, and on occasion the DPA4099. It works well with all these sound sources. As for being a noisy unit, I'm going through a monster power conditioner and haven't had any noise issues in my place or gigging, however, I did have to use the ground lift switch when using the xlr out, otherwise there was a horrible hiss and no sound. The ground lift alleviated this entirely. I'm not trying to invalid your posts because everyone's situation is different (guitar, type of pickups, amps, etc), but I just wanted to let other readers know that there are satisfied edb-1 users out there.

Thanks,

Dave
__________________
www.daveguitar.com
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 06-16-2010, 02:43 AM
wal wal is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Derbyshire, UK
Posts: 5
Default Headway EDB-1

Hi desertguitar,
I'm glad you're happy your Headway EDB-1.
My concern is more about the build quality / long term use etc. I had to strip-down and rebuild my EDB-1 to correct a misaligned DC power socket (How's yours? Is it seated within the cut-out of the enclosure?). Whilst doing this I noticed that that the misalignment was causing the whole PCB to distort. I had to re-solder most of the connectors to relieve the pressure from the PCB, and re-align the DC socket. Also if you read my review you will have seen the components glue sticked to the PCB. These are 'Through-Hole' components, designed to be mounted through holes and soldered to pads on the other of the PCB..
The noise I was referring to is the EDB-1's self noise. You will notice that no noise figures have been published for the EDB-1 (In the user manual or on Headway's web site). The EDB-1's circuit design is based around low current 062 op amps. These are not known (or spec'd as far as I know) for low noise operation. If you turn up the gain and master controls to halfway or so, you will hear a hissing sound. This is most likely generated by these boys (assuming good circuit design techniques were used). Though to be fair on Headway, they did tell me that the Edb-1 was designed for live use and not for professional recording. Also personally, I would never use the 15 meg ohm setting on Chanel One, as in my opinion this is asking for trouble from external noise and interference.
I use the EDB-1 together with my (much quieter) own design Phantom powered Hi Z pre. With the EDB-1 powering my on-board electret condenser mic.
Thanks for the reply,
Kind regards,
Wal...
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 06-16-2010, 08:19 AM
hann hann is offline
I miss the USA!
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Singapore
Posts: 2,348
Send a message via MSN to hann Send a message via Skype™ to hann
Default

mmm for me, i've never had the need to go past 10 o'clock really.. anymore than that and it's usually blinking red on the soundboard.

On the rare times i've tested the limits, i've not hear much audible noise as well..

Now i'm a noob at such sound engineer stuff.. but would it have anything to do with the rest of the system that makes me not hear it?

Also, how would changing op amps change the sound? Perhaps clearer/fatter/pristine? Besides the fact that it'll prob not be able to run on batteries? Or would it serve the sole purpose of removing the noise?
__________________
Present:
2006 GSRS w PWM/Wavelength
1992 Taylor 410
Headway Audio EDB-1 Preamp
Countryman Type85

Past:
Alvarez MF80C (was sad to see this one go...)
K&K XLR preamp
K&K powermix trinity
Zaolla
Baggs PADI
Stillwater acoustic amp

Future:
1940s D45
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 06-16-2010, 08:20 AM
desertguitar desertguitar is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 114
Default edb-1

Hi Wal,

I haven't popped the hood on my edb-1, and even if I did, I'm not sure what I'd be looking at (although I hope mine doesn't have the red paint on it)! My technical knowledge is not at that level. But from a user stand point, I haven't had any noise issues and have been pleased, even surprised by the sound quality of the unit.
__________________
www.daveguitar.com
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Amplification (Electrified!!!)

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Loading

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:13 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=