Is it perhaps that the transparency of the Berning is just letting you hear the noise of the Calypso more clearly?
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I have a friend here who has the Calypso and his setup is by far the most critical of cable placement than any other I have heard. He has to go through a lot of effort here to get rid of the noise....but when he does, the sound is outstanding. He feels that his Plinius may also be the culprit but perhaps it is both of these in combination. One thing for sure about the Calypso over my Callisto, the Calypso is more critical of needing ultra-quiet tubes.
Hi Nr9, I have a Berning Switch mode tubed powered pre-amp ( yes a tube switcher), a Berning Switch Mode powered tube BAM, (Don't ask and I lent it to profone, who still has it and does not want to give it back :)) and a Berning SMP supply Headphone amp, two Berning mono amps with 1 Farad of power supply capacitance each also with switching power supplies without adjustable gain and noise is absolutely not an issue.
I have had complaints with a couple other pre-amps with regular power supply's as well being noisy ( and tested as such), it's an issue of sometimes higher residual noise of the pre-amp design or sometimes noisy tubes, which a most other power amps do not have the sensitivity to show up.
Our first switch mod pre-amp was in 1984 the TF-12 and TF12B, B for Balance, No issue with noise on the ZH-270 with the TF-12.
This is one of the reasons that we have the adjustable volume control on the ZH-270 and why we would not do amps without these unless we do our own matching pre-amp.
You may want to reduce the sensitivity of the amp by reducing the gain on the volume control.
"17" could be a higher gain step than the other preceding ones.
If you turn the volume control on the ZH-270 up to full, you may encounter the noise at a lower level setting, and if you reduce the volume control on the ZH-270 you may encounter the noise at a higher level on the pre-amp, but it's there in the pre.
The ZH-270 because of it's unique design is able to have very high sensitivity and low noise, I know of no other power amp with this capability, the volume control is there so that you can adjust the input sensitivity to allow the use of varying pre-amps.
Are you using a power conditioner?
I have a Hydra 8, but the use of it doesnt affect the noise at all.
The strange thing is that the noise is rising and dropping a lot when only a slightly change in volume setting is done. (+/- 1db). Example: The noise is high when the volume setting showing 40, but it is low when showing 41. This is happening between more steps. I have tried to change the tubes to different brands, but the noise problem is still there. I have just bought me a new Joule Electra LA 150 MKII. Hope this will solve the problem.
Ah, you may want to try the Berning without the Hydra, plugged directly into the Wall, the ZH-270 does have a conditioner built in, the Hydra maybe just too much, this will not help with the noise from the pre but for dynamics from the amp.
Is the Calypso is remote control, if so, is it a digital processor switching discrete resistors into the signal path?? Then if yes, then it's a issue of that function, we pioneered this designed 24 years ago in the TF-12.
I just took a quick look at the website, I don't think the unit is a switching power supply, plus it has two power supplies, something you would not want to do in a single unit if it were switching power supplies.
Nr9: You have EXACTLY the same issue as my friend with the Calypso and Plinius 102 amp. When he adjusted the volume on the Calypso, everytime the volume display value was a multiple of 8, the noise was much higher. There must be some kind of stairstepping/multiplying going on here with a bank of 8 resistors being switched with the 8th one causing some side-effect (impedance issue?). He said that after he rearranged his cabling, the problem was gone. He has felt that the Plinius may be the problem of his system being so susceptible to cable routing and such noise issues. But if you have this with the Berning, the commonality here is the Calypso. He does not used balanced cabling in his system. But he does use a Hydra 8.
So verify this for yourself: Notice the increased noise level at the various multiples of 8 and then notice how quiet it becomes as you decrease or increase the volume by one setting from these positions. This sounds like a design problem with the Calypso and a call to Aesthetix may be of value to you.
Yes, the noise problem is multiple of 8. What do you mean with this? He said that after he rearranged his cabling, the problem was gone.
I have got new cables to. Stereovox SEI/LSP. I dont use the Hydra for the moment. I have to contact Aesthetix then. The pre was not like this when I used it with a cary cad 211 ae.
"What do you mean with this? 'He said that after he rearranged his cabling, the problem was gone.'"
His system is hyper-sensitive to cables touching each other, crossing over each other, sitting on the floor, etc. Such a situation would drive me crazy but he is used to this. Once he re-arranged the cables to not be in contact with each other and routed them in different ways, the issue of higher noise with the level at multiples of 8 was gone. Inexplainable black magic! Maybe he resolved it for the moment, but it is an inherent design constraint here.....and it will return as you have observed it as well. Calling Aesthetix is the answer.