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Author Topic: Camco Vortex Amplifiers  (Read 68770 times)

Andy Peters

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #30 on: November 20, 2006, 01:10:34 pm »

Jens Droessler wrote on Mon, 20 November 2006 10:41

@ Langston: In the other direction it's the same. Under 115V the amp will loose (SIC) power rapidly and because of the small buffers it will react instantaneous even to quick changes (like line droppings of a few volts on every bassdrum hit or such). This behaviour, also the overvoltage mute is partly because the SMPS is unregulated. It doen't react to the line situation (like LAB Gruppen for example does).


Jens, AGAIN: a SMPS doesn't need big honkin' caps because the caps are refreshed a lot more often than once every 1/60 seconds (1/50 in your part of the world).  You completely ignored this important fact the last time I pointed it out.

-a
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #31 on: November 20, 2006, 01:52:12 pm »

Andy Peters wrote on Mon, 20 November 2006 12:10



Jens, AGAIN: a SMPS doesn't need big honkin' caps because the caps are refreshed a lot more often than once every 1/60 seconds (1/50 in your part of the world).  You completely ignored this important fact the last time I pointed it out.

-a


Not to agree or disagree with Jens' subjective assessment, the CAMCO uses an unregulated switcher (per a review on their website) so there is still a requirement for reservoir capacitors to supply current between mains voltage waveform peaks.

The HF switcher eliminates the heavy iron of a LF transformer but not the need for significant capacitance. Capacitors on the mains side of the switcher can be less capacitance but will need to be higher breakdown voltage so will neither be inexpensive or all that small.

In a three level class H amp if you deplete a lower rail reservoir the amp will (should) just switch to the next higher rail, so you won't run out of rail reserve until all rails, and the mains cap supplying the switcher are depleted.

In the early days of audio amps using switchers there were examples and valid criticism of reservoir sizing. As this technology is now pretty mature I would be inclined to expect that they got it right and a number of happy customers seem to suggest that.

YMMV

JR    
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Jens Droessler

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #32 on: November 20, 2006, 04:13:15 pm »

@ Andy Peters: No, I didn't ignore it, I just replied to it. Yes, you are right that the buffers can have a smaller capacity, but as this is an UNREGULATED design, they still have to be adequate. But they are not. They are adequate if you have nearly perfect main lines with low impedance, a.k.a. virtually NO voltage drop on huge current demands. You have that many times, yes, and with big big events you have it 80% of time, so this problem is reasonable to ignore. But for the smaller companies with 'wall outlet jobs', fulfilling their dream to have such an amp, this would be a massive drawback, but yet they'd have to admit that their hard earned bucks went into a product not fully up to what they thought. Most people just can't do that and it's the subconscience doing this. They don't even intend to....

Still, even with good power lines, there are amps with less power rating outperforming the Vortex in bass range. Believe it or not.

All you Vortex owner might feel insulted by my statements. If you are really FULLY happy with them, so be it, but I think potential new customers have the right to know that some people think otherwise.

A friend of mine, at least here in Germany known for his knowledge about amp circuit desgn, called the Vortex 'value engineered for high profits' (I hope I got that translation right).


@ John Roberts: Really, John, how many people do you know capable of admiting that they invested a big bag of money in the wrong product? As I said, it's already happening on subconscious level, the people can't do anything about it.
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #33 on: November 20, 2006, 05:41:51 pm »

Jens Droessler wrote on Mon, 20 November 2006 15:13

@ John Roberts: Really, John, how many people do you know capable of admiting that they invested a big bag of money in the wrong product? As I said, it's already happening on subconscious level, the people can't do anything about it.


I don't argue with people about what they hear, and customers are always right (even when they're wrong).

While it rare for individuals to brag about their past purchasing mistakes they don't typically hypnotize themselves into believing a lump of crap is good, and keep buying more.

The switcher and/or amount of reservoir capacitance will make little difference wrt mains source impedance, and a 3 level class H will be noticeably better than class AB. Only PFC and to a lesser extent regulated switchers will mitigate against wimpy mains.  

Another data point I can't address is how does the 120V market design differ from the 230V market? IIRC most of the favorable reports here are from 120V users.

JR


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Jens Droessler

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #34 on: November 20, 2006, 07:51:54 pm »

But the higher rails are with even less capacitance, because they should only take medium 'peaks' (middle rail) or real peaks (high rail), while the lowest rail has the most 'work' and therefore the biggest buffer.

A further question about this issue is: How many people dare to compare? IMO the most people ordering a big number in the first place just because they look good on paper and are from a renowned company won't. They will be quite pleased with the performance, because their older amps stopped 700W earlier on 4 ohms (2x1500W at 4 ohms) and had additional 40lbs per unit. A local company has a lot of Vortex6 and used to have a lot of DL3000 (and DL3000-2). They NEVER EVER compared. I asked why, they told me 'Why should we? The new ones make our racks 160lbs lighter and a lot more powerful' (on paper that is). And that is  big company doing jobs on international level. So I think most companies never compared..... some did, but as I said, after that they eventually found a reason that would work for them to keep'em. I don't want to argue with them, but I think it's not wrong to bring up bad sides.

I'm really starting to get the feeling that the ProSoundWeb has been converted into a 'Happy Sunshine forum' where nobody is allowed to say bad things about a product.
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Lee Jacobson

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #35 on: November 20, 2006, 08:51:33 pm »

Jens,

 No happy sunshine for me. That said, I think you stated the reason right in your last post. They do the job, are smaller, lighter, and do more than the old ones. I am not saying "who cares if they don't meet spec", because, frankly, I don't know that you have all the facts. Not saying you don't, not jumping on your bandwagon either.

Lee
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Jens Droessler

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #36 on: November 21, 2006, 01:21:23 pm »

@ Lee: Even if some people here might get the impression I'm only here to piss off people, it's not like that (it's just an unwanted sideeffect). I just want to inform people with the possible interest to buy an amp in this class (weight and power rating) that there are amps doing the job a bit or even much better. I never expected people already owning 20 units to sell them to switch over to LAB or something (OTOH I already saw people doing this Smile ). They do the job, that's the least you can expect when you pay such money.
Of course it is a matter of what you are looking for: Get the job done (will work with Vortex) or get the best equipment possible for price X (won't work with Vortex). All I want is that potential custmers compare instead of buy because of reputation. They'll find out themselves.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #37 on: November 21, 2006, 02:56:55 pm »

Jens-

I don't think that 'bad news' is verbotten here.  I do think that the Vortex users here aren't experiencing problems, or perhaps are not using amps in the same manner, or holding them to the same criteria, as you.

We had a Nexo Geo S rig on demo last year, and I played with the supplied Vortex 6 amps on some of our existing gear.  I didn't have an opportunity to take them out on a gig, however.  In the shop, I noticed some differences on subwoofers when compared with Macrotech 5002s, *but* the sonic differences I heard were not great, and were acceptable to us from a *business* standpoint.  However, the client we were anticipating a contract with, did not choose us and we didn't buy the Geo S rig or anything else...

Good luck, have fun.

Tim Mc
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Trond Oeyre

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #38 on: November 26, 2006, 02:21:53 pm »

I have the same experience as dessler, I also feel that camco 6 is good amps, but I often feel that they are not as thight in the sound as our macrotech 5002vz.

I havent heard the lab amplifiers, and we dont have the budget to change either.

Dont get me wrong, I am 99% happy with alpha and camco, but I often wonder is the gras greener??
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Lester Moran

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Re: Camco Vortex Amplifiers
« Reply #39 on: November 28, 2006, 07:42:42 pm »

Lester Moran wrote on Tue, 03 October 2006 01:27

This is timely for me as I was recently offered four rep-demo V6s for 2,900 USD each.  I would be replacing four MA3600s that serve as sub and mid amps in a JBL 4894 /SRX 4715 system.  I like the 3600s, but a more power/less weight upgrade would be cool as long as sonically it is an upgrade.


I see the latest Bink's Amp Shootout didn't get Camcos to test, and Forum searches haven't produced the breadth of Camco opinions I was hoping for.  Can anyone provide a link to some opinions I may have missed?

Thanks,  Les



Thank you, gentlemen, for the insight and the opinions.  This has been quite an education.

Les


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