i8

Power regulators

One of the (many) challenges of the fully balanced design that we want for our 8 stereo inputs and 9 stereo outputs is the integration of fully isolated power regulators within our relatively small enclosure (351 × 268 mm).

After further review, it turns out that each stereo input needs 11 regulators, 7 for the ES9102C analog-to-digital converter, and 2 for each of the 2 input buffers. If we were to use the excellent ADM7150 and design a breakout board for it similar to the Pulsar Power, the smallest we could make it is about 20 × 20 mm, by removing the option of using a custom noise capacitor. Mounted next to each other on top of the audio interface board, the 88 breakout boards would take 220 × 160 mm, which is acceptable.

On the output front, things are a bit easier, since we only need 4 regulators per stereo output, of which we have 9. This will require 36 boards, which would take 180 × 80 mm. Conclusion: we should be able to fit everything, and power dissipation should not be an issue, since the ES9102C consumes less than 200mW, and the ES9018 requires less than 100mW.

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2 thoughts on “Power regulators

  1. julien says:

    Can you elaborate a bit more on the number of regulators that are needed? 11 regulators for one stereo sounds huge.

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  2. In a nutshell, every single power supply line gets its own regulator. You can see this type of design on the AKA102 from Ackolabs for example. You have seven regulators on the main module, and two for each one of the two input buffers, which brings the total to 11 for a single stereo input. Of course, putting all these regulators on individual boards is a bit extreme (even Apogee does not do that), but if you’re a purist, that’s pretty much the way to go.

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