AYA II 2014 DIY edition talks

AYA II 2014 DIY assembly manual is now done and sent to the users, and all the necessary data is there.

Still, some things in this project might not be straightforward. And some parts are harder to find, and not all sources are reliable. Also, many users will want to abandon suggested parts, and replace them with ones of their choice. Furthermore, this project includes some optional features, which use can require more detailed instructions.

This page is here to help AYA II 2014 DIY users avoid pitfalls, so we see as many boards as possible turning into the nice DACs. So, everything related to the AYA II 2014 parts, functioning and possible tweaks can be asked, discussed or shared here.


Related topics:

AYA 4: 2018 AYA release, featuring 192/384 kHz async USB

AYA II DS, DIY edition

USB to simultaneous data (or I2S) board

262 Replies

  1. Avatar

    Hi Frederick,

    thanks for your reply.
    Since I expected to work on the board I didn’t want to solder the AC wires. The connectors are from WAGO when memory serves me right.. actually nothing special but they go nicely with the white PCB. 🙂

    As for caps to try we are on subjective territory, so to speak. Everyone has his/their own perception of things, so judging caps in this position is most likely up to you.

    In my opinion bigger or more expensive is not automatically better, so I would probably start with a decent MKP cap (Jantzen?)first to hear the difference to the Elna Silmic and go from there.
    The ERO caps I know from other projects so I “knew” what to expect, more or less.


  2. Avatar

    Hi Oliver,

    Thanks for the tip on Wago… Yeah, caps are highly subjective. Lots of variables within a system to consider.. Thanks again.


  3. Avatar


    I have please a question about my AYA II 2014: If the I/V R is 1K instead 1K5, do I need to swap the 2N2 shunt cap after the trim pot to another value for filtering behavior (can it be hearable ?) ? 1N5 for instance, or it doesn’t matter at all ?

    Thanks in advance and sorry to dig out this older thread by an OT question

  4. Avatar

    Hello Eldam,

    It is good to know that the AYA II 2014 still keeps your attention, and is being tweaked.

    Those 2n2 caps are not related to I/V resistors. On the other side, if you decrease I/V resistors from 1k5 to 1k, you may proportionality increase C407/C408 capacitance, so you preserve the same low pass slope. This slope itself is however not really critical, so you can leave all the caps as they are, as well.


  5. Avatar

    Many thanks Pedja,

    It is still my every day DAC 🙂

    I ‘ve got a TAIWAN 98 TDA1541A chip… indeed very different than the others older one from Europe. I don’t know if mine is genuine though.

    best regards


  6. Avatar

    If it is different, then it is genuine. 🙂

  7. Avatar

    Long live the Aya ll . Really appreciate your effort in bringing
    this wonderful dac to us Pedja. Thank you
    Thie dac is highly tweakable minute changes brings different
    results. Like Eldam I’ve been tweaking Aya. Thought that I
    reached the peak of tweaking until tonite I tried something
    wihich really brought an improvement beyond my belief

    Thanks again
    PS wish that the rest of you guys will tweak Aya as well cause
    you really don’t know how great this dac is till you do so.
    Just red book play back will eat Sabre dac etc for breakfast
    No need DSD

  8. Avatar

    You’re welcome, Jaffrie.

  9. Avatar

    Hi Pedja

    Send you an email. Need help & advice pls


  10. Avatar


    I would like to ask if anybody has experience with shielding a wood cabinet with steel sheet (magnetic).

    I know steel as made from iron has good properties for traffo or traffo compartment shielding (the iron attract magnetic fields so stop a part of it if between the source and the area to protect (here the AYA & its digital front end)

    I also read than if Mumetal was good at low frequencies (say few Hz to 20 K) because its high permeability, steel was better for Frequencies above 20 K Hz !

    Does it Worth to make a case around our external digital front end as the USB to I2S board for instance ? Or does the effect of magnetic field catching will worse the things if too near from the ICs?

    Have a 0.7 mm thick steel big layer lying around… and also a plane rod of the same material (4 cm large for 2 mm thick to putt between the traffos (emitive source) and the AYA & digital boards (area to protect…)… though it will be just a 4 cm eigth wall !

    Have to say my AYA II cabinet is from wood and not the usual amagnetic aluminium we can see (or copper Inside sometime)… so my questions (have no hum btw and all my traffo are 90° from each others on a line at 15 cm from the ICs (but the digital front end a little nearer!

    Thank you a lot if any ideas



    Attached file:

  11. Avatar

    Hello Eldam,

    It all depends on what you are starting with. If you don’t have to block some really strong radiation, you might simply abandon shielding.

    Anyhow, regarding mumetal, as far as I know it is effective at higher frequencies too, even though the copper is still better. And it is non-magnetic. Shield box made of mumetal, on the other hand, will protect from magnetic field.


  12. Avatar

    Thank you Pedja for all those inputs.

    So I will try just to putt just a wall between the power traffos and the pcbs as I saw in your Model S pictures, although I have just steel, no copper or aluminium either.

    Maybe i will try a steel wall between each traffos to avoid coupling (?) as I see your two EI traffos have casing around their core.

    In case of no différences at ears, I will remove it (I don’t know if C-Core radiate the same ways as EI traffod. Btw have steel your two EI traffos to experiment with, though no Ground Earth for the secondary CT of the isolator transformer yet in my living room.

    I also abandon the idea of casing above the front end.


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