Linn Karik + Numerik

Linn Karik + Numerik


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Excellent conditions / Without original boxes.

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The Karik
One look at the rear panels and it’s obvious that the Linn Karik/Numerik is unlike other CD players; the Karik’s rear panel holds a 9-pin “D” connector marked “diagnostic output,” and each BNC input/output is accompanied by an RCA jack marked “CD Sync Input” (or “Output”). Interesting.

Let’s start with the diagnostic output. This port connects to an IBM-compatible PC running Linn software. An owner can periodically have his Karik checked by Linn dealers who have the computer and software. Among the information available on this port are error rates (broken down into specific error syndromes identifying the number of missing or erroneous symbols and in which decoder stage), the servo control voltage needed to maintain a specified laser power, and the tracking servo signal. This information allows the retailer to know if the player is performing optimally and when the laser is about to quit. Lasers in CD players have a finite life, typically about 1000 hours. Unlike most CD players and transports, changing the laser is relatively easy in the Karik.

The Numerik
The Numerik is similarly forward-thinking in design. The unit uses a brand-new chip set not yet seen in any other D/A converter.

The digital filter is an 8x-oversampling unit from Burr-Brown, the DF1700. This linear-phase filter has 20-bit word output and 25-bit internal word length. I haven’t seen this filter used before; most converters use the NPC or Sony digital filters.

D/A conversion is handled by dual Burr-Brown PCM63P DACs, another brand-new part. This 20-bit monolithic DAC, called a “Sign-Magnitude” converter, has some impressive performance specifications. I saw one of the PCM63P’s designers give a technical paper on the part at the 1990 Los Angeles AES convention. The DAC has excellent low-level linearity and doesn’t need MSB trimming. This is a result of a neat trick: the zero crossing point where all bits toggle (the 19 LSBs turn off and the MSB turns on, or vice versa) is shifted to a much higher level, moving the zero crossing glitch away from low-level signals. This technique is described in more detail in my review of the Museatex DCC in Vol.13 No.11. In that product, the same goal was achieved by conventional DACs and proprietary circuitry. The PCM63P incorporates these techniques within a monolithic part. Linn chose the PCM63P after listening to over a dozen DACs. Incidentally, the PCM63Ps used in the Numerik are the highest grade available, then selected by Linn for lowest switching noise.

A Philips SAA7273 S/PDIF input receiver was chosen over the more popular Yamaha chip. When the Numerik’s sync cable drives the Karik, the clock recovery portion of this chip is unused. Without this sync cable, the 7273 can function normally. The input receiver and the 8x-oversampling digital filter are shielded by a pair of flat metal cans.




Consonance Srl

Ricordo da bambino zia Maria a casa della nonna suonare con il Petrov Pianofortissimo di Carosone, un brano da virtuosi che lei eseguiva con naturalezza. L’idea di riprodurre la musica dal vivo in un luogo protetto come la casa di mia nonna mi ha spinto a fare di questa passione il mio lavoro. A 14 anni andai per la prima volta in un negozio di dischi, chiesi i Police e ascoltai Bring On The Night in un “Pioneer A400”: fu un momento indimenticabile, un rituale di iniziazione…

Da qui è nata la mia passione: all’istituto agrario passavo ore tra i banchi di scuola ad immaginare come potesse suonare quel pezzo strappalacrime di Tracy Chapman, Baby can I hold you, con le casse di ultima generazione Yamaha. L’adolescenza l’ho passata costruendo o riparando amplificatori Marantz che trovavamo a casa di amici e parenti.A un certo punto con mio padre decidemmo di creare Consonance, per coniugare questa passione con il lavoro: e sono passati quasi 30 anni dal fatidico 21 aprile del 1991, quando aprimmo il primo negozio.

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