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LClock XO3
XO3 Guides

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L C Audio Technology
H.C. Andersensvej 56
8230 Aabyhoej

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or Gert Frederiksen
+45 6062 9017

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Examining Your Player

Start by opening the machine, remove screws holding the top lid, converter PCB, plugs on the rear panel, and perhaps the rear panel itself, if it is necessary to remove it to access the clock.

Identify the crystal (or oscillator) on the converter board. The crystal is a 10 by 15 mm. blank metal can component, possibly with a rubber casket or tape winding. In some cases the crystal can have other shapes such as SMD or a tiny metal cylinder. In any case the crystal has a number printed on the circuit board, starting with an X. Such as: X401, X02 or X1.
On the crystal itself you will find an inscription related to the frequency, such as:

16,93 : 16,9344 MHz
NDK 169 : 16,9344 MHz
11.2 : 11,2896 MHz
45.15 : 45,1584 MHz

In some cases you only find an inscription as: M51 which has nothing to do with the frequency in question, but fortunately it's very seldom.

Instead of the crystal you can also find an oscillator, which is a square metal can of 10 by 20 mm, with 4 pins. The pins are placed as the corner pins of a 14 pin DIP package. In this case the installation of LClock is very simple, as the clock signal is connected to pin9, and GND to pin 8 of the oscillator footprint.

Operational Amplifiers

Now you should have the frequency of your LClock required. Before you go on, take a minute to check your opamps. Maybe they are OK, but may also be of poor quality, such as NE5532, NJM2114, OPA2604, AD712, NJM4558 etc. In these cases you should consider upgrading these as well. Cheap and much better alternatives are available, for easy drop-in upgrade.

Signal Capacitors.

Take a look on your signal capacitors. They are placed close to the RCA output terminals, and connected directly to the L and R output. Are they standard electrolytic caps, SILMIC caps, or the better Tantalum caps? If they are Tantalums you may enjoy the soft and warm sound of these types of caps, in other cases you should consider upgrading these caps to a better type. One of the best and most expensive options is Black gate NX Hi-Q 47 uF 6.3 Volt bipolar. But other cheaper types are also an upgrade. We use AVX tantalums of 22uF / 16V in many upgrades. These cost just 50c each. Decoupling caps on the o-amps pins 4 and 8 are also an obvious upgrading option. For just a few Euros or Dollars, you can really make your player several hundred Dollars better sound wise.

Op-amp pin numbers.

DC blocking caps as mentioned earlier sit right in the signal path, blocking DC from the DA converters. Unfortunately also blocking part of the music signal. Bypassing the existing

types with Poly propylene caps of maybe 10 nF is one option, exchanging them to tantalum or Black Gate caps is another. More info on this further down this page.

Order your required parts.

Now you have all the information required to order your upgrade parts. Click on the shopping basket in the blue price field to add the items you need. Capacitors may be found on the Price List page, accessible on the front page only.


+12V from the CD player's own supply, feeds LClock XO3.

The typical circuit in your player before LClock XO3 installation.
Remove the crystal and two capacitors.
Then the clock feed wire from LClock XO3 is connected.

The circuit can also look like this:

The circuit in your player before LClock XO3 installation.
Remove the crystal and two capacitors.
Then connect the clock feed wire from LClock XO3.
Alternative connection in players with 74HCU04. In some machines this mounting is possible, and gives you slightly lower jitter. Cut the output connection to the old Clock CMOS IC and simply connect the LClock Feed signal instead.

Installation, step by step.

1..Gently angle the PCB with the crystal out of the player to access its underside.

2..Remove the crystal or oscillator. Solder it out using braid.

3..Remove the two capacitors connected to the crystal. (NOT if it's a 4 pin oscillator!) The two caps are directly connected with the two pins of the crystal. Marking on the PCB is C something (like C102). On the caps, the marking is probably something like: 10, 12, 15, 22, 100 or 1000. If the marking on the caps are: 104 473, 100nS, DONT remove it, it's not the right one.

4..At the PCB trace where the two capacitors meet, connect the GND screen (outer conductor) of LClock XO3 feed wire.

5..Connect MAIN Output from LClock XO 3 to the XTAL solder pad leading to the input of the integrated circuit. (On big integrated circuits this is normally marked XI, Xtal_in or something similar).

6..Connect the red wire from +input on LClock XO3 to a 12V supply in the CD player. Most players have a 7812 regulator, in this case you just connect the red wire to the RIGHT hand pin of the 7812 part. (When you can read the text on it properly). If not your player may have a 7805 regulator, in this case connect the red wire to the LEFT pin (when you can read the text on it properly). XO3 works fine on any voltage from 8 Volts to about 17 Volts DC. If you can't find any of these regulators a possibility is to steal the voltage from pin 8 of one of the opamps. Don't go for an audio op-amp, but rather a DC servo op-amp or like. If it's a dual op-amp, connect the red wire to pin 8, if it's a single op-amp, connect it to pin 7 instead.

Pin numbering of the op-amp.

If the supply is OK, a blue LED will light up on the XO3 module after about 10 seconds.

Click to enlarge photo.

Use the MAIN output on LClock XO3 to run the CD player. The AUX output is for sync'ing an external DAC if any.

7..Mount PCB plugs, and loosely secure the PCB's. Turn on the power, does the blue light on LClock light up? Does the CD spin, and does the machine appear to work correctly? If no turn power off, and go back and repeat point 5 with the OTHER pad of the crystal removed. Then repeat point 7 directly. If you should run into problems, please contact our support team immediately for help. The phone number is listed

on the left side of this page.

8..When the machine works correctly, turn power off, remove the 470 Ohms resistor and connect the feed wire directly to the solder pad where it worked.

9..You are now done with installing LClock XO3 we recommend you mount it securely inside the CD player's enclosure with the supplied mounting gear. Shorten the LClock feed wire as much as convenient.

10..Mount other mods like op-amps, blocking caps etc. now.

Other modifications of the CD / SACD / DVD player.

Bypassing of the DC blocking capacitor.

Here is the circuit before the 'Bypass Surgery'.
This is how it's usually done.
But this way is better. Use a 10 - 100n PP or MICA cap of good quality, but not too big physical size. (because of noise injection). A speaker cap is no good here!

11..Fasten the PCB's with screws, secure the plugs and wires that were removed previously.

12..Put your favourite CD in the player and connect it to your system.

13..Make a listening test, if any

strange noises are heard, turn it back off and contact us immediately by phone or e-mail for technical support!

Enjoy! Maximum result will become evident after about 48 hours of burn-in time.

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