Showing posts with label 3d Printing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 3d Printing. Show all posts

Monday, March 8, 2021

Repairing the king! Bringing a Sony D-Z555 back to life and giving it a new rechargeable battery

Like many others that grew up in the 80s/90s, you probably have fond memories of going to school listening to your Sony Walkman or later on their Discman. Among the many models of portables that Sony made over the years, a few top of the line models remain in the minds of collectors and audiophiles alike as the best sounding portables ever made. Walkmans like the WM-DD9, WM-DD100, WM-DC2 with the king in terms of sound being the (semi-portable) WM-DC6 - which reigns as one of the best portable cassette players ever made.

On the realm of digital music, Sony had their Discman series. This line has a few players that commonly make the top of the list of the best players ever made are the D-Z555 (also called D555), D10/D100, D35, D303 and D350. More often than not, the throne of the best Discman ever made goes to the D-Z555 for a combination of features, looks and sound quality.

Note that the best portable disc players were made in the early 90s and below, when it was considered a luxury item made for audiophiles. When the Discman became more main stream, some features were added such as ESP (Electronic Shock Protection) or later MP3 discs playback, but their 

The Sony D-Z555 was released in 1989 and it features not one but two (!) backlit LCDs displays, one of the displays spotting a spectrum analyzer (how cool is that for a portable!?). Inside the unit, you will find two audiophile-grade PCM66P DACs and for the very first time on a portable and consumer device: 8 times oversampling and a DSP chip. The player also spot a digital optical output (which was a very new technology in 1990, especially on a portable unit!), a remote port (for an optional IR remote) and line out. 


The Sony D-Z555 (or D-555) and it's 2 backlit LCD displays in action
PS: testing it with a great game soundtrack from the time the D-Z555 was released (1990)!

Monday, February 15, 2021

Power Mac G4 Cube - Power Supply replacement


The Power Mac G4 Cube is a very unique Apple computer, with its special and compact desktop (for the time at least) "cube" form factor. It features  easy access to its internal components for (some) upgrades, but mostly, this accessibility is used to show off to your friends and family. 
Unfortunately, it ended up being a commercial failure due to lack of specific market focus and higher price compared to other Apple products of its time with similar or higher specs. Thus, it had a very short life span, being produced only between July 2000 and July 2001 what today lead to a somewhat rare and collectible Mac.


The Cube, like most Apple products, is a solid machine and if you are lucky enough to find a reasonably priced one, most units tend to be working to this day. Among the non-working ones available, chances are that it's because of its power supply (PSU) being dead. Sadly, the Cube PSU is custom made for the Cube, using a proprietary connector cable - making it very rare / expensive to find a plug and play replacement. 

Thankfully, you are lucky enough to come across this article! :)




Thursday, January 7, 2021

The wonders of 3D Printing

This has been a long overdue post on how useful having access to a 3D printer can be. I have one for the past few months and I am still learning new functions in the program slicer and I am very rusty in terms of CAD design software. Throughout my career, I learned a little bit of AutoCAD but I never really used, so most of it I had forgotten. Thus, having a 3D printer gave me an opportunity to re-learn CAD and of course, learn about the intricacies of preparing a 3D model to be put into our physical world.
I am not going to go much in depth as this post is not a tutorial on how to design and 3D print parts. There is simply too much to cover and much better resources out there. To illustrate the "wonders of 3D printing", I will focus on a simple, yet useful feature of 3D printing: DIY repairs. 


My printer is the Creality Ender 3 v2, that despite being a budget, is a very competent printer, especially for beginners.  


My 3D printer setup with some customized (printed) mods