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Linn Kairn problem

Discussion in 'audio' started by Linnovice, Mar 21, 2019.

  1. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Hi all. I have a Linn Kairn pre amp that appears to have a problem that, if possible, I’d like some advice on. It started after an initial turn on a few weeksago. The display flashed up the ‘error 2 don’t panic message’. Ah, battery change time. So I changed the battery and it was fine for a few days then the error came up again. On turning it off and on the display completely collapsed and was showing just random images nothing cohesive or sensible. Left it off for a while and tried again and had no display at all just a slightly blinking power on light. Turned it off and left it for a while then tried again, got the error message again and after a few seconds it started normally and worked fine. Thinking that possibly the battery was duff (it had been in my spares box for two/three years) I ordered a new one from RS and installed that. Turned it on on the bench and it started ok with no problem. Left it a couple of hours to give the battery a charge and installed n my system. Blow me (or words to that effect!) the error message came up again and I’ve had to go through the same rigmarole again to get it going. Eventually it booted up and is working fine but I can’t turn it off just in case I can’t get it going again!
    Has anyone else experienced this or have any idea what may be causing it?
    Confused of Colchester . . .
     
  2. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    Did the old battery spill its guts over the pcb and cause any track damage?
     
  3. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Hi David, no. The battery was fine. In fact, when I took out my original replacement I checked the voltage and it showed just under 4 volts, then dug the original out of the battery bin and that showed just under 4 volts also. They are both rated at 3.6V so well within spec. I was very careful with the handling and soldering. All done on an anti static Matt and wearing a wristband.
     
  4. linnfomaniac83

    linnfomaniac83 I bet you can’t wheelie a unicycle!

    I’d start by replacing the electrolytic caps in the vicinity of the battery. It might not solve it but it’s cheap, easy and won’t hurt. Good luck!
     
  5. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    A recap is definitely a good place to start!
     
  6. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Surely not a complete recap? It works fine provided I don’t turn it off. I would have thought that a more targeted approach would be appropriate. But where? Is there a known fault on these units? Does anyone have a schematic that they’d be happy to share?
     
  7. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    A full recap of the front panel!
     
  8. linnfomaniac83

    linnfomaniac83 I bet you can’t wheelie a unicycle!

    More chance of getting a positive, successful outcome from brexit than getting a schematic from linn... but start with the few electrolytic caps around the battery, try it again and if it works, job done... if not, try changing the ones at the opposite end of the control board. The chips on that board should either work fine or not at all, and I’ve never seen them fail. Not much else on there and one or more failing caps could definitely cause errors and lockups.
     
    Mr Pig and Mike P like this.
  9. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    I seem to remember a few years ago there was a problem with caps in the power supply. I’m getting on a bit so the memory is not what it was! But, the caps were inside the transformer and used to overheat. The cure I think was to swap out 85* caps for 105* caps. I can remember that but I can’t remember what LK units it referred to. There was a thread on the original Linn forum but that’s now been shut down. Linn show a distinct lack of respect for their client base. They seem to forget that the people they ignore now are the same people they built their business on. Sign of the times I’m afraid. They will crap out though. These companies always do. You stamp on client loyalty at your peril, when it hits the fan that’s when you realise you could do with a bit of loyalty. Rant over!
     
    Mike P and linnfomaniac83 like this.
  10. linnfomaniac83

    linnfomaniac83 I bet you can’t wheelie a unicycle!

    That applies to Kairns, Kariks, Kremilins and and Wakondas with the “round brilliant” switched mode PSU. I’m almost certain that the PSU has nothing to do with the problem you’re experiencing. Try the caps on the control board, it’ll probably cost under £2.50 in parts.
     
  11. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Hi all, again. Seems that life is getting in the way of a recap lately. One of the main problems being no schematic or parts list. I have to take it apart and look for myself, no great deal but I don’t know if it will start up again. So, three questions.

    1. A the moment I have it turned on 24/7 and it’s working fine. Will this do any damage if I leave it a few weeks like this?

    2. As I’m unlikely to get a schematic from Linn does anyone have a pdf copy they could let me have?
    and
    3. A thought. Attached to the control pcb is a transistor that fixed with a screw to the case but is insulated from it. On mine there is no insulation under the screw head or within the fixing hole of the transistor. Is this correct?

    Any advice on these points will be very welcome. Thanks, Mike
     
  12. mjkelshaw

    mjkelshaw pfm Member

     
  13. david ellwood

    david ellwood Kirabosi Kognoscente

    The klout was designed with remote on/off.
     
  14. linnfomaniac83

    linnfomaniac83 I bet you can’t wheelie a unicycle!

    When used with a Kairn...

    Anyway, I’d the medium term, I’d say it’d be fine left on... if you’re unsure yourself, send it to Darran at class A HIFI. I’d look at it but I can’t give you a timescale, I’m just about to start making my new product and as of next week, I’ll be stupidly busy for a good while.
     
  15. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Hi, thanks for the offer. I’m not too worried about recapping the control board myself. It’s just that if I take apart to work out the list of replacement caps I may not be able to restart it. As I’ve got busy time coming up I may well not get a chance to the recap for a few days and I don’t like the idea of being with my music. My evening dram will just not be the same .

    Any comments regarding the transistor screw?
     
  16. linnfomaniac83

    linnfomaniac83 I bet you can’t wheelie a unicycle!

    Not without seeing, it’s been a few years since I’ve had a Kairn control panel apart. Is it a transistor or a local voltage regulator for the control circuitry?
     
  17. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Don’t know from memory. I didn’t take much notice, just put it back as it was. Seems odd to insulate it from the chassis then put a screw through it into the chassis. As I say, it’s from memory so I may have it wrong.
     
  18. Darran.H

    Darran.H pfm Member

    The transistor has to be insulated, you need a thermal pad and a bush, see Farnell part 520214 to give you an idea..
     
    linnfomaniac83 likes this.
  19. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Hi Darren, thank you, that’s exactly what I thought. The bushing is missing so contact is made through the screw. Could that be causing the problem?
     
  20. Linnovice

    Linnovice pfm Member

    Hi all, back again. I’ve now changed all the 22uF 50V caps around the battery and fitted a new isolation pieces and top hat washer to the transistor.
    It has improved the situation but not cured the fault. ie. when I restarted it would not boot up but flashed various elements of the display in parts. After a few seconds I tried again and got the error 2 message and it started normally. I ran it for a few hours and found that I could turn it off and on as normal. Job done so I thought. It was not turned on at all yesterday so was off around 36 hours. When I tried this morning the problem had returned, partial display flashing, error message, reboot ok. It leads me to think it has something to do with the battery receiving and holding its charge.
    When I desoldered the caps there was evidence of battery leakage underneath them and on closer examination of the board under a magnifying glass you can see traces of leakage on the board traces. Only very slight but it’s obviously had a major leak in the past. I’ve cleaned it as far as possible and can’t find any broken traces and with a charge in the new battery it works well.
    What would you do next?
     

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