Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Graham Langley founded Amek in 1973 with Nick Franks. Since then, AMEK and TAC recording consoles have been the choice of demanding audio professionals for over 25 years.

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Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Postby SeldomSeenTrev » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:00 pm

I recently bought an Amek Big. 28 mono Big 1 channels, 4 stereo Big 2’s and a master section. I’ve got it cleaned up, bought a manual and it all seems to be working pretty much.

I’m having trouble with the automation though. I got Supertrue 3.6 installed and made a cable up to connect it to the desk, from the wiring diagram in the manual. The software loads up fine, but I get a message saying can’t find the TRG, and then it can’t find the Virtual Dynamic cards. One weird thing though is although it says can’t find the TRG card, it does run smpte from the timecode XLR on the back.

I’ve definitely got 3 1147 VD cards installed and the TRG card. Also with Supertrue booted up, it seems when I click a mute button on the computer or select read or write, it mutes the channel or changes the read and write mode on the desk, but when I press a mute button on the desk or use the select switch, nothing happens in the computer. So it seems like the computer is talking to the desk but not the other way around. I’ve checked the cable I made up and it definitely seems to be wired correctly, and the computer com ports are set up as the manual says.

I’m running a Pentium 2 350 MHz. I know 133Mhz is recommended, but those Pentium 1’s or 486DX’s are actually getting tricky to track down. I’ve heard of people getting Supertrue to run on other machines, but could that be the problem ?

I changed the battery on the processor card for a new one. The old one had leaked a little. The other thing I’ve noticed is one of the IC’s on the processing board looks a little corroded. It’s the U23 IC, photo attached. Could that be my problem or more likely to be the PC I’m using ? Can anyone tell me what that IC should be ? All the markings have rubbed off it, and I’d like to replace it.

Thanks.
SeldomSeenTrev
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Re: Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Postby SeldomSeenTrev » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:10 pm

IMG_5168edit.JPG

Sorry Here's the pic of the corroded IC on the processor board.
SeldomSeenTrev
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Re: Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Postby Jim Williams » Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:56 am

Use a quality de-soldering tool and remove that socket. Clean up the pcb and replace it with a machined socket. Then use a pencil eraser to rub the corrosion off the IC pins.
Jim Williams
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Re: Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Postby SeldomSeenTrev » Fri Sep 01, 2017 2:53 am

Hi Jim, thanks for the top tip, I'll give that a go later today. Do you think that IC could be causing my problems with Supertrue, or is that more likely to be the PC I'm using ? I guess I'll be a little closer to knowing when I clean that IC up.
SeldomSeenTrev
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Re: Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Postby Jim Williams » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:45 am

That chip might be fine. Only way to find out is clean it all up and test. That resistor next to it looks a bit brown too, try cleaning it off with contact cleaner. If the brown color is dirt it's ok. It it's cooked, replace it. Best to use a ground strap, remove all of those chips, clean off the pins, spray a little contact cleaner into the socket pins, then blow it out with a can of compressed air. Then re-insert the chips.
Jim Williams
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Re: Help with Amek Big and Supertrue

Postby SeldomSeenTrev » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:49 pm

Hi Jim, today I took out that IC, put a new socket in, cleaned everything up like you suggested, and put the IC back in. Fired up the console and everything seems great. The computer found the VD and TRG cards, and the faders on screen came alive. I ran a bit of SMPTE out of pro-tools and the automation is recording and playing back.

So thanks for the advice, really appreciated.

Trev
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