V25 Controller Board Overview
The V25 Preamp Controller (Rev A) was first released in April, 2017.
The V25 is a digitally controlled passive analog 2 channel audio attenuator with integral input switching that uses light dependent resistors (LDRs) for both attenuation and input switching.
The V25 is classified as a “passive” attenuator insofar as there is no active processing of the audio signal and no direct connection to or manipulation of the audio signal by a power supply. Despite the sophistication of the V25 design, all the the audio signal “sees” is a voltage divider composed of 2 LDRs in a classic series/shunt L-Pad configuration that emulates a potentiometer.
The V25 board is shown below with annotation of the key components and control interface points.
V25 Board Versions
There are currently 3 hardware versions of the V25 board designated as A, B and C with A being the original board as shown above. The version letter is printed on the V25 board on the left side under the name of the board. The differences between these versions relate to the display interfaces and the USB interface. These differences are summarized in the table below. All 3 versions utilize the same firmware which recognizes these differences.
|Criteria||Version A||Version B||Version C|
|Handles 7 segment display (J3)||Yes||Yes||No|
|Handles OLED display (J9)||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|OLED header (J9) interface type||Parallel||Serial (SPI)||Serial (SPI)|
|Serial (SPI) interface voltage to 7 segment display header (J3)||5V||3.3V||N/A|
|USB header VBus pin has 5V power||No||Yes||Yes|
V25 Update – June, 2018
The following changes to the V25 became effective starting June 1, 2018.
Base Model Now Includes 3 Inputs plus Mono Switch – While keeping the base price unchanged, the base model V25 now includes switching between 3 inputs (was previously single input) . In addition, all V25 boards now include the Mono switch for switching between stereo and monaural listening modes.
Graphic OLED Display Module – The V25 is now fully operational with the latest OLED Display Module (sold separately) which provides a highly interactive, easy to use, intuitive, menu driven user control interface for configuring and controlling the V25 via both remote control and encoder.
Major firmware update – The V25 firmware has undergone a major update incorporating both the new OLED interactive controls plus numerous “under the hood” improvements.
|Attenuation type||Passive series/shunt (L-Pad) voltage divider using two (2) light dependent resistors (LDRs) per channel | total of 4 attenuation LDRs for attenuation. |
|Attenuation Range||-60 db to 0 db in 99 in ~0.5 dB steps plus 1 additional muting step.|
|Gain||Unity (1x) gain | no amplification, processing or active manipulation of the audio signal | audio signal optically isolated from control system|
|Buffering||No input or output stage buffering|
|Input impedance||Nominal 20k by default. User may configure up to 9 additional impedance settings each adjustable between 1k and 99k and switch between the settings with live music to optimize input impedance for their system. |
|Number of Channels||2 independent channel stereo|
|Multi-channel Attenuation||2 or more V25 boards can be daisy-chained to provided mutl-channel attenuation with 2 channels per board|
|Channel Balance Accuracy||Within 0.5 db over full attenuation range|
|Channel Isolation||Each channel 100% isolated and independent from the other within the V25 board | audio signal grounds must to tied to a common star ground point external to the board|
|Audio Signal Ground||No connection of signal grounds to power ground within controller, however, audio signal ground must share common ground with power supply via an external star ground point in order for LDR self-calibration feature to function properly.|
|Audio Inputs | Single Ended||1 board accommodates up to 6 switchable single-ended stereo (2 channel) inputs|
|Audio Inputs | Balanced||2 boards accommodate up to 6 switchable balanced stereo (2 channel) inputs. With 2 boards it's possible to configure a mix of single-ended and balanced inputs.|
|Audio Input Switching/Isolation||Input switching is done with LDRs | typical 50 ohm resistance when on | in excess of 5 megaohms when off | no relays in signal path.|
|Audio Output Switching/Isolation||Output signal switched on/off with LDR. Isolation between inputs and output when switched off in excess of 10 megaohms.|
|Total Harmonic Distortion||typicallay less than 0.5%|
|Power Input||7-30 volts DC rated at 0.5 amp via J1|
|Power Regulation||2 stage regulation | 5 V 1st stage low noise switch mode regulator followed by 3.3 V low noise 2nd stage linear regulator|
|Processor||ARM M3 Cortex 32 bit microcontroller running at 72 MHz|
|Control Input | Remote||Accepts control inputs from infrared silver Apple remote or equivalent remote using 38 kHz NEC protocol and Apple commands | infrared commands received via infrared receiver module attached indirectly via display module or directly to J3 pins. |
|Control Input | Encoder||Accepts control inputs from rotary stepped encoder with integral push button switch | encoder attached indirectly via display or can be attached directly to J3 pins.|
|Control Input | UART||Accepts control inputs from external device using UART serial protocol and specific command codes (available upon request).|
|Display | OLED||Graphic OLED display with an intuitive, easy to use, menu based control scheme. Connects to the V25 controller board via both J3 2x5 header and J9 2x7 header. Requires display jumper across pins at J7.DISP.|
|Display | 7-Segment (legacy)||Original dual 2-digit numerical 7-segment LED type display with adjustable brightness | each 2-digit display is a physically separate module connected via ribbon cable | connects to board via J3 2x5 pin header|
|Display | Status LED||Status LED light | connects to board via J7|
|Mono Mode||Output switchable between stereo and mono mode via LDR switch | applies on to single-ended audio|
|Firmware||Custom interrupt driven application code written in the C language|
|Firmware Update||Firmware can be updated via a resident bootloader that communicates with an external PC based HID bootloader application. User can download firmware update files from company website.|
|USB Port||Standard 5 pin USB port allows processor to communicate with external HID bootloader application for updating firmware.|
|WiFi Module||Future ability to plug in a simple WiFi module via J6 that will allow the V25 to be controlled via smartphone app.|
|Trigger Out||Outputs a DC voltage signal when unit is turned on. Signal can be used to turn other devices on/off that are equipped with a Trigger Input. Trigger voltage level is equal to DC voltage level supplied to the board.|
|Printed Circuit Board||High quality nickel immersion gold solder pads with blue solder mask|
|Ambient Requirements||Board must be operated in a stable, dry indoor environment only with ambient temperature within 60-90 degree F|
|ROHS||Compliant or exempted|
|Physical Dimensions||Length: 5.7 inches |
Width: 2.7 inches
Corner Holes Center: 0.145 inches from edges
Corner Holes Diameter: 0.15 inches
Top clearance: 0.7 inches
Bottom clearance: 0.5 inches
V25 Compared to the V2?
- Overall smoother, quieter, more resolving attenuation – it’s just better!
- Improved built-in LDR calibration algorithm
- Completely redesigned hardware & software
- Code rewritten in C
- 8x larger application memory
- 2 stage low-noise power regulation
- Faster 32 bit ARM vs slower 8 bit PIC processor
- 6 DAC channels vs only 2 for improved LDR control
- 100 step attenuation vs. 70
- Graphic OLED display with simple, intuitive interactive menu
- Provision for future WiFi module
- Can daisy chain multiple boards for multi-channel control
- V25 board with 3 switchable stereo inputs (up to 3 additional inputs can be added at additional cost)
- Monaural mode switching LDR
- Mating slip-on power connector with wire crimps
- Updated firmware
What Else is Required?
To implement a fully functional passive preamp requires the V25 board plus the following additional items that are sold separately by Tortuga Audio and/or third parties.
- Apple Remote
- Graphic OLED Display Module assembly including Encoder
- 12 V DC power supply (0.5 amp or higher)
- RCA/XLR jacks
- Wiring and enclosure
Changelog & Product Roadmap
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Changelog & Product Roadmap
More detailed technical information V25 can be found in the product documentation section of our website.