FAQ ( Frequently asked Questions)
Q: When will my order ship?
A: We'll ship your order within 1-5 business days. If your order contains a unit that will be assembled in-house, please allow a lead time of 4 weeks before shipping.
Q: Do you ship to my country?
A: Most likely, yes! We're proud to send our kits to DIYers all over the world.We will ship to any country served by UPS worldwide and DHL in Europe.
Q: How long does shipping take?
A: Domestic shipping typically takes 2-3 business days, depending on your location. International shipments typically take 2-7 days via UPS and DHL. You can track your shipment via the tracking number in your shipping confirmation email.
Q: My package hasn't arrived yet (international).
A: If your package hasn't arrived, odds are it's stuck with your local customs office. Contact your local customs or postal office to see if they are holding your package. They may be able to identify your package via the UPS tracking/customs number provided in your shipping confirmation email.Sometimes, if your customs agency can't contact you within a certain time period, they may return the package to us. If this happens, you have the choice of a) receiving a refund for your order, minus the shipping cost or b) having your order re-shipped for the re-shipment cost.If you cannot locate your package after 45 days, we'll consider it lost and send a replacement. We hate asking you to wait this long, but we have seen numerous international packages delivered within this window.
VAT, Taxes, Out of Stock, Discounts
Q: Are there International shipping duties?
A: Most international customers will owe some import duties to their local customs agency. As the importer, you're responsible for any taxes, duties, or fees assessed by your local customs agency.We declare all items as “Merchandise” with the actual amount of your purchase on the customs form. Please don't ask us to modify the amount on the customs form; we can't do it, sorry!
Q: When will kits be back in stock?
A: Unless a kit says "Out of Stock" in the title, you can rest assured we are planning on restocking it. Most out-of-stock kits are restocked within 3-4 weeks.
Q: Why is there an added sales tax (only European customers) ?
A: We are part of the One Stop Shop VAT. At the end of your shopping experience the amount of VAT of your country will be added to your order. Many European countries have different sales tax rate. We will collect the sales tax of your country.
Q: I have a VAT Number, can I pay without adding VAT?
A: We are happy to do business with companies. We always need to validate your VAT number manually to avoid fraud of the VAT Number. If your VAT number is valid we will refund the amount of VAT after purchase to your previous selected payment method. You also can write us a mail if you have any questions regarding Business to Business ordering.
Missing or damaged parts
Q: My kit arrived with missing or damaged parts...
A: We do our absolute best to make sure that every kit is complete, but sometimes we make mistakes or a part is damaged in shipping. If your part arrived with a missing or damaged part please contact us via the chat box or by email and we will send it out to you asap.
Q:During assembly I damaged a part while building...
A: No problem, we can send you a replacement. We have a flat rate replacement parts policy of 5€ within the EU and 20€ internationally. This covers any part(s) you need plus shipping. Please contact us via the chat box or by email to request replacement parts.
General troubleshooting tips
So, you finished building your kit and it's not working. Here's our recommended troubleshooting procedure:
Don't panic! In all likelihood the issue is something small and simple to fix.
Retrace your footsteps. Go back through the assembly guide, checking each step as you go. Don't assume you got something right - confirm it visually as if you were doing a pre-flight checklist.
Check your audio setup. Rule out your audio interface as a variable before troubleshooting your build.
Check your assembly for common errors. 90% of issues we see are caused by a single misplaced component.
Check your soldering. Joints should have a smooth, shiny, concave surface, and cover the entire pad.
Clean your board. Sometimes small pieces of solder or flux can get stuck to the PCB and cause issues. Go through methodically and remove any flecks on the top and bottom of the board -a little pressure from the tip of the screwdriver is all it takes.
Still not working? Check out the product-specific Issues at the end or contact us.
Checking your audio setup
Before you even start checking your assembly and soldering, it's a good idea to check your audio setup first.
Run a cable from the input and output on your interface that you were using to test your gear. This will confirm that the routing in your DAW and interface software are correct.
If you are using XLR cables to connect to your gear, just connect the cables together, bypassing the gear. This will also confirm that the cables are good.
If you are testing a 500-series module, make sure it is screwed in all the way.
Swap the module to another slot in your rack, if possible.
If you have a known-good module, test that in the slot you are using to test the gear.
Once you've confirmed that your audio setup is working correctly, proceed to Checking Your Assembly.
Before inserting IC-Chips - Checking power with a multimeter
Many kits have test pads for testing the power rails with a multimeter. To confirm that the power rails are correct with a multimeter, follow these steps:
Set a multimeter to read DC volts.
Place the black probe on the test point labeled GND or 0v
Place the red test point on each of the power test points in turn. These are usually labeled +16v, V+, -16V, +5V, -5V ,V-, etc.
When testing a power rail, your meter should display the expected voltage within +/-0.5 Volts.
Checking your assembly (component positions and orientation)
More often than not, the issue with your build is a single misplaced component. Carefully check your board for the following?
Are all ICs in the correct position and orientation?
Are all resistors in the correct positions? Check the color bands of every resistor against the sorting sheet. Pay especially close attention to those that start with the same number, for example 4.7k and 47k.
Pro tip: use our handy resistor color code calculator.
Are all non-polarized capacitors in the correct positions?
Are all electrolytic capacitors in the correction positions and orientation?
Are all diodes in the correction orientation?
Are all transistors in the correct positions and orientation?
If everything above looks good but you're still having problems, it's time to check your soldering.
Check your Soldering
Take a look for these issues in your build:
"Blob" joints where the solder doesn't form a neat "tent" around the lead. This is from either too much solder or not enough heat.
Joints that don't cover the pad completely.
"Cold" solder joints where the joint is not perfectly shiny and uniform. This is the result of not enough heat during soldering.
Follow this process to re-flow any suspect joints:
Get your soldering good and hot, make sure the tip is clean (no black oxidation) and tinned (plenty of solder covering the tip)
Heat the solder joint, touching the iron to where the pad and the lead meet
Heat for 2-5 seconds until the solder melts completely. Sometimes the solder will seem to suddenly “snap” onto the pad. That’s what we want!
Add a tiny amount of solder to the molten joint. Leave the iron for another 2 seconds after this
Remove the iron
LEDs not lighting or turning off after a few seconds
If the LEDs don't turn on or turn off quickly after turning on your unit. Please check the following:
Check for solder bridges causing a short between two pads
Check the orientation of all ICs and transistors
Remove all the socketed ICs and power the unit up.
If the LEDs work now, replace the ICs one-by-one, powering down every time before placing a new IC.
If one or more of the ICs are bad, please contact us for a replacement
500-series module troubleshooting
Check the Rack and Routing
Is the module completely screwed into the rack? You may get intermittent power/signal if it is not totally screwed in, or in a test jig like our test adapters, check if you have the right orientation.
Check your routing. Connect the cables you were running to your 500-series module together to confirm that your routing and cables are correct. For example, if you were using the module as an insert between output 3 and input 3, connect the XLR from output 3 directly to the XLR going to input 3.
Test your 500-series rack. If you have another, known-working 500-series module, test it in the same slot of your rack where the module was not working.
500-series module troubleshooting
Check Component Positions
Are all resistors in the correct positions? Check the color bands of every resistor against the Colours Codes of the Resistors. Pay especially close attention to those that start with the same number, for example 4.7k and 47k.
Are all ICs in the correct position and orientation?
Are all capacitors in the correction positions and orientation?
Are all diodes in the correction orientation?
Cleaning the PCB
Although it's not strictly required, and it's unlikely to fix any issues you are having with your build, cleaning your PCB will make it look nicer and ensure there is no flux or solder residue left behind.
First, gently scrape off any leftover solder with a screwdriver. Sometimes little bits of solder will jump off during soldering and stick to the solder mask. You can easily remove these with just a tiny bit of pressure.
Clean the board with high-purity isopropyl alcohol (90% or higher) and a microfiber cloth or tooth crush. We recommend three rounds of cleaning.
Q: Do you have contact with International repair techs?
We always work on a worldwide network of trusted repair techs to help you out with your project. If you want to be listed on this page, reach out to us. All of the techs that will be listed here will have access to our repair documentation and replacement parts.
At the moment we highly recommend groupdiy.com (there are several support threads about our projects) and our Email support.
Project Specific Questions
Any delivered Kit: In my kit I just found 100 uF 25V BP instead of 100 uF 35V BP. And or 10uF 35V BP instead of 10 uF 50V BP. Can I use them also?
A: Absolutely! We always have these green Nichicon capacitors in stock. Their Rating is at 25V but their lifetime is way longer than most of any other capacitors we found. Also technically there is no reason to have a 35V/50V rating. Internally we run maximum 10V on the signal. So you would find in some other commercial circuits often 16V rated capacitors. So our 25V/35V is almost more than needed. Go ahead and assemble them!
Any SLQ51X Q: When I turn on the LPF or HPF I get a loud bump?
A: No problem, mostly the LPF or HPF is just not calibrated. The Filters are a fixed frequency 3rd Order Sallen Key Filters. These filters can set for a boost on the corner frequency and also set the amount of cut per decade. Go ahead with the calibration and everything probably will be alright.
Any SLQ51X Q: When I turn on the Gain Trim of a band (e.g. HF or LMF) nothing changes?
A: No problem, mostly there's a bad solder connection on one of the legs of the Potentiometer. Use the Schematic and follow the traces and check with the probe if everything has a connection. If you find the spot, resolder the connection. Sometimes the mini sub board and the main board are not connected perfectly, so check these connections also.
DYN-X Q: I think the Compressor is not working properly?
A: At first, it's important that your measuring system is completely calibrated and you can read dBu and not just dBFS. It's important to make sure to exact levels and you need to switch between AC and DC on your Voltmeter in some cases. Calibration can be tricky and need some time, don't just calibrate to fixed voltages. Also both trimmers react to each other so bringing one trimmer in the wrong range makes it difficult to calibrate the desired voltage of the other one.
Any Preamp: When I turn on the Phantom Power I have a constant noise/ oscillation. What can I do ?
A: The Circuit we implemented for the Phantom power is a slow start phantom power, some of the Microphones don't like this circuit and start to make noise or oscillation. The solution is sadly running the Preamp without the slow start phantom power. Recheck the schematic and BOM for your corresponding parts. It's always the same circuit in all of our products. For that, don't use the 22k resistor, 1N4148 diode and BC550 transistor. Place just one 22uF 100V Capacitor, it doesn't matter which one. Use a piece of copper wire to bridge all pins of the unassembled spot of the transistor.
Any Preamp with old LED Board: The Peak LED stays a little bit on. What can I do ?
A: No problem, some of the 500 Racks deliver too much current. You can change RM128(1k5) to 2k2. We will provide these additional resistors with all new kits.
Any Preamp with new LED Board Rev B: The Led Of -22 and/or -4dB stays always on. What can I do ?
A: No problem, some of the 500 Racks deliver too much current and then the Lm317 is delivering too much current. You can change RM127(330R) to 1k and RM126(604R) to 2k. That will change the current use. We will provide these additional resistors with all new kits.