My Yamaha PM-1000 preamp project

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January 16, 2006 -- saw local ad on Craigslist.org for a pair of stock PM-1000 modules ($100).  So, after seeing all the raves about these, I took the plunge. 

A very brief history--the Yamaha PM-1000 mixing board came in a couple different models with varying number of channels.  They are sometimes referred to as the "Japanese Neve" because of the absence of any ICs (op-amps).  Or in other words, they are all discrete components--which is typical of older, analog equipment.  The PM-1000 mixers appeared in the late 70's to early 80's.

January 17, 2006 - start researching, figure out what parts I need, etc.  Read every single post from previous PM1000 DIY's.  Decided a web page to consolidate much of the info I learned on this journey might be a good idea. 

January 31, 2006 -- finally completed (I think) the bill of materials (BOM) that I need to rack and rework these.  I bought some locally (Fry's electronics) and will probably be back there when i figure out what else I forgot...  Ordered the rest from Jameco, Redco and Digikey.  There doesn't seem to be a one-stop shopping for all of this stuff...  I contemplated Panasonic vs. Nichicon.  Ultimately, it came down to price and availability (Digikey had the sizes I wanted in stock).  Jameco had the best prices on a 48VDC power supply and toggle switches.  I also created a "map" of the capacitor layout on the input module.  I had several schematic drawings, but none showed the actual, physical locations on the board (at least that I found) so I made this <image1>.

This just made me feel better--don't know that it will really help me that much though.  Now I'm waiting on all my parts.  Once I get them I will attempt to wire up the boards and see if they actually work before I go to all the trouble of mounting and re-capping.  When I finish, I plan to finalize the BOM and post it here. 

Here are the original values (I think) of all of the caps in the diagram above. 
C1 3.3/35 Tant C2 47/50 C3 47pF ceramic C4 47/35
C5 100/6.3 C6 47/50 C7 33/25 C8 10/35
C9 33/16 axial C10 33/25 C11 33/25 C12 0.15/50
C13 0.068/50 C14 0.033/50 C15 0.047/50 C16 1.0/35 Tant
C17 0.47/35 Tant C18 0.47/35 Tant C19 47pF ceramic C20 47/50
C21 47/35 C22 100/6.3 C23 33/25 C24 47/50
C25 0.47/35 Tant C26 100pF ceramic C27 3.3/25 C28 4.7/25
C29 4.7/35 C30 47/50 C31 0.47/35 Tant C32 100pF ceramic
C33 3.3/25 C34 4.7/25 C35 4.7/35 C36 47/50
C37 33/25* C00 47/50        

All values are uF/VDC and Electrolytics unless otherwise noted.  The one I designated as C00 I cannot seem to locate on any schematic...yet there it is on the board...  The EQ section is in this color.  This color designates what I believe to be in the fader section.  These I believe are in the preamp section.  The remainder, I think are all part of the echo channels which I will not be using so I don't intend to recap them at this time.  I will recap the Electros, Tantalum (with film) and the EQ section (with different values).  change C37 to a 220uF (or larger).

February 1, 2006 - I just got my order from Redco.  It shipped quickly and they were nice (they called me with a question about my order).  I ordered some Mogami mic cable and connectors too so not just stuff for this project.  Anyway, now I've got my 2U cover plate.   The Jameco order is supposed to arrive Friday, and Digikey--well, who knows, I specified USPS Priority -- so no tracking.

February 2, 2006 - WOW!  DigiKey was really fast.  USPS was really fast too.  Minnesota to Texas in 2 days.  Maybe there is some benefit to living right off a major NAFTA thoroughfare.  Too bad I hosed up my order.  The Panasonic .01 poly film caps I ordered (trying to sub for the Wima MKP2 0.01/100/5) were way too big -- HUGE in fact!  I'll have to make an order with Mouser now and try to send these back.  At least I got the diodes and a few other parts I needed so maybe I'll be able to power one up soon.

February 6, 2006 - Well, I got my Mouser order really quick too.  Dallas to Austin and Fedex ground did it in one day, with Saturday Delivery.  Location, Location, Location...  So I've got most of the parts now.  Here's a picture of one of my pre's cut down <image2>As you can see, I removed the Echo Send 1 pot, and rewired the Echo 2 pot to be the output.  I left the phase switch in and wired an XLR input.  The output jack is soldered now too (pictured loose). 

A couple shots of the chassis in progress too.  I hoped to get it powered up this weekend, but didn't get all the way there yet.  As you can see the chassis has a front toggle switch for power and a pilot light.  You've gotta have some blinky-blink to let everyone else know how much work you put into this project...  Next up is the inside shot.  The PM-1000 is simply laid in there for now.   As you can see I left the metal structure on the pots because I could not for the life of me get them off--they are glued!!  When I put a wrench on them, they spin (no way to grip them from the back side either).  The power supply is wired and I did test it.  The string of diodes (for step-down to 44VDC) is experimental.  this freaked me out a bit because I was expecting the 0.6V drop per diode as specified in the docs, but after 10 diodes I only dropped to 45+V.   But, since I had no load applied (except my voltmeter) I need to try again.  So I bought a 100ohm/20W wire-wound/ceramic resistor from Rat Shack and I'll measure it again before I hook it to the PM1000.  Since this has worked for others, I'm going to try it (instead of going the LM137 method).  Six of the 1N4003 diodes should get me in the +44VDC range.  The fan does nothing--it's just leftover from the Ethernet switch.  I may de-pop some of the components in the areas that will be unused (echo1, echo2) also.   More to come when I find some time.

February 8, 2006 - Got up enough guts to apply power today (beads of sweat...).  Luckily... no smoke and I even got audio on the output.  Whew...  Anyway, next step is to punch all of the necessary holes in the faceplate, then cut down the 2nd module, and finally recapping.  Also realized I need to add a toggle switch for phantom power.

February 13, 2006 - Got the extra switches I needed for phantom power switches.  Also wired in my DI inputs and drilled my faceplate.  Also, started re-capping one module and replaced the NPN transistors.  I have not added 0.01uf Wima's yet, but that's next.  Then same for the other board and hopefully I can mount them in the chassis and be done (or close).

Here are a couple more pictures showing the re-capped module (right) and the chassis with all holes cut.  I could not find a 15/16" hole saw so went with the 1" and that was a mistake.  the holes are a bit to large for the XLR panel mount so I'll have to fill a slight bit with some silicone or something.  I'll figure that out later I guess.

February 18, 2006 -  Good news.  After re-capping one module, replacing the NPN's and adding the bypass caps on the bottom of the board, it still works! My DI input, phase switch, and phantom power all work too so I'm pretty excited.  I had a slight scare after mounting everything in the chassis -- I reversed my string of diodes (which were covered by shrink-tubing so I couldn't see the polarity anymore) and it did not work.  But, a few minutes of troubleshooting, and I figured it out (no +44 to the board).  Here are some pictures of the first module mounted in the chassis:  <chassis5> <chassis6> 

Also, a close-up of the NPN Transistors, showing the correct orientation (because it's different than the originals) and a shot of the EQ section.  The small red film caps are Wima's and the big one's are Panasonic.  I couldn't find the sizes I wanted in the same type, so I mixed them up. 

February 21, 2006 - Got my Mouser order for the extra caps I needed (obviously I screwed up the quantities previously).  Mouser also sent me my 3rd huge catalog today.  I hope they stop soon....   Happy Birthday to my new PM-1000's!

   <Front> <Back> <Top>

They are now fully racked, operational and all I need is something to record.  Hey, no problem, I built these for tracking drums so that's what I'll do.  More on that as I get to know them better.  I used a label maker with a gold on black tape so I could see which knob I was twirling.  Looks a bit ghetto, but not as bad as the back (silver Sharpie marker...).  I promised to post a BOM, so as soon as I clean it up I'll do that too.  I also meant to take a picture of the bottom of one of the boards after I put all of the bypass caps on there.  Oops!  Too late now.

February 21, 2006 -   Ok, as promised... 


BTW, the entire project probably cost me about $250 total (including the PM-1000 modules).   Good luck to y'all.  Now get out there and rack it up!

June 22, 2006 - Another birth announcement!   - Ok, had to add my latest.  Looks very close to the firs pair, but this one has the output transformers too.  Also tried a few different caps in the EQ section this time as well as used a better power supply.  I also included a close-up of the bypass caps on the backside, and a shot of C9 which was different from my first set.  These used a 0.47 tantalum whereas the first pair had an axial electrolytic here. 

July 6, 2006 - Racked the 3rd pair.  I think I'm done now since I've got enough for all the drums (kick, snare, & 4 toms).  This one was a little trickier.  The input gain on one unit would go dead after I moved the pot to center and beyond.  After measuring voltage (with a voltmeter) across the transistors, and comparing it to the good one, voltages at Q2 looked suspiciously low.  I replaced it with another and voila! problem solved.  so, looks like the "new" transistor I installed initially was bad. whew...

July 14, 2006 - edited this page a bit to make it load faster (too many pictures...)

October 16, 2006 - Dang it!  I bought a couple more strips so I'll be racking up another pair and may end up putting it up for sale cause I don't really need more right now...

October 27, 2006 - This is the fourth pair I've racked now.  This unit was sold to a TapeOp'er.

November 29, 2006 - Oops, I did it again...  Here is number 5.  This unit was sold to a local studio!

December 02, 2006 - I must be crazy but I did another.  Number 6 front and rear view.

January 21, 2007 - I got a pair of PM1000 master modules, and after a bit of schematic reading, rewired them as preamps.  So here is Number 7.  And yes, that's a strip of Red Oak on the front panel (just for variety). 

March 9, 2007 - Here is a picture of Number 8.  This time I figured out how to replace those crappy slide switches with rotary switches.  Much cleaner!

March 14, 2007 - Here is a picture of Number 9.  This is yet a different flavor, constructed from two talkback modules (which incidentally had different circuit layouts).  It seems to have lots of gain!

April 25, 2007 - I forgot to mention this earlier.  I took the 3rd unit and added some output transformers.  I heard about the Altran transformers and decided to try a pair.  The specific model I tried is the C-4000.  This is a 200:600 ohm, however they also make a C-2780 which is a 600:600.  Anyway, I definitely noticed a thicker presence in the low end (compared to the unbalanced out).  In my opinion they sounded very comparable to the original Yamaha/Tamuras.  So, if you cannot find the originals, the Altrans may be good alternative.

May 26, 2007 - Here is Number 10 almost complete (made a few changes after the pictures).  These are from a pair of master/monitor modules and have the original input/output transformers.  Added the input and output gain/level pots for more flexibility.

September 24, 2007 - Found a full 16-channel PM-1000 mixer for sale, although I had to drive a couple hours to get it.   These are big, heavy and a bit impractical for my use so looks like I will be racking a few more modules.  Shoot me a mail if you need parts for your board or if you are interested in purchasing a racked pair (I'll start a wait list and contact people in order when I have something for sale.)   See Gallery.

October 15, 2007 - Pictures of old and new rack projects will now be in the photo Gallery page.

November 10, 2007 - check out the "PM1K mini" in the gallery.  Arguably the smallest 2-channel PM1000 ever!  I built it for my toms.  It has a single gain control for each channel but does have transformer in and out.

December 20, 2007 - I'm up to 20 now... See Gallery.

March 1, 2008 - Wow, I'm up to 26 of these now.   Finally getting close to the end of the parts though so then I hope to take a long break and get back to making music!

March 23, 2008 - Earlier this week I gutted the PM1000 chassis and took the bare-bones, wood shell out to the curb for garbage pickup.  It felt kind of weird but not much else you can do with them.  I do have a few miscellaneous parts I will be selling (VU meters, metal parts, arm rest, a few pots, knobs, etc) so if you need something, feel free to email me and see if I have what you are looking for.  NOTE:  I do not have any of the channel strips or transformers available...

December 27, 2011 - See the gallery link for pictures.  I still have a few small parts for sale (VU meters, knobs, screws, bolts) but no strips or transformers and I am not racking any more units at this time.

July 16, 2013 - Hey!  its been awhile...  Check out the new PM1000 FAQ.

More PM-1000 Resources

The Viewing Room Five Fish another schematic
Tape-Op   Group DIY
Mouser Yamaha

My other DIY projects:

Sub-kick Project

Bass Traps Project

Other Mic Pres

Mic Mod Projects


Last updated 07/31/2014