IC Sockets: yay or nay?

I started building some castle modules and I’ve used IC sockets on all of them, they all appear to work fine. Then, I read that this could cause problems and am wondering if it would be wise to remove the sockets on some/all of them.
Is avoiding sockets on just the LT1256 sufficient or should I also avoid them on LM6172 or on everything? I assume the TL072s and other low speed op amps should be fine in sockets. Any advice would be helpful thanks!

Can’t speak to if it will cause a problem though I’m not sure why it would be an issue to use sockets. I would say you’re more likely to cause yourself issues (and headaches) trying to remove IC sockets. Personally, I don’t typically use IC sockets when building from BOMs just cause I don’t want to order extra shiz. Haven’t ever noticed any difference with or without.

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It’s possible for socketed ICs to exhibit parasitic capacitance that can result in unintended oscillations with wideband signals.

If you’ve already socketed them, I’d suggest leaving it and only replace them with directly soldered ICs if you notice any noise. It might be 100% fine as-is.


About two thirds of my DIY modules are socketed and I can’t say I notice any artefacts. If I ever move onto a HD system it might be more of an issue.


Thanks for the feedback, I’ll hold off on unsoldering anything, but will probably avoid sockets on further builds. Might try to compare a few modules with a friend’s unsocketed ones to see if any differences are apparent.

if you start to think you have problems because of the sockets. you can just solder the chips into the sockets i bet

I had some issues in the past with the Hard Key Generator (socketed LT1251) .
interference from the VCO’s visible at the edges of the keyed signal, and offsetted edge.

so I’d solder those in directly.

Hard Key Generator offsets the edge and has visible noise at the edges without sockets. I have two of these without sockets and they are both like this…
I’ve never built one with. This would be an interesting comparison to make.

I’ve built loads of unsocketed video modules. The LM6172 datasheet tells us not to socket them but they are also rated for much higher frequencies than we are using them for.