The future of hi/end audio & a rant on honesty in reviewing (tuning fuses)

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James Romeyn

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A member here suggested the Teflon wrap on the fuses.  I wrapped Teflon tape around every fuse in every component.  I listened, wrapped, listened, then went on to the next component.  Honestly, I was open to anything from hearing no difference to a moderately big improvement.  Some items like my receivers there seemed to be no difference.  Other pieces seemed more audible.   

One component (since sold) that seemed to benefit the most from the Teflon tape, estimate 30%, was Bongiorno's Trinaural Processor.

I wonder if trapping heat in the glass housing (or whatever is the material) might cause the fuse to blow prematurely.

srb

I wonder if trapping heat in the glass housing (or whatever is the material) might cause the fuse to blow prematurely.

A fuse is as close to zero ohms as possible and therefore there would be infinitesimal voltage drop across the fuse and correspondingly negligible power dissipation.

Steve

Carl V

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Doc, I am not sure who you are quoting here. Please include the quote.

Quote
"That's not a great idea. Why would you ask someone who has no experience to conjecture about what the facts really are?" DaveC113


Carl V

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Preferences, esthetics or pride in ownership, all have their place in our hobby as does Euphonic.

Hi-Fi is a term couched in noble & artistic aspirations. We all get our 'dander up' when when Best/better
is applied. Reminds me of the Voltaire Quote Great is the enemy of the Good.  In this sense substitute
best/better for : accurate, Faithful, Musical.

But it usually comes down to good design & engineering.

Tyson

A big part of the problem with our hobby is how passive the customers are.  In the old days, a LOT more people built kits, and thus had at least a nodding familiarity with electronics.  Now it's all just black boxes and voodoo.  I'm not casting any stones, just stating facts.  Plus I have my own glass house to live in since I used to be exactly one of those types of audiophiles.  Building stuff opens up your eyes, quick.

Roger A. Modjeski

A big part of the problem with our hobby is how passive the customers are.  In the old days, a LOT more people built kits, and thus had at least a nodding familiarity with electronics.  Now it's all just black boxes and voodoo.  I'm not casting any stones, just stating facts.  Plus I have my own glass house to live in since I used to be exactly one of those types of audiophiles.  Building stuff opens up your eyes, quick.

Agreed and I take it that you are now building stuff?

May I add that measuring stuff (in addition to listening) has opened my eyes very wide. I am up to book four of my notes I call "Various Amplifiers Tested". That is over 200 amps and preamps tested.  Any amp that crosses my bench gets a full workout. John Atkinson does an excellent job of amplifier testing and it is worth getting familiar with his measurements. I contend if an amplifier measures really badly it cannot possibly sound good to a person who knows what good sound is.

bdp24

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   I bought a phono amp from an audiophile awhile back. Before he would sell it to me, he wanted to make sure it would meet my needs and work in my system (the gain of the pre-amp in relation to the output of the cartridge, etc.). I found that unusually conscientious, as most sellers care more about selling a piece than insuring it will work well for the buyer. Anyway, he advised me to wear gloves when touching the tubes, and to try different tubes in the amp, etc. The ad stated that the amp had been fitted with a Hi-Fi Tuning Fuse, and the picture showed what looked like Herbie's tube Dampers on the three tubes. When he told me the dampers were made by the amp's manufacturer (which I knew not to be the case), I realized that he didn't know as much about the amp as I did. But okay, I bought it.
   Imagine my surprise when upon it's arrival I heard something rattling around inside the box. The seller, who was so concerned that I might touch the tubes without gloves, had left not only the tubes installed in their sockets, but the heavy metal tube dampers in place on the tubes! With all that weight on them, the tubes were, of course, ripped out of the sockets, all their pins bent. When I informed him of this, and said that I didn't mention removing the tubes for shipping because I thought surely anyone owning tubes would already know this, especially if he considered touching a tube without a glove a bad idea, he blamed the damage on the fact that I had not told him about not shipping the tubes installed! Oy! He did know that the amp really, really needed that special fuse, though, didn't he? Wonder where he got that idea? I'll tell you where-----from subjective reviewers. A lot of them remind me of this guy.....skewed priorities.
   Speaking of which.....Bill Johnson told a story about the founder and editor of an unfortunately influential rag who had one of the ARC pre-amps in for review. The guy contacted Bill because the pre-amp was, the guy said, defective. Bill had him send the amp back to Minnesota, and quickly discovered the "defect". Harry, oops, I mean the reviewer had installed shorting caps on the unused inputs of the pre-amp, and also on the unused OUTPUT jacks of the amp! Well, :duh:. He knew that shorting the unused inputs was essential in getting the best sound out of pre-amps, but not that shorting the outputs was a VERY bad idea. A person like that has NO business "reviewing" hi-fi products, don't you agree? See, J. Gordon Holt knew his engineering, AND listened to the gear he reviewed. Is that asking too much of our reviewers?

Tyson

Agreed and I take it that you are now building stuff?

May I add that measuring stuff (in addition to listening) has opened my eyes very wide. I am up to book four of my notes I call "Various Amplifiers Tested". That is over 200 amps and preamps tested.  Any amp that crosses my bench gets a full workout. John Atkinson does an excellent job of amplifier testing and it is worth getting familiar with his measurements. I contend if an amplifier measures really badly it cannot possibly sound good to a person who knows what good sound is.


Indeed - I built my last 2 sets of speakers and am going to build a 3rd set soon.  For amps, it's just been a couple of F5's and a Burning Amp 3, all First Watt designs.  I am very, very far from any kind of expert, but I do have to say that there's a lot less voodoo and woo going on in your thinking when you are dealing with the engineering side of things. 

Roger A. Modjeski

   I bought a phono amp from an audiophile awhile back. Before he would sell it to me, he wanted to make sure it would meet my needs and work in my system (the gain of the pre-amp in relation to the output of the cartridge, etc.). I found that unusually conscientious, as most sellers care more about selling a piece than insuring it will work well for the buyer. Anyway, he advised me to wear gloves when touching the tubes, and to try different tubes in the amp, etc. The ad stated that the amp had been fitted with a Hi-Fi Tuning Fuse, and the picture showed what looked like Herbie's tube Dampers on the three tubes. When he told me the dampers were made by the amp's manufacturer (which I knew not to be the case), I realized that he didn't know as much about the amp as I did. But okay, I bought it.
   Imagine my surprise when upon it's arrival I heard something rattling around inside the box. The seller, who was so concerned that I might touch the tubes without gloves, had left not only the tubes installed in their sockets, but the heavy metal tube dampers in place on the tubes! With all that weight on them, the tubes were, of course, ripped out of the sockets, all their pins bent. When I informed him of this, and said that I didn't mention removing the tubes for shipping because I thought surely anyone owning tubes would already know this, especially if he considered touching a tube without a glove a bad idea, he blamed the damage on the fact that I had not told him about not shipping the tubes installed! Oy! He did know that the amp really, really needed that special fuse, though, didn't he? Wonder where he got that idea? I'll tell you where-----from subjective reviewers. A lot of them remind me of this guy.....skewed priorities.
   Speaking of which.....Bill Johnson told a story about the founder and editor of an unfortunately influential rag who had one of the ARC pre-amps in for review. The guy contacted Bill because the pre-amp was, the guy said, defective. Bill had him send the amp back to Minnesota, and quickly discovered the "defect". Harry, oops, I mean the reviewer had installed shorting caps on the unused inputs of the pre-amp, and also on the unused OUTPUT jacks of the amp! Well, :duh:. He knew that shorting the unused inputs was essential in getting the best sound out of pre-amps, but not that shorting the outputs was a VERY bad idea. A person like that has NO business "reviewing" hi-fi products, don't you agree? See, J. Gordon Holt knew his engineering, AND listened to the gear he reviewed. Is that asking too much of our reviewers?

Thanks for sharing your experience which is typical of audiophile misunderstanding. Lets see where some of these things come from

1. Someone got the idea that you cant touch tubes with bare fingers (hence the cotton gloves) because of the problem of contamination on the glass of Quartz lamps. Tubes are not made of that kind of glass and do not run that hot. I find this a good example of the misapplication of knowledge or that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

2. While cryo treating metals for their mechanical properties makes some sense, I do not see how it applies to the metal in a tube that is working with electrons.

3. I have some real issues with burn-in. It applies to speakers of course as the suspension loosens up. I cannot see how it applies to cables or electronic parts. Someone please enlighten me on that one. It has become such a popular question that manufacturers (not me) are putting it in the specs. When it comes to electronics I think the burn in is going on in the listeners ears getting used to the new sound. If burn-in is real how come it wasn't discovered in the 1950s.

I have often told the story of visiting Harry oops in Glencove in the early 1980s. I had just flown in from California and fell asleep on his couch (my sales manager at the time was close to Harry as they shared a love of Corvettes) and I was told Harry didn't like that. Wandering around as they discussed cars I saw an ARC preamp upended in the bar sink and lots of gear all over the place. At the end of our visit as Harry got into his as we said good by in the driveway he leaned over the top of his Corvette and said. "Audio is a drug and I am the audio pusher". Until recently I though TAS was the biggest offender of "hey give me a good review and keep the amp" I was told that David Manley would roll up in his milk truck and just throw amps to the reviewers. Why do you think that for years several companies were TAS favorites. Given this discussion about fuses and the general quality of reviewing by  Positive Feedback I would say they have surpassed TAS in irresponsible journalism.

When the first Tuning Fuse report came out (the one I mentioned in my survey last year) I wrote the Editor of PF to inform him that his reviewer got current and voltage mixed up. I offered my services as a technical editor. He asked "do you know what an editor does, I doubt you could do it" I replied "well given that review you certainly aren't doing it" :nono: Perhaps you need a Technical Editor to check for accuracy of content so you don't embarrass yourself. He really doesn't care.

bdp24

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The blind leading the insecure. And the egos involved in the reviewing racket-----it's worse than the product marketers. The newest twist on getting the gig---and I see this particularly at PF---is a rich enthusiast buying himself a very expensive system, and then reviewing it, piece by piece. Apparently the only qualification required to review a piece of expensive gear is to already own it. Hey, I own a BMW 528e; do I get to be on the staff at Road & Track? It was bad enough when a reviewer would buy his review sample at the "industry accommodation" price after the review was published (seems possibly unethical to me, at the least an easy road to corruption), but now a rich boy gets to buy his coolness-----impressing his Hi-Fi hobbyist pals, both he and they thinking he is now a mover-and-shaker in his and their identity-creating obsession. They're the guys who play only demonstration-quality material on their system, constantly reassuring themselves that it is still State Of The Art.
« Last Edit: 8 Jul 2014, 08:38 am by bdp24 »

Roger A. Modjeski

In searching PF there are several reviews of Tuning Fuses. Does this look like payola? If you seach "tuning fuse" on PF archives you will get 7 pages of hits, at 10 per page thats 70 hits. They even gave the fuse an award. They have all the reviewers using it.

Here is an excerpt from one. Not I have warned against using these for tube fuses. From this reviewer who spoke with the founder directly, perhaps even he doesn't know any better.  http://www.positive-feedback.com/Issue51/hifi_tuning.htm

There was only one potential drawback that I think of with the HiFi-Tuning fuses. Conrad-johnson uses the KTK fuses to protect the amplifier against output tube failure. So when that 6550 tube eventually goes, and like death and taxes, that's a certainty, the tube will take out the fuse. So conrad-johnson owners will have to potentially replace one or two HiFi-Tuning fuses fuse every two or so years. In addition, conrad-johnson amplifier owners should keep around a stock of the conventional fuses to check which tube is bad before replacing the HiFi-Tuning fuses!

I looked at the KTK fuse data. It is a very sophisticated high breaking, fast acting fuse. A tuning fuse provides no such protection.

One of the key properties of a high breaking fuse is that it is filled with sand. In this review http://www.positive-feedback.com/Issue54/fuses.htm the maker said the following.

These fuses are further resonance optimized by sheathing the internal fuse filament inside a Polyolefin tube, as well as encasing the conductive materials within black ceramics rather than the more common glass. HiFi-Tuning settled on the Polyolefin tube approach once they had exhausted other methods, including filling the fuse body with sand or glass beads. The thermal properties of this ultra-pure conductive material don't lend itself well to the use of sand, and the glass bead process made the production cost prohibitive. The final process applied to all the Supreme3 fuses is that of a proprietary quantum level treatment.

Oh, they would have used glass beads but the cost was prohibitive! How much can glass beads cost? By putting the fuse element inside a Polyolefin tube they contained the silver vapor (plasma created when the fuse blows) further reducing the effectiveness of the fuse. In a high breaking application the plasma continues to conduct long after the element has blown, often melting the holder.  As far as being a fuse it is about the worst a fuse could be. Oh yes, they were going to use sand to prevent resonance (gosh that little soft wire is just like a guitar string, we can't have that playing some note) :nono: What is a quantum level treatment? :scratch:

The more reviews I read in PF the more I find things like this from Jeff Parks. I guess he is on the Tuning Fuse payola program to use them in everything he reviews. It is interesting to note that there are 100 hits for "premium fuses" which includes tuning fuses and 70 for "tuning fuses' alone. So by subtraction all the other premium fuses (and there are many) are only getting 30% exposure.

Recently I have discovered by replacing a product's internal cheap tin-based fuses with a far superior fuse from HIFI Tuning fuses the improvement in sound can be dumbfounding. Each time I replaced the stock fuse with a HIFI Silver Star tuning fuse in a piece of gear I heard a dramatic improvement in speed, soundstage, clarity, transparency, and even a bit more bass with added dynamic slam. All of this from a little $59.95 fuse.

Guy 13

Hi all.
I am not sure if I am off topic, but here it goes anyway.
I gather all those citations from left and right over a few years.

An audiophile is someone who can hear differences among various components, cables, etc… even when there aren't any.
An audiophile can confirm that there is a difference in sound,
even no components have been changed,
only by suggesting him, that some changes have been made.
It’s a fact that many audiophiles concern themselves with connectors
and power cords and all the fancy tweaks,
when these at are pale in comparison to the effect of room acoustics.
Room treatments are the most grossly overlooked and misunderstood aspect of hi-end audio.
Sometimes, room treatment can only be bookshelves, plushy sofas, thick carpet thick drapes and a few frames on walls.
The industry has now reached the point where wire resistance
and listening quality are not the issues any more,
although listening claims may still be made…
The strategy in selling these extremely expensive products is,
in part, to appeal to those who are looking to impress others with
something unique and extremely expensive and flatter their alter ego.
How a short strand of expensive cable can improve upon
electricity delivered by miles of standard electricity transmission
equipment outside and inside a home?
How short does the (Specialized) wire have to be made before differences can no longer be heard ?

Guy 13



Roger A. Modjeski

Hi all.
I am not sure if I am off topic, but here it goes anyway.
I gather all those citations from left and right over a few years.

An audiophile is someone who can hear differences among various components, cables, etc… even when there aren't any.
An audiophile can confirm that there is a difference in sound,
even no components have been changed,
only by suggesting him, that some changes have been made.
It’s a fact that many audiophiles concern themselves with connectors
and power cords and all the fancy tweaks,
when these at are pale in comparison to the effect of room acoustics.
Room treatments are the most grossly overlooked and misunderstood aspect of hi-end audio.
Sometimes, room treatment can only be bookshelves, plushy sofas, thick carpet thick drapes and a few frames on walls.
The industry has now reached the point where wire resistance
and listening quality are not the issues any more,
although listening claims may still be made…
The strategy in selling these extremely expensive products is,
in part, to appeal to those who are looking to impress others with
something unique and extremely expensive and flatter their alter ego.
How a short strand of expensive cable can improve upon
electricity delivered by miles of standard electricity transmission
equipment outside and inside a home?
How short does the (Specialized) wire have to be made before differences can no longer be heard ?

Guy 13

Excellent insight, made me smile as there is a lot of truth here. This I so agree with.

Room treatments are the most grossly overlooked and misunderstood aspect of hi-end audio.
Sometimes, room treatment can only be bookshelves, plushy sofas, thick carpet thick drapes and a few frames on walls.


A wealthy man in Orange County was interested in getting involved with Music Reference. I visited his home which he had been livinig in for at least two years. His listening room was literally a rather large cube with very hard walls, hard floor, very few windows, no drapes, no carpet, one couch. The two of us in the room provided more sound absorption than everything else put together.

We started to converse and I suggested we go outside because it was a nice day. The real reason I wanted to go outside was the I couldn't understand a word that was said in that room it was so live. I have never experienced a room with such horrible reflections. Later he asked me to comment on his system. As nicely as I could I told him I couldn't hear his system, all I could hear is the room. He had some decent equipment. He told me the speaker maker was going to come and make some updates to the speakers in a few days. I wonder if the speaker maker commented on the room. I found it hard to believe that this man had been listening to whatever in this room for over two years.

It is interesting what some people will pay for special room treatment that does the same thing as furniture that you can enjoy. For instance a bookshelf with books of different sizes will do a better job than those assemblages of little wood blocks that people hang on the walls. The blocks are harder than books (more reflective) and the differences in height too small to do anything much below 10 KHZ where you really need it.

I don't understand corner traps at all. At the corner there is a node in a standing wave where there is virtually no air motion to be trapped.

I think the people who design room treatments don't know much about sound waves, which is unfortunate.

I thinks audiophiles trust that someone who makes something knows what they are doing. I find quite the opposite is true when it comes to tweaks, fuses, cables, burn in devices, etc, etc.

I don't understand why people listen down the length of a room when they can listen across the width and reduce side wall reflections.

Instead of pulling your speakers way out from the wall and your speakers into the middle of the room try putting a heavy drape on the wall behind the speakers and a shelf full of books right behind your listening chair. Its a handy place to keep the books too.

I recall one time a fellow told me something that was simply untrue, something that could easily be shown to be untrue. I asked where he got that information. He told me he read it in an advertisement so it must be true. The Admen have finally reached their goal.

Guy 13

Hi Roger,
thanks for your comments.

Guy 13

bdp24

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   Did everyone see the story (in the L.A. Times Sunday magazine section, with pics) about fifteen years ago on Fabio's music system? Fabio, the male model (women's romance novel covers) with long golden hair? Like that of Michael Green, of Room Tunes---remember THAT charlatan? It was a big system, though I don't remember the details. If I remember correctly, it was the Infinity IRS with Levinson (the company, not the man) amps. From the system's components, you could tell they were chosen by their most important spec-----price. But it was the room that drew my attention; marble floors, lots of glass, hard walls, etc. He knew enough to try and defend his choice of room composition, saying that it was also important to live in a beautiful home. That assumes one finds marble beautiful, of course.
   In addition to bookcases, LP racks work well as diffusors, as do those for CD's. I too prefer to place my panels on the long wall, rather than firing down the length of the room. They do need to be away from the wall behind them, but that can be partially accomplished by angling them in quite a bit towards the listening area. As long as they're not parallel to the wall behind them, the returning wave doesn't meet and cancel with the direct sound wave, or reach the listener's ears too closely in time with the direct sound, which we all know causes smearing. I prefer to sit more near-field that most, which also diminishes the contribution of the room to the sound one hears. Magnepan recommends their speakers be listened to from a distance about twice that of the space between them. I don't care for that at all. The Magneplanars might require that distance to allow their side-by-side drivers to integrate properly, but ESL's don't. The old Quads can be listened to from a very near-field distance. The ET LFT's I don't know yet---they still haven't arrived. Another reason the long wall works well for all my panels is that the Tympani IV bass sections are 32" wide, left channel and right; I butt them right up against the side walls, creating a kind of loading (the front and rear sound waves can't wrap around the outsides of the panels and cancel each other. Free bass! Then the Quads/GR Research OB subs are butted right up against the Maggies. That blocks THAT side of the bass panels. More free bass!. A room would have to be pretty wide to accommodate my set-up.
« Last Edit: 8 Jul 2014, 01:18 pm by bdp24 »

kevin360

Quote from: Roger A. Modjeski
I thinks audiophiles trust that someone who makes something knows what they are doing.

This isn't unique to audiophiles. This is a general truth about our species. Heck, who among us hasn't exploited the trust of another at least once in his/her life? Memes drive us and the overwhelming majority of us embrace ideas on faith alone (I'll abstain from painting that parallel explicitly). It should come as no surprise that memes which ought to break our credulity fuses pass right around our critical analyses.

The raison d'être of advertising is the manipulation of our decision making. Advances in neuroscience promise to create ever more potent mind viruses. It may seem sinister, but it's just natural progression. 'Quantum' is one of those hot words. Toss it into the description of one's product and it gets an instant whiff of deep physics at work (however pseudo it may actually be).

We have a defense. In the vast ocean of information we call the Internet, all is not misinformation. A real and deep education is available to anyone who can read this post.

On the other hand, this is a hobby. It should be fun. I have 'cable risers' (for instance). I purchased them from an electrical supply house for a few dollars a piece, and I spray painted them high gloss black. I like the way they look and I consider them part of my cable management scheme. I have some OCD tendencies (as most of us do), and they are an outlet via which those tendencies can escape.

With a little education (such as visiting the link you posted earlier, and viewing the breadth of variables which must be considered when selecting a fuse), HiFi Tuning fuses scream, "Danger!" It is only by highlighting what fantastic conductors they are (I'm not validating that claim here) that we are distracted from the aforementioned details. The advertising press provides memetic reinforcement and embellishment. Satisfied customers add their voices to the choir. The meme spreads.

The sonic improvements don't have to be real to be experienced (the point of the link I provided earlier - I could provide many more). In most cases, the fuses will never be tested (called upon for protection), so the risk they impart will never be realized - they can get away with being inappropriate. In other cases, the worst on which I stated that I'd wager will happen. No matter - the blame can always be shifted to the equipment designer.

We are an irrational lot.  :wink:
 

bdp24

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Excellent insight, made me smile as there is a lot of truth here. This I so agree with.

Room treatments are the most grossly overlooked and misunderstood aspect of hi-end audio.
Sometimes, room treatment can only be bookshelves, plushy sofas, thick carpet thick drapes and a few frames on walls.


A wealthy man in Orange County was interested in getting involved with Music Reference. I visited his home which he had been livinig in for at least two years. His listening room was literally a rather large cube with very hard walls, hard floor, very few windows, no drapes, no carpet, one couch. The two of us in the room provided more sound absorption than everything else put together.

We started to converse and I suggested we go outside because it was a nice day. The real reason I wanted to go outside was the I couldn't understand a word that was said in that room it was so live. I have never experienced a room with such horrible reflections. Later he asked me to comment on his system. As nicely as I could I told him I couldn't hear his system, all I could hear is the room. He had some decent equipment. He told me the speaker maker was going to come and make some updates to the speakers in a few days. I wonder if the speaker maker commented on the room. I found it hard to believe that this man had been listening to whatever in this room for over two years.

It is interesting what some people will pay for special room treatment that does the same thing as furniture that you can enjoy. For instance a bookshelf with books of different sizes will do a better job than those assemblages of little wood blocks that people hang on the walls. The blocks are harder than books (more reflective) and the differences in height too small to do anything much below 10 KHZ where you really need it.

I don't understand corner traps at all. At the corner there is a node in a standing wave where there is virtually no air motion to be trapped.

I think the people who design room treatments don't know much about sound waves, which is unfortunate.

I thinks audiophiles trust that someone who makes something knows what they are doing. I find quite the opposite is true when it comes to tweaks, fuses, cables, burn in devices, etc, etc.

I don't understand why people listen down the length of a room when they can listen across the width and reduce side wall reflections.

Instead of pulling your speakers way out from the wall and your speakers into the middle of the room try putting a heavy drape on the wall behind the speakers and a shelf full of books right behind your listening chair. Its a handy place to keep the books too.

I recall one time a fellow told me something that was simply untrue, something that could easily be shown to be untrue. I asked where he got that information. He told me he read it in an advertisement so it must be true. The Admen have finally reached their goal.

Art Noxon (ASC) could answer all your bass trap (his products are not for just corner placement) questions. He was installing them in recording studios (ones without bass traps built into their walls, something that has been done since the 50's) long before JGH reviewed them in Stereophile (and used for the rest of his life). The company website has a lot of technical, scientific (no, really!) information. The Tube traps are designed in accordance with sound, well-understood and established acoustic theory, and are very effective. I bought a bunch of them out of The Recycler about twenty years ago, ten bucks apiece (about a dozen of them, including a couple of the 15" version!). He's the real deal, an honest-to-God Acoustical Engineer. Yes, degreed :). No Michael Green, he!

bdp24

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  • Posts: 883
This isn't unique to audiophiles. This is a general truth about our species. Heck, who among us hasn't exploited the trust of another at least once in his/her life? Memes drive us and the overwhelming majority of us embrace ideas on faith alone (I'll abstain from painting that parallel explicitly). It should come as no surprise that memes which ought to break our credulity fuses pass right around our critical analyses.

The raison d'être of advertising is the manipulation of our decision making. Advances in neuroscience promise to create ever more potent mind viruses. It may seem sinister, but it's just natural progression. 'Quantum' is one of those hot words. Toss it into the description of one's product and it gets an instant whiff of deep physics at work (however pseudo it may actually be).

We have a defense. In the vast ocean of information we call the Internet, all is not misinformation. A real and deep education is available to anyone who can read this post.

On the other hand, this is a hobby. It should be fun. I have 'cable risers' (for instance). I purchased them from an electrical supply house for a few dollars a piece, and I spray painted them high gloss black. I like the way they look and I consider them part of my cable management scheme. I have some OCD tendencies (as most of us do), and they are an outlet via which those tendencies can escape.

With a little education (such as visiting the link you posted earlier, and viewing the breadth of variables which must be considered when selecting a fuse), HiFi Tuning fuses scream, "Danger!" It is only by highlighting what fantastic conductors they are (I'm not validating that claim here) that we are distracted from the aforementioned details. The advertising press provides memetic reinforcement and embellishment. Satisfied customers add their voices to the choir. The meme spreads.

The sonic improvements don't have to be real to be experienced (the point of the link I provided earlier - I could provide many more). In most cases, the fuses will never be tested (called upon for protection), so the risk they impart will never be realized - they can get away with being inappropriate. In other cases, the worst on which I stated that I'd wager will happen. No matter - the blame can always be shifted to the equipment designer.

We are an irrational lot.  :wink:

The insecurity I mentioned above is very much in evidence in regards to the improvement claimed to have been heard from the use of the Hi-Fi Tuning Fuses. By the way, what exactly do the fuses "tune", anyway? Once one reviewer/audiophile claims to have heard an improvement from their use, no other r/a dare admit he doesn't. Poof, there would go his Audiophile Credibility.

fastfred

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  • Fred Petersen
    • audiofyle.com



I'm not sure if other members caught the play, but here goes. As I said in a previous reply,
Roger started a topic called tuning fuses ( 39 replies 7578 views ), which has been bumped.

Judging by the response to this thread ( 77 replies 1948 views ) I'm wondering why there hasn't
been a larger response to the poll on Roger's tuning fuses thread.

It's real easy to find at the top of the Music Reference page

I'm wondering if there shouldn't be an ongoing topic or circle specifically dealing with questionable
products like these. It's been said that subjective reviewing has it's place but it needs to be made clear
that there is no basis in science for what these products claim to do. In the case of a fuse which could
cause a fire, there needs to be a higher standard.

On a subjective note while walking with a friend we came across a fellow walking his invisible dog. He had
adapted a small speaker to the collar & was able to make his invisible dog spot bark at the push of a button.
He put a smile on each of us he met that day ( the bark sounded like great dane )

*For those unaware an invisible dog is a product similar to a pet rock*

James Romeyn

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  • James Romeyn Music and Audio, LLC
    • James Romeyn Music and Audio, LLC
This is worth what you paid to read it.

I'd wager some money, maybe $50 toward a legal, certified, tax exempt charity of the winner's choosing: if we started with two OEM Trinaural Processors that sounded similar, I could blindly pick the one with the fuse wrapped with Teflon with statistical accuracy presumed higher than chance.  (The difference I heard at the time was well beyond subtle.) 

No need to argue this point, because I happily admit I could be totally wrong and loose the bet.  I'd view it as a fun experiment with a hopefully worthy winner (the charity). 

I don't even have the Trinaural anymore.  Trinaural designer Bongiorno passed away early '13.  He'd publicly scorn anyone proposing that a fuse could affect performance.  The Trinaural had IEC Mains receptacle but he believed only in captive AC Mains for all his power amps, even his best and last $7500/pr 60 lb Ampzilla mono blocs.  The designer of my all time favorite amp Jack Elliano privately disbelieves in audiophile tweaks such as fuses, etc.   

I do suspect that "blind" testing comprises "pass/fail" stress that is the exact opposite of listening to music for enjoyment and pleasure.  From my limited reading on the subject of blind tests I suspect its proponents choose to ignore or discard this potential defect in the test parameter.

Did you hear about the guy who lost his imaginary friend?