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Agoraquest • View topic - Black Diamond Racing Pyramid Cones

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View topic - Black Diamond Racing Pyramid Cones

Black Diamond Racing Pyramid Cones

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by Maxxwire » Wed Apr 26, 2006 10:29 pm

  

So far we have dealt with the many aspects of eliminating Weak Links in the AC Power Delivery Network, but as far as dealing with Weak Links while preserving the integrity of the AC Power itself during the essential stages of Surge Protection and Line Conditioning have not as yet been addressed. In this post I want to discuss what is probably the most illusive form of Weak Links which are Resonances which can negatively influence the sound of the Music that our Audio equipment produces by robbing it of the greatest amount of potential in areas as divergent as the retrieval of detail to the characteristics of the Audio System's Bass Response. Addressing and eliminating these Invisible Weak Links can bring about improvements in sound quality that are quite profound in that they directly influence the quality of the AC Power.

These Invisible Weak Links are created through the agency of Microphonics which works very similar to how a microphone works in converting mechanical vibrations to electric signals. The principal of Microphonics which was first discovered in 1929 can negatively effect the components of our Audio Systems in that it converts mechanical vibrations into electrical noise which can negatively alter the quality of the Music we hear from the speakers. The wiring in our Audio Systems can also be degraded by Microphonics in the form of charged conductors where various materials in the wiring can become subject to static charges known as triboelectric charges that couple to the wiring in our Audio Systems.

I first became aware of the effects that Microphonics can have on Audio equipment back in 2002 from a Soundstage Magazine article written by Mike Vans Evers who is the designer and maker of the Line Conditioners that I use. Here are some of his opening remarks...

"All audio systems are the result of the following process: sound is turned into electricity which is then turned back into sound. In this process, there are three types of energy that flow: signal, power, and mechanical vibrations. The third energy type, mechanical vibrations, affects the first two, signal and power.

"Tuning" is the conscious and deliberate act of making these unavoidable mechanical vibrations affect our sound systems in a friendly way. The proper goal of tuning is to bring an audio system’s distribution of resonances, its "resonant response," into balance. When this balance is achieved, an audio system will provide a more musically neutral interface between musician and listener, and in so doing maximize the emotional connection between the two."

It took a couple of years for the concepts contained in the Mike VansEvers article "The Art & Science of Audio System Tuning" to set in with me, but by 2004 I was well on my way to confronting the Invisible Weak Links known as resonance not by eliminating them, but by tuning them.

My first post Here at Agoraquest concerning the results of the Resonance Tuning that I had done in my Audio System was in the 2006 Black Diamond Racing Pyramid Cones Thread below where I shared the amazingly positive results that I got by applying Resonance Tuning to the components in my Audio System and its AC Power Delivery Network...



This is my VansEvers Model 12 Reference Line Conditioner which I purchased used for $65 back in 2003. It features programmable and highly effective proprietary Electrical Transient tuning and a Spirinol Oil capacitor. As it sat on the rubber feet that it came with it sounded better than any of the Line Conditioners that I had auditioned before I bought it, but when I put a set of 3 Mk3 Carbon Fiber BDR Cones between it and the MDF shelf that it was placed on I immediately heard an improvement in sound quality as a result of the elimination of the influence of Invisible Weak Links in the form of mechanical resonances that were negatively affecting the AC Power. Mike VansEvers' method of Tuning Mechanical Resonances is based upon not on trying to completely eliminate these Resonances as is the commonly used method, but rather to as he said "Tuning" is the conscious and deliberate act of making these unavoidable mechanical vibrations affect our sound systems in a friendly way".

The other piece of equipment in the AC Power Delivery Network that is very necessary is a Surge Protector. For the last 6 years I have used a Brick Wall Series Mode Surge Filter in my Audio System which features not only an Unlimited Amount of Surge Protection, but also EMI/RFI Filtering at 5 KHz, 100 KHz and 300 kHz. Most AC Filters for Audio equipment are above the Audio Band frequencies, but the Brick Wall filters 2 octaves lower into the Audio Band and contributes to its being the only Surge Protector that actually improves sound quality by actively filtering out the Invisible Weak Links in the AC Power that most other surge protectors allow to pass. The Brick Wall Series Mode Surge Filter uses
no sacrificial Metal Oxide Varistors in its circuitry which eliminates a myriad of Invisible Weak Links that exist in most Audio Systems...



I have the Brick Wall Filter which powers my Stereo System sitting on a slab of Granite that was custom cut for a Quicksilver Tube Monoblock Amp and makes it a great candidate for Resonance Tuning using BDR Cones because I've found them to work best on rigid surfaces whereas I have had good results using Sorbothane hemispheres on less stable surfaces where Decoupling the Resonances works better than would Rigid Coupling with the Carbon Fiber BDR Cones.



Sony has been aware of the the way that Resonances can negatively effect the performance and sound quality for over 30 years during the Esprit era as evidenced by this now rare set of Sony FW-90 Floating Magnet Sound Bases...



Sony has long known that Resonance Tuning not only works, but that Tuning these Invisible Weak Links is essential to obtaining the the highest levels of performance from the Audio equipment they make. From The Vintage Knob- "After nine years of use, the G chassis (G for Gibraltar) was discarded but replaced, effects-wise, by the much touted FB frame (Frame and Beam) which structures the chassis so that it remains completely rigid but non-resonant through careful arrangement and placement of the joining parts, different material densities and screws. This goes further with cast-iron and off-center feet to (tentatively) help to do away with remaining chassis resonances."

The audible results of dealing with these Invisible Weak Links will depend on the Resonance Profile of Audio equipment and how appropriately it is Resonance Tuned. The only way to find the ideal Tuning is through experimentation. I used several different kinds of Decoupling (Sorbothane and Vibrapods) and Rigid Coupling (Aluminum cones, Brass cones and BDR Cones) with my VansEvers Model 12 Reference Line Conditioner before I tried the BDR Carbon Fiber Cones which by experimentation worked much better than any of the other methods I had tried and raised its level of performance to such an unprecedented level that once all of the other components were also Resonance Tuned allowed the Audio System to give a Musical performance that was on a completely higher level than when it was being repressed and suppressed by Invisible Weak Links.

I installed a set of Mk 3 Black Diamond Racing Pyramid Cones between the Hybrid Sorbothane Decoupled Granite Energy Sinks and each of my JBL L-100a Century Speakers that are mounted on them.



To begin with I placed the front 2 Cones under the Woofer and Midrange speaker, but this placement* worked very poorly as it muffled the normally crisp and clear sound of these JBL AlNiCo speakers which were used by most US Recording Studios in the 1970's as final mix monitors.

I then moved the front 2 Cones as far out to the sides along the front of the speakers as I could and left the rear Cone in the center at the back of the speaker and the speakers came to life with the clearest most intricately detailed sound I have heard from them in the almost 9 years that I have owned them!

These 2 sets of Mk3 BDR Cones are keepers! They have improved the sound of my Speakers far more than I had expected and this improvement is worth far more than the $90 cost of implementation.

*BDR Cones are similar to real estate because getting the most out of them depends on location, location, location! I have placed 6 sets of them in my Audio system and in each case how well they worked was totally dependent on proper placement!

~Maxx~




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by rb » Thu Apr 27, 2006 7:46 am

Thanks for sharing your experience with the BDR cones Maxx.  With my completely solid state system I found #4''s to work best for me.
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by Maxxwire » Thu Apr 27, 2006 9:35 am

Rick- Black Diamond states that their Mk3 Cones were designed with a resonant frequency that is best suited for Solid State equipment and that the Mk4 Cones are more neutral which benefits Tube equipment.

As true BDR Coneheads we have each found that the manufacturers suggested application methodology does not apply in our Stereo systems.

I gave both the Mk3 and Mk4 Carbon Fiber Cones a try and the Mk3 cones gave both my Tube Preamp and Tube Power Amp more Resolution and inner detail.

I think that the lesson here would be to try both kinds of BDR Cones in any given application to see which works best because there is no way to predict which set of Cones will work best with any particular piece of equipment.

~Maxx~
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by jttar » Sat Apr 29, 2006 7:22 pm

Maxx,

Reading that your JBL speakers "came to life with the clearest most intricately detailed sound I have heard from them in the almost 9 years that I have owned them!", is a remarkable statement, considering your finely tuned system. Could you share a little more detail with us?

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by Maxxwire » Tue May 02, 2006 12:00 am


On 2006-04-27 02:29, Maxxwire wrote:the speakers came to life with the clearest most intricately detailed sound I have heard from them in the almost 9 years that I have owned them!



At the time I wrote this I was being purposely conservative in my description of the effects of this Resonance Tuning upgrade on my speakers because I wanted to take a few days for a more extensive evaluation.

I have now had several more days to evaluate the new Transparency and Resolution that this upgrade has brought and I want you to know that it is neither hyperbole nor exageration to say that the combined effect of the adding the Seismic Sink to the Tube Preamp and BDR Coning the Speakers in combination with the 120 previous Resonance Tuning upgrades I did have improved the Transparency and the Resolution capabilities of this Audio system by an amount equal to that of going from SD to HD in Video.

My working theory is that Audio equipment including speakers have a tendency to dam up Resonance and thus prevent the full fidelity of the signal to pass.

We can still do upgrades and they will improve the sound because they pass over the Dammed Resonance just as newly added water would force water over a Dam that is full, but the pent up water still remains behind the Dam.

What installing the Seismic Sink and BDR Coning the speakers did was to destroy those 2 Resonsnce Dams and release all of the pent up sonic potential of the equipment along with all of full the benefits of the previous upgrades that had been restricted by the Dammed Resonance to flow freely downstream for the very first time to be fully appreciated!

This is why I have gotten more meaningful improvements from Resonance Tuning my Audio equipment than I have from upgrading the equipment itself because without Resonance Modification it tends to dam up the effects of Resonance which obfuscates its true sonic potential.

I have read the lenghthy descriptions of the sonic results achieved by guys who have done $2,000+ worth of exotic parts upgrades on their Preamps which are the same brand as mine only more expensive models and compared to what the $185 it cost me for the Seismic Sink and 2 sets of BDR Cones did for my Preamp it sounds to me like my Resonance Modified will run sonic circles around the expensive modified version even though they have parts that cost 16 times as much!
The day I picked up the BDR Cones for the speakers I got to hear a great Reference Audio system at the Audio shop. It consisted of:

The $6,200 Audio Aero Capitole 24/192 CD player which upsamples with their custom designed Algorithm which is run by 32 bit floating point SHARC chip.

The $13,500 Edge NL-10 SS High Current Stereo Power Amp with dual 1,000 va transformers.

And a $16,000 pair of B&W 800 speakers.

I found some great Mozart Music and hit play! First off, the B&W 800's don't sound nearly as good as the $40,000 B&W Nautilus speakers do, but they still sound very good.

Overall I would say that the sound of this system was on a par with the sound I had 2 years ago before I started getting audible results from Resonance Tuning which was probably due to the fact that I have better Tuned Room Acoustics than they do at the Audio shop.

The sound of this Reference quality system honestly doesn't come anywhere close to the quality of the sound I have now.

After 130 Resonance Tuning upgrades the sound of my humble Audio equipment is able to make Music that on a level of such Transparency and absolute Realism that this un-Resonance Tuned super sophisticated ultra expensive Audio equipment has no hope of ever acheiving as it sits.

Why? It isn't because I have better equipment because I most certainly don't! No matter how great the quality of the Audio equipment great quality sound can only be achieved by total systematic Resonance Tuning!

The one and only advantage that my Audio system has despite all of the equipment disadvantages compared to this Audio system and the fact that I choose to run it in 16 bit resolution instead of 24 bit is that my Audio equipment has been carefully Resonance Tuned which allows it to make sweet natural sounding Music that simply can't be done with un-Resonance Tuned equipment!

I heard the $30,000 Sony SCD-1/ TA E-1/ TA N-1/ SS M-9ED system over a dozen times and it had the exact same problem of not being able to bring the Music to life. They brought in a pair of $30,000 KEF Reference Monitors to try to solve the problem, but it didn't sound any better because poor room treatments and the lack of Resonance Tuning had a sonic death grip on this system which is in actuality one of the finest Reference Audio systems ever made.

As I sat with in the well treated boundaries of my listening room enjoying the newly enhanced capabilities of my now fully Resonance Tuned Audio system this evening the sound was so realistic that I could hear the notes of the solo violin freely, clearly and effortlessly bounce from one boundary of the recording venue to the other as it very clearly mapped out the exact true orginal dimentions of the hall that the recording was made which greatly expanded the preceived size of the listening room.

I could go on and on about the perfect tonality of the instruments, the wholly formed three dimentional imagery and the extrordinarily lifelike Pace, Rhythm and Timing that is indistinguishable from the original Musical event that Resonance Tuning can bring out of Audio equipment, but you will see more about this in other Threads.

Just knowing why all of those ultra expensive Audio systems sounded so flat and unlifelike and now knowing how to raise up the sound quality of an Audio system that cost a fraction as much to astonishing levels of sonic excellence through Resonance Tuning is worth the 6 years of work that I put into experimenting until I finally found the answers I was looking for.


~Maxx~


A Satisfied Sony Fan Since 1974!

One Half of My A/V System


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by mykyll2727 » Wed May 03, 2006 6:57 pm

I for one am definitely a BDR cone head. I use them under virtually everything including my line conditioner. Maxx is absolutely correct about placement. I have found that there aren't any absolutes with regard to that either. I have found that one placed to some degree under transformers/power supllies produces excellent results. The degree varies with the component. With MMM for example directly under her transformer is not best but somewhat forward is. At one point I was using almost all MK4s. These combined with granite and marble energy sincs, along with some other materials, produced detail that was truly unreal in MMM's system. I heard things that one would not hear in a live performance unless you were standing on top of the performer/instrument. I still marvel at the amount of detail that exisits on a RBCD. But the sound tended to be cold and without any bloom whatsoever.  Positioning was so critical that even a couple of millimeters difference produced significant changes in sound. MK3s gave me warmth and bloom but detail was lacking. Then I did the Dynamat treatments. Now it's almost all MK3s. I've gone from four MK4s with each K90 to two MK3s and one MK4.  Positioning is somewhat more forgiving but is still critical. I'm building a DIY rack that I'm going to use with my DIY platforms. I'm hoping it'll work for me. If not a Skylan rack will be next. I'll see what configuration I'll settle on with the new rack and platforms._MMMike
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by Maxxwire » Mon May 08, 2006 10:35 am

I experimented for 4 years with Resonance Tuning my Audio equipment and out of the 50 different tools I had aquired only 9 pieces of Hybrid Sorbothane that was decoupling the Digital front end were truly effective and because there were so many pieces left untuned downstream I couldn't hear the positive effects of the decoupled Digital front end.

That all changed 2 years ago when I discovered using BDR Cones. For the first time I was able to get enough pieces properly Resonance Tuned by using BDR Cones to hear the amazing effects that Resonance Tuning can make.

I can't say that they work the same psitive way in every possible application, but they provided the breakthroughs I needed in the Resonance Tuning of my Audio system.

I am currently using 6 sets of BDR cones in a total of 21 Resonance Tuning applications in my Audio system and although the BDR Cones are used in less than 1/3 of the system they work absolute sonic miracles where they are used.

~Maxx~
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by maverick11359 » Tue May 09, 2006 2:05 pm









On 2006-04-27 11:46, rb wrote:
Thanks for sharing your experience with the BDR cones Maxx.  With my completely solid state system I found #4''s to work best for me.




Gaday Rb , Maxx and friends
             I ,ve just had an earth chattering experience, did a half hearted experiment which changed my skeptical heart forever
(well maybe).
  As you can see in the pic below I placed this glass shelf with Neotech Metal Cones under my sony amp and it completely changed my sound not just a little a lot(as much as different speaker cables did).
  My question to you guys is there a correct amount of cones , 3  or 4 ?
Is placement on solid state gear critical? should i replace the glass with something different or just put the cones straight on to the bottom of the components or leave alone? 
   
  Rb you have metal cones under all your solid state equipment does the sound change if some componets are left with out the cones,what i'm trying to say is i only did this to one componet ,will my sound keep changing if i do this to my Rotel power amp and Denon player  as well.

Is there  large differences between the brands and sizes ,Neotech make gold and black and 1" (25mm)and 1+1/2"(30mm)pyramid cones?
http://www.selbyacoustics.com.au/storefrontprofiles/deluxeSFshop.aspx?sid=1&sfid=74520&c=84153 will the different shape cones do different things?

                 Still  in some disbelief and shaking my head!
                   A happy !      MaveRick.

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by RickeyM » Tue May 09, 2006 5:53 pm

maverick, have you tried putting your receiver directly on the cones without the glass? Report man, inquiring minds have to know!
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by maverick11359 » Tue May 09, 2006 8:53 pm






On 2006-05-09 21:53, RickeyM wrote:
maverick, have you tried putting your receiver directly on the cones without the glass? Report man, inquiring minds have to know!


 Gaday RickeyM,
             No I have had the Neotech isolation cones glued to the glass , their been there a long time(couple of years)and I can't get them off.
          I,m  definitely going to purchase more cones of some description the question is what type and how may?
         There are so many types to choice from all claiming to be better than the next.
         Check these out.http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/vibrapod/cones.html

                               Tough decision!
       Cheers Rick.
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