Synergistic Tubes

We ran into SinglePower Inc.'s Mikhail Rotenberg as he was sprinting down the hall to the Synergistic Research room. "Check these out," he said. "These are a 1932 Tung Argon 4327 and a 1943 722A (323), labeled Centennial, but manufactured by Western Electric."

Rotenberg has a warehouse full of NOS treasures like this he bought from a MilSpec supplier near West Point. A few minutes later, we saw them in action, but we could have never guessed what they were being used in.

This is the Synergistic Research/SinglePower Enigma power supply ($6000) for Synergistic's active shielded Tesla cables (interconnect $1200–3000 per 1m speaker cable: $5400/8' pair).

Synergistic's Ted Denney explained, "The TungAr sounds great with small intimate recordings; the Western Electric sounds fabulous with big, dynamic music."

Wait, you're telling us the the tube running the shield has an effect on the sound? "Yup," Denney said.

It did. Something's going on here, but we don't know what it is.

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COMMENTS
Tim Rassi's picture

This is one I'm going to have to hear to believe. Tubes powering the active shielding in the cables? And THAT makes a difference? Please understand, I love Synergistic Research. I own a pair of their wonderful Designers' Reference speaker cables. But this? How could it be?

Doubter's picture

A few factual corrections: the tube on the left is a 4B27, fullwave Tungar rectifier. The tube on the right could be a 323A or a 722A, but they are different - not the same. (Different PIV ratings). Both are single-wave thyratrons (here looks like being run in grid-as-plate mode, eg. a half-wave rectifer). They were made by WE and Cetron (not Centennial, which is a non-existent brand), among others. If it's not labelled as WE, it wasn't made by WE (they didnt' OEM tubes for others).Gotta wonder what's really going on, if a half-wave and fullwave rectifier can both produce results, it can't be a very demanding application (if it's anything other than snake-oil at all, which remains to be seen, IMNSHO).

Tony's picture

I heard the Synergistic Research Enigma demonstration and it was easily the best sound at the show. The amazing thing was not that Synergistic had such great sound or even the differences I heard when they switched between tubes. To me the thing that really caught my imagination was the fact they achieved this performance with real world components- Theil 3.7 loud speakers and an Apple laptop running iTunes feeding an inexpensive USB DAC. There were many systems several times the cost of the Synergistic Research system ($70,000 plus loud speakers,$50 ,000 plus digital front ends, etc) but none came close to the sound in the Synergistic Research room and that's remarkable. As Wes Phillips states in his show report, there is something going on here.

audiodoctor's picture

I have to concur with Tony, the fact that this system produced such palpable sonics, rivaling the magic of many of the shows most expensive systems, out of affordable components, shows the power of their new breakthrough technologies.The demo was extremely effective with the Enigma and Powercell in circuit, the system had a wall to wall sound stage with sounds floating in space, superb depth of field, and a compelling sense of musical engagement and bass solidity.With the Enigma and Powercell turned off the images receded into the plane of the speakers and the system sounded good but rather ordinary.One quite unique part of the demo was when Ted switched which type of tube the Enigma had in circuit. The Tungar tube produced a warmer and more dimensional sound compared to the Western Electric which was perhaps a bit cleaner but with less sense of bloom.The Enigma was the coolest looking audio product at the show. Bravo Synergistic.

Ted Denney III Lead Designer Synergistic Research Inc.'s picture

The tubes used in the Enigma are as follows:Western Electric 323A engraved in it's base packaged in it's original date stamped box for the US Army with dates between 1943 and 1945. The 323A was used extensively in WWII in everything from radars to radios and was part of the 82nd and 101st Airborne drop into Normandy to Liberate France during the D-Day invasion. The JAN-CG-4B27 was in production from 1919 through 1949 and was engineered as a low voltage high current tube for battery charging stations. It comes in it's original packaging and with it's original registration card from 1932.The Enigma Valve power supply for Tesla Active Shielding supplies a 30 volt DC bias to the shields of Active Tesla cables out-side-the-signal-path. The differences between the two tubes are profound and allow Tesla users to tune the sound of Active Shielding to compliment different recordings as well as personal preferences. The Enigma powers up to 24 cables or 12 pairs of interconnects, speaker wire, and

Ted Denney III Lead Designer Synergistic Research Inc.'s picture

The tubes used in the Enigma are as follows:Western Electric 323A engraved in it's base packaged in it's original date stamped box for the US Army with dates between 1943 and 1945. The 323A was used extensively in WWII in everything from radars to radios and was part of the 82nd and 101st Airborne drop into Normandy to Liberate France during the D-Day invasion. The JAN-CG-4B27 was in production from 1919 through 1949 and was engineered as a low voltage high current tube for battery charging stations. It comes in it's original packaging and with it's original registration card from 1932.The Enigma Valve power supply for Tesla Active Shielding supplies a 30 volt DC bias to the shields of Active Tesla cables out-side-the-signal-path. The differences between the two tubes are profound and allow Tesla users to tune the sound of Active Shielding to compliment different recordings as well as personal preferences. The Enigma powers up to 24 cables or 12 pairs of interconnects, speaker wire, and

Mr Wizard's picture

This is simply a scam artist pulling the wool over you audiophools eyes once again. he wants a bigger sail boat is my guess. PLEASE learn some basic science guys before you go out throwing away money.

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