You are here

Log in or register to post comments
Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Someone explain please

On this drawing the cables are represented in grey lines, getting thinner and thinner all the time. Except the red cable from the power outlet in your listening room being thicker than the preceding cable.

How can this possibly have a positive effect on the sound? In my system it definitely does, and I wonder why.

Does (the red piece of) cable act as a capacitor? Anybody have a guess?

May Belt
May Belt's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 weeks 5 days ago
Joined: May 8 2006 - 1:51am
Re: Someone explain please

Do you know what the insulation materials used around both the previous power cord and the new (thicker) power cord were ? If you say the thicker cord had a positive effect, then this must have been judged against a previous cord ! I am presuming the (Red) cord is in your listening room.

Regards,
May Belt,
P.W.B. Electronics.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 8 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Someone explain please

Have you tried thicker between the fuse box and the wall outlet?

I bet you'd hear it if you could do it.

I think we audiophiles tend to start coddling the signal at the earliest point that is convenient is all.

We ran a neater wire to our outlets from the fuse box when we built the house. No A/B to compare, but I'm happy.

We got to choose the wire from the city to our mains last house - but I didn't know what to pick! The guy from the power company liked udio and recommended one so we went for it. He said he used it, and later I got to hear his rig and it was nice.

Love this kinda stuff, but I feel none of us know enough yet.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
Do you know what the insulation materials used around both the previous power cord and the new (thicker) power cord were ? If you say the thicker cord had a positive effect, then this must have been judged against a previous cord ! I am presuming the (Red) cord is in your listening room.

Regards,
May Belt,
P.W.B. Electronics.

The previous thicker than standard (3 x 1,5 mm) installation cable from the outlet is insulated with PVC I guess, or some other kind of plastic. The insulation of the red cable (Vincent High End power cable) I have no clue of. No info from the manufacturer whatsoever. But it's FAT!

And yes, I compare the new (Vincent) power cable to the previous standard computer power cables I used to have. Much much better!

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
Have you tried thicker between the fuse box and the wall outlet?

I bet you'd hear it if you could do it.

I think we audiophiles tend to start coddling the signal at the earliest point that is convenient is all.

We ran a neater wire to our outlets from the fuse box when we built the house. No A/B to compare, but I'm happy.

We got to choose the wire from the city to our mains last house - but I didn't know what to pick! The guy from the power company liked udio and recommended one so we went for it. He said he used it, and later I got to hear his rig and it was nice.

Love this kinda stuff, but I feel none of us know enough yet.

I already have thicker than standard cable from the fuse box. Normally they use 2 x 0,75 mm (gauge 21), but I have 3 x 1,5 mm (gauge 15) earthed. I strongly believe that thicker wire provides tighter and much better sound, plus a darker background.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

Power is electrons wandering through cords of (usually) copper with something in the area of the speed of light. Am I correct?

Presuming I am, I have the idea that the electrons cannot move as fast once inside the amplifier, and when reaching this, they move with a slower speed. Can the electrons "build up" in the thicker wire, thus making a kind of "buffer" like they do in a capacitor?

If this is not the case, why is it that it makes a difference to place a thicker cable in a chain of otherwise thinner cables?

Kal Rubinson
Kal Rubinson's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 30 min ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 9:34am
Re: Someone explain please

Since, in most of the relevant audio situations, the signals and power are AC, the electrons just move back and forth, so there's no possibility of "dangerous build-up," as with hair products. Beyond that, I choose not to address your "model" of current flow.

Kal

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

I get it. No problem Kal.

geoffkait
geoffkait's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 50 min ago
Joined: Apr 29 2008 - 5:10am
Re: Someone explain please

Think of electron flow in conductors like herding cats.

Everything you never wanted to know about signals and electron flow in a conductor

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

Thanks for the link. I was afraid I didn't understand any of it, but it's starting to make sense.

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 7 months ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
Power is electrons wandering through cords of (usually) copper with something in the area of the speed of light. Am I correct?

Not really. The electrons actually move very slowly. But there is a shockwave that travels around the conductor at a velocity close to the speed of light, depending on the dielectric. Think of "Newton's Cradle": as one slowly moving electron enters the cable at one end, another almost instantaneously leaves at the other end. But it's not the same electron. (Pace all you physicists who are now going to jump on me because all electrons are by definition the same.)

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 8 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:

Quote:
Power is electrons wandering through cords of (usually) copper with something in the area of the speed of light. Am I correct?

Not really. The electrons actually move very slowly. But there is a shockwave that travels around the conductor at a velocity close to the speed of light, depending on the dielectric. Think of "Newton's Cradle": as one slowly moving electron enters the cable at one end, another almost instantaneously leaves at the other end. But it's not the same electron. (Pace all you physicists who are now going to jump on me because all electrons are by definition the same.)

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

You do, of course, know that there is only one electron in the universe, explaining why every time we take its measure we get the same result.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

I think I've got it now. Electrons are inside the copper, even when no current flows through it. Thicker wire = more electrons. But it's just what I think - I'm not sure if anyone really understands all of it. But why better sound because of better wire?

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 7 months ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:

Quote:
The electrons actually move very slowly. But there is a shockwave that travels around the conductor at a velocity close to the speed of light, depending on the dielectric. Think of "Newton's Cradle": as one slowly moving electron enters the cable at one end, another almost instantaneously leaves at the other end. But it's not the same electron. (Pace all you physicists who are now going to jump on me because all electrons are by definition the same.)

You do, of course, know that there is only one electron in the universe, explaining why every time we take its measure we get the same result.

I said _don't_ jump on me :-)

Yes, I am familiar with this hypothesis. But it doesn't affect my description of the transmission of an electrical signal. if you think of the ur-electron as being akin to a multidimensional coil of rope, where the individual strands of that rope coil intersect with the limited number of dimensions we experience, each such intersection will appear to be a discrete object. Cool, eh!

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 8 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:

Quote:

Quote:
The electrons actually move very slowly. But there is a shockwave that travels around the conductor at a velocity close to the speed of light, depending on the dielectric. Think of "Newton's Cradle": as one slowly moving electron enters the cable at one end, another almost instantaneously leaves at the other end. But it's not the same electron. (Pace all you physicists who are now going to jump on me because all electrons are by definition the same.)

You do, of course, know that there is only one electron in the universe, explaining why every time we take its measure we get the same result.

I said _don't_ jump on me :-)

Yes, I am familiar with this hypothesis. But it doesn't affect my description of the transmission of an electrical signal. if you think of the ur-electron as being akin to a multidimensional coil of rope, where the individual strands of that rope coil intersect with the limited number of dimensions we experience, each such intersection will appear to be a discrete object. Cool, eh!

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Sorry, I meant it as a joke, I didn't mean to make you feel jumped_on.

In a Universe of cosmic coincidence, we can actually watch as the magic electron makes changes in its trajectory.

The annihilation reaction of an electron and a positron marks the precise moment in which the particle reverses its trajectory in time.

If you think about it, humans can actually affect the One True Electron...at will!

Mwaaaahaaahaaahaaha...

geoffkait
geoffkait's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 50 min ago
Joined: Apr 29 2008 - 5:10am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
I think I've got it now. Electrons are inside the copper, even when no current flows through it. Thicker wire = more electrons. But it's just what I think - I'm not sure if anyone really understands all of it. But why better sound because of better wire?

I don't think it's necessarily as simple as the thickness of the wire or the purity or type of metal or even the dielectric. There are undoubtedly excellent examples of cords and cables that are very different from each other. Omega Mikro interconnects are 56 gauge solid core with air dielectric; these ICs are very open, high resolution and terrific in the bass frequencies. So, I don't think one can say that thicker is always better. I have used primarily high purity silver, crygenically treated cables, broken in for 30 days on a machine and tested for directionality. But one can always improve upon the basic formula. I suspect how far one goes with these things depends on what one is trying to accomplish.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

... and how far your credit card will let you go

geoffkait
geoffkait's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 50 min ago
Joined: Apr 29 2008 - 5:10am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
... and how far your credit card will let you go

A lot of it is finding out what works the old fashioned way, by trying it. It might be of some consolation to you how very average and pedestrian many expensive rigs sound.

"If you control the mail, you control information." Newman

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

I haven't got as many friends with good systems to compare with, but the times I do, I find my system is not bad at all. Not everyone can say that I guess.

When I compare to the sound of live instruments, I can say my system does very decent. Instruments like saxes and trumpets sound so natural, I almost can't believe it. Piano, violin and cello aren't that easy to copy for a system, and my system reproduces these instruments very well too, like it does on female and male voices. Lots of natural sounding air over all voices. Throat and chest sizes sound very natural. My only complaint is that the "S"-sounds are a tad too present on some records, but not on all.

Right now I am listening to Rebecca Pidgeon on 24/96 which is extremely well recorded and similarly reproduced on my system. Understanding the sung words is easy, which I take as a hint, that it ain't that bad at all.

When playing very loud, the treble can be a bit grainy, but this is no big surprise on speakers to around $1000 a set. Otherwise they do very well. I will stick with Dynaudio for my next set of speakers, but a pricier set next time!

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
It might be of some consolation to you how very average and pedestrian many expensive rigs sound.


Very, very true.

On the flip side, there are many wonderful, lovingly set-up inexpensive systems that are much better.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

Lovingly is a key word I believe. I have spent countless hours on tweaking, aligning, absorbing, reflecting, damping etc, and with only one thing in the back of my head: The love I have for music...

geoffkait
geoffkait's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 50 min ago
Joined: Apr 29 2008 - 5:10am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
When playing very loud, the treble can be a bit grainy, but this is no big surprise on speakers to around $1000 a set.

If I may be so bold: it's not the speakers. Even systems with expensive speakers exhibit this phenomenon when played loud - it's as if the system is over-loaded, congested, raucous with much grain, blare, and good old fashioned noise and distortion. Strident and harsh, just plain unlistenable, really. Part of the explanation is comb filter effects coming into play as sound pressure levels go up around the room, but the rest of the explanation is more, uh, mysterious and, dare I say.....disturbing.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

Oh, it's not that bad. Not at all. Besides, I live in an apartment complex, so I can rarely play very loud.

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
...but the rest of the explanation is more, uh, mysterious and, dare I say.....disturbing.


Does the explanation involve mimes or clowns?

Many find both disturbing.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Someone explain please

Some people find large woodland animals to be disturbing.

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Scary Things!

As well they should!

geoffkait
geoffkait's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 50 min ago
Joined: Apr 29 2008 - 5:10am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:

Quote:
...but the rest of the explanation is more, uh, mysterious and, dare I say.....disturbing.


Does the explanation involve mimes or clowns?

Many find both disturbing.

You're close, really, really close. Minds.

cyclebrain
cyclebrain's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 5 months ago
Joined: Jun 16 2006 - 11:40pm
Re: Someone explain please

So in a piece of wire in an AC circuit such as a power cord or speaker cable the electrons just move back and forth like in a line dance. The same old electrons over and over. But in the DC power supply the electrons flow only in one direction. Out with the old in with the new. AC sounds like trying to heard cats. Go this way, no wait, now go this way.
I think that using DC for all audio signals would yield significant improvement.

Freako
Freako's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 17 2010 - 8:29am
Re: Someone explain please

Perhaps why battery-operated equipment exist. I guess you are right, it might easily be a major improvement.

geoffkait
geoffkait's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 50 min ago
Joined: Apr 29 2008 - 5:10am
Re: Someone explain please


Quote:
So in a piece of wire in an AC circuit such as a power cord or speaker cable the electrons just move back and forth like in a line dance. The same old electrons over and over. But in the DC power supply the electrons flow only in one direction. Out with the old in with the new. AC sounds like trying to heard cats. Go this way, no wait, now go this way.
I think that using DC for all audio signals would yield significant improvement.

I'm all in favor of getting rid of electrons altogether. I vote for using neutrinos instead.

  • X
    Enter your Stereophile.com username.
    Enter the password that accompanies your username.
    Loading