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Placement 13

Posted 7 years ago

We’re working on adding the magic of a subwoofer, properly implemented and setup; a magic that if you don’t have a pair setup properly you’ll just never understand what it’s about until you do. I can write and wax about it endlessly but until you actually get it right in your system, you can only […]
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The highest level 3

Posted 7 years ago

My thanks to Wyn Tathem of Simply Hi Fi in Australia for sending me the great photo of a true Sub Woofer pair which I’ll include at the end of this email for those of you reading strictly by email. Yesterday I suggested using a Y connector at the amplifier inputs if you were forced, […]
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Y long cables matter 5

Posted 7 years ago

Now you’ve gotten your main speaker system in order and imaging properly, according to yesterday’s post, it’s time to think about adding our subwoofer. Let’s start with a fairly broad overview and then later we can dig down deep. Your subwoofers are going to be placed behind and to the outside of your main speakers […]
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Getting our house in order 7

Posted 7 years ago

One correction I’d like to make about my statement you should make sure your main speakers are flat to 40Hz – I should have said are -3dB at 40Hz and I would extend that as high as 60Hz (the -3dB point). There are very few speakers that don’t go down this low, so you should […]
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Does size matter? 10

Posted 7 years ago

When it comes to subwoofers, the answer’s yes; size matters greatly. If you have a couple of 8″ drivers in a box you’re calling a subwoofer, you’re going to be disappointed if you follow the setup steps we’ll be discussing – because you won’t get the results we’re getting. Big is better as long as […]
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The sound of silence 15

Posted 7 years ago

Yesterday’s post sparked a number of comments and observations and one that came to the forefront was the ability of the subwoofer to help with a sense of space – not just hitting lower bass notes. We all recognize a sub’s ability to produce the lowest notes of a piano or organ, T-Rex stomping and […]
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Sub Woofer 1

Posted 7 years ago

Language has a funny way of confusing and misleading us sometimes. Take for example the word subwoofer – it is a thing, an object – something that performs a task specific to bass. Compare that to the more descriptive term Sub Woofer and you quickly understand this is something that works below a woofer – […]
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Subways 13

Posted 7 years ago

I was mentioning to a reader yesterday that one of the reasons I am so convinced a subwoofer is a critical component in a reference sound system is the ability it offers me to hear the subway rumbling below Carnegie Hall in some of the early recordings. “Why in the world would you want to […]
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The bass myth 21

Posted 7 years ago

One of the biggest myths I routinely encounter in high end audio is what I call the Bass Myth; “my speakers go to 30Hz and below and I don’t need a subwoofer”. I have travelled the world over and rarely ever do I hear proper bass. The number of speakers that can truly reproduce live […]
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Bassaholic 11

Posted 7 years ago

Ok, I’ll admit it – I am a Bassaholic and instead of trying to cure myself, I am most comfortable embracing and supporting my addiction. Yup, a system without deep, low and impressive bass isn’t my cup of tea and as many of my reader know, I believe the only way to get the results […]
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Life's good 11

Posted 7 years ago

Today I’d like to cover how a Noise Harvester works. It’s a clever little device that converts line noise into light and when it does that the converted noise energy dissipates into the room in a series of flashes never to be heard from again. Literally. The basic circuit is a fairly simple one in […]
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Parallel filters 4

Posted 7 years ago

One of the least intrusive, yet least effective type of filter for the AC line is the parallel filter. There are a number of different types but these filters generally consist of a single or group of capacitors across the hot and neutral. Placing a capacitor across the hot and neutral does not eliminate line […]
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Parallel universes 8

Posted 7 years ago

Now that we know where AC line noise is coming from and that our homes are vulnerable to all the generators of noise, what to do about it? Our options have pretty much always involved creating safe havens for the equipment that will benefit from it. Safe havens are isolated areas of power that we […]
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Standing naked 4

Posted 7 years ago

Yesterday we started our series on Harvesters and how they came into existence: first as an idea and a challenge, second as a solution. I’ve put together a short little video that explains the Harvesters and if you have a chance to view it, I’d love to know what you think. Cecil B. Demille I […]
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Harvesting 9

Posted 7 years ago

Noise Harvesters were launched some years ago and were very popular amongst the high-end crowd. Many are still used today and we get continual requests to bring the product back – which we have. I thought it might be interesting to do a short little series on how the product developed – describing the process […]
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Putting it all together 7

Posted 7 years ago

I think we’ve probably spent enough time on amps for a little while – we can always return – so I’d like to sum up some of our findings and then move on to our next topic tomorrow. Here’s a list of some of the topics we covered: Bigger is better. While small low wattage […]
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Taking out the garbage 5

Posted 7 years ago

The last thing you want to do to a power amplifier is put something with impedance between it and the loudspeaker. It’s one of the reasons we spend so much time and money making sure the speaker cables we use are as thick as a horse leg, impede nothing and connect our amplifier output with […]
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Fooling our ears and eyes 2

Posted 7 years ago

Yesterday we mentioned that DSD and Class D operating systems were similar in that each can be played directly into the loudspeaker without conversion; unlike digital audio which cannot. Both are bit streams – DSD a series of fixed width bits that get more or less dense to make music and Class D a string […]
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Class DSD 0

Posted 7 years ago

Who knew so many of you were happy reading about common mode rejection? Thanks for the kind notes about yesterday’s post. Today let’s focus on what a Class D amp does, how PWM works and why this process is so closely related to DSD. Remembering that the simplest understanding of a traditional class A/B amplifier […]
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Common modes 0

Posted 7 years ago

Yesterday we started our series on Class D amps and how they work. We went through the all important input stage but before we get moving, however, quite a few of you wrote me and asked for a better idea of what common mode rejection was and what an amp designer might do to make […]
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Class is now in session 0

Posted 7 years ago

Sorry about the headline, just couldn’t resist. We are going to start delving into the working of Class D amps, also incorrectly known as “digital amps” and correctly labeled PWM amps – short for Pulse Width Modulation. As is our custom we’ll start with an overview and then get into details. It’s perhaps easiest to […]
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How may I serve you? 5

Posted 7 years ago

If for some reason your power amplifier puts DC into your loudspeaker you’ll wind up letting the magic blue smoke out and killing your loudspeaker. “Magic blue” smoke is engineering humor: it’s what we jokingly say when a component blows up and smoke spews from its innards – “oops, we let the magic blue smoke […]
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Getting straight in 6

Posted 7 years ago

Yesterday I promised we’d jump into Class D amps and how they work – but before going there I wanted to take a short detour – one that a few of you have been on my case to get out in the open for a while: direct coupling. I really hesitate to write “back in […]
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Getting in the way 2

Posted 7 years ago

We’ve been focusing on amps and their design philosophies as a precursor to the release of our new power amplifier this summer. I thought it instructive to write about the various types of amps, their good and bad points and the power requirements for loudspeakers of all kinds. The one thing we did not touch […]
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Compromises 5

Posted 7 years ago

Designing any product for consumer electronics is a series of design choices – better known in some circles as compromises – giving one thing up for the benefit of another. Design choices are not unique to consumer electronics as compromise is just a part of the process of everything you can imagine: cars, food, clothing, […]
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