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About Backfire

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  1. Can you at least tell us what you mean by the term "transfer efficiency," even if you are unwilling to debate it at a technical level? Presumably even outside the box, words still have meanings.
  2. This is a good point, and one that can be rather objectively analysed. Let's say he has in mind 22 gauge zip cord. Two runs of 10 feet (roughly!) would mean 20 feet. At about 16 ohms/1000 feet that means about 0.3 ohms for the zip cord. If we suppose, generously, since it was just a preamp I think (?) that the mains current was about 1/3 amp; that would mean about 100mV drop for the zip cord. For the 12 gauge silvered wire it would be a lot less, so we can say the extra voltage loss in the case of the zip cord is just about about 100mV. This is absolutely negligible compared with the mains voltage itself, and furthermore, as you say, it is very small compared with the typical fluctuations in mains voltage from one time of day to another. So, Jeffrey, can you explain what precisely is the issue with "transfer efficiency" for the mains supply cord that you are concerned about? The preamp could very easily be getting a higher supply voltage at one time of day, even with the zip cord, than it is at another time of day with the 12 gauge silvered wire. And yet you say that the 12 gauge mains cord universally led to a better sound than the zip cord?
  3. It would be necessary to know what his previous scope was, before being able to evaluate any possible significance of his remarks. On high? Are we back to the religious angle again??? Seriously, though, the whole subject of signal analysis is well understood, and there are not going to be fundamental surprises discovered by some amateur diddling around on his kitchen table (or floor) with an old vacuum tube amplifier. The weakness in so much of what you, and some others, report is that it all relies upon your own subjective impressions. Now that is fine, as long as your are happy. But it may very well not convince other people. So much in the field of psycho-acoustics is subject to uncertainties through expectation bias, and the like. One way of cutting through all of that is to carry out rigorous double-blind comparisons. It is quite eye-opening (or perhaps I should say ear-opening) to see how bad people are at discriminating between different audio set-ups if they don't have the luxury of knowing which they are listening to. See, for example, the Richard Clark audio amplifier challenge. But I have seen enough of these kinds of discussion in the past to know that the people who make, shall we say, "extraordinary claims" about what they hear are usually very quick to come up with all sorts of alleged reasons for why double-blind tests can't be trusted. Spoon benders and clairvoyants do the same.
  4. What is your evidence for the alleged involvement of high-frequency information in the audio signal? Up to what frequency?
  5. Even if reflections were a significant factor, which seems rather unlikely because of the very low frequencies involved in audio signals, it would be a very frequency-dependent phenomenon. It is inconceivable that there would be a universal "optimum length," the same for audio signal wires and for mains cables. And all of this wire-length saga was based on the behaviour of distressed and confused baboons??????
  6. My question was only partly in jest, because if you truly believe that having an integer multiple of 9.52 feet for the power cord to the amplifier makes a substantial difference to sound, then it would not be too much of a hassle for you to get your house mains supply redone so that you had an integer multiple of 9.52 feet between the breaker box and the power socket where your amplifier plugs in. Maybe you would achieve a yet higher level of audio nirvana? Of course it sounds absurd, and indeed it is absurd, to do that. For exactly the same reason that your insistence on precisely 9.52 feet for the power cord is absurd. And this also raises another question,again serving to highlight the absurdity of it all. Since you specify the length of the power cord to two decimal places, that means you are specifying it to about one tenth of an inch. Where exactly are you measuring from, and to, in your power cord? Are you including the length of the spade connectors in the power plug, for example? Surely you can appreciate how absolutely ridiculous your professed adherence to this Fulton nonsense is?
  7. I'm curious, does your house wiring to the power socket where you plug in the amplifier also conform to the requirement of being an integral multiple of these 9.52 foot lengths? And what about the wiring from the local substation?
  8. Yes, 40uF would seem to be pushing the limits of what is recommended for a 6X4, so certainly switching the 40uF and the 20uF around so that the 20uF is the one coming directly after the rectifier would give a bit of extra margin.
  9. It looks like it just has standard, rather basic, bass and treble controls; it doesn't look as if it has RIAA compensation (which is good, because you don't need or want that, when driving from a CD player). So the best thing would be just to try it as is, after following Maynard's suggestions about recapping and adding a 3-wire mains cable. One amp takes its input from the left-channel output of the CD player, and the other takes the right-channel output. Tone controls are like a red rag to a bull in some "audiophile" circles, but they have their uses and plenty of people like to have them. These amps are never going to be super hi fi, so the best thing is just to try them out, after the basic safety replacements a la Maynard, and see what you think of them.
  10. I think perhaps you are under a misapprehension about the time-scale of the signal travel time through the amplifier, in comparison to the time-scale of the musical rhythm. The time delay is totally insignificant. There may be other objections that could be levelled at feedback in some circumstances, but a time delay that interferes with the beat of the music is not one of them.
  11. Absolutely! And your "Ministry of Silly Wires" is such a gem that it alone justifies the continuation of the thread! If I am ever again tempted to argue with logic against the Gentleman from Missouri, I will remind myself of the Ministry of Silly Wires and have another laugh...
  12. A few days ago you advised everybody to take your reports about amplifier performance with a grain of salt, because you hadn't understood what was going on. Do you have any updates on this?
  13. If a choke or transformer has a winding constructed from, say, 100 feet of 24 AWG wire, and you modify the last 2 inches of each end of that wire by replacing it with, say 16 AWG wire, then the percentage effect of your modification on the current carrying properties of the winding will be absolutely negligible. If you leave 99.7% of the wire (the part you can't get at because it is inside the transformer) unchanged, and modify only the little bits that stick out of the transformer, then you will have no worthwhile improvement at all.
  14. I agree fully about speaker wires. The wisest thing about speaker cable choices I ever read was recently on another audio forum: The most important Characteristic of Speaker Cables is ........ Length. If they are not long enough to reach from your Amplifier to your speaker, you will not hear anything at all.
  15. It depends what, if any, accompanying explanations went along with these offerings. One can imagine, for example, that a manufacturer might offer cables in 3ft, 6ft and 12ft lengths, but that, of itself, does not imply that the said manufacturer has some crazy idea that these are the only lengths that will provide optimal audio performance. It could just mean that those happen to be the lengths they offer. If you can provide documentation where this Fulton chap expounded on the specific superiority of these particular lengths, then that might indeed argue against the charitable interpretation that he was joking with you. It would then tend to favour the suggestion that some of his ideas were a bit wacky. By the way, that 14 1/4 ft length seems to be 3/8inch short of being a multiple of three times the 57 1/8 inch basic unit.
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