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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My uncle made up some cheapie cords for me using some hospital grade connectors and some run of the mill 3c/#10 SOOW cord. He made me three total, a 2' for the krell, a 3' for the denon and a 8' for the sub and then had them Cryo'd by a friend of his that does the -300f cryo process.

Put them in this morning and the differences are definitely audible yet subtle. The imaging/soundstage did not change but the instruments themselfs just feel more "real". The one thing I noticed is the simbilance was much more noticable with the roll off of cymbals and the higher notes of a guitar rang more. Like it opened the sound up more as if I almost was wearing a pair of ear plugs per se'. not a great analogy but kinda like it improved the top end by 3-4db as a "perceived" value.

Kinda hard to explain but it was definately noticable. I plan on changing these out at various times during listening and seeing if it's just my head jacking with me or if it is indeed these changes.

The previous cords used was factory cords. The sub had a 18awg 8' cable, the krell had a 14awg standard cable and the denon also had a 18awg cable as well.

Best part... Free :) He did these for me as a gift.. he had all the connectors and the cost was only $20 for the cord and he paid his buddy 20 for the cryo and then shipping was 15. My uncle is awesome!
 

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Not sure how your uncle's friend performs the cryo procedure, but here's a paraphrased explanation of the process and its possible audible benefits from just one of the many companies available:

QUOTE

What is it?
Cryogenic treatment is a fairly common process typically used for enhancing strength and durability to ferrous metals (usually steel). This process is known to convert a soft, unstable carbon impurity known as Austenite to a more stable form called Martensite. The material is then typically heated to form a "tempered" form of Martensite- resulting in extremely fine grained, evenly distributed carbides in the steel making a harder, stronger, and more durable material. That's great if you need stronger parts in your car engine, better tool and die life, or knife blades that will cut through stone like Excalibur.

Our process
VH Audio's deep cryogenic processing has been developed specifically for audio cables and connectors, and consists of a computer-controlled, slow cool-down cycle from room temperature to the temperature of liquid nitrogen (-320 degF). Their profiles use several temperature "plateaus" as the material is ramped down to below -300 degF. Once the material reaches the temperature of the liquid nitrogen, it is "soaked" for an extended period of time before being ramped-up to ambient room temperature. Again, computerized equipment is used to control the temperature ramp-up, as well as the quantity and duration of the temperature plateaus.

But what about audio?
There is NO significant amount of Austenite or Martensite in many of the materials we use for audio. So what is happening? The truthful answer is no one really knows. Even the exact mechanics of the proven process for steel (noted above) is debated among metallurgists. Theories abound, but many speculate it may be the crystal boundries and/or impurities in the metals we use for audio that are being changed, as well as the dielectric material being affected. The result may not only be modifying the ELECTRICAL characteristics of the material(s), but may also alter the PHYSICAL/MECHANICAL properties of the metal.

In the end, we are left with subjective evaluation.

From a subjective standpoint, common evaluations of cryoed vs. non-cryoed parts are:
  • Deeper, more three dimensional soundstage
  • Wider dynamic range
  • Smoother, more refined highs
  • Better bass articulation
  • More organic presentation

In their experience, the degree of difference vs non-cryoed parts is not the "earth shattering" or "night/day" difference that some companies' sales literature might suggest, but rather an incremental improvement more akin to an upgraded connector, cable or other "tweak". Also, in our experience, not all materials benefit from cryogenic treatment to the same degree. Brass seems to benefit more from cryogenic treatment than pure copper, and high purity silver may actually be DEGRADED by cryogenic treatment, based on our listening tests. Plated materials are also a mixed bag, with the resultant sound improvement varying by type of base metal, the plating material, AND the plating process used.

END QUOTE

Question: Are you sure you heard no improvement in the soundstage. You're supposed to hear one (see first bullet above)! :blink: I'm interested to find out what the upcoming listening sessions turn up. You listening in the morning when electricity is supposedly "dirty," so a late evening session with "cleaner" electricity should yield even more gains. But then you'll also be more tired, which will affect your emotional ability to judge subjectively. Good luck, and keep us posted :bigsmile:
 

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You have to ask yourself "what is the quality of the romex in your wall running all the way back to the breaker panel?" that extra 6ft of high end cable is not going to make a difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You have to ask yourself "what is the quality of the romex in your wall running all the way back to the breaker panel?" that extra 6ft of high end cable is not going to make a difference.
No romex on my esssential circuits. I have 4 circuits (amp, sub, preamp, blueray) that are ran with XHHW with an XLPE outer jacket. This wiring uses polyethylene insulation which has a lower dielectric than normal PVC insulated romex.

I did run 3 circuits of romex #10awg and one #14awg to provide dedicated circuits for other equipment (my network switch uses one 14g dedicated 15a circuit)

You forget..... I'm crazy. PE > PVC

My Leviton Snap in outlets have also been cryo'd before installing
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Question: Are you sure you heard no improvement in the soundstage. You're supposed to hear one (see first bullet above)! :blink: I'm interested to find out what the upcoming listening sessions turn up. You listening in the morning when electricity is supposedly "dirty," so a late evening session with "cleaner" electricity should yield even more gains. But then you'll also be more tired, which will affect your emotional ability to judge subjectively. Good luck, and keep us posted :bigsmile:

Well I still have the isolation transformer that will be here at the end of the week and if I can hear a difference with it I'll send it to my uncle and have it Cryo'd also and next summer I'm planning on a trip to Indiana and will remove all my dedicated feeders from the panel to the outlet box... roll them up and drive them up there to get cryo'd along with the panel/breakers. IF I indeed hear a difference then I will definitely get my entire power delivery cryo'd. Total cost will be less than 300 bucks so why not. Thats like a fun night out in the town kinda thing.

Now... I do know the IEC connectors (both ends) use brass and your notes you posted said works best with brass and my receptacles prongs are also brass... 95% of the outlets and connectors use brass. Maybe thats the difference it's making? not sure. I do know the guy that does my uncles cryo'd uses a computer controlled process but not sure the exact process. I know it has to deal with liquid nitrogen and that it's a controlled process that has to be held at -300f for some period of time and then brought back up to room temp but thats all I know.

Whoever does it I think does a good job though because my uncle had his entire phonostage cryo'd but something that prevented the ability to do a regular amp or preamp because of some kind of switches or something but this is all he told me.

Cables/connectors are good to go. He wants me to spend $200 and replace my front three speaker cables with Morrow Audio SP1 cables and send them to him to get them cryo'd and for me to get those installed saying I'll hear similar results.

I personally didn't hear the soundstage grow any... if anything it had more depth but was just very sutble to the point where it may of just been my head jacking with me...

without a doubt the cymbals being hit and rolling off just sounded so much more "real" as if the system was breathing. very weird.

I wouldn't hesitate to lend these cables to other people to confirm.... would actually like that to make sure I'm not nuts.
 

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You have to ask yourself "what is the quality of the romex in your wall running all the way back to the breaker panel?" that extra 6ft of high end cable is not going to make a difference.
The battle cry from the subjective audiophile arena--as well as from more than one power cable marketing department--has it that the power cord is not the last few feet of thousands, but the first few from the component to the grid. :rofl2:

I've also come across many arguments that power cable shielding matters a lot more than dielectric material or wire geometry. I can see where you probably wouldn't welcome high RF/EMI levels on the power supply input, but doesn't a good power supply design reject noise? Besides, how many audio component chassis do you know of that have effective RF/EMI rejection?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The battle cry from the subjective audiophile arena--as well as from more than one power cable marketing department--has it that the power cord is not the last few feet of thousands, but the first few from the component to the grid. :rofl2:

I've also come across many arguments that power cable shielding matters a lot more than dielectric material or wire geometry. I can see where you probably wouldn't welcome high RF/EMI levels on the power supply input, but doesn't a good power supply design reject noise? Besides, how many audio component chassis do you know of that have effective RF/EMI rejection?
Well thats where the isolation transformer comes from. It's a 1:1 transfer and the windings from the primary are isolated by a farady shield from the secondary..... One thing I need to check on is if this is considered a "seperately derived system" and if it is then it can support it's own grounding thus ultimately creating a new reference point. I'll test this out here near the end of next weekend on the affects and will also looking into the NEC into isolation transformer grounding.

As far as the RF/EMI if I see becomes any issue I can install ridgid conduit and put my feeders in it and that would eliminate any issues as well but I don't think it's a huge problem.

If I remember right a good power supply will reject some noise but unless it's a balanced output it will still have issues with some DC.

My feeders are TC type tray cable that we use in the petrochemical industry. It's a twisted conductor typically with XHHW insulation with a XLPE/PVC jacket. The very nature of it's construction alone is designed to prevent any cross contamination of current leaking voltage onto other cables. I'm not saying it's not out there but we run this stuff 1,000s of feet on sensitive control cables and the only time we have ever run into some issues twice that required a shielded control circuit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I got in contact with a local Cryo treatment place and they have a 30"x30"x54" bath and their price is $175 or $.75lb whichever is more. $175 will do 233lbs

I can pull the transformer from the krell, do the isolation transformers (1k, 2-500va and a 2k) and all my AV power feeders from the panel, the panel itself w/ all the breakers, all the speaker cable and interconnects pretty much everything and probably fall within a $200 price range.

Hmm....
 

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The problem is that the effects of cryo treatment wear off after a while, but not completely. It is good to expose your cables to lower temperatures below 15 deg. F. for at least several days per year in order to preserve the molecular state that the cryo initially created.

Personally, I have a friend who studies reproduction rates of penguins, so I pack up all of my cables once a year, and ship them off to his lab in Antarctica, he leaves them in a storage shed for a couple of weeks and then sends them back. The shipping cost is well worth the sonic improvements. Also, I usually do this in the summer while I am on vacation, so I won't be home to listen to music anyway, and with the southern hemisphere having reverse seasons, it's the coldest time of the year at the south pole.
 

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Ive had a Pangea 9g chord for some time on my Elite 35 and, as you did, noticed the sonic improvements right away.... I won't go into the details, but all I got was alot of "haha your just experiencing "buyers bios" and other less positive comments.... :rant:
 
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