I guess most are familiar with the fable of the Philosophers Stone…..essentially the tale of the ancient Alchemists’ search for a stone (ingredient) that would turn base metals into Gold. Well apparently QSA-Lanedri have found the audiophile equivalent, which I believe is worthy of some discussion.
I have been an audiophile for over 50 years, with the last 4 spent developing a dedicated digital streaming system. Up to 4 years ago my experience with digital was that it consistently proved inferior to analog, but thanks to the inputs from 3 fellow audiophiles (DIY gurus) and 2 hi-fi designers that has now changed. Having implemented a number of their suggestions I came to very much rely on their inputs and advice, so when 2 of them began messaging and posting about QSA fuses and later about QSA-Lanedri cables, I immediately became interested. Both these guys have lucrative careers while hi-fi is their passion, so my belief in their findings is 100%. Neither has any financial or business relationships with QSA-Lanedri and get no financial reward for promoting their products. My conclusion is that QSA-Lanedri really have discovered something remarkable with the potential to revolutionise the hi-fi industry. This thread is intended to provide a place to discuss actual experiences with the products, to discuss your take on their perceived value and to ‘speculate/hypothesise’ on what the process may be that brings such spectacular results in terms of improved sound quality. It is based on the assumption that the products do what they claim and seeks to come up with possible ways of how they achieve this.
Let me provide a few observations to get things started
1. The ‘treatment’ is applied to fully confected cables and plugs, so must be fully compatible with all the soft plastics used in plug and cable manufacture
2. The treatment is not patented, so either it’s extremely unlikely to be discovered and therefore not worth the patent costs (which are considerable) or the treatment itself isn‘t patentable ie. Isn’t non-obvious or novel
3. The treatment can be applied to any cable or plug so isn’t product dependent
4. There appears to be no outward signs of any modifications to any treated products
5. There’s a scale of products, so it seems the process can be either tuned, adjusted or dosed to modify/enhance the effect on the treated cable
6. Listeners have observed that the effect of the treatment is greater on less pure metals i.e metals with greater level of impurities
7. Listeners have observed that the closer the treated product is to the ‘end point’ the greater the effect i.e downstream untreated conductors reverses some of the benefit
8. Its claimed that over 22 years of R&D went into the process but my own key-word searches revealed no related or relevant publications, so its likely the R&D was performed either in a private or commercial capacity rather than as part of a research institution e.g university that depends on publishing results to justify its funding.
9. Humans have studied the structures and behaviours of metals and their related molecules and atoms for well over a century, but not as they apply to their ‘sonic qualities and attributes’ .
10. QSA- Lanedri claims that the treatment occurs at the ‘molecular or atomic level‘ and is ‘quantum‘ in nature
11. QSA-Lanedri list the following technologies as key attributes:
- Metal Molecular Activation Technology
- Musical Metal Molecule Alignment Technology
- Skin Deep Compensation Technology
12. The cables themselves start out life as complete $50 - $100 Blue Jeans and Iconocast cables that following treatment sell for $2,500 - $6,000. Power cables are based on Sablon Prince ($3,250) and Sablon King ($3,950) which following treatment sell for $6,000 - $9,000 and $8,000 - $12, 000 respectively.
13. Iconoclast and /Blue Jeans cables are themselves made from bulk off the reel Belden and Canare cable
14. Listeners have observed that the greater the metal content of the cables and plugs, the greater the effect of the treatment
Interesting topic. I've only skimmed this and the other thread so forgive me if any of this has already been stated.
Based on your 1 thru 14 list and my numerous experiences and treatment methodologies, I'd venture to say that quite possibly all 14 attributes / characteristics you list could be applied to cryogenically treating cables and every other electrical object including fuses, plugs, inlets, outlets, etc.
Might this be a new more extreme version of cryo-treating? Once introduced to the sonic benefits, I was sending out all of my cables to be cryo-treated. Soon I started experimenting with having my electrical objects double-cryo-treated for even further but diminishing gains.
But it turns out that was all with the inferior vapor method of cryo-treating an object. 8 years later I was introduced to the superior full-immersion method of cryo-treating and as one vendor said, the difference between the two methods is like eating half-baked cookies and that seemed fairly accurate compared to my experiences.
I did inquire about double-cryo'ing via the full immersion method but was told it's unnecessary as the object in question need only reach the I think -324.5 degree mark once for full effect.
I remember one time where I'd replaced all fuses and plugs and IEC conntectors at the same time with cryo-treated versions and after burn-in was astounded by the results. But I still wasn't quite performing metaphoric cartwheels in the streets.
Perhaps there's a new more extreme method to this cryo-treating biz? Liquid helium has a boiling point of something like -650 degrees.
Regardless, some of the performance claims I read are a bit of a hard pill to swallow and I don't put much stock into anything Clement Perry might say. I always have to remind myself that just because some "audiophile" is doing cartwheels in the streets doesn't necessarily imply experiences are all that fantastic. After all, a drop of water in the desert can seem like a gallon of water to some.
But there are several claims that cause my radar to go up a bit.
1. Fuses only. A run of cable / wire is usually only as good as its weakest link. If a 1-inch fuse from heaven is inserted and generates off-the-chart results, what does that say about the rest of the cabling/wiring? It must be from heaven too, right?
2. Why the various models and prices? For example. In the case of cryo-treating via the superior full-immersion method, the object either has it or it doesn't (on or off) and there are no in between variations to the best of my knowledge. That implies QSA partially treats objects as tiny as a fuse. Why would anybody partially treat a tiny object like a fuse in any way, shape, or form?
3. If the performance claims are not hyperbole, then that kinda' implies that everything else we might do to a system pales in comparison and matters little. Not saying it's impossible but doesn't seem very logical. In my limited experience the two greatest improvements anybody can make to any playback system are found by addressing two noise floors.
- The first noise floor is electrically-induced and has everything to do with electric current flow starting before or at the service panel and ending at the speaker input.
- The second noise floor is acoustically-induced and has everything to do with the interface / acoustic-coupling of a speaker to its associated room. This acoustic noise floor starts at the speaker and ends with the room.
IMO, both noise floors are potentially huge benefits - at least when taken to the extreme.
This QSA treatment clearly falls under the first electric-induced noise floor umbrella but again, whatever objects QSA is treating is but a small segment of a much larger puzzle. For example. To the best of my knowledge QSA treatments do nothing to cleanse / purify the extremely noisy AC coming in from the street nor do they claim to. Cleansing or purifying the noisy AC coming in from the street alone has huge sonic potentials but seems outside of QSA's scope. Also, QSA is not treating any objects internal to the components (other than fuses) nor in the speakers so there's gaping holes there as well. Again, huge potential benefits but seems clearly outside QSA's current scope.
If the performance gains are legit, then it should take next to nothing for most any QSA consumer to generate an in-room video/recording of their playback system so we don't have to just take others' word for these fabulous performance gains.
Don't get me wrong as I'm confident there will always be new technologies and methods to potentially obliterate the status quo.
But reading some of these performance claims, I can't help but think of 2 editors-in-chief who starting in 2014 claimed that cows were now jumping over the moon with the newly-introduced MQA format and the many who bought into that and it turned out to be a huge nothing burger.
But again, a reasonable in-room recording would do wonders for some of us to substantiate some of these tremendous performance claims.