MusicWorks ReFlex Ultra G3 Distribution Box

When i added the NAP300 to my Nova i fuffed around getting the burndies in the best position. Wow it was great…a few tracks in…i realised i had not put the speaker cables into the NAP300. I was still listening to my Nova. Duh…the mind plays tricks versus expectations.

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Very brave of you to admit that Gazza. I’m sure we have all done something similar, not me of course…no…not like me at all.

Now are you sure your newly installed 552 and 500 have indeed been hooked up to the speakers?:wink:

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One possible interpretation of DB’s posts is that a 500 will have a bigger spike than a 250. Of course 3 x 500 will be bigger still.

Nigel, Did you have a different mains block before the G3?

I now feel I have a reason to try a mains block. Removing the Aria to the mains ring has been a good thing and explains a few things, including what seemed perverse to me several years ago when @Adam.Zielinski said he had his not on the Naim supply. And then when you move up the range of poweramps things change!

Phil

Phil, yes, I had already thought that the 500s would be more susceptible to this phenomenon than my 250.

Before the G3, I used a WireWorld Matrix II for my Naim black boxes (excluding the UnitiServe which is still on a separate Matrix II with the router, switch and NAS).

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Sitting here having an amazing time…it really is sounding better after a few days.

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Hi DB,
you are definitely not the only one thinking this way. Caelin Gabriel, owner of the US company Shunyata Research, feels strongly about some distance between the power amplifier and the rest of the system. He even suggests a different spur for it, which isn’t your point (at least I think it isn’t).

Nigel the same experience for me … I think a few of us tried the power amp in the G3 block after the upgrade wondering if it would sound better. Initial reaction was that it was but once the system had settled back down things didn’t sound quite right, in my case, a rather overblown bass developed. Moving the 500 back to the wall socket immediately cured this. Personally I find any change easier to distinguish going back rather than an initial impression going forward. It is interesting that the experiment was short lived and several members who tried it have reverted back to convention ie keeping the power amp away from the rest of the gear which my dealer has always advocated.

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When running the Power Amp separated on the mains circuit from the other HiFi supplies I found there is a ‘sweet spot’ distance of around two or three Naim Power lead lengths of total wiring for things to gel-together musically for me - to sound cohesive.

Too long a separation and things get strained and can sound rather stark and lose the warmth and low-level harmonic structures. Just be aware that the ideas of ‘some is good, more is better’ does not apply here IMO.

Worth the experiment - I also have several radials and rings to my consumer unit arrayed available at my HiFi to be used - after trying them I found I got more satisfactory results lust using the single connection and feeding the Amp(s) directly from wall socket and the rest from the block.

Having a long run of power wiring between two boxes invites noise - the idea is to keep the subtended loop made by all the HiFi as it connects to mains and then connects by signal leads between the boxes as small as reasonably possible, as it is that subtended area that opens the system to noise injection.

But if it works it works is the usual rule! :slightly_smiling_face:

DB.

Thinking about the physics, the earths are the means of picking up noise from the power supplies. The signal earth originates from the power cord of the box set as the signal flowing through the interconnect to the preamp, thence to other sources (not earthed), through the preamp Burndy and then from the preamp PS to the poweramp. There are safety earths from the mains to the boxes.

The noise on the signal earth is a function (Maxwell’s Laws of electromagnetism) of the relationship between the noise source and the (signal) earth wiring.

Just trying to clarify what is meant.

Phil

I’m here really referring to just having a loop of wire in ‘free space’ - which is never free of a lot of EM signal ‘noise’ from lots of sources human and cosmic. A loop of wire plus EM fields traversing through it induce currents.

If you then add-in all the mains earth connections sprinkled around the mains circuit that connect into plugs and equipment then it becomes complex - it can be explored and you can achieve surprising beneficial improvements but beyond the scope of this thread.

Back to the Distribution Block as a concept to which this particular one under discussion is an example - why do they give the improvement people hear and then pay a lot of money for? Naim even have their own ‘block’ custom-built that I’ve seen sitting atop a Fram base at demos, so it is known there are effects in the mains plug-in end.

My view is that it is complex yet also simple to understand once you get beyond thinking of mains as some kind of Edison DC being pumped from the power station and people only considering DC resistance. Fortunately Tesla won with AC and we have to consider that there is a waveform being sampled by the HiFi endpoints at peak excursions and that creates all the noise at the equipment end.

Then the turn-on conduction transients running at 100Hz (UK) pulse lots of current - which induces EM fields - which in turn induces its own current (depending on layout topology).
It is a can or worms and does not surprise me that different blocks will ‘sound’ different - or that plug-in sequence matters.
A particular block implementation is a way of controlling a segment of wiring topology, But there seems to be more than just the induced electrical field aspect and vibration seems also important to control - but things moving conducting wires in fields create currents…can of worms! :bear:

DB.

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Most, if not all, of the scientific engineering ‘stuff’ in this thread goes straight over my head. My grasp of the English language is pretty sound, but the concepts being discussed are beyond my ken. That said, would someone kindly explain to me, preferably in words of few syllables, exactly what this ‘noise’ is, and precisely how it manifests itself to our ears. At the moment the word, in hifi terms, means about as much to me as Philip Pullman’s ‘dust’!

When I play music through my system I hear nothing other than silence in the passages which are meant to be soundless. When voices and instruments play I hear them ,dependant upon the quality of the recording, with absolute clarity. Given I don’t have one of these power blocks, an independant mains for the hifi and my system is towards the lower end of the Naim pecking order, I should be able to identify this ‘noise’ should I not? Can anyone help me?

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The bottom line is that some of us hear a difference from changing the order of the plugs on a block and from trying different blocks. At 282/Hicap/250 level I can form a preferance for a certain order on my block, after I’d upgraded to 500 series the preferance was more marked but followed the same basic pattern on the same block (which is not a Musicline nor the same as DBs but then neither is the system or brain). Back when I had Rega Cursa/Maia pre power (roughly equivalent to112/150 level) and a CD5x I couldn’t hear any difference from the order on the then standard RS block. The rest is theorising from subjective observations.

Wasn’t there a post a while back with reference to the continuity and resemblance of various waveforms in separate mains feed.
A known dealer running the Naim statement pre and power from different legs and finding a fault in listening.
Finding running both pre and power from the same spur was better.

Yes - I heard the before and after of that system. I asked - wow that sounds a lot better what have you done? And they described that they had run every box on different radials and were increasingly unhappy and put it onto a single run and then it all worked and sounded better. Power Amps into the wall and the rest into the MW block.

Again - I don’t ‘know’ why personally - I have a lot of ideas supporting why it would matter and also how to design a solution that encompasses those idea - but then it is into the playing and hobby side of HiFi which people should individually do for themselves without presumption to what they will prefer in the end.

Many years ago I thought none of this mattered - it surprised me that I began to find it did and I then did my own investigations.

DB.

i concur with this … I have had issues with my room … I recently changed the switch which for some reason greatly improved the bass quality - the knock on effect is that it drastically reduced the boom mode in the room …i guess the bass starts and stops better … giving less chance for the room to join in.

Noise is a distortion of the audio signal in its passage from the source to the ear. We live with the fact that no audio system is perfect, but that the more you pay the closer to perfection you get. Unfortunately the implementation of a better system also introduces the need for more complex power and interconnect cabling which become weak links and ones with scope for variability. We are discussing these variables.

In terms of what we hear, we are aiming for musical enjoyment! Part of this is enjoying hearing the instruments/sounds clearly (the harmonics of a note are just as important). Music can get complicated when there are lots of instruments playing at the same time when the thrill is hearing them clearly including having them spatially separated as they would be hearing the recorded performance.

Phil

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I interpret ‘noise’ as used in this thread to be induced interference or distortion in the electrical supply and in the signals running in the various cables and interconnects.

I think I would not exclude mechanical vibration as the Peeked base of the G3 is supposed to have some effect.

Phil

Ah, that sort of makes sense! Given that I’ve never been present at a recording, all the live music I’ve heard over the years (primarily rock and metal) has been considerably more distorted than any recording, and I’ve never listened to music played on a higher spec. hifi, I guess I’m in luck! I can hear no distortion of any description, all the music I play in my lounge, on my system sounds fabulous.

Provided I keep away from any higher specced ‘sorted’ system I hopefully will never be tempted to start messing with what I have (particularly as I have no desire to spend more than I’ve
already parted with).

Thanks for your response (and saving me piles of cash!).

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My Electromagnetic theory hasn’t been tested for 50 years, but here goes.
On the rectification side if we look at the capacitor charging current (generating the EM field), the switch on duration will increase in proportion to the current being drawn from the power supply. The period of the charging current is twice mains frequency, but the harmonic structure of the charging current depends on how long the current flows for. So volume will affect the noise in different parts of the audible spectrum moving to lower frequencies at higher volume (my feel for the analysis).

As DB suggests, loops in the earth signal path are bad. We all understand that transformers work with lots of loops, but we don’t do this hopeful. Also we don’t just consider the power supply because audio signal current can couple as well in the currents flowing through the Burndies. So the routing of the signal cables relative to Burndies can create loops inadvertently. You could think of a loop as two wires with fixed ends but run one inside the other so there is a limit to the movement of the wires.

So I would suggest that checking for loops is worthwhile. You may feel that this then makes it difficult for your IC to hang freely without touching Burndies. I share your frustration.

Phil