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Q: What weight ranges are intended with the different cones and feet?
A: All isolators can carry substantial weight. Even the smaller Cones XS are tested for 85kg each. The XS set can carry at least 3 times that. The standard cones, feet and pucks hold even more so in real life weight is never an issue.

Q: Do your products require specific care? Is the ceramic prone to damage?
A: Nothing exceptional in terms of care. When dropped they might slightly chip but remain perfectly usable. We repeatedly tested for breakage by throwing them very hard into a wall but of course we don't recommend that. When dirty you can clean with a clean dry towel and you can also sand them clean with very fine-grit sand paper. This however should rarely be necessary.

Q: What is the warranty period?
A: We warrant against material flaws and production faults upon delivery. Otherwise what's there to cover? If you do have a problem, always contact the seller first.

Following this e-mail I began with the cones and feet. These were controlled listening sessions swapping out existing resonance control devices and inserting the cones and feet one by one to gauge effectiveness in specific situations and determine individual sonic character. The system was assembled with the subwoofer to more challenge isolation properties in conjunction with my Apogees. The Tortuga Audio LDR6 passive preamp remained throughout to minimize variables. The cones and feet were first employed under it, then found their way to the Wyred4Sound server, DAC-2 and finally the Audio Space CDP-8A to explore different components and include one with potential tube microphonics (the valve CD player).

The discography for these auditions ran a gamut of quality and style to see out how they'd react to real-world recordings as well as audiophile fare. All my standard reference recordings made the rotation. Here’s a small sampling of music old and new. "Archangel" from
Archangel: Two Steps from Hell [Thomas J. Bergersen & Nick Phoenix,TSFHCD02] has talented composers with access to full-budget synths, orchestra and choir do symphonic-style music for film, game, television and trailers. Their compositions include original and imitative material (try "Unexplained Forces" if you want to hear some Inception homage.) Entertaining and ambitious material abound on this CD with sufficient musical merit to compensate for highly variable recording quality. The "Archangel" cut demonstrates the perils of midrange compression/limiting which can become a tightrope for systems to navigate. The record levels push into clipping and the dense material becomes a challenge to unravel and differentiate. Welcome to the You Tube generation of recording quality.

"Barrio San Miguel" from
Flamenco Passion: Gino D’Auri [FIM XRCD 023] is a lovely Winston Ma remastering of material by guitarist Gino D’Auri from 1991 through 1996 with a strong supporting cast. Any cut is superb. Some emphasize guitar body and romance. This one is faster paced and showcases quick finger work, wide separation and lightning-quick transient information on the castanets. "Black Fly" from Little Red Boots Sampler: Lindi Ortega [Last Gang Records CDPRO LG26223] is a sampler of the full CD with big talent and wide style. Country music swings from classic to modern in a style that earned the moniker 'neo rockabilly'. Ortega’s strong emotionally charged vocal work sees good band support featuring excellent electric guitar in a warm complex overdub mix with old-school acoustics. It's a decent little recording that has all of the satisfaction without the "Diva" chestnut repertoire.

"Mind if I Cut In" and "Imagine the Fire" from The Dark Knight Rises: Hans Zimmer [Sony Classical 88725431172] is classic modern Hans Zimmer, hence deep, dark and dense. There's a delicate piano, beautifully recorded in atmospheric depth and stark against brooding orchestral undertones. It's a superb departure to show Zimmer doing small scale as well as massive tympanic assaults which is the next track. There’s choral work with signature Zimmer drums and excavation-grade deep bass to test the response and dynamic agility of your system. It's a quality recording that has also been made available in 24/192 for audiophile consumption

"Everybody Knows" from More Best of Leonard Cohen: Leonard Cohen [Sony Music B000002C31] is a popular piece from this compilation CD. Musically rich in content, it showcases Cohen's deep "articulated gravel" vocals. Subtle orchestration and backup work in a reasonably warm and dense acoustic. "lo lume vostro" and "Non al suo amante" from Italian Madrigals of the 14th Century: Jacopo da Bologna: Ensemble Pan/Project Ars Nova [Ars Musici 232306] is a 1985 recording by Deutsche Harmonia Mundi features Swiss American group Pan Project Ars Nova at the Musikakademie der Stadt Basel. This series of 14th century secular works rely on delicate vocal interplay, sparse medieval instrumentation and generous acoustic. It offers intimate insight into a very different musical style from the more opulent and complex world of Baroque music to come. It's mall-scale material well recorded.

The game’s afoot. Under all conditions I could generate the CA feet and cones displayed a family sound. All of them accentuated midrange and upper midrange information by a small degree, enhancing edge information on dynamic transients as well as gradation. The effect was one of increased liveliness, with quicker stops and starts combined with finer shadings where the recording offered them. In short, transients were steeper, complex information was more clearly defined and intricate. The different products did however have slight variations on this basic character. In frequency response the smaller XS cones were leaner through the lower midrange and upper bass, creating a higher tonal contrast that gave the midrange through upper midrange an additional push. This emphasized dynamics and produced a soundstage that favored depth and focus over forward projection. The extra mid/upper prominence also revealed a limitation in the XS.

When confronted with compressed material already pre-emphasized in the same range spotlighted b the CA, the smaller ceramic cone overloaded and lost its composure at higher volumes. Complex detail, spatial information and dynamic gradation all became somewhat homogenized. Reference-quality recordings did not but heavily limited and compressed fare could trigger it. This character was most pronounced when the XS cones were challenged under the CD player and Wyred Server and least under the Tortuga Audio preamp where all devices had the benefit of an additional layer of primary resonance support from the Audio Exclusiv d.C.d. base. The bigger devices proved relatively immune from this anomaly and therefore maintained a more consistent character.