Anticipating that going whole hog would end up in fat city (throwing the top number of modules at my rig for max effect), the quad-FW power bar replaced my Vibex duo. Now I needed the four funky Schuko/US power adaptors for my own cords. Those terminated with one or two pig-tailed modules right before the IEC of my boxes. I cooked that stew for a number of days as suggested, then lent a quizzical ear or two. Oops. Was I in regression therapy? I tore everything out to return to my usual setup. Yes, that stomped the "DIY'd" LessLoss option which by contrast was noticeably MoreLoss. Off went an email to Louis. I was open to suggestions that might tap the secret sauce he'd promised. "Could be because of the cabling. What happens when you only use the C13/C14 FWs? Did you only do the maxed-out configuration? Nothing else? That would mean you always used those long hardware-store cords." Quite. That's exactly what he'd opted to send after all. I reminded him that I could only work with what I was given. "Right. But we are talking major simultaneous power cord change, too. So we need to do some isolation. I say this. Use the Vibex setup as your given base and don't mess around with that part. Then just put a C13/C14 Firewall into the IEC inlet of the DAC. Forget yanking everything out. It's too invasive. See what that does. Then put a second one on the DAC. See what that does. The Firewalls act on the entire spectrum from low to high in exactly the same way. So don't look for clues in any sort of timbre or color fashion. Look for aim and focus. Look for close and far and mainly focus and control."


Okay. Now we weren't talking wholesale substitution. Louis' new plan would be an enhancement of an already superior power delivery solution of Vibex filters and mostly Zu cords. Nothing wrong with that. It simply rewrote focus given how in an earlier email, Louis had flatly claimed that his modules would/could transform garden-variety power cords. They'd perform like boutique versions afterwards he'd said, rendering audiophile power cords obsolete. Alas, no such miracle cure in my system. Louis had a final tip. "Since the existing filter is your listening base in your own system, there's nothing to keep you from putting a FW module right before it, too." It wouldn't.


In fact, that's exactly how I rebooted my experiment. The rationale behind it mirrored why, if one possesses just one superior power cord, one might like to run it between wall and power bar to benefit all components simultaneously. Having a total of eight bootstrapping modules, I could attempt a different cut of whole hog at the pre-Vibex point before spreading the joy around and placing some of these modules into the IECs of my various boxes instead. That would play to the claim that their max effect comes from extreme proximity to the electrical circuits one means to "treat". I'd start off with just one module in front of the Vibex, then serialize a few to observe cumulative effects. The simple control system was iMac, COS Engineering D1 DAC/pre, Pass Labs XA30.8, Zu Submission sub and EnigmAcoustics Mythology M1 monitors with Sopranino super tweeters. I recalled Louis' instruction to listen for focus and control.

Vibex double DC filter with 8 outlets on bottom, Vibex Alhambra without outlets on top, two LessLoss FW modules between Alhambra IEC and power cord on the wall.

Now I had traction. Mind you, it wasn't anything I'd call major. It was similar to swapping out same-brand tubes which have grown slightly tired. The addition of just two modules in the treat-everything pre Vibex spot did increase what we might call contrast ratio. In softer lingo, the suchness of sounds was a bit stronger. In optician terms, it was a pair of mild glasses to compensate for minor age-related vision blur. It doesn't change the scenery or its colours. In audio terms, it doesn't touch amplitude response and its related tonal balance. It simply ups sharpness of focus. I'm 53 and still don't wear any corrective glasses. My wife does. Trying her customs with arguably the wrong values for my own eyes, I can easily tell that my sight is softer than it used to be. Because that's my new normal, it doesn't yet telegraph shy of silly small type. Back to the FW modules. Despite their added funky connector junctions, I'm very clear that their benefit was exactly like a first pair of mild reading glasses. Time to go four square or rather, four in series over just two. And indeed, the same quality or attribute moved more into the foreground. I'd call it crispness were it not for hifi lingo's reflexive tie-in with sizzly treble and spot-lit transients. But imagine driving in inclement weather as your car window begins to subtly fog over with condensation. One press on the defog button and a few seconds of strong cold air blowing straight up at the windshield render the scenery patently crisper. Think of the LessLoss boxes as our hifi equivalent for such cold strong air and what it does to subliminal condensation.