Improve sound with the right accessories
1. Accessories made of carbon block
Carbon block is obtained after months of high-pressure and high-temperature calcination processing of petroleum coke and soot. As a material deriving from petroleum coke, carbon block has high density and is very tough. Thus, it is employed, for instance, in the production of motor brushes for Shinkansen bullet trains. Audio Tekne accessories implement high-purity carbon block that is roughed, cut and polished.
In 1978, Audio Tekne became the first audio company in the world to produce audio equipment that implemented carbon.
Carbon absorbs mechanical vibrations better than any other material. It has no equal in this capacity. It is an epoch-making material in terms of eliminating auditory distortion.
Carbon micro-particles are of globular shape and have a sponge-like structure optimal for diffusing and absorbing vibrational waves. As vibrations are diffused, the reverberated sound is free of distortion and the signal is unaffected. It is ideal for audio equipment.
Carbon products improve with use.
a. Carbon headshell
Our carbon headshell (CH-7 7t) with 180 litz core wire shell lead (18g) revives your cartridge. The headshell fully absorbs vibrations from the cartridge’s stylus tip, returning zero unnecessary vibrations to the tip, delivering a precise electrical signal to the record groove, and reproducing sound faithfully — all you hear is pure music.
b. Carbon turntable mat
A 10 mm-thick turntable mat (CH-10) that dramatically upgrades your record player.
Due to carbon’s properties, the mat has an unprecedented capability of absorbing vibrations between disk surface and turntable. The turntable rotates smoothly without returning any irregular vibrations to the disk. Sound recorded on the disk is reproduced in full bandwidth, in an ideally natural manner in terms of sound transparency, source localization and definition. Audio Tekne’s carbon turntable mat generates less energy loss than ordinary turntable mats, reproducing sound free of vagueness, distortion and dullness, giving the listener 20% to 30% higher auditory power and a feeling of larger scale. Placing a pig or chamois leather sheet between the record and turntable sheet produces even better results by eliminating any resonance caused by an air gap between them.
c. Carbon disc clamp (LTP-11, 255g)
While record players with an ordinary disc clamp produce high-pitched sounds that are congested or penetrating, record players with a carbon disc clamp are free of unnecessary vibrations and present an entire range of sound, from low- to high-pitched, with uncommon beauty. Enjoy improved, natural sound that is refreshing, creamy and smooth, with a distinct, clean and long reverberation.
Heavier disc clamps make a singer’s voice sound muffled and stuffy, as if it were coming from a tight, constricted throat. It is also a common misunderstanding that they produce better sound by improving the lower pitches.
d. Carbon isolation /de-coupling absorber
Carbon isolation absorbs all vibrations apart from the music signal itself and improves the low frequency signal’s playback sound, rendering it surprisingly natural. Used underneath various devices — record player, CD deck, amplifier, speaker system — it greatly improves sound quality.
Carbon isolation dimensions
100 x 100 x 100 mm
100 x 100 x 50 mm
100 x 150 x 20 mm
100 x 100 x 20 mm
100 x 50 x 20 mm
50 x 50 x 50 mm
50 x 50 x 20 mm
Carbon plate dimensions
500 x 400 x 35 mm
450 x 350 x 35 mm
Other sizes are available upon request.
2. Cables and interconnects made of pure copper litz wire
A pure copper litz wire delivers natural sound with full bandwidth. However, simply taking a thick copper litz wire with plus and minus wires running in parallel isn’t sufficient. For the litz wire to really work, the individual copper wires should be insulated one-by-one and then bundled. Unfortunately, applying a vinyl coating to the litz wire in order to improve its appearance, compromises sound. When signal current flows through a conductor, a potential difference is created in the surrounding electromagnetic field and the insulator becomes electrified. Electrification again creates an electromagnetic field that distorts the next signal. Therefore, using electrically-conductive lead and cord with as little insulation as possible creates the best sound. Moreover, the conductor through which the electric signal flows should have a small inductance -- the send and return wire structures should be the same. By meeting all these requirements, Audio Tekne cables deliver unparalleled natural sound, free of coloration.
a. Litz wire headshell lead
LTP-190 (90-wire core)
LTP-1180 (180-wire core) headshell lead wire
The headshell lead wire consists of 90/180 litz wires and pure copper wire covered with a 0,08φ polyurethane coating. Upper register improvement is reflected in the lower register. If the high-frequency register is distorted, sound balance slips towards treble, but if distortion in treble is reduced, low-pitched sounds become clearer, and bass sound is improved.
Distortion destroys all balance.
Codes for balanced pure litz cables
ARA-500-1.0 M (1.5M): tonearm output cable
ARC-500-0.7M（1.0M.1.2M.1.5M.2.0M): RCA PIN-PIN signal cable
ARC-500-OO.OOM XLR (3P): signal cable
ARSP- 500-OO.OOM: speaker cable
+0.14 φ /25 core: red polyurethane coating x 10 pairs (twisted together)
-0.14 φ /25 core: green polyurethane coating x 10 pairs (500 wires total)
5/0.14 φ x 16: red (green) polyurethane coating, braided shield structure
A good cable has:
1. Identical structure on plus and minus wires
2. As little insulation as possible (to prevent sound quality deterioration caused by electrification of the insulators)
3. Densely twisted plus and minus wires (to minimize treble sound range transfer loss)
4. Shield construction that protects against outer induction (signal current should not flow through the shield)
Audio Tekne cables meet all of these criteria.
Audio Tekne’s tonearm output cable greatly improves S/N, creating the impression of leisurely tempo, as if the spinning of the record has relaxed. The same is true of the signal cable and the speaker cable. The result: natural sound.
Remember that replacing a poorly performing speaker cable with an Audio Tekne cable will only bring out the inadequacies of preceding equipment. It is easy to mistake this result for compromised sound quality. Keep this in mind, and do not make a hasty judgment.
Long cables tend to be influenced by external induction, even if their impedance is low. However, Audio Tekne speaker cables implement all necessary countermeasures, and feature improved S/N ratio.
A speaker cable shield should be used for grounding the metal frame of a speaker unit.
Since a speaker frame is usually not connected to anything (not grounded), it can generate an electromagnetic field that produces a potential difference of about 1V between the amplifier and speaker voice coil. S/N ratio decreases, and silence is not reproduced correctly.
Speaker cables made by Audio Tekne provide unique frame grounding, S/N ratio increases, and silence reproduction is optimized. This is another important step toward sound quality improvement.
The above effect can be achieved even if only the minus terminal of a speaker is connected to a speaker frame.
3. Electrification-removing conductive paint
When signal current flows through a wire, the external electromagnetic field changes, generating random electrostatic charges on the surface and in pinholes in the insulating material (e.g. PVC). Some of the residual electric charges are passed on to new signals, distorting them and causing unclear sound. This phenomenon is called random charge distortion.
By eliminating the magnetic field generated by an insulator’s electrostatic charge, sound quality improves. This can be achieved by simply painting the insulator. All you need is Super Black, a conductive lacquer containing tiny carbon particles and organic solvent. Applied to the insulator’s surface, Super Black penetrates several microns in depth, making electrification removal very effective.
When applied to a resistor insulator, capacitor and interconnecting wires, Super Black makes shrill, penetrating sounds softer and clearer. About 10 seconds of your time can cause such a dramatic improvement.
Even the slightest distortion (third harmonic distortion of -150dB) decreases significantly (by 1/2 or even 1/3, thus becoming 156dB or -169dB). It might seem an insignificant improvement, but it is quite noticeable.
The paint can be applied on the surface of practically any insulator (signal circuit, high-tension circuit, AC input circuit). However, best results are achieved by painting the following parts:
Plastic coating of a shell lead wire
Plastic part of a lead wire inside a tonearm
Plastic part of the arm’s output wire
Plastic coating of wiring inside the amplifier
Capacitor (polyester film, ceramic, mica, styrol)
Carbon composite resistor
Plastic coating of speaker wiring
Speaker network cabling material
Capacitor of speaker network
Cabling inside the speaker cabinet
Speaker corn paper, diaphragm
Directions for use
Shake the container well and apply the product on the surface of an insulator with a brush or toothpick. The paint will dry in a matter of minutes. Do not touch the coated area while it is wet.
1. Since this product is conductive, avoid using it where a short circuit may occur, (terminals, AC 100 V line and B+ power source circuit).
2. Leave uncoated at least 5 mm at both ends of PVC-insulated wire to avoid a short circuit between other conductors.
3. Since this product is highly volatile, seal the container’s lid tightly after use.
4. Line transformers
ALT-8905 separation model AC line transformer
Achieves unbelievably high S/N ratio and close to no distortion at the AC100V line input.
Enjoy natural sound beyond imagination.
It is specifically recommended for people who are wary of loud music.
LT-8310 CD line transformer (matching line transformer)
Placed between two audio equipment pieces (CD deck and pre-amplifier, tuner and pre-amplifier, pre-amplifier and main amplifier etc.), the line transformer improves S/N ratio, adds depth and width, eliminates distortion and refines reverberated sound.
It gives the most remarkable results, especially if used with a transistor amplifier.
In addition to LT-8310, two other models are available upon request: LT-9701 and LT-9501 (lossless winding transformer type ATT with five input selector).