By Lam Seng Fatt
From the outset I must confess that I could not understand what was going on when Jeff Lin, the owner of Telos Design, held a demo session using his products at Swedish Statement Boutique, Jaya One, Petaling Jaya last Thursday.
How can something like an RCA connector used to plug up unutilised jacks in a preamp change sound quality? I don’t know.
Some years ago, Telos marketed its RCA caps which appeared similar to the Cardas ones. Some people reported lower noise floor when these were plugged into unused jacks in the preamp or integrated amp.
Version two of the RCA cap has a secret ingredient – okay it’s not a secret anymore since Jeff Lin told everyone in Swedish Statement Boutique what it is. The not-so-secret ingredient is a dash of Bybee powder inside the cap, which is cryo-ed and broken in at the factory. With these caps plugged into the unused jacks, the soundstage gets bigger horizontally, the singer’s voice becomes smoother and is pushed forward a bit while the music is fuller.
Jeff Lin, who hails from Taiwan, has a new gadget called the Grounding Noise Reducer that is used to plug up all the unused jacks This is an active design and with this plugged in, the RCA caps are not needed.
From the Telos website: “Every audio equipment uses a power transformer in order to operate at the correct internal voltage. Hence, each component is said to have the primary side and secondary side. The primary side is from the power receptacle, all the way to the input of the transformer. The secondary side is from the output of the transformer to the circuit board. The audio circuitry remains within the secondary side.
“The Telos technical team proposes the use of a CPU within the Grounding Noise Reducer to calculate and generate high precision Ground reference voltage. Grounding is achieved by connecting the audio equipment to the binding posts of Telos Grounding Noise Reducer that carry the Ground reference voltage. By doing so, the Grounding Noise Reducer is able to truly correct the Ground reference point for the equipment chassis, audio circuitry and the Ground connection.
“Using the same analogy as a high precision digital clock, Grounding Noise Reducer generates low distortion Ground reference voltage, giving each equipment a consistent reference point. When the audio setup is operating on a singular Ground potential, the signal transmission becomes least impeded, avoiding any transmission loss due to polarity mismatch and bit error. Therefore, truly achieving the best transmission possible.
“Telos Grounding Noise Reducer Active Grounding Box comes with Ground cables of the same materials. Thus each component has the same grounding impedance characteristics, which greatly reduces the likelihood of coloration.
“By having an isolated Ground for your audio setup, the effect is as good as having a dedicated power line. Through the Grounding Noise Reducer generated Ground potential serving only your audio setup, noise will be totally isolated.”
His latest toy is even more controversial and mysterious – it is his Quantum Noise Resonator which blasts out a signal from 1Hz to 100kHz for a few seconds. It looks like a larger version of a CD jewel box with flashing lights that make it look like a prop from a sci-fi movie.
Now this gadget can be used to zap anything. CDs, LPs (what?), CD players (what??), speaker units (what???) … anything in the hi-fi system can be treated by that zap of sonic waves and the sound quality will change.
However, the effect is not permanent. Jeff Lin said it will last 20 to 30 minutes.
How does it work? I don’t know. From the Telos webslite: “This is the very first time (there is) a circuit design which is a combination of resonance and noise and (which) transform into light! The Internal quantum modules is combined with eight resonance channels and a core processor, the engineers detect the power outlet wave type by internal IC, and generates instant synchronous phase distortion compensation which is made for the beautification (of) waveform through precise resonance and reduces phase distortion.
“Based on the noise and surges with energy conversion circuit design, it manufactures the difference of noise above 1KHz and make it fall into light energy!
“Thus a whole new audio processing technology – QNR has been released. The actual listening experience to the sound system makes more sense and focus (with) more precise audio clarity. The whole background is black and silent, music is enhanced with more charm and smoothness.
“Since TELOS QNR uses a parallel circuit design, there is no limitation in power ampere that is caused by traditional series processors. QNR is able to provide high-wattage electricity with no dynamic depression, reduction of detail or creation of a dry sound, and narrow sound field. Such side effects (are) caused by excessive pursuit of power crunch.This is one audio dedicated power processor that has been developed in perfect balance, and is built for the essence of music, and (will last)for years, without any compromise of the actual listening and tuning (experience).”
Finally, I had to pose Jeff Lin one question that Willy had requested me to ask. The question was: “In terms of amplifier design, is it better to have an amp with as few jacks as possible (like having one pair for CD and one pair for Aux) or more jacks?”
Jeff Lin, who answered through a translator (an audiophile at the event who was bilingual), said he could not comment on amplifier design as that would be the prerogative of the amp designer, but if it has few jacks, then there is the loss of opportunity to tune the component and sound system with his products.
Telos products have the effect of making the music sound fuller, smoother and enlarging the soundstage. I noticed that the singers were pushed forward too in the demo system comprising Marten speakers, Vitus pre and power amps and MSB CD transport and DAC. Why should the sound change with the inclusion of (or zapping by) these odd gadgets? As I admitted in the beginning, I do not know.