Ansuz Darkz S2T
Resonance Control Isolation Device
Although the components of an audio system appear to be sitting still on a shelf or stand, if we were to investigate carefully we would find that they are in fact resonating, or vibrating. These vibrations are caused by many factors. Power supplies that are receiving an AC (Alternating Current) power feed often resonate at the same frequency as the fundamental current (50/60Hz). In all of our equipment, as different electronic components become energized they resonate at different frequencies.
Mechanical energy from the rotation of motors, platters & drives propagate through the components & the system. The actual sound waves themselves that are emanating from our loudspeakers are also interacting with our components. Furthermore, when something resonates, the surrounding materials bounce the resonance back, sometimes at slightly different frequencies. An audio system playing music is often an environment with a multitude of resonance energy at play, similar to a pond with a surface disturbed by lots of pebbles randomly thrown into the pond at different times.
These mechanical vibrations have a huge impact on the performance of the components in our system and importantly, audibly degrade the sound quality of our system. This can be easily demonstrated and many audiophiles who pay attention to resonance mitigation & the mechanical isolation of their components attest that the sonic improvements are significant. In fact, all manufacturers of high-end audio equipment will tell us that you can’t actually hear the full potential of what their equipment is capable of without proper mechanical isolation.
Ansuz have created the innovative Darkz series which are a range of efficient devices to ground all components in a high-end audio system. They are mechanically tuned to allow vibrations a path out of the component and to keep various components individually isolated. The sonic improvement caused by Ansuz Darkz are undeniable.
The Darkz S2T resonance control is created with three stainless steel discs which are extremely rigid. The two upper discs float on three titanium balls to give the Darkz its resonance handling properties. The three disks are held together by a specially designed mechanism that allows the discs to function as intended.
Installing 3 Darkz S2T devices under an audio component will result in a sharpening of the image, improved clarity, resolution of detail and will also open up the soundstage. It is a no-brainer if you would like to hear what your component sounds like fully optimised and the cumulative effects on a whole system are incredible.
Ansuz Acoustics D-TC Accessories: Sparkz and Darkz
3 Functional Designs
Darkz adjustable resonance control comes in four quality levels – C2T, T2, D2T and T2S.
The Mechanical Grounding of a Hi-Fi System
1. ANSUZ DARKZ FEET / DARKZ / DARKZ ADJUSTABLE
The loudspeakers is the by far the most powerful creator of vibrations. So powerful, that they can set the whole room rocking. So naturally, you do not want to spike both your speakers and the electronics down into the same floor. You want to assure that vibrations from one speaker have as little feedback into the other speaker, the electronics and the cables as possible. The way to do that is to place the speakers/speaker stands on Darkz.
If your speakers/stands are fitted with spikes or feet that are attached in threaded holes, you can replace those with Ansuz Darkz Feet that are available with screws in the same dimensions. For the best results, place the mounted Ansuz Darkz Feet on top of Ansuz Darkz with ceramic balls between. If adjustments are needed, to level out the speakers on an uneven floor, use Ansuz Darkz Adjustable. A set of 3 Darkz and 1 Darkz Adjustable underneath each speaker can be the right solution, if the floor is not too uneven.
2. ANSUZ DARKZ CABLE LIFTERS
Often sounds that may be perceived as room resonance are actually vibrations picked up by cables. When vibrations from the room is transferred into the cables (mainly the speaker cables), the vibrations create a new energy that influences the electrons in the cables. This energy travels in both directions within the cables. Some of it is propagated directly back into the speakers and some of it is propagated in the other direction into the output of the amplifier. The feedback circuitry sees this added energy as a differential to the input signal and therefore tries to compensate against it, which is heard as resonance and distortion.
Naturally you want to stop vibrations in the cables so they will not act like microphones. That is what Ansuz Darkz Cable lifters can do, and this is where these cable lifters are very unlike most available cable lifters. Where most cable lifters are just suspending the cable off the floor (making them much more susceptible for vibrations), Ansuz Cable Lifters are grounding vibrations and stopping the induction of the conductors.
One Ansuz Cable Lifter for each half meter of cable running on the floor is recommended. The cables do not need to be lifted completely off the floor, if the cable is touching the floor in between the Cable Lifters, it will not have a negative effect. The most important Cable Lifters are located where the cable first reaches the floor, coming from the amplifier and from the loudspeakers.
3. ANSUZ DARKZ / DARKZ ADJUSTABLE
The research that Ansuz has conducted suggests that standing your equipment racks on spikes doesn’t make sense as the spikes will act like a cartridge picking up vibrations from the floor. Instead, you want to ground all the vibrations the rack is picking up from the room and from the equipment standing in it. With Ansuz Darkz Adjustable underneath the spikes of the rack you ensure the best grounding and you are able to also level the rack very precisely.
4. ANSUZ DARKZ
As amplifiers are fitted with a substantial power supply, they are under the heavy influence of 50/60 Hz resonances that originate from the mains system. At the same time amplifiers are sensitive to the vibrations coming through the room from the loudspeakers. Grounding is important to drain out internal and external vibrations.
Most electronics are fitted with rubber feet to make them ‘user friendly’ and avoid them scratching your shelf, however Ansuz research shows that you should avoid having any components standing on soft materials. A soft material does not just absorb vibrations. Rubber feet absorb vibrations and release the energy again back into the component causing destructive resonances.
To create the best environment for your amplifier we recommend that you place it on three Ansuz Darkz. If it is possible, place one of the Darkz directly underneath the power supply / transformer and the other two so the amplifier is standing stable. If the original feet underneath your amplifier are so high, that the Ansuz Darkz does not lift the feet free of the shelf, we can recommend stacking more Darkz with ceramic balls between them. Please note to never place components directly on top of each other! Separate shelves and Darkz for each component are recommended.
5. ANSUZ DARKZ
The CD-player / transport emits so many vibrations due to the fast spinning disc that it is not only harmful for the player itself, but also for other components in the system. Draining vibrations through proper grounding is crucial for the CD-player / transport. To ground the CD mechanism most efficiently, place one of three darks directly underneath the center of the mechanism. In a few cases this is not possible because the chassis of some players are not strong enough. In those cases, place the Ansuz Darkz closer to the corners.
6. ANSUZ DARKZ
The research Ansuz conducted over many years led them to pay significant attention to the mains power supply. This was backed up with listening tests, which confirmed that properly setting up the mains system is extremely important. It is helpful to think as power as the ‘raw material’ with which the music signal is re-created. Due to the fact that the 50/60 Hz resonances have so much influence here, the power distributor needs highly effective mechanical grounding. Adding the Ansuz Darkz in this location is very audible. (If you are using an Ansuz Mainz8 distributor you will find that it is already fitted with Ansuz Darkz Feet that fits ideally on four Darkz with ceramic balls in between)
The following information is specifically about the manufacturing of the Darkz T2S, however it can be applied in principle to the whole range.
In both the design and production phase, scientists at the Technology Institute of Jutland in Denmark have played a critical role. Without their extensive knowledge about materials and their refined skills in operating the advanced particle accelerators, Ansuz may have never achieved this performance outcome.
The bare Titanium discs are mounted on racks and sandblasted to have the proper surface finish as the appearance of the final product is highly contingent upon the surface topography prior to the coating deposition.
After sandblasting, the Titanium discs are cleaned in an ultrasonic bath and further cleaned in a water cascade with demineralized water to make sure they are completely free of any dirt and grease. The discs are then dried and stored in an oven until they are ready to be coated.
Prior to the coating process, the Titanium discs are mounted on holders that can be inserted into the particle accelerator. In the deposition chamber, large pumps extract all air that is in the chamber to create conditions similar to those in outer space. To guarantee perfect conditions of the vacuum, the coating unit with the discs is heated to remove water and other contaminants that are in the air.
Even these pure conditions do not suffice to achieve the desired quality level! A small amount of Argon gas is let into the chamber to receive a perfect adhesion of the coating to the Titanium discs. By applying a voltage to these discs, they are exposed to a bombardment of Argon ions. This removes the naturally formed oxides from the Titanium surface. Under these conditions, high-performing coatings can be applied and spread on the surface of the Titanium discs.
The acoustically optimized layers of Zirconium and Tungsten are then deposited on the Titanium surface, and finally a hard layer of Aluminum Titanium Nitride is added to obtain the desired surface properties and the intended visual appearance.
After cooling, the coating unit is vented, and the coated Titanium discs can now be taken off the holders. Quality control checks if the adhesion and thickness of the coating are within the set specifications. The adhesion test is performed by pushing a diamond tip through the coating and deep into the substrate.
The second part of the quality inspection consists of the measurement of the thickness of the coating. For this, a ball is being ground through the coating layers supported by the application of a diamond paste. Under a microscope, the individual layers become visible and can be measured precisely. After the Ansuz Darkz have passed the quality control, they have to undergo a final visual inspection before they are packed and ready for assembly.