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So how do they do it?
We must point out that the idea behind the Lautus is pure theory and is yet to be scientifically tested.
EMC legislation highlights the fact that we live in a world of ever-increasing interference.
The interference with our precious audio signals comes from the proliferation of wireless devices.
It also comes from "green-energy" power-supplies which emit and therefore must transmit at least some of their ultra-high frequency distortion. And because legislation demands it, "green energy" devices are everywhere.
Interference can "land" on cables and pass into your equipment where it can mix with the high frequency harmonic distortion all amplifiers and preamps will have to some extent.
Because of radio we understand that a modulated frequency, when mixed with another frequency, can produce a sound at a frequency we can hear.
For example: an amplifier which isn't effectively immune will sometimes accidentally "tune" to a radio station which you'll hear in the background. Most people will have come across this at some time.
This demonstrates the need for cables to have effective shielding to prevent this happening and the Lautus has that effective shielding (or screening as it is known in some circles).
But the Lautus has more. It uses ferrite filters placed at positions along the cable which were found to give the best subjective results.
And those results were that the bass felt deeper - became clearer - more well defined. Not louder - just more complete.
So what's the theory?
As we said above, all amplifiers and preamps will have some high frequency harmonic distortion, and in addition to that there will always be some instability no matter how well an amp or preamp is designed to avoid it, because no electronic component is perfect - they all have what are known as parasitics.
The frequencies output from one type of preamp or another, or a DAC, or any piece of electronics that outputs an analogue signal, or even a digital signal such as S/PDIF or USB, will not be absolutely pure.
All signals have added distortion artefacts and together these are sent in cables. It is current flow and all currents flow in circles. In coaxial cables they go by the signal conductor and return by the shield (or should do if proper cable design practice is followed).
The source is the return (Kirchhoff's current law) so the signal in the cable has its origin or node just behind the socket of the source equipment.
We know that effective shielding prevents outside interference mixing with our signals but the source is also "sending" interference on top of its signal inside the cable.
We'll call it high frequency distortion or harmonics, and when that mixes with the harmonics produced by the receiving equipment (such as an amplifier), by the same "radio effect" as discussed above, false audible frequencies "fall-out" - new noises emerge which aren't any part of the original sound.
Remember this by Keith Armstrong from the Interconnects & Cables category page?
... in-band intermodulation products are inevitable when there are two or more frequencies (which there always are) and any non-linearities (which there always are).
Interestingly, noise with fundamental frequencies that are outside the audio range ... can intermodulate with audio harmonic distortion products that are above the audio range, causing in-band noises to arise.
The thing with intermodulation 'artefacts' is that they are completely alien to the original waveforms, so even small amounts may sound objectionable even though similar amounts of harmonic distortion products might sound acceptably low.
These new noises tend to be at high audible frequencies and often go unnoticed, but upset the top to bottom sound balance and more often than not, the bass suffers - it appears "thin" or overly "tight".
Single RCA/phono RCA/phono for S/PDIF
The ferrite filters on the Lautus are placed at two measured positions away from the signal origin where theory says the first anti-nodes of wavelengths for frequencies at 100MHz and 200MHz happen, based on the propagation velocity of the cable type being used (the Lautus S/PDIF and USB has only one ferrite).
These anti-nodes will not be the exact anti-nodes for all high frequency harmonics generated in the source equipment, but are the common frequencies of analogue and digital broadcasts, which can easily "travel through" source electronics.
Lower high frequency harmonic waveforms will be rising toward their anti-nodes at the ferrite positions so will have an effect on these too.
The theory says that the ½ turn transformers formed by the ferrites short the send and return frequencies to which the anti-nodes are "tuned" and a short circuit prevents current flow. These positions also become the new origins of the source at those frequencies due to the "shorts" - after which the signal should be much clearer.
We would like to emphasize that all the above is at this time pure theory which has not yet been scientifically tested, and the results the user may find can only be subjective.
Lautus USB Power Wire has an additional length of cable to hook-up to a 5V USB power supply/charger. Lengths: 0.8m from computer A-plug to USB device B-plug; 0.8m from computer A-plug to power supply A-plug. For safety if the A-plugs are connected the wrong way round the cable doesn't work - when it works it's connected right! (power supply shown for illustrative purposes - not included with Lautus USB Power Wire)
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