You make good points based on sound observations. As I mentioned, my post was based on a bunch of "if's": if we used --> the same amount of cotton, teased to the same density; the same equipment; the same amount of Dynamat; the same amount of acoustic foam (not to mention different brands of acoustic foam); the same amount of putty (not to mention the density/weight/damping differences between commercial plasticine and my formulation of tungsten putty). There are obviously multiple variables interacting that create the perceived differences that we/every individual "hears" - then there is our different HRTF X preferences X biases*cognitive dissonance to consider. I am no more immune to placebo, confirmatory bias, and/or cognitive dissonance than anyone else.
I will try what you suggest and let you know what I "hear." I hope you, and everyone else reading my posts and this wordy reply, appreciate that my impressions are nothing more than my impressions and sonic preferences. To me, it's all good. I share my experiences and impressions FWIW, IMHO, My 2 cents, YMMV, etc., for others to try or toss in the waste basket. I know what I like when I hear it; same as everyone else, and understand that what works for me may not work for anyone else. I do not deign to pass judgment on your work and results, or anyone else's.
Peace, cheers, and best to all,
I find what you say interesting. I will try and test with no cotton in the cups so ONLY the electrical tape reflex dot this weekend and see what I think. I'm really busy this week and don't have time to do it until Saturday or so. However, I found what you said true when comparing amps. My Bijou tube amp makes the mids sound fuller and gives the bass some added presence where as my little Total Bithead is not up to par. It leads to thinner sounding mids and slightly weak bass.
I'm very happy with the balance of the cotton in the cups with tube amps, but I'm also a big fan of tube amps.
Also, I used less cotton than you did per that picture. My cotton was way thinner. The Jumbo balls are bigger than the Triple balls, at least here in the East Lansing, MI Kroger where I bought the cotton balls.
Try thinner cotton and let me know as well what you think!