DIY Ground Box Thread
Nov 13, 2023 at 4:23 PM Post #1,051 of 1,705
These photos may be of interest of when l tested my mobile phone and placed inside a wooden box with G Shield, you can we when the box is close on both photos.

l had to use two different apps,as one wouldn't work on WiFi, and the other on BT, but it's a great example of its effectiveness.
 

Attachments

  • Screenshot_20230123-114218_MD Faraday Bag Tester.jpg
    Screenshot_20230123-114218_MD Faraday Bag Tester.jpg
    502.6 KB · Views: 0
  • Screenshot_20230123-113734_Shielding Tester.jpg
    Screenshot_20230123-113734_Shielding Tester.jpg
    319.1 KB · Views: 0
Nov 13, 2023 at 4:24 PM Post #1,052 of 1,705
YES, AND ITS TOXIC, ALWAYS WEAR A SUITABLE MASK IF YOU MUST USE THIS MAGNETITE ! I have now stopped using this and prefer a grounding box from one of the UK manufacturers anyway .
Magnetite is not a toxic product ( Magnetite nanoparticles have attracted much attention not only because of their superparamagnetic properties but also because they have been shown to have low toxicity in the human body ).
In fact if it was toxic Inoxia will not be able to ship it without hazardous material informat sheet.
When you handle it carefully with a spoon , it is no problem .
 
Nov 13, 2023 at 4:47 PM Post #1,053 of 1,705
Magnetite is not a toxic product ( Magnetite nanoparticles have attracted much attention not only because of their superparamagnetic properties but also because they have been shown to have low toxicity in the human body ).
In fact if it was toxic Inoxia will not be able to ship it without hazardous material informat sheet.
When you handle it carefully with a spoon , it is no problem .
Should be careful when transferring any fine minerals from one bag/container to another. I use a large spoon/scooper and are careful. I do not want to inhale the dust particles.
 
Nov 13, 2023 at 5:12 PM Post #1,054 of 1,705
I will order 1mm sheets as you did when I get home. Just to try on the ground boxes. I have zero expectations, since so far everything shielding wise I have tried has negatively effected performance. This stuff is like $20 USD shipped for 10 1mm sheets, so not expensive.

Just for reference I have tried EMI tape, including Oyaide, copper foil to sheets, aluminum foil to sheets. With all shielding material, will shrink sound stage and effect tonal balance without any positive performance gains. Can be small pieces, panels, inside or outside the enclosure. Almost like the shielding is reflecting what the box is absorbing.
Zero expectations are all good, mine were hopeful but pretty modest. I have not tried any of those other shielding types you mention.

I've tried plenty of stuff that had potential and reviewed with mild hope but was ultimately disappointing or negative e.g. Dynamat Xtreme damping stuff had a pretty minor effect that was far outweighed for me by the mess and difficulty of removal (Fo.Q much more potent without the downsides); those copper tubes I trialled as grounding cables based on the waveguide theory - no good.

Incidentally, we should keep in mind we have different ground box designs - my Quartz Acoustics ones are copper lined it appears (acknowledging you've not found this desirable in your DIY designs), so the graphite sheets may be acting as a semi-decoupled reflective shield which particularly helps the performance of the QA design. Also suspect with graphite in this hard pressed - to the point of being shiny - form the predominant shielding mechanism is reflection with any RFI absorption effect minor. This is per my reading that porous, maximised surface area is optimal for absorption.
 
Nov 13, 2023 at 9:26 PM Post #1,055 of 1,705
Zero expectations are all good, mine were hopeful but pretty modest. I have not tried any of those other shielding types you mention.

I've tried plenty of stuff that had potential and reviewed with mild hope but was ultimately disappointing or negative e.g. Dynamat Xtreme damping stuff had a pretty minor effect that was far outweighed for me by the mess and difficulty of removal (Fo.Q much more potent without the downsides); those copper tubes I trialled as grounding cables based on the waveguide theory - no good.

Incidentally, we should keep in mind we have different ground box designs - my Quartz Acoustics ones are copper lined it appears (acknowledging you've not found this desirable in your DIY designs), so the graphite sheets may be acting as a semi-decoupled reflective shield which particularly helps the performance of the QA design. Also suspect with graphite in this hard pressed - to the point of being shiny - form the predominant shielding mechanism is reflection with any RFI absorption effect minor. This is per my reading that porous, maximised surface area is optimal for absorption.
Oh yah I also tried Dynamat and off brand type of dampening and that also hurt performance. You have a good point regarding the way the Quartz Acoustic box is designed vs my DIY.
 
Nov 13, 2023 at 10:10 PM Post #1,056 of 1,705
Call me very impressed .
I have done only 5% of what is proposed on this thread . I have used three AC wrap of 400g inoxia magnetite ( a very , very fine powder ) .
I have put it on my dac ac cord , server ac cord and ac cord of the power distribution box. ...

The result are quite impressive as this has significantly decrease the noise coming from the AC and the musicality has made a very nice progress on my system !
Thank's

This is my AC Wrap 17cm wide , 20 cm long and 400g of magnetite powder !

IMG_5572.jpg
There are a lot of new people that are visiting this thread. So here is a recap of what is in this thread. All the different tweaks and DIY ground box device (which includes the cable design and wrap upgrades) revolves around the theme of removing noise from or going to the system to "Hear More", by lowering the noise floor. Using natural minerals to accomplish this. I have piece meal the DIY ground box and different tweaks as I was able to research, experiment and refine them. Most of the concepts except using Rochelle salt to remove EMI and mineral wraps to enhance ground cable performance, were based on Entreq's and CAD's work and retail offerings.

The Magnetite AC Power Cable wrap offers about 1/3 the performance of a well built and installed ground box (which includes the associated wraps). The Magnetite AC Power Cable wrap itself does not remove noise. What the wrap is doing is disrupting the electrical field generated by the power flowing through the cable. By disrupting the electrical field, lowers distortion in the power being delivered, thus improving the performance of the power cable.

All the different tweaks address different types of noise that emanate from our system's electronics and outside sources. The different noises most being of high frequency, mask data that is in the original recording The more of the noise that is removed from a system the more you will hear. Once enough of the noise within a system is addressed/removed, system performance is literally transformed to a level you likely never thought possible. You will get to hear what your system is truly capable of.
 
Nov 13, 2023 at 10:52 PM Post #1,057 of 1,705
Just added 3 more 1-1.4 gram Rochelle salt wraps at three different AC outlets. Now 12 locations outside of AC powering sound system have been treated. The background is so black, micro detail and harmonics so good. Its like every application is removing a bit more of the EMI from the AC line, lowering noise floor. Bass a bit faster, tighter and a bit more defined. LOL very cool.

Unfortunately I am not familiar with UK or over the pond wiring. If you guys have the same ground, Neutral and Hot wiring, I would try 1-2 grams by the Hot like I do it on the inside of a light switch plate. And if possible to get to live side of a AC outlet, try that.
 
Nov 14, 2023 at 4:01 AM Post #1,058 of 1,705
Now at 18 Rochelle salt wall plate installs. 16 wall outlets and 2 wall light switch plates across three different breaker circuits. All installs are on the Hot/Live side of the plate. LOL sounds amazing. Keeping all installs 1-1.4 grams, no change to system tonality. I say 1 gram to 1.4 grams because the way my scale measures. It will round up or down and I can tell when it is rounding, there is a 1 full second delay when it is rounding.

With each additional install the noise floor slightly drops. I can hear more of the ultra fine minute layering of detail. For example, a chair causing a wood floor board to creek. The floor board creek has more detail, decay and residual layering. Piano note with more bite and residual wood decay tone, also more layering and separation of fine detail within the entirety of the note. Even with decay the harmonic richness is increased. One of the songs I am using to analyze changes is on Tidal - Patricia Barber, Night Club album, Autumn Leaves. The two examples I just describes is very apparent in this song. All sounds exhibit this deeper look into the recording.

What I am doing is listening to specific tracks, install, then listen again. I like the Magnetite AC power cable wraps. This Rochelle salt wall plate at AC outlet or light switch tweak is way better when it comes to performance gains. The two tweaks are addressing different aspects of noise in the system, but this gives you all an idea how the two tweaks compare in my system. Amazing I got this level of performance gain for about $9! Will install more tomorrow :o2smile:
 
Nov 14, 2023 at 10:09 AM Post #1,059 of 1,705
Next weekend before l start. l am UK based, and l am in the lucky position, l can gain access to main outside cable into house, the downside, it has to run 3 sets of power boards breakers before it enters my listening room, that's a lot to play with.
Question.. my outside cable is reinforced, should l add a touch more due to sheild? perhaps 3 grams?

The other cables are standard ,no sheilding so l will stick to 1 grams. So the question is will sheilding or reinforcement, reduce the RS effectiveness?
 
Last edited:
Nov 14, 2023 at 10:21 AM Post #1,060 of 1,705
Now at 18 Rochelle salt wall plate installs. 16 wall outlets and 2 wall light switch plates across three different breaker circuits. All installs are on the Hot/Live side of the plate. LOL sounds amazing. Keeping all installs 1-1.4 grams, no change to system tonality. I say 1 gram to 1.4 grams because the way my scale measures. It will round up or down and I can tell when it is rounding, there is a 1 full second delay when it is rounding.

With each additional install the noise floor slightly drops. I can hear more of the ultra fine minute layering of detail. For example, a chair causing a wood floor board to creek. The floor board creek has more detail, decay and residual layering. Piano note with more bite and residual wood decay tone, also more layering and separation of fine detail within the entirety of the note. Even with decay the harmonic richness is increased. One of the songs I am using to analyze changes is on Tidal - Patricia Barber, Night Club album, Autumn Leaves. The two examples I just describes is very apparent in this song. All sounds exhibit this deeper look into the recording.

What I am doing is listening to specific tracks, install, then listen again. I like the Magnetite AC power cable wraps. This Rochelle salt wall plate at AC outlet or light switch tweak is way better when it comes to performance gains. The two tweaks are addressing different aspects of noise in the system, but this gives you all an idea how the two tweaks compare in my system. Amazing I got this level of performance gain for about $9! Will install more tomorrow :o2smile:
In fact I had one question about these Rochelle salt mini wraps on the house electricity network.
On my system I have a dedicated power line and circuit breaker only for my audio system .
Therefore nothing to treat except the audio system and may be the circuit breaker in the electrical panel .

You say that you have also treated two additional circuit breaker and associated outlet .
How do you choose them ? Next to the audio circuit breaker ?
How you would rate the impact of doing these two breaker compared to the main breaker feeding the audio system.
 
Nov 14, 2023 at 1:35 PM Post #1,061 of 1,705
@Stellabagpuss and @jean-michel6

In a bit I am meeting friends for a long lunch get together. When I get back will break down exactly when to tune/adjust salt volume, and applications (with pics) I have found increase system performance. I now have 23 installs and understand what I am looking for. D**mn it sounds good. What this tweak basically does by lowing EMI across the AC line running through the circuit(s) is:

* increase the speed and impact of macro and micro dynamics
* increase ultra fine micro detail retrieval across the entire note or sounds being heard. This is across the whole note or sound(s) from attack to decay and effects the entire frequency spectrum.
* Blacker/quieter background
* improves timbre, probably because of the first two benefits noted above
* separation and space within the sound stage is also improved

Rochelle salt used to absorb/remove EMI is a cool tool. How it is applied and how much used, I am finding is the key to how effective it is within an audio system.
 
Nov 14, 2023 at 10:46 PM Post #1,063 of 1,705
Excellent....Any information is always good.
I am interested to know if you have to slightly increase RS when a armoured cable is used.
I would assume placing the Rochelle salt outside of the shield will do not much. I have to see a pic of the cable and at junction points to make any recommendations. I have no idea what you are dealing with.
 
Nov 15, 2023 at 12:32 AM Post #1,064 of 1,705
Now at 18 Rochelle salt wall plate installs. 16 wall outlets and 2 wall light switch plates across three different breaker circuits. All installs are on the Hot/Live side of the plate. LOL sounds amazing. Keeping all installs 1-1.4 grams, no change to system tonality. I say 1 gram to 1.4 grams because the way my scale measures. It will round up or down and I can tell when it is rounding, there is a 1 full second delay when it is rounding.

With each additional install the noise floor slightly drops. I can hear more of the ultra fine minute layering of detail. For example, a chair causing a wood floor board to creek. The floor board creek has more detail, decay and residual layering. Piano note with more bite and residual wood decay tone, also more layering and separation of fine detail within the entirety of the note. Even with decay the harmonic richness is increased. One of the songs I am using to analyze changes is on Tidal - Patricia Barber, Night Club album, Autumn Leaves. The two examples I just describes is very apparent in this song. All sounds exhibit this deeper look into the recording.

What I am doing is listening to specific tracks, install, then listen again. I like the Magnetite AC power cable wraps. This Rochelle salt wall plate at AC outlet or light switch tweak is way better when it comes to performance gains. The two tweaks are addressing different aspects of noise in the system, but this gives you all an idea how the two tweaks compare in my system. Amazing I got this level of performance gain for about $9! Will install more tomorrow :o2smile:

Great stuff. Who'd have thought - before reading this thread - electrical noise would have such an insidious effect on the sound and that it would hide in, and/or spawn from, and so require treatment in, such a myriad of obscure locations. And more to the point that affordable and simple counter-measures proposed here mostly by you could be so effective to deal with it.

I'm not as systematic as you - I mean I do laser focus on a particular change and variants thereof incl also doing careful AB using particular sections of certain tracks to listen for certain things like realism of a female or male vocal, attack-body-timbre-decay of piano notes & strings. But I tend to get distracted by the latest tweak and move swiftly onto that. I mean I have Mundorf foils sitting here unloved for a few weeks now.

Graphite foil sheets update
Speaking of the tweak du jour... after a lot more experimentation yesterday evening with the graphite sheets, I can confirm those 1mm thick sheets are goddamn EMI shielding/absorbing monsters. Even if it turns out they don't work as well with your ground box design (though I do hope you’ll be pleasantly surprised) I'm sure they'll work well elsewhere in folks' systems.. as per below.

The whole pack of 250x200mm 1mm thick graphite foil sheets is now experimentally deployed in my system like so:
  • 1 cut up & wrapped around a ground box as pictured yesterday
  • 2 stacked on/over the power cables coming out of my vertically oriented Puritan power conditioner partly with the sheet also half supported by the edge of my hifi rack (1 good, 2 better - effect was so pronounced it was like a tone control turning down the treble, rather treble edginess. Took some acclimatisation, felt too much initially)
  • 2 on network switches - one on the LHY on top of the copper grounding plate that's already there & another on the Netgear
  • 1 under the copper grounding plate resting vertically on the inputs to the master active speaker (they're both quite light so no issue)
  • 1 at the back of the sub, vertically resting on the input cables leaning against the sub back plate (again a full frequency spectrum effect, so an upstream effect on the L&R amps/DAC/streamer)
  • 2 side by side leaning against the side of my wireless router that faces the hifi (alas it's in the same room corner not ideal, I do turn wifi off from time to time when critical listening but miss the convenience)
I could hear the delta with each addition and removal. Consistent theme with the sheets was sweeter midrange (residual glare/hardness banished) particularly female vocals sounding so soft, natural and effortless; greater refinement and realism in the representation of an acoustic space - wider & deeper, more precise placement of instruments with a richer and more nuanced decay of notes; leading transients more fully drawn with layers and body, less etched leading edges. Also more life, tempo and seemingly dynamic range.

Graphite v copper sheets
Here's the interesting bit. So once again I compared to the 0.5mm sheets on several places, the 1mm still consistently better. No surprises there. Then it occurred to me I should compare to some 300mm x 300mm pretty heavy gauge 0.6mm copper sheets I have kicking around. I did so - on the Netgear switch, sub and Puritan conditioner. Another consistent theme emerged - the copper thinned the midrange a little or a lot, got a little drier, female vocals lost their charm, while soundstage scale (height & depth) and dynamics flattened.

Remarkably the delta was greatest, IIRC, with the sheets leaning against the wireless router. Where one might have thought the more potently conductive and larger copper shield would be better. 🤷 Though I realise the router and sheets are fairly close to my Goundmaster external ground rod connection so maybe that's part of it, perhaps alongside some denoising of the router itself as an upstream ethernet signal source… mental note, test this again with wifi off.

The graphite sheets give my system a sweeter, fuller, bigger sound than copper sheets placed in the same locations. Idle speculation as to possible reason for this:
  • graphite has RFI absorptive/dissipative properties copper lacks i.e. not just reflective
  • graphite has better vibration damping characteristics, incl being softer and much lighter (it 'feels' dead/inert to the touch whereas copper feels more resonant)
  • differences in their electrical conductivity - although graphite is a very good conductor, copper is two orders of magnitude (~100x) better and is equally conductive in all X-Y-Z planes, whereas I understand graphite is strongly conductive length wise within (parallel to) a rolled layer but not so much across the layers comprising the thickness, in this case 1mm.
I can see myself ordering some more of this stuff, incl trying using it inside components. It's very effective IME, it’s cheap, light and easily cut. And it’s stealthy in a Batmobile or B-2 bomber kind of way. What’s not to love? It also breaks easily if you're careless with it so spares are good.
 
Last edited:
Nov 15, 2023 at 1:08 AM Post #1,065 of 1,705
Using Rochelle salt to absorb EMI from your homes AC line to supercharge your audio system performance

For ones that have been following this thread and have tried any of the tweaks, cable mods or DIY Ground Box knows how effective they are. This entire thread is devoted to "lowering noise" within an audio system to "hear more". With the obvious goal of improving the sonic capabilities of our audio systems. Well, I have found a way to systematically lower the EMI noise in our home AC wiring. I will share in this post what the tweak is, how to apply the tweak, and how to tune your system with the tweak.

This tweak is a doozy, the potential sonic performance upgrade is astounding. I can easily say that the tweak is a AC line upgrade. And absolutely the lowest effort, lowest cost to highest performance tweak I have experienced in 25+ years in this hobby. The cost is about $20 or less to treat your entire home! I do not believe there is a retail offering or solution that accomplishes what this tweak does, so it is DIY only. Also, as presented is for US home wiring. If your part of the world has different junction points, you will have to use the concepts shared here and apply to your wiring.

What does the tweak do?
It is apparent after a lot of experimenting, our AC home wiring is acting like an antenna for EMI from airborne and appliances. Even AC wiring from circuits other than the one powering our audio systems effect the circuit powering the audio system. Noise is likely transferred at the main breaker junction. The tweak absorbs EMI systematically at AC line junctions we can easily access. By doing this I can easily and immediately hear the effect on my system. I have treated 28 such junctions within a 1100 square foot apartment. Would have been interesting to do this in my previous 3600 square foot home. Every junction treated causes a slightly different effect. Also gives an opportunity to tune which I will get into soon.

The performance increase I received by installing across the 28 junctions in my residence:

* increased speed and impact of macro and micro dynamics
* increased ultra fine micro detail retrieval across the entire note or sounds being heard. This is across the whole note or sound(s) from attack to decay and effects the entire frequency spectrum.
* Blacker/quieter background
* improves timbre, probably because of the first two benefits noted above
* separation and space within the sound stage is also improved
* Bass slam and bass detail retrieval of ultra fine detail is improved. Bass performance was already very good, now it is better!

What is the tweak and how to apply the Tweak?
Before getting into the tweak, let me share that I like a warmish, dynamic and lush presentation. I am sensitive to tonal imbalance, peaky and sharp or weird high frequencies. Take this in consideration when tuning. You may want a more spicy top end or not as weighty mid bass or less body, or less bass slam in the presentation. The amount or weight of the Rochelle salt I am going to recommend as a starting point, is for my taste and system setup. The tuning section will explain how to tune to your tastes.

We are going to use Rochelle salt to absorb EMI from every AC outlet and light switch junction in the house. You can also use the Rochelle salt to absorb EMI at the breaker panel which I will address in the tuning section. We want to filter the Hot line and at the ground. Leave the Neutral side alone. You could try also on Neutral but all my tests show there are negatives filtering the Neutral line. We are going to make what I call Rochelle mini wraps. Which is simply Rochelle salt in a small plastic zip lock baggy. I will post links for the Rochelle salt I use and where I get the baggies I use.

You "will not" be touching any electrical wiring. You will only be removing the cover plate for the AC outlet or light switch. The Rochelle mini wraps are affixed to the actual wall cover plates with masking tape and then re-installed. That is it, as easy as that. The cover plate will wedge the rolled up baggy to the wall, it is not going anywhere. Also note, Rochelle salt "is not" conductive. The amount of Rochelle salt you want to use for the Hot line is 1 gram. Amount used for the ground is 0.5 grams. Do not let that small amount of Rochelle salt fool you, it is very potent within this application. You will understand once you start installing these wraps. I use a plastic spoon for scooping the small amount of Rochelle salt into the little baggies. My favorite mineral measuring tool, LOL. But I do weigh for this application. Not critical to weigh but helps for tuning.

* Hot line filtering - 1 gram in a 6.2cm x 8cm zip lock baggy
* Earth Ground filtering - 0.5 gram in a 4cm x 5cm zip lock baggy

Tuning:
* After install, effects of the tweak is immediate. Takes a few hours only to fully settle in.

* Filtering just the Live line without filtering ground will offer a more active or livelier performance. If you want a spicier top end add a tad more Rochelle salt. Basically adding 0.2 - 1 more gram to tune. Just have a few different amounts in bags and you can easily just lift the cover, swap the amount and listen. No need to screw that cover in place to hear what it does, so long as it is in place.

* The 0.5 gram filtering the ground adds a better tonal balance. Warms up the presentation a bit compared to the Hot line being filtered by itself. Also improves bass slam and presentation weight. You obviously can also use less or more to tune. I just find 0.5 to be the sweet spot for me.

* If you look at the included pics. You will notice the pic that has a 2nd smaller baggie, that is the ground filtering. Not obvious but I am pointing at the ground on the outlet or switch. In the pic the baggie is installed vertically (up and down - outlet pic) where the ground is affixed to switch. You can also install the baggie horizontally (left to right - light switch pic) where the ground is affixed to outlet or switch. Installing vertically also slightly filters neutral and will produce less bass slam. Installing horizontally, only across ground will produce more body, bass slam and adds slight warmth to presentation. You can use this also to tune at the different junction points in your home.

* Filtering at wall panel. This is trial and error for placement and amount. In the pic the left baggie has 11 grams and the right baggie has 14 grams. The interesting thing is filtering across the AC line at junction points is more effective than at the breaker itself, go figure.

Where to buy the Rochelle salt and baggies I use:

From eBay, Rochelle salt by JSP:
https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fr...DIUM+TARTRATE+(+rochelle+salt)+1+lb&_osacat=0

Small plastic bags I purchased from Amazon:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0BK48CFF2/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
 

Attachments

  • Rochelle salt filtering AC line - at light switch.jpg
    Rochelle salt filtering AC line - at light switch.jpg
    60.8 KB · Views: 0
  • Rochelle salt filtering AC line - at outlet.jpg
    Rochelle salt filtering AC line - at outlet.jpg
    77.3 KB · Views: 0
  • Rochelle salt filtering AC line - 0.5 grams.jpg
    Rochelle salt filtering AC line - 0.5 grams.jpg
    30.3 KB · Views: 0
  • Rochelle salt filtering AC line - 1 gram.jpg
    Rochelle salt filtering AC line - 1 gram.jpg
    36.4 KB · Views: 0
  • Rochelle salt filtering AC line - at panel.jpg
    Rochelle salt filtering AC line - at panel.jpg
    81.2 KB · Views: 0

Users who are viewing this thread

Back
Top