I have never tried the Bybee Bullets. You may look or try Synergistic XOT's They may not be in the same class, but they are much cheaper at $399.00 a pair and have a 2 week money back trial. easy to install and uninstall. The reviews are about 50/50 on them some love them and some do not. I have them on my B@W Matrix's 800 and for red book cd play like them a lot.
Bybee products tend to be controversial but I'll be darned if I can see why. I have used his power cords, early models of his speaker bullets, purifiers soldered directly in line with the drivers of my speakers themselves and purifiers that go between preamp out ICs and the amp inputs and the result is always the same...increased transparency, purity and intelligibility. None of my stuff is the newest latest greatest BTW. A few months ago I decided to run a little experiment and started pulling out Bybees just to see if I was fooling myself. It took 30 seconds of listening to realize what a mistake that was.
purifiers soldered directly in line with the drivers of my speakers themselves
That is actually what I was thinking of when I emailed Jack Bybee. What kind of purifiers did/are you using there? Just one on the + leg of the driver, or + and -?
Did you ever compare that to the performance of the speaker bullets?
Thanks for chiming in!
I have installed Bybee speaker bullets on my Apogee Duetta Signature speakers and just love them! Since I am using my speakers in bi-wired mode, I bought 2 pairs per speaker. Better resolution on low-level details, increased transparency and lower noise level. I have installed Bybee purifiers on the AC input line of my Benchmark DAC and Krell Monoblocks with same results.
The Bybee will not color the sound of your equipment, they just give you access to information that seemed to be veiled prior to the installation of these devices. Very similar effect as upgrading from a mid-level interconnect to a reference-grade interconnect from same cable manufacturer or inserting a top-of-line power conditionner in your system. Just everything gets better.
Perhaps I am being a bit outspoken, but I really feel that the AG community has a responsibility to call Bybee products (and all of those who make similar claims) by their proper name: junk. It simply confounds me that so many of us are just so very gullible what a shame.
Bojack, have you ever heard them? I have and the improvement they made was undeniable. Out here in Australia we had a group of people that got together to check them out, buying some and passing them around. The results were uneven - one person finding an appreciable difference, others a small but positive improvement, while for others it was negative or no difference. That's exactly the same as any other bit of Hi Fi gear or tweak. I expected more people to find a positive improvement than did, but there is no denying they made a difference in some systems. BTW the difference was not what a small resistor some say it really is would do - something else is going on and those doing the trial have conjectured on what that might be. Its obvious what Jack Bybee writes is marketing puffing - he is not going to let out exactly whats going on, but something is going on.
So instead of jumping to conclusions, do what the guys out our way did and see what they do for yourself.
BTW I have them installed in my current speakers that I haven't taken delivery of yet (for various reasons) and would not have forked out the not trivial amount they cost without hearing it first. Those speakers are the best speakers me, and quite a few others with considerable audiophile experience, have heard. Exactly how much Bybees contributed to that cant say - they contain all sorts of wild stuff like Duelund Cast capacitors and are internally lined with 1/4 inch copper, but it is a contribution.
The guy that makes my speakers will demo to anyone what Bybees do with his speakers prior to ordering them and tons of people go for that option - including me.
Fortunately more expensive placebos work better than cheaper placebos... so the more you pay, the more you get, regardless of actual efficacy.
I hate to disagree with you Bojack, cost at full retail, extortionate, yes, but junk no. There are often pairs available on the Gon or E-bay for a lot less than retail. I got 4, Golden Goddess external units for just under $1000, on Audiogon and am very pleased with the result.
If you can wait, keep an eye on the for sale side of Audiogon, they come up infrequently
I have seen the inside of one of these "purifiers".
There's nothing inside! Just a ceramic tube with a little caked clay inside.
Correction. Quantum ceramic tube.
Bybee better off upgrading components or improving room or better yet buying music. Lots of sudo science and BS in audio don't fall for it. We all suffer from confirmation biases and are easily fooled or audio video playback wouldn't even work. Its a trick on the human senses and mind. If one spends $ on tweak thinks the tweak will cause improvement they will hear it due to confirmation biases. After all you wouldn't buy unless you feel it will improve things thus when you install you expect improvement or you just wasted $ and time easier to feel you spent well and improvement exists than to accept fact that you were conned scammed etc. A common human problem.
Have you installed or evaluated any Bybee product?
I do not suffer from confirmation bias. I just tried them out with any preconception and they worked out well for me. The problem on this forum are people who express opinions without being factual. A lot of folks have indicated their positive experience with Bybee products. Why would they do so, if the technology would not work? What model of Bybee did you try out?
The little cake layer inside the ceramic tube is a rare earth composite. Who cares about what is inside a component, as long as it works out well for you.
Has anybody argued about the chemical composition of a V-Cap or Duelund capacitor? The thing is, that these are some of the best audio capacitors available on the market. Did the Bybee work for you or you never tried them out?
I have a sneaking suspicion that what we have here is someone suffering from the reverse expectation bias, when you thunk a tweak is a fraud or won't work, you can't hear it cause you psyched yourself out.
Dasign, Yes, I have tried them. In fact I still have the one that I didn't take apart.
Wayyyy toooo much money for what it is.
We seem to have people saying they tried them and liked what they did to the sound, those believing it just can't work (but apparently haven't heard them), and Ozzy having tried them and believing they are too expensive for what they have inside...I guess he didn't like the effect.
My question, though, is not to argue whether they are fake/junk/placebo/you name it. After trying them I don't believe they are. Just like those who believe they are fakes and it doesn't matter what others say here they will not change their mind, I do not think they are fakes and I won't believe they are just because someone says so here. I tried them.
So I'm more interested in reading from those who used them: do you think my best bang for buck in terms of Bybee mods are the internal speaker bullets or other Bybee mod?
- Treating all my components' AC inlets would cost abot $800.
- Treating the analog signal throughout the system would take about $550.
- Using regular purifiers soldered directly to the speaker drivers, I guess about $1.4k.
- Using internal speaker bullets $1.6k.
I can't help but wonder if it makes sense to spend $1.6k in tweaks on $4k speakers.
Thanks for the input!
I would start treating the AC inlet of your source components since it will have the greatest impact IMHO. My first Bybee mod was performed on the AC input of my Benchmark DAC 1 and it litterally transformed the unit. Impact was so good that I did the same mod on a second Benchmark DAC I recently purchased.
My second mod was on the AC input of my Krell FBP 350 MCX monoblocks. Again, same increase in resolution. Last mod was performed on my refurbished Apogee Duetta Signature ribbon speakers done by Rich Murry. Rich has replaced all the ribbons and I have rebuilt the Xover from scratch. This is when I decided to add the Bybee speaker bullets on my external Xover. Again same incremental effect of added resolution.
Be careful if you want to install the Bybee on the analog path. I have looked into this for the Benchmark and Krells and the operation was too risky because of lack of space to install these. Maybe your gear will permit it or not. Best bang for the buck would be to do the AC path since far easier to install. Personally, I would not be putting $1.6K on a $4K speaker as your first step. Start installing Bybees upstream in your system and going downstream afterwards as money is available.
Geoffkait wrote 'I have a sneaking suspicion that what we have here is someone suffering from the reverse expectation bias, when you thunk a tweak is a fraud or won't work, you can't hear it cause you psyched yourself out.' That's a possibility. As well as it being a placebo when people like me hear a difference.
Personally for what its worth I simply think its one of those tweaks that works for some and not others.
It wasn't until recently I heard cables making a big difference. Why hadn't I before - who knows - my gut tells me my system wasn't revealing enough - but that's just a guess.
Unless they are the last loudspeakers you'll ever own, don't do it! They will add nothing to the resale value of the B&Ws.
Since you haven't listed it I don't know what the rest of your system is, but $1,600 dollars will probably generate a bigger bang for the buck spent on something else.
The work well on poorer systems. What does that tell you. I think youd be better off getting stillpoints for under the speakers. If you want to upgrade them, thats what I would do.
If you have great speaker you don't need this.
"If you have great speaker you don't need this."
A drunkard's dream if I ever did see one....I have a sneaking suspicion it's actually people with great speakers, you know, EX-pensive speakers, that are scarfing up all the Bybee filters, bullets, Purifiers, some of which are hideously expensive. These are not some sort of playtoys for cheap DIYers. :-)
I don't think these will be the last speakers I'll ever own, but placing the bullets between driver and crossover is easy enough to put in and take out, so should I sell the speakers I would keep the Bybees with me.
I'm wondering along the same lines as you regarding spending 1.6k on this. Rest of system is highly optimized PC server, Audiophilleo with PurePower, Metrum Octave, Lamm LL2, McIntosh MC275, and 2 Rythmik Subwoofers in DIY boxes.
Stillpoints under the speakers. Interesting. Never thought of that. Which Stillpoints would you recommend? 3 or 4 under the speakers?
don't know...are my speakers great per your definition? For many here they would be mid-fi, yet for 99% of people they would be outstanding.
Just following on other posts I suggest that before investing $1600 in your speakers check out an MIT Oracle AC1 power cord -- trying it on on your preamp, digital and amp in turn. I think you will notice a distinct improvement in the sound of your speakers--from a very sound investment for your entire system. Cheers. (I was astounded at the improvement through my B&W speakers.)
I have seen the inside of one of these "purifiers".
There's nothing inside! Just a ceramic tube with a little caked clay inside.
Well, that's High End.
It's a product for "Audiophiles" with more money than brain.
Good way to invalidate any warranty and I do know many manufacturers will not repair equipment modified by owners. Also on resale who wants equipment modified by owner with no manufacturer support?
Audiophiles invalidating warranties? Don't be silly.
I have used various types of Bybees over the years in electronics and speakers. I still use some in electronics, but I've found that in speakers they do improve the soundstage, but seem to reduce the top end a bit as well. Net, I like them with some speakers, not with others. The price/benefit ratio has gotten out of whack, though, IMO.
I use the Golden Goddess speaker bullets in my system with mixed results. They do tighten up the bass response and improve the clarity of the sound, but at the expense of the sound seeming less "beautiful" -- the overall sound is drier and less saturated in harmonics. We tried the bullets in a friend's system with much better results. The sound was unequivocally better. Like any tuning product, this is something that may work to improve the sound or it may not. But, there is no doubt that it actually changes the sound of the system.
Net, I like them with some speakers, not with others.
Thanks Jm. Which speakers did you like them with, and with which speakers didn't you like them?
We tried the bullets in a friend's system with much better results. The sound was unequivocally better.
Hey Larryi. Thank you as well. Do you recall what were your friend's speakers?
My friend's speakers are horn-based--it is a 1970's Electrovoice system with a rear horn-loaded bass driver and a dome tweeter with a waveguide. The midrange is from another system altogether--I believe it is a JBL compression driver feeding a large multicellular horn.
My system is also something cobbled together. The "modern" part of it has two 12" bass drivers in a Jensen-Onken bass reflex cabinet and a Fostex bullet-type tweeter. The vintage part is a 1939 Western Electric 713b midrange compression driver and a Western Electric multicellular horn.
Thanks Larryi. I did look at your system before replying so that's why I had not asked about yours - intriguing set of speakers!
I was hoping to draw some correlation between those experiences and estimate an outcome for mine, but the two data points are from speakers too different from mine to draw any conclusions.
I'm now leaning towards trying only an SE AC bullet instead of a whole internal speaker bullet set, to keep the cost down and see how they impact the sound in my case. I would be using 2 bullets per speaker: one on the positive between bass XO and binding posts, and one before the midrange/treble XO. If I like it, the upgrade path would be adding a regular purifier on the negative side of each, and eventually doing the same but for every driver.
My conclusion from this thread is people who have tried them all agree they make an impact on sound. Most liked what Bybees in their speakers did for sound, although not on every system they heard. This is not bad for a tweak.
Then there is the discussion about whether the improvement is worth the price. Again, like every tweak except those super-cheap ones. This is such a relative aspect (expensive means different things to different people). Not that I don't care! On the contrary. I keep coming back to my speakers costing $4k when new 6-7 years ago. I haven't taken the decision yet just because it is not an meaningless amount for me should it not work.
Thanks to all who contributed here!
Lewinski - the stillpoints under the speakers is well documented on audiogon. You need 4 assuming the bottom of your speakers are square. Do an audiogon search.
Yes, Stillpoints are well documented in A'gon threads. But talk about bang for buck!? 4 Stillpoints under each speaker would cost $2k for Ultra SS or $1k for Ultra Minis. Again, under $4k speakers...I struggle to see the likelihood of being worth it.
Not that I don't like Stillpoints. I have a set of their original units under my preamp. But like someone said above about some Bybee products, price has gotten out of whack with the Ultras, I think.
Lew-if youre thinking of going $1,600 for the bybees, my thought was you were better off with 8 of the stillpoints ($250 x 8 = $2k). My thought was if you were investing $1,600 in bybee, which is so subjective and debated, $400 more for something that everyone agrees is an awesome improvement seemed like an alternative. Your post was about bang for the bick and I think, while the stillpoints aint cheap, offer much more bang that the bybees.
Thanks for clarifying.
Please note now I'm not looking at spending $1.6k on Bybees. More like $600, per my post from 7/19. Should I find the sound improvement worth it I might eventually spend more on Bybees, though.
But I like the option to try smaller and spend more if I deem it worth it. Can't do that with Stillpoints and I struggle to see the rationale for spending 2k on 4k speakers.
I had Ryan at Vapor Audio build me a pair of speakers where the purifiers were installed in line (2 per speaker) as outlined by Acresverde. Ryan started with the base cirrus whites and then we upgraded all internals (caps, wiring) and added bullets. During the build, ryan did extensive listening with and without bullets. With bullets, clarity, detail were materially improved. Ryan at Vapor is a great source to discuss the bybee stuff and how to utilize most effectively.
Thanks for the tip! I sent Ryan an e-mail.
Am I right to assume your comment
where the purifiers were installed in line (2 per speaker) as outlined by Acresverde
Refers to a speaker with two sets of binding posts, where one set of Bybees where installed between the woofer's crossover and the binding post, and the other set was installed between the midrange/treble binding post and its XO?
BTW, I decided to try it. After lengthy discussions with Jack Bybee I decided to buy two SE Internal Speaker Bullets per speaker. That means one bullet on the positive of the bass and one on the positive of the midrange/treble, which is Option 4) on Bybee's website/speaker installation options.
Although a significant amount of money to just try ($600), it's far less than what I was looking at first and does give me the chance to try it for myself and follow the upgrade path described in that website, should I deem it worth it.
Unfortunately I have to deal with very complicated logistics so it will be a couple of months at best until I can try them. I will post my findings here as a way to give back to all of you, who have been so helpful (and I do mean everyone - a quote of skepticism is very healthy, I think).
Given the time many of you dedicated to sharing your experiences and opinions around my question, I thought I should provide follow-up - no closure yet, though.
I finally got together with the 4 Super Effect Internal Speaker Bullets this week. As mentioned before, my logistics are very complicated :-)
I got in touch with Ryan at Vapour Audio, following Dangelod's suggestion:
A quick summary, I didn't find any improvement with Bybees on larger drivers (8" woofers and up), in fact they seemed to have less impact after the Bybees. However on the tweeter and midrange drivers, I ended up using 2 slipstreams per driver inside the cabinet, soldered directly to the driver terminals. I liked the silvers on the tweeter, but when silvers were used on the Accuton midrange drivers it added a bit of stridency.
I asked him back why he chose on the (apparently) regular Slipstreams instead of the SE Internal Speaker Bullets suggested by Jack Bybee, but I haven't yet gotten an answer. BTW, his turn-around time was very long, so I might still get an answer.
Nevertheless, Ryan's comment defeats a preconception along the lines of "you either treat all drivers or none".
Now I need to find the time to open up my speakers and do the internal work. My plan is to try two alternatives:
1) One purifier between (+) binding post and woofer XO, and another purifier on (+) between corresponding binding post and mids/trebble XO. This is Setup #4 on Bybees website.
2) Per Ryan's, one purifier on (+) tab of the midrange driver and one on the (+) of tweeter. This approach is close to Setup #2 and 1 on Bybees website, said to be better than 4, but this has an untreated woofer compared to Bybees suggestion.
Next week I receive a new DAC I want to try, so I'm hesitating to make changes on my speakers that could mix up the results from introducing many changes at once. So it might be another month before I follow up with impressions about Bybees in use - that is if I can fight back anxiety ;-)
Thanks again to all who contributed.