Alexc, that is actually not a bad idea. I hope someone has tried this and will respond. The Vibrapods are a bargain in any case, and could always be used under some piece of gear if the cable test failed.
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You can buy ceramic "cable hangers" at any decent electrical supply house, farm & fleet or large "warehouse" type hardware store. These are the SAME thing as the "audio approved" Cable Suspenders and run between $3 - $5 apiece. Price is NOT a big deal and these come in two different sizes. I would recommend using the larger ones instead of having to use 200 of the smaller ones to do the same job. Sean
My question would be why ceramic? Is there a certain resonant frequency that ceramic avoids or doesn't transmit? I can see getting the cables off the floor using something that either absorbs (vibrapods) or dissapates (cones--not practicle I realize, or rollerblocks--or derivative that would work as a single unit) mechanical energy. I have never understood why ceramic is the choice for cable supports. Logically it would seam that vibrapods would be a better choice. Any thoughts?
My theory on the ceramic is the insulating properties, not the vibration for the cable suspenders. In most cables, (other than air insulated), the wire is fixed pretty tight in the cable. You can check this by tapping the cable lightly with the system at a high volume level. If you hear nothing, then chances are the vibration isn't affecting the cable. In addition, one of the things that I don't like about most cables I have heard that are sensitive to vibration is the fact that the higher sound levels tend to modulate them -- no way to get away from that if your cable is in the same room as your sound... The ceramic will insulate the charges that your carpet / flooring inherently has, suspending speaker cables so they don't have to travel on the floor. I have never figured out a way to manage interconnect cables with ceramic -- I let them hang well away from each other in air.
If others have comments regarding my understanding -- bring them on!!
You are not trying to isolate cables from vibrations (vibrapods) the theory is that raising speaker cables
off floor removes "static charge" and lowers cable capacitance. Glass/ceramic is good insolator, cheap way to do it is buy clear glass fruit/cereal bowls at dept store
to lift cables.
I had done this and an engineer friend came to listen to system and laughed when he saw this and insisted I prove to him this has any effect on sound. After careful listening
session with/without I had to admit I heard no real difference in sound, so I don't use this tweak. You can try yourself for a few dollars by buying clear glass small bowls
and trying on your system. You may find it produces positive
Another item from local discount dept store is clear short
tumbler/coctail glass usually 4 inch height, you can get
set of 8 for very cheap. I like clear because it is almost invisible when used and lets floor/carpet show through,
if you find no benefit you have a set of glasses that can be used for drinks.
Sean - good tip. Will look into that. Still haven't heard a good reason for why ceramic is better, though. If the principle is to isolate the cables from the static electricity generated by the carpet and ceramic is good because it's a good insulator...then vibrapods or any "suspender" made of a non-conductive,polymeric material ought to be just as good. My guess would be that ceramic is used instead of rubber or other non-conductive polymers in industrial power application because it is more durable/resist atmospheric elements better. Then again, I'm not an electric engineer. Still..worth doing a bit more research on this. I'll report my findings back in a day or two...
I have tried putting Vibrapods under my cables (on carpet over wood floor) and could hear no difference so I removed them. They looked sort of tacky IMO. It seems to me that there are two considerations that need to be addressed, vibrations and static electricity.
I wouldn't think ceramic would have any way of reducing vibrations-- may even focus them? But Vibrapods should reduce or eliminate both? No? Cheers. Craig.
One poster here used inverted & shortened styrofoam cups as cable elevators. I've never tried it, but if it works for you then the cups could be spraypainted a dark color to hide them somewhat. For me this is one of those things I'd view quite skeptically, but then again I used to laugh at the thought of AC cabling affecting sound too, until I tried it. Not laughing anymore!
I have noticed quite a difference in the sound depending on what my Kimber cable does and does not touch. It does not like the synthetic carpet at all (neither do we:-) which clouds the highs (I don't know if this is caused by static or by some other reaction between the plastics involved). It does not like touching the walls (drywall) and assume that this interference is caused by vibration. I cannot hear a difference when it touches cotten rugs (over the carpet) or wood (pine), but prefer to have all of the wires and cables hanging in the air from component to component as this is a simple way to avoid any problems. I use cotton ribbon ties to hang cable when needed if there is an excess. I am working on a new setup (and location) that will be optimal in this reagrd. I would guess that other cables may not be as touchy. Another nice touch is separating the left and right signal and speaker cables from one another.