I have found out why new cables and tweaks actually work!

The issue is now solved via irrefutable scientific data and rigorous validation after unprecedented levels of physical effort. I now know why swapping cables works, and why a great deal of other tweaks work too.

I spent a great deal of time over the weekend cleaning my entertainment center. I used a Swiffer with the extending wand attachment. Immediately afterwards I went to watch a movie and the sound was clearer, cleaner than I’d ever heard it before. The video didn’t change, but the audio, it was so good I stopped playing the Fellowship of the Ring for the 10th time and went to listen to music.

Oh my goodness, what deep and extended soundstage! Not only could I hear deeper into all of my music but instruments had bodies and height! Diana Krall was so palpably present I wanted to buy her dinner. But what had changed?? Every single cable was left as it was, but I had cleaned!!

That’s when it hit me. All my tweaks and all my cable replacements did nothing. It was the cleaning I did every time I replaced a set of cables that actually caused the revolutionary transformations I was experiencing.  Same for every other audiophile!! You've ignored the cleaning and ascribed changes to gear.  We've been fooled!

On a completely unrelated note, I will soon be releasing my own line of advanced, jitter free, cleaning solutions, in peach, evergreen, unscented and Axe Body Spray fragrances.


And all this time I thought the dust acted as a sound attenuator. I think I will tape swffers to the wall! Visually amazing too.

Zen and art of HiFi maintenance.  You become one with the equipment, drawing closer to the experience.  Same phenomena with old British automobiles. At some level, being an audiophile is the feedback loop of obsessive "taking care of" with attention, money, or Swiffers.


Bravo. This should be mandatory reading for all flat earthers on the Cable and Tweaks fora. Could you add a few lines on conductivity, impedance and resistance in cables with their impact on phase and frequency response… and if you feel indulgent on RFI/EMI and ground level noise incursions and their impact on DA conversion as well as amplification down the chain?

There is a need for a comprehensive treatise on all of this to fight wars of belief rather than knowledge.

@ambr1600 : very good write-up! Thank you for sharing. You should start to post more often.

I'm an electronics engineer myself, ...

I was worried a bit when I read this first 🤷‍♂️. Kudos to you for using your own experience to guide you into looking beyond your meters and engineering books. Not all engineers are the same, have the same knowledge. The famous saying: what do you call a lawyer who finishes at the bottom of the class in Law School? A lawyer!

Of course, closed-minded strictly by-the-book meter-reader engineer types who believe that the differences obvious to audiophiles between cables, amplifiers, use of "tweak" accessories, etc. are hype and illusion will not be interested in the following, and need read no further, rather than make snarky comments. I'm an electronics engineer myself, and I have found through long experience that these effects are definitively real and pervasive in audio, and at least partially can be corrected by various measures.

This is a complicated topic. I agree that well-conducted objective measurements, up to a point, are totally valid for what they can show. The issue is, there is a vast amount of subtle audio information important to audiophiles that is real and physical but at the same time is essentially not measureable because of the limitations of normally available instrumentation equipment. But this information is still perceivable by audiophiles and is very important, because the resolving power of the experienced audiophile's ear-brain system is greatly beyond the capabilities of electronic and acoustic measuring instruments.

Caveat: for high quality/high cost components, and "tweaks", to be of benefit your system already has to be good enough in terms of resolution, imaging, etc. for these forms of system modification to be of benefit.

Just one area of "tweaking" and the effects of high quality and expensive components on the sound: the area of cables. Two of these subtle mostly unmeasurable in practice but extremely important effects are the improvements gained by high quality cables via two interrelated mechanisms: increasing the time coherence of the system, and also by reducing the noise floor. To "improve time coherence" means to reduce the delay and smearing of sonic energy of a musical event over some period of time following the event. This "time smearing" phenomenon is inherent in the mechanical and electrical systems used for sound reproduction, and the ear-brain system is very sensitive to it. Electrical examples are skin effect or frequency-dependent phase shifting of signal current propagated through the interior of the wires in a cable, dielectric absorbtion in cables and capacitors, and microvibration-induced timing distortion. With digital cables this time smear phenomenon translates into noxious audible distortion because it causes timing jitter in the digital data transmission. In analog cables this phenomenon directly translates into audible noxious distortion.

Mechanical / electrical examples in other areas of high end audio are the time delayed and resonant behavior of speaker drivers and enclosures, flutter (rapid speed variations) in turntables and CD transports, and time smear induced in the phono cartridge output due to stylus contact-generated energy returned to the stylus after first being propagated into the tonearm and record. Interestingly, timing jitter in the CD playback serial digital data is caused both electrically and mechanically by vibration, and rapid speed variations in the transport drive mechanism.

Another example of vibration feedback-induced time smearing is the vibration of wires in cables due to sound pressures from the speakers and to electromotive forces induced by adjacent current-carrying wires.

Yet another form of mechanical vibration-induced time smearing is the fore-and-aft vibration of a speaker enclosure in response to forces on the driver voice coil. This is simply due to Newton’s law of action and reaction and occurs regardless of the rigidity and degree of damping of the enclosure. Simply placing a 15-20 pound lead weight on the top of the speaker improves clarity of sound considerably by reducing Doppler distortion due to the reactive fore-and-aft motion of the enclosure. Doppler distortion smears sonic energy over a range of frequencies (rather than time) and is inherent in all speaker designs. If a driver diaphragm is moving at both a low and a high frequency at the same time (say 50 and 5000 Hz), the higher frequency is modulated (distorted) by the lower frequency due to the Doppler effect. As the sound source approaches at some velocity its sound is shifted up in frequency proportionately to the speed of approach, and vice versa for the sound source moving away from the listener. This effect "frequency smears" the output of all speakers, with the effect worsening with decreasing efficiency, smaller radiating area and 2-way designs. Of course the weights also improve performance by increasing the damping of cabinet resonance.

The common effect of all these and many other time and frequency smearing mechanisms is a massive perceived blurring, smearing, flattening and veiling of the sonic "picture", along with various tonal imbalances such as overbrightness and bass boominess or looseness.

Tweaks of various types and more expensive and more sophisticated components partially correct these fundamental problems such as time smear and RF induced noise. 

This analysis is partial and evolving and only touches on a vast subject. One of the fascinations of audio is the complexity of the basic problem — attempting to reproduce recordings as realistically as possible in a home environment. The elements of the problem include electronics, psychoacoustics, acoustical engineering, mechanical engineering, physics (electromagnetics) and many other disciplines.

My old cars always ran better after a wash! 100% of the time. 


Now I'll add the audiophile touch....

Even my wife could tell!

I should have mentioned that the R squared value of correlation is 0.92 with a p value of < 0.02 that these experiments resulted from random chance.

Well, I am half way there already, I have a detached retina that I never got fixed, so when the next one lets go . . . what an upgrade that may be!

Not only could I hear deeper into all of my music but instruments had bodies and height! Diana Krall was so palpably present I wanted to buy her dinner


Bravo Erik! Hilarious 😂

Happy Holidays 

Fear is never boring.  

I mean, sure blindfolds may enhance your sense of hearing, but fear of death has a magic all it's own. 🤣


I think he should go straight to Daredevil.  I mean, sure blindfolds may enhance your sense of hearing, but fear of death has a magic all it's own. 🤣

@immatthewj, LOL!  But way too extreme.  If you're wrong, there's no going back from eye-gouging!  I would try something like removing earwax first, and see how that works.  Or you can walk around the house with an eye mask on for a few days and see if your other senses compensate.

I have considered gouging my eyes out in hopes that my ability to hear will be enhanced. 

I found that the cheapest tweak is candling your ears to remove the earwax.  Amazing improvement in soundstage, air around the instruments, and the bass is now magnificent!

On a serious note, I highly recommend MadScientist Audio's Graphene Cable Enhancer, no matter what you've used before it

I know you’re joshing, erik, or trolling, but it is true that cleaning has both physical and psychological benefits on audio.


Just for the record, the cleaning I referred to is the cleaning of connections, switches, volume pots, etc., although it’s also a good idea to keep your gear dust free.

Merry Christmas everyone!   Peace to men of goodwill.

With regards to tubes, warm with out a definition is meaningless. By warm, many mean dark, akin to a lot of Burr Brown opams from a decade ago. I haven't kept up, if they still label any Burr Brown I don't know what they sound like these days. That, however, seems to largely depend upon the tube. As for second order distortion, that's true, and Nelson Pass has made at least one solid state amp that has said distortion. This adds depth to the sound. How it seems to add depth so as to seem accurate to the sound stage, singer forward, drums to the rear usually, I don't pretend to know. The bottom line though, IME, is that like any primarily innocent hobby, it doesn't matter what proclivities you have for what you say passes as music, or how you manage to turn it from some electrical signal, or from bumps on a disc to sound, if you enjoy it, forget the haters and keep enjoying your music!

Funny, dust does have na impact on sound. That's why I swipe an Audioquest brush to remove it before every cartridge drop across and then up toward the center of the record - no fluid to gunk it up. Also occasionally brush the stylus with a tiny bit of fluid on a dense stylus brush. These things do make a difference.

I'll dust around the components and under the turntable and on it once in a while, all very carefully. That doesn't affect the sound, but it looks cleaner. 

Or just maybe you have a good quality system that allows you to hear the differences in cables (most cables do sound different) and you have the ears to hear it.

@lanx0003   Sorry if you were really joshing.  Trouble is some on here really believe in stuff way more crazy than your dust.  Welcome back to the world of reason.

In all seriousness, I kind of remember someone, either here or on AA, saying that spraying cables & interconnects with that antistatic stuff for laundry had a positive sonic effect.  And I am pretty sure I remember he was serious about that. 

@fuzztone, Foz SSX dimension set far to narrow ... :-) 

@erik_squires, attention to detail ... tan lines? Err, vacuum carpet lines add that finishing touch ;-)

its a fun conversation.

 too many sourpusses 


we all KNOW a clean dust free rack, wall unit with components, once cleaned, the satisfaction of having it all dust free, sparkly, does add to the sound. it DOES for me!!!!    




  lighter up Francis !

enjoy life, smile more, don't be a negative ninny.

 i reply to way to many things with over long boring dribble.

unless im on ignore, y'all don't itchbay bout my posts.



be positive, you will be happier/

PS - @fuuzztone, you’ve attacked several of my threads VERY MUCH in public, why on earth do you think I should PM you to reply? Why should you get the benefit of a private criticism when you never extended that courtesy to me?

As far as I can tell you are upset this thread isn't specifically for you? Right?

Well your refund check is in the mail.  Go stand outside and wait for it.

I am bored with this thread because it is time wasting to me.

Good progress, @Fuzztone so if you are bored and this thread is a waste of your time, why on earth are you here, at all? Is it too hard for you to just move along, without saying anything at all?

It’s not as if the existence of this thread, or any other thread I start prevents you from moving right along to another.

ES try PMing if you really want answers instead of public comments to attack.

You were the one who made several public comments which were disparaging, you should explain yourself very much in public. Remember that part where you said we weren’t sticking to reality? That was a really nice thing to say.

Just now you said it was boring. OK... and what? So it’s boring to you. Did you pay for it? Did you do something to make this site better or less boring? No you did not. Why should I talk to you in private about your are unable to behaving like an adult and move onto threads you DO like ?

im in !!!!


after 45 min of cleaning, wiping dust,  removing orca's, replacing, it does sound better !!!

better cables sound better.


By the time I finish with a LONG listening session I'm usually covered with layer upon layer of car fur.

In that the "sessions" are great/memorable you may need to rethink your premise.


This reminds me of the effect of cleaning up the frame on my bicycle so all the paint and chrome looks nice and shiny. It seems to ride so much better even though I didn't clean or lubricate any of the moving parts or adjust anything. 

I've found Audio Quest Swiffers to be much better at providing a dust-free signal path.

@clearthinker  All right, I give up.  I was being cynical and sort of tagging along playing dumb.  I apologize for the invented dust "theory".  Lately, there are several dumb threads like this, such as comparing digital to the cheap TT/analoug equip.  I do not find that funny at all to be honest not because I don't get the joke...

I am bored with this thread because it is time wasting to me.


Happy now?

At least your challenge is silly and condescending.

As is your inference that I don’t like others to "enjoy" this site.

I wish happiness to all.

I’m only on this Forum for experience sharing and education. When I find something actually funny along the way, I can play along.

Never here.

ES try PMing if you really want answers instead of public comments to attack.

Post removed 

@fuzztone  In case I'm not being clear enough, I'm trying to figure out why your passive aggressive commentary has continued this long.  I assume you are an adult, right? 

I challenge you to talk like one.  "I am uncomfortable with this thread because X  and wish it was more like Y because Z."

Try it out.


If you have a poor relationship with anything (car, machine, electronics, speakers, amps, cables, etc.); that item will perform more poorly for you.

Cleaning you equipment shows you respect and like it, so of course it will perform better. Wash you car and it runs better. Wash your dog and he licks your face. Dust and polish all your components and they sound better.

Relationship/perceptual bias?

I’m not here to "start a conversation"

That’s what Reddit is for.

@Fuzztone In that case, don't start conversations.  No one is forcing you to.

What exactly is your problem if I am? You can be here for what you want while I and all the participants who join in the conversations I start, are here to start conversations. That’s how the internet works.

What exactly is your problem with letting others enjoy this site?

There’s a name for people who interrupt others who are having a good time, for no good reason but I can’t place my finger on it...

I’m particularly curious why you think your vision of what this site should be for is more important than mine, or that of the people who are happy to participate. Did you pay extra?


I’m not here to "start a conversation"

That’s what Reddit is for.


@erik_squires This is too funny.  Merry Christmas, I needed that laugh.

 used to work for the DoD making cleaning fluids for submarines to make them extra stealthy. The secret is dolphin spit. Turns out their spit causes a hydrophobic electrical charge to build on their noses which repels water and makes it easier for them to glide through the water.

Trouble is, we can only gather it while they sleep.


@lanx0003     'Perfect' insulation may be putting it too high.  On any cable if you put a few kV to the outside insulation, some of it may get through to the core.  But you must be buying too cheap.  I could put extremely effective insulation on every cable for a few $.  Which are the brands of your cables that do not have perfect insulation?  I shall be sure to give them a miss.

@jerryg123    On here, fun is a serious business.

Yawn: we started with a Swiffer and end up in senseless discussion about fuses and powercables?

You must be new on Audiogon. 

Wow some are wound a bit tight on this thread. It was poking fun at the fanatics and the deniers of cables and their mystical audio abilities. 

@clearthinker  Not every cable I have has perfect insulation.  I am frugal, not because I do not believe in expensive cables.  Every time I clean the dust, immediately I hear the sound improvements just as claimed by the OP...  Ha!

Why nobody thinks I have been flippant?  Am I being too serious?