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29 March 2017 | Hi-fi
Instead of tricking you all into believing yet another cockamamy April Fools story, this year we decided to take a look at something a bit different: Products that sound like an April Fools joke, but are actually very much the real deal.
Originally we were going to talk about a few manufacturers and their products, such as the MAG LEV floating turntable, but when we stumbled across MachinaDynamica, it became the primary focus of our investigation.
Touting themselves as dabblers in “advanced audio concepts”, their main aim seems to be the improvement of a system’s sound through room treatment, cable shielding, specialised equipment, and phone calls. Perfect for the audiophile who wishes to banish the last bit of sonic imperfection from their hifi. With that in mind, lets take a look at their catalogue…
Animal Magnetism IC collars: Short metal tubes that slip over your cables, shielding them from magnetic interference and such. It’s a concept that works very well in some situations. At $10 each, it was nice of them to mention you could get 8 for $80.
Cyro Baby Promethean Mini Isolators: Cryogenically treated springs to place under your equipment and isolate it. They also do non-cyro, super stiff, and super compressible versions for different weights. Makes sense, seems like they could work.
Codename Blue/Green Meanies: Small adhesive dots that attach to your room’s walls, and can be hidden behin decorations and bookcases. They, and I quote, “operate via mind-matter interaction. The subconscious mind interacts with room boundaries, i.e. closed-in spaces, producing a claustrophobic reaction that interferes with and degrades the listener’s sensory perception.” Apparently these dots help with that, and are compared to “putting in a better set of interconnects”. I’d stick to upgrading your cables personally…
Frog Jump in Water Sound Room Acoustics Tweak: Yup, that’s really the name of this “product”. $39 for 4 small plastic containers you fill with ordinary tap water and put around your room. A revolutionary bargain.
Super Intelligent Chip: A tiny little self-adhesive dot that upgrades CDs permanently, making them sound “remastered”. Apparently they work thanks to the miracle of Quantum Material. I’m going to leave it at that…
Ultra Signature Clever Little Clock: Originally released in 2005, this is a modified battery-powered travel clock. Promising less distortion and a more coherent soundstage, as well as better picture quality for any AV systems. All you have to do is put one in your room. You don’t plug it in or attach it to anything, and it starts effecting your equipment as soon as it enters the house. They say the effects are cumulative, so adding more makes everything better. People have reported buying as many as 20 of them and still wanting more, however I remain sceptical as to their efficacy.
Brilliant Pebbles: Clear plastic ziplock bags filled with magic crystals which have profound effects on your hifi if you tape them to your interconnects and speaker cabinets? I’m wary of this hifi hippy voodoo, especially at $129 for a bag of rocks…
Particle Accelerator Ion Gun: That’s a bloody hairdryer!
Teleportation Tweak: You can pay $60 to have someone phone up your house, play a series of clicks down the line for twenty seconds, and then hang up, which will drastically increase the clarity and frequency extension of your hifi. They work thanks to the wonders of quantum teleportation and mind-matter interaction (I’m starting think the latter is code for “wishing it true”). It also works for video systems like TVs and projectors, which is a great bonus.
Morphic Message Labels: This one really, really takes the piss… Stickers. Stickers that you stick over the barcodes and logos on anything and everything throughout your house. From the CD cases in your listening room to the cleaning products under the sink, your hifi will have added “AIR and REALISM” if you cover their barcodes with these… I can’t even…
Maybe I’m just a cynic, but I must say I’m doubtful as to whether any of these products do much. I’d love to be proven wrong, but if I am, how long till our listening rooms are full of modded travel clocks, sticker dots all over the walls, and bags of magic crystals on every available surface.