Firewall C13/C14 daisy chaining; Laminar Streamer development
Monday 13 April, 2015
People have been asking how best to implement the ready-to-use Firewall modules with the IEC C13/C14 option.
First, please note that the ground connection between the two connectors is maintained. It bypasses the Firewall module as per design, but ground is indeed connected between the C13 and C14 connectors, rest assured.
Mounting vs. letting it hang in the air?
As you can see in the picture below, the module comes with flanges for securing the base to a solid surface.
The question arises whether for best results the unit must be secured using those flanges and mounting bolts. The answer is yes and no.
Yes in the sense that, as in all audio electronics, you get absolutely best results when you reduce micro-vibrations to a minimum. "To a minimum" actually means that there is no limit to the quest. But then there is the practical side. Instead of going all out and rebuilding your audio furniture to accommodate the physical mating of the FW modules to solid surfaces, you can go the cheaper route and simply daisy chain an extra Firewall module to the first. You can't go wrong with the C13/C14 connection system. See below:
One end is male, the other is female. There is no way to mix them up and there is no way to make a false connection. In terms of sound quality gained, more is gained by using an extra Firewall module than by mounting the unit to a solid surface such as a thick slab of wood. Daisy chaining is really just as easy as it looks:
Three FW modules daisy chained together would then look like this:
In this configuration, from four units+, with IEC C13/C14 connectors attached, the price is $241 each and includes international shipping. Order your Firewall modules here.
Latest News on the Laminar Streamer
We are currently finishing up the silk screening job and hand assembling the first production main circuit board. We changed everything around during our last revision and optimization. We'll report on how it goes!
Below, you can see how the Panzerholz will make direct contact to a generous portion around the edges of the circuit board. The anti-vibration qualities of the Panzerholz material will thus be utilized to the extreme. The round holes are for the robust industrial specced precision control buttons.
Thick steel will immediately surround the SD card upon insertion. You can see the thick round top plate here, viewed from the inside of the device. (This is the underside of the plate.) It is quite amazing how it rings like a bell because it is inherently very resonant material, but when mated to the Panzerholz, even without using any bolts, it is dead silent and doesn't exhibit even the slightest ringing tail. It sounds like a rock buried in moist earth.
The same goes for the large, main plate of steel. The aim here is to separate the low frequency EM fields coming from the transformer from the main circuit board, which will be on the far side of it. Basically, what you see here is what the main circuit board will see when it "looks" at the transformer -- a centimeter thick steel barrier which will absorb all of the low frequency fields. The holes will be filled with steel bolts, too, so nothing will get through.
This is an example of the bolts I mean. Here you see how they hold the round leg tightly to the Panzerholz above. Again, I emphasize the uncanny feeling that metal makes absolutely no sound when mated tightly to the Panzerholz. Not even a very short ring, which you'd expect to hear upon rapping on it.
The leg will make contact with the furniture in only three symmetrical places, for ultimate stability in stance and to minimize any possible micro-vibration at the foot-table interface.
The control buttons, likewise, will have no chance at introducing even the slightest parasitic micro-vibration to the unit. The Play button will glow dark blue when engaged, but in Laminar Mode, all power to both the visual display and to the diode in the Play button itself will be disengaged. Even the operating system, at that point, will not know anything about the SD data except the very sample it is currently on, and where the next one is. At that point it will be absolutely smooth sailing, and the Laminar Streamer will be completely in its element.
The main Laminar Streamer page is here.
Have a nice day,
Louis Motek | LessLoss.com