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These forms of EM radiation can be considered as a form of pollution. One might posit that humans weren’t biologically designed to live and work inside such artificial EM smog. More and more people notice related physical symptoms. Headaches, nausea and general discomfort are being diagnosed as caused by (over)exposure to EM radiation. An escape to the seaside or the mountains is no longer fully viable. Cell phone antennae coverage includes just about everything.

Back at home things are no different. We use a cell or DECT phone, Blutooth or uPnP devices, work on a computer and listen to a stereo. A stereo has more to do with this than you might like. One of the characteristics of a hifi is that it comprises a number of electronic components connected via cables. Relatively recently we must also add HF radiation by way of various computer chips since audio equipment began to merge with PC technologies at a rapid pace.

With the onset of optical discs the amount of circuits in our home systems that are based on and controlled by high-frequency switching devices has risen. While they do fine work in processing data and converting them into audible music, they add byproducts to our general environment. This byproduct is another form of EM pollution. While this pollution may not always be directly noticed, other components in the vicinity of the EM radiator are affected in some way. In audio terms EM pollution adds to the overall system noise which, once subtracted, gives the listener a very noticeable new openness in the perceived sound quality.

Now we have come full circle. We are surrounded by natural radiation plus a good dose of man-made radiation over which we have very little influence. On top of that we voluntarily add a good dose with our beloved audio systems of this fun hobby. Respecting the latter has our article continue.

When we met Franck Tchang a few years ago he introduced us to his acoustic resonators. These minute bowls cast from various precious metals exert a curious influence on the sound perceived in a listening room. They should be placed at designated spots like in the front top left and right corners and the corresponding bottom positions. Also beneficial for sound quality are additional resonators placed on the side walls. The subjective result is that the room opens up, seems bigger and thus less restrictive toward music propagation within it. Franck refers to his resonators also as pressure-to-tension transformers which convert excess in-room air pressure by means of the intrinsic material tension of the metals used. Platinum is much denser than silver and thus capable of more intense transformation. Whether this theoretical explanation cuts wood is still to be ascertained but the fact is, the devices work.

In order to get a firmer grip on the subject, Franck contracted with French company Pro Links to generate some spectrometer measurements. Besides results in the audible bands there were also results in the electromagnetic field where various frequencies in the 300kHz to 1800kHz band and even higher showed attenuation. This suggested that the resonators work in two capacities, one acoustic, one EM influences. Experimenting further, we put one or more resonators inside various audio components and could not deny their effects. These varied from very favorable when placed inside a CD player to dulling the sound of a turntable when a resonator was placed near the cartridge. Large effects were noticed when a resonator was placed in close proximity to a class D headphone amplifier. The sound from the headphones—several makes and types—became more relaxed and natural. This also underlines the general workings of these little bowls in the electrical field.

With our consent, Franck used us as guinea pigs for another experiment. He installed several of his resonators in our car. Under the hoods of modern cars are electronics galore. Motor management today is chip based and controls just about everything but the steering. With five pro-version resonators placed on and close to the engine block and two in the interior of the car we had to drive around and report our findings. Not much later others in Europe and Asia duplicated our experiment. After the first 3.000km we had to conclude that the car handled better especially in corners. Also—and this was very welcome—fuel mileage improved. Over 3.000 kilometers we clocked a 10% improvement in gas consumption. Of course we reversed the ‘test’ and removed the resonators again for another 3.000 kilometers over roughly the same day-to-day commute. Reviewing the gas receipts showed the car to be back in its old consumption pattern. For us this proved that the resonators somehow influenced motor management in the EM sector. Being frugal Dutchies, the resonators went back in the car where they still do their mysterious job.