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The Ultimate Tweak
Article By Dave Glackin


  You've done the exotic cable. You got your resonances controlled. You've set your cartridge VTA to a gnat's eyelash. You've got your diffusers, absorbers, and custom listening chairs in your dedicated room. What's next? What's left? Only... The Ultimate Tweak!

The air we breathe is less than 1% argon. Yes, argon, that insert little atom that reacts with just about nothing. A gas that's a poor conductor of heat. I could go on, but imagine the following scenario. You decide that it's time for a little listening session. You approach the door of your dedicated room. You swing a large handle and pull open the heavy metal door. You find yourself in a small room with a similar door on the other side. You don your breathing apparatus. You press the big red button. Suddenly, the air in the room is evacuated and replaced with (you guessed it) argon. Pure, sweet argon. You go through the other door, into your listening room, which is already filled with argon, at a slight positive pressure. But you're breathing free, with your special breathing apparatus that supplies you with pure air at one atmospheric pressure. In short, you're in your


Argon-Filled Dedicated Listening Room!
What are its advantages, and why should you care?

1. Expensive red wine can be stored uncorked...there is no oxidation happening in your listening room!

2. The contacts on your expensive electronics never oxidize! Once they're clean, they're clean forever.

3. When your vacuum-tube amp goes kablooie, no fire can follow the nice blue flash...there's no oxygen to support a fire!

4. No CD rot!

5. There can be none of the usual audiophile jabbering while listening to music. Your audiobuds have to keep that breathing mouthpiece firmly in place, sit down, shut up, and listen for a change. How refreshing!

6. There are no unsightly spider webs on the ceiling. There are no spiders.

7. There are no silverfish in your record jackets...other than old dead ones...very dead ones.

8. The pages of your valuable collection of audio mags never yellow.

9. Your oxygen-free copper cables stay oxygen free. There's no oxygen leaking in through badly sealed terminations.

10. Argon is a poor conductor of heat. Thus, those big OTL tube amps won't feel quite so hot any more!

11. Regular air, composed primarily of oxygen and nitrogen molecules, suffers from "propagation confusion" noise, due to the presence of two kinds of molecules involved in the transmission of audio waves. We call this Bimolecular Flux Dispersion (BFD). But you, you cunning devil, have an argon-filled listening room...no more BFD!


Of course, being the cutting-edge audiophile that you are, not just any argon will do. You'll want to use Audiophile Approved Argon (AAA). That means you'll want the Certified Registered Argon Product (CRAP) from the Argon Business Board of America (ABBA). Or if you really want to impress your next date, you'll insist on NOS (Nature's Own Straight) argon, usually found in canisters in the basements of old physics buildings on campuses back east.

Finally, what about that breathing apparatus? You'll need Some Crazy Unbelievable Breathing Apparatus - Delivering Only Oxygen (SCUBA-DOO). And you'll need to be, I mean, get certified to use it. And you'll want only the latest optical-quality tenth-wave glass for your face mask (to help with imaging, natch), and you'll want only the finest in comfy mouthpieces.

Finally, you'll want a large, utterly reliable supply of air. It'll take some time to get back through that airlock in case of emergency, and a sudden release of argon into the rest of the house would definitely not be appreciated by the family pets.

So go to it! Solve the pervasive problem of BFD. Amaze your friends and confound your enemies by being the first on your block with an argon-filled listening room. Just don't stop to smell the vinyl.













































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