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Audio For Dummies ™
Topic: “Tool” for Morons ™: Black Gates

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Posted by Romy the Cat on 02-22-2006

There is large army of people who dedicate quite a lot of efforts in audio for “voicing” audio components, believing that different passive elements of electric circuit, cables, directivity of cables and many other things are “gravely important”.  Yes, this view has some merit, though much less merit then commonly believed.

The problem is that attributing attenuation to SOUNDS REPRODUCTION via tweaking the resistors, wire and capacitors those people forget that beside the sounds reproduction there is a reproduction of Sound. Sound, as the main entry, has less dependency from those “sound polishing techniques” but rather derive from a macro topology of circuitry. If you have really nothing to do then built Melquiades using the crappiest parts from Radio Shake (with exception of OPT). You will be surprised that the Milq’s sound will not be changed a lot by the “bad” parts. The reason is because the Milq’s Sound is not based upon the performance of the individual parts. Or for another instance: the Sansui TU-X1 tuner that has the best tone that I even head from any imaginable source or devise (and the people who have visited me and heard live FM reception then know that I’m not stressing Realty). So, how pissed the tweakers would be if they realized that the Sansui TU-X1, sounding as it is, is built with very-very cheap and very bad parts. To insult the injury I would tell you that it uses sub-1c-worth electrolytic coupling capacitors….

The capacitors! This is a special subject. Ironically as soon anyone mentions electrolytic capacitors to an average person with no brain and no ears – means to an average audiophile – then they immediately roll off their eyes and whisper the only know to them word: the Black Gates capacitors. The Black Gates capacitors for an average audio Moron are like a laser pointer for my Cat – hypnotizing without reasons. Those audiophiles pay a lot of money buying the Black Gates and sticking them wherever possible, attributing to circuits with Black Gates some “special quality”.

Well, I religiously hate Black Gates for years and since 2001 I even refuse to listen anything that has the Black Gates capacitors installed. There are three reasons why:  First of all because it is my sincere believe that if a person needs those Black Gates in his equipment than he is impotent to get sound without them. Second: if a person appreciates the Black Gates result then that person has barbarian taste and corrupted reference points. And the Third: the electronics with Black Gates – all of them – sound IDENTICALLY IMPROPERLY. How improperly? Accumulate some saliva in your mouth. Then close your teeth, lift your lips and very strongly inhale air. Do you hear this sound? This was the sound of Black Gates approximately after 6-8 moth or burning in. (Immediately after installation they are completely insulting).

So, friends DO NOT LET FRIEND TO USE BLACK GATES, IN ANY PLACES! Run from Black Gates like they are a deadly infection. Remember: If a person has a need to use the Black Gates than s/he does not know what a good sound by natural means is and how the Sound might be reached. As far as I concern the Black Gates are not capacitors – they are just the audio Morality ™ indicator.

Romy the Cat

Posted by Romy the Cat on 06-14-2008

I have to admit that after years of hating Black Gates and the unfortunately-proven ability of mine to recognize and the acknowledge the Black Gates’ nasty thing in Sound of a playback I got recently a different experience. I was listening last two weeks a component that was sent to me for private evaluation. The unit was stuffed with Black Gates and was burned-in for one year continues used. After a week of shipment I burned it for 2 weeks continuously…

Anyhow, to make the long story short – I did not detect any negative signatures of Black Gates – absolutely none. I did not detect any Black Gates advantages ether but the most important was that all those miserable characteristics that Black Gates demonstrated to me in past were not there.

I have to add that the designer of this unit claims that he not used Black Gates capacitors like any other devise uses capacitors but he implies that he has “other ways” to use caps. Whatever it worth but in this case the “Black Gates Misery” was not there.

The Cat

Posted by JOHNR on 07-27-2016
I no longer use BGs simply because they are too slow.
Yes they sound bad when new and take 3 months to come good.  Worse, if a system is not used fro a few days, they needed running in again so they only really work if you leave them on full time.  I used a 100 volt parallel supply to get around that problem.

No, elsewhere on your board, you are looking for a 10uF coupling cap, non polarized try using the 10uF 50 volt Red Black gate for low level signal transfers.

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