Taking a stand

Paul McGowan: One of the hallmark indicators of low impedance is a firm stand. External forces have little sway over a device with low output impedance. This can be seen in a high damping factor amp and speaker combination where the amp exerts control over the speaker, yet the speaker cannot do the same to […]

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PS AUDIO: “Of the two types of power supplies found on class D amps, linear or switch mode, the latter is taking over and the former is moving down in popularity”

Paul McGowan writes: Of the two types of power supplies found on class D amps, linear or switch mode, the latter is taking over and the former is moving down in popularity.  It’s a natural progression as combining a giant power transformer and capacitor bank supply with a small and lightweight power amplifier doesn’t make […]

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Lowering impedance

Paul McGowan: The lower the AC impedance feeding high-end audio equipment the better each piece sounds. And when the entire system is fed with low impedance power the results can often be breathtakingly better. But, how do engineers lower impedance? That question’s not simple to answer but I am going to try. Basically, we need a […]

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Dedicated power lines

Paul McGowan: If you’re serious about building a high-performance audio system you have to pay attention to the AC power. It’s a constant theme with me because power is the foundation of our systems. There aren’t many great structures standing on weak foundations. Power Plants solve many problems but they need a head start. One […]

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The comings and goings of audio

Paul McGowan: Remember when we thought the best way to get pure live sound from our hi-fi systems was to artificially make them better? Dynamic range expanders, click and pop eliminators, aural exciters, holographic generators, stereo dimensional arrays. Even something as unexciting as an external active crossover was crafted to better serve up music. It wasn’t […]

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DSP and bass

Paul McGowan: One objection many of us harbor towards DSP (Digital Signal Processing) is the necessity to convert analog to digital then back again. While I have nothing against digital—my system is pretty much all digital—I am still a purist at heart. The idea of working as hard as we do to get perfect analog out […]

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The impersonal internet

Paul McGowan: I spend a great deal of time on the forums and comments section of our channels: Ask Paul, Ohms Law, Paul’s Post, PS Forums, YouTube, Copper Magazine, Facebook. I do this because the internet can be an impersonal place if you let it. Just look at some of the more untended channels and you’ll […]

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How emotions impact sound

Paul McGowan: We listen with our ears but hear with our emotions. Every sense we possess runs through the lens of our emotions and that lens can pretty easily warp our feelings. Take for example spit. Imagine spitting saliva into a cup then drinking it again. Gross, right? Logically we know that emotion is absurd. […]

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What makes an amp musical?

Paul McGowan: As design engineers, we all have different rules of thumb design crib sheets. If we want to design a servo-controlled power amplifier we engineer for maximum control and fast step rate. On the other hand, if we want to build a syrupy-sweet sounding amp we’d use a soft-focus input like a JFET or a […]

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When transparency is the goal

Paul McGowan: What we hope for in any piece of hi-fi equipment is sonic transparency. We get there by practicing the Hippocratic oath, “First, do no harm.” And while this is all well and good the facts are unfortunately not in our favor. All electronics affect the signal in some way: robbing or adding. There’s […]

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