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as reviewed by Robert H. Levi
The Quantum Physics Noise Disrupter, a black box about half the size and a tenth the weight of the venerable VPI Magic Brick, is the most powerful passive EMI absorption device I’ve come across. The Disrupters absorb EMI like a Scott towel absorbs water, except there’s no mess when you’re done. Light and relatively inexpensive, they are a blast to play with. You’ll need one or two just for the education and enjoyment of tweaking.
Disrupters are 100 percent passive. They are best used on top of power conditioners, outboard power supplies, or power cords. They come in two sizes. I tried the larger size, but the smaller one may work better on certain components. The larger one was sometimes too powerful for gear that was already fully tweaked. Putting one on a Tice Power Block transformed it, providing new heights of smoothness and musicality. On a Monster power line conditioner, I heard increased sweetness and elegance. I did not like it in on my Power Wing, where it sounded too smooth and dull. It was very nice on the outboard power supply of my ModWright Sony 999, but I preferred the more subtle effect of the VPI Magic Brick. The Disrupter was too powerful for my Pass X1 preamp, where it again sounded dull.
Atop my NuForce 9.02 amplifiers, it was too sweet. The amps sounded more alive and natural without the Disrupters. However, when I placed a Disrupter across the two Harmonic Technology Fantasy power cords connected to the 9.02s, I loved the result. The Disrupter took away the last little bit of etch in the NuForce amps, without changing their character. It sounded like I was running the world’s most sophisticated tube amps. The NuForce amps are ultra-accurate, and I suspect that they were amplifying a bit of crud coming over the line. The Quantum Physics Noise Disrupter elegantly and easily removed the grunge.
You really can’t predict how the device will interface with your gear—you just have to try it. In my SET system, the Disrupter smoothed out my Cary 300B amplifier and dulled my E.A.R. 834L line stage, but it was terrific on my Denon SACD player. It sounded like I had had the Denon modified. I tried two Disrupters on my Tice Power Block, and the effect was too rich and dull. One Disrupter on the Tice, and bingo! The Tice now sounded quite similar to a modern megabuck power line conditioner.
When I tried a Disrupter under a commercial power strip, it sweetened and smoothed every component attached to the strip. The effect was more subtle this way, and I liked it. If you have a sophisticated, tweaked-out system, putting a Disrupter on a power strip or on one or two power cords may be all the EMI cleanup you need. A little Disrupting goes a long way. If you have already adjusted your system to reduce etch and glare, Disrupters may make the system too smooth, but chances are you’ll find a spot for them.
Is the Disrupter a magic bullet? It absorbs EMI noise better than any passive device ever produced, including the Shakti Stone or the VPI Magic Brick. It is every bit as effective as an active device, and is easier to use. If you are not using a top power conditioner, or your system sounds etched for any reason, these may be the cure. I loved them on the Tice Power Block, the Monster line conditioner, the Denon SACD player, and on the cords powering my NuForce amps. They took the 9.02s to new heights by treating the AC feeding them, even though I plug the amps into a superb line conditioner. One or two Disrupters are mandatory for tweaking a top system, and the experimentation is half the fun. The Disrupters are recommended—a tweaker’s delight! Robert H. Levi