Welcome to my favourite part of the site. Aside from my own contributionsn, it’s fair to say that most of these techniques were generously donated by kind permission of P.W.B. Electronics Inc. For the most part, they are the result of countless hours of research by yours truly, for the edification and enlightenment of audiophiles across the globe. Some may have been sourced from P.W.B’s own site, or their discussion forum. Other ideas may have come from “T.C.B.’s” (Those Crazy Brits). That requires a bit of explaining. There is a sub-class of British audiophiles from way back when, who hang around on what can realistically be described as “the internet version of a boy’s club tree house“. Upon scouring these various audio forums for mentions of Peter Belt, I would inevitably find one of them occasionally decrying this “Peter Belt fellow”, upon reminiscing about how “crazy” the audio scene was in his youth, and how “gullible” he once was. In the stock-car pile up ‘discussion’ about Belt, one of them would denounce some “crazy Belt idea” he had remembered hearing about from that period. If indeed it was a legitimate Peter Belt idea that I had not heard about and was unfamiliar with, then it was gold to me. That’s because every time I would test what they considered a “crazy idea”, it worked! So while this list comprises a hodge-podge of different sources, there may indeed be some authentic forgotten “gems” proposed by Peter himself, circa 80-90’s Belt-era, in among them.
The great Chinese philospher Confucius, told us “Every great journey begins with a single step”. The audio improvement experiments (listed below or in the sidebar to your left) are that single step. But sadly, many hobbyists won’t take that first step, simply because they don’t understand how they can work. And if they don’t understand how something works, or the explanation makes no sense to them, they won’t try it. Even though most only take a few minutes to complete. The same skeptics will however be happy to argue against the ideas with you on audio forums for years on end, until their dying day.
If you are one of those, then please read this part of the section of The Audio Skeptics F.A.Q.: “Q. I choose to believe in “real” audio ideas, products that work on what is already known.”. Or, if you wish to try some of the following ideas, whether to try to improve your sound for free, find out more about the Belt phenomenon hands-on, or simply indulge yourself in scientific experiments of a novel nature (because you have a scientifically curious mind), read on!
Before you engage in any of the experiments below, please read the How To Listen guide first (especially if you think you already know how to listen!). It is essential to the proper evaluation of these experiments. It’s also important for me to note that none of these techniques are meant to substitute as an evaluation of P.W.B.’s products. Any one of their products can be expected to be far more effective (in terms of good sound), than any one of the techniques I’ve listed. If you wish to evaluate PWB’s products, it’s not difficult to do. You can check out their website in the links menu for more info.
I said elsewhere that Belt’s ideas are often as much a test of one’s open-mindedness, as anything else. Some, perhaps all of these ideas, will seem “unacceptably silly” to many. Many Beltists found that getting over that mental hurdle was the difference between enlightenment and darkness. Although reverse placebos (the idea that something can’t make a difference therefore you will convince yourself you didn’t hear one) don’t help anybody, some Beltists were able to eventually discover the effect despite their initial prejudices.
If one technique doesn’t do it for you, try some of the others. Each one has their own level of efficacy, and as with most things, those ideas which can be applied multiple times (ie. L-shapes), will have a greater effect in multiple numbers. The important thing to remember is that anyone can benefit from these ideas, whether audiophile or videophile (yes, most of these ideas used effectively can enhance video as well). Or even whether you are not at all part of any such hobby, but dig music enough to want to hear it better. It doesn’t matter whether you are a believer or a disbeliever, since none of this works on auto-suggestion, and anyone who enjoys the idea of better reproduction of music or video benefits!
In a society of like-minded sheep, Peter Belt is an independent thinker, and as close to a creative genius as we’ve ever seen in audio. In my estimate, he may well be 100 years ahead of everyone else in the audio industry. It is for this reason that these ideas seem incredibly far-fetched and implausible by most people, because they are not now anywhere near where he was thirty years ago with this. These aren’t just “novel tweaks” in a list, but a small aspect of a very profound and important scientific phenomenon, that has existed for perhaps millions of years.
So for the most part, I haven’t endeavoured to explain how they are purported to work or why they should at all. One reason being it won’t be believed by the inexperienced, and will only get in the way of the evaluation process. Even though there is actually good logical reasoning behind every idea. Despite none of it being obvious to the layperson (or arguably, anyone but Peter!). If after trying some of the experiments you really do wish to learn more regarding theory, I touch upon some of the background in The Tao of Beltism in the Information section. The rest can be found on PWB’s site, and the key to understanding much of that it seems, requires delving into the research of various scientific disciplines (such as quantum mechanics and anthropology).
The important thing is not to allow theory to put a spanner in your wheels of scientific exploration. This is the fallacy of audio cynics the world over, and the primary reason why Beltists remain way ahead of the curve, even though we would rather not! So learn how to listen, listen, experiment, listen some more, experiment some more, and above all, have fun! The worst that will happen is you will get to hear your favourite music once again. And whether you can or can not ever hear differences wrought by any one of these ideas, it will be a learning experience. You’re never too old to learn new things!
“If I had to live my life over again, I’d dare to make more mistakes next time.” —Natine Sanger
p.s. While the articles under “Free Tweaks” are listed in alphabetical order, they are not necessarily listed in order of efficacy. While I have no problem hearing differences wrought by any of them, which are likely to be heard and confirmed by you, I can’t really say. Of course, the more experiments you do try, the more likely you are to find one that works for you. But rather than toss an arrow into the air, I would probably start with one or some of these:
- The Reef Knot Technique
- The 1-Cent Tweak
- Black Audio Squares
- The L-Shaped Device
- The 5-Pinhole Paper Device
- The Bookshelf Equalizer
- The Freeze Technique
· the advanced audiophile
A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away, a group of elite Jedi fighters were training to use a mysterious “force”, to aid them in their quest for security and a better life…..
…On this planet, not so many years ago (roughly 10), I embarked on a series of audio experiments that involved aligning slotted screws on light switch plates (link), so that they were 180 degrees vertical. This was, naturally, an idea from Peter Belt, of P.W.B. Electronics. One which I sought to validate or invalidat
“Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance.” – Confucius GOD IS IN THE DETAILS Beltism teaches us that there is a Zen approach necessary, if you are interested in following the path to audio Nirvana. In that sense, Peter Belt is like a solitary Buddhist monk(full article)
I’m starting to change my way of thinking about the so-called “Belt phenomenon”. Starting to realize that, there is no “Belt phenomenon” as such. And its wrong for me to think about it in those terms. Yes, there’s a “Belt phenomenon”, in that Peter Belt discovered this hitherto unknown(?) scientific(full article)
Ok, so I’m taking a break from the World of Beltism to explore the World of Chi Fi, to get into some serious earphoning. (Don’t get excited, it’s only temporary). Here, I undertake a major, comprehensive, multi-product review of an array of VLPE’s (Very Low Priced Earphones!). aka “in-ear monitors”, aka(full article)
Now here’s what may sound like an unusual theory… of which I have no doubt, no conventional thinker will believe. Even if they can claim tens of years of experience in audio. If you fit that bill and just react with amusement… then great. Call me the new “Cartoons on(full article)
This review of P.W.B.’s “Morphic Link Bookmark” can be considered “Part 2” of my review on the “Morphic Link Paper Clips”, from P.W.B. Electronics. Particularly as this new device followed that one in series, and both follow the same concept: “linking or breaking patterns of morphic resonance”, as the instruction(full article)