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The Zapperator Family

Wednesday, 16th October 2019


Over the years, the Zapperator range has expanded from the original Speaker Zapperators designed to connect to your loudspeaker inputs or amplifier outputs. The range now includes MiniZaps for a variety of line-level signals, and Mains Zapperators designed to clean the mains and augment our other mains filters. But what's the difference between them and which ones should you fit? John Armer investigates...
The Zapperator Family Header

 

What are Zapperators?

Zapperators are a family of filtering products designed for us by Ben Duncan. They use a specialised network of components to assist in the reduction of noise and interference, which consequently helps to reduce the noise floor and deliver a more musical sound.

What are the types?

Mains ZapperatorThere are three families of Zapperator. The first is the Mains Zapperator which is a type of specialised mains filter. The Mains Zapperator is supplied as a simple 'wall-wart' plug-in device, but we also offer special modules for connecting into our Power Purifier. Mains Zapperators are ideal for reducing the effects of high frequency noise generated by wireless computer networks and mobile phones and help in creating a 'quiet' mains around your system.

MiniZappsThe second type are the MiniZaps that apply the technology to line level signals, such as those that come from your turntable, CD player and Streamer. These are typically wired into interconnects (you specify them at the point of ordering) and we now offer an inline, plug-in version that is perfect for using with existing interconnects - you don't need to send your cables back to have them fitted.Speaker Zapperators

Additionally, there are also a number of plug-in versions of the MiniZaps that connect to unused sockets on your amplifier - we make MiniZaps for connecting to unused phono, XLR, DIN and USB sockets and we can now offer them for headphone sockets too (see p10). Nothing needs to be connected to these for them to do their job.

The third type are the Speaker Zapperators that are specially tuned to a speaker-level signal and should be used at the interface between your amplifier and speaker cable, and at the speaker cable and speaker interface.

When should you fit them?

Zapperators are supplementary filters and you should fit them after you have installed the 'first line of defence' products.

By this, we mean that for best performance you would fit the Mains Zapperator afteryou have installed our mains Purification products such as the Silencer, Mini Purifier or the Power Purifier. The reason for this is that the Purifiers are 'wideband' mains filters, and you should use these as your first line of defence against mains noise.

You'd then augment the effect with the Mains Zapperator whose job is to clean up a very specific type of noise. The Mains Zapperators canbe successfully used on their own or with other manufacturers' filters if you prefer, but they are designed to be used in conjunction with our Purifiers and Silencers.

The MiniZaps are designed to work synergistically with Kimber's woven cable - and that's where you'll get their best performance - but the plug-in and inline versions can also be used if you are using other manufacturers' cables too.

Fit the Speaker Zapperators at the same time or after you've upgraded to the woven Kimber speaker cable. The same caveats apply, however, in that you can use Speaker Zapperators with other manufacturers' cables. Hi-Fi Critic reviewer Martin Colloms had good results using them with a very basic  speaker type cable, for example, but our experience is that they work particularly well with Kimber's braided design of cable.

Which order?

Zapperators will benefit your system regardless of the order in which you fit them. However, to get the very best performance at each step, we recommend fitting the Mains Zapperators first, followed by MiniZaps and then Speaker Zapperators. This follows our general guidelines for cable upgrade; starting with the mains, then interconnects and finishing with the speaker cable.


 Who is Ben Duncan?

Speaker ZapperatorsBen Duncan designed the technology we use in our Zapperator range and has, since the mid 1970s, designed hundreds of electronic and audio products. Equally at home working in Hi-Fi as he is in professional audio, Ben's book High Performance Power Amplifiers has become a world-reference textbook on quality power amps.

Ben has a long background in mains investigation and he was part of the design team that we put together to develop our SuperKord range of mains cables. Working with Dr Craig Sawyers, Ben came up with a clever way of terminating our mains cables, optimally using perforated discs, housed in the distinctive wooden pods at each end of the SuperKords. Ben is also responsible for the design of the AbZorber, the Star RF Router and developed the technology used to provide our Super Burn In service.

Ben has prepared a White Paper on the Zapperator technology which can be downloaded at www.russandrews.com/zapperator

 

   
The Zapperator Family Range


Mains Zapperators.
  • Plug-in devices that make it easy to connect close to your system. You can also use them plugged in around the house - fit one next to your broadband router, for example.
  • Mains Zapperator modules are designed to plug into our Power Purifier, meaning that you don't need to use an additional 13A socket.
  • Buy Mains Zapperator here
  • Buy Mains Zapperator Module here
     
 

MiniZaps.

  • Mini Zaps are designed to connect to interconnects. They can be built into Kimber cables at the point of manufacture or connected 'inline' between the cable's phono plugs and the component's phono sockets.
  • Buy In-line MiniZaps here
 

Plug-in Mini Zaps.

  • Plug-in Mini Zaps are available for connecting to empty RCA, XLR, DIN, USB outputs and 1/4" and 3.5mm headphone sockets on preamps, sources and power amps.
  • Buy RCA MiniZaps Here
  • Buy XLR MiniZaps Here
  • Buy DIN MiniZaps Here
  • Buy USB MiniZaps Here
  • Buy Headphone Socket MiniZaps Here
 

Speaker Zapperators.

  • Speaker Zapperators connect to the end of speaker cables: either between the speaker cable and amplifier, or between the speaker cable and speaker... or both.
  • Stackable bananas fitted to the Speaker Zapperators make them easy to use with speaker cables fitted with bananas.
  • Bare wire and 6mm / 8mm spades terminations also available.
  • Buy Speaker Zapperators Here

 

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