Telos GNR Mini V3.1, a Tour-de-Force in Eliminating Ground Noise
Telos Audio Design is a Taiwanese company who specialise in Hi-Fi system upgrades to tackle issues such as system grounding, phase and magnetism. The product that first caught our attention was the Telos GNR Mini V3.1, also known as the Ground Noise Reducer Mini. The GNR V3.1 functions by eliminating ground noise from an audio or video system. There is a lot of noise inside each component and normally this would be discharged through the system ground supply. The problem is that the ground loop inside a house or apartment is not a good way to remove the noise. When the GNR is used in a system, each Hi-Fi component can be connected to it and the ground noise eliminated by specially designed circuitry. The ground impedance of GNR Mini is extremely low, around 40 times lower than the original ground supply.
Passive Versus Active Ground Box’s Passive ground boxes can work very effectively use materials with good conductivity like copper plates, copper rods, copper mesh, mineral powder or some composite substance. The downside is that they are unable to provide a near ground reference voltage so not able to stabilize the fluctuating potential differences between each component.
To use an analogy, imagine floating ships on the ocean, the sea is the ground voltage but it can never be truly stable. The active grounding solution differs since it each component in the system is given a ‘reference’ ground voltage, similar to how a master clock works to reference all components to one highly accurate, stable clock. Installing and Setup of GNR V3.1
The installation and setup of the Telos GNR Mini is straightforward. As the name suggests, this is the Mini versus and has 2 active ground modules which can each accept up to 2 Hi-Fi components, so a maximum of 4 in total. The GNR is placed on a spare shelf on your Hi-Fi or AV rack, then each component is connected to the GNR via a 1.5M grounding cable. These ground cables are connected to a spare RCA, XLR, USB or ground terminal of the audio equipment and then to the GNR Mini via the rear WBT binding posts. The GNR is then connected to the AC mains using the supplied IEC cable and setup is complete. For those with larger systems and more than 4 components to ground Telos has a larger model available with 6 grounding modules enabling up to 12 components to be connected.
How Effective is Active Grounding? With all Hi-Fi components referenced to extremely low ground impedance the first thing you will notice is a reduction in the noise floor. This cleaner background to the music makes way for greater transparency to the recordings, improved positioning of instruments and vocals as well as clearly depicting the spatial sense of recording. It is often when removing noise from a system whether by grounding or the AC power that the greatest changes are observed when the noise is reintroduced. We found this to be the case when the GNR V3.1 was unplugged. When the GNR Mini is removed from the system the music acquires a veil that you’re not necessarily previously aware of. The sound-stage is reduced in all planes the highs gain an unnatural edge and the low frequencies are softened.
But I already have a dedicated Supply or Conditioner. There is often the view that if a dedicated mains spur and or mains regenerator, conditioner is in place that no further improvements are attainable, or if they are they will be subtle and not worth considering. A dedicated spur is highly recommended for any audio system but will not reduce ground impedance to anywhere near the extremely low levels of Telos GNR Mini. The dedicated spur will also generally rely on the same ground loop as the rest of the home or building. Similarly, mains regeneration, transformer isolation or balanced power supplies can equally benefit from GNR and will work together to provide a tour-de-force to achieving the quietest mains supply. How to try the GNR Mini V3.1 Like any Hi-Fi system upgrade, the only way to experience and understand the benefits is hands-on listening. Telos GNR Mini pricing starts at £1499 and is available with a 30-day home trial (terms and conditions apply). For more information and ordering please see our website for the Telos GNR Mini V3.1 or contact us directly on 01646 650008 for advice.
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