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Old 21st June 2006, 02:56 AM   #1
jsa_ind is offline jsa_ind  United States
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Default Cryogenic Processing Does It Work

There is much talk about cryogenic processing, may I request folks advice as to
What is actually cryogenic processing ?
How does one go about it ?
How long has a product or component need to be treated ?
Does it actually work ?
If it does what are the scientific principles behind it.
How is it that folks swear that a cryogenic treat solid state amplifier sounds so much better then one not treated ?
Is there any difference if only the electronic components are treated prior to soldering & assembly versus if the whole unit is cryogenically treated as a unit by itself ?
How is thermal shock prevented ?

Question and more questions I am totally lost, can someone help me please ?

Thanks a million !
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Old 21st June 2006, 03:20 AM   #2
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Quote:
How is it that folks swear that a cryogenic treat solid state amplifier sounds so much better then one not treated ?
those are usually the same folks that in a listening test can identify cables, but fail when tested blinded in a properly laid out test.
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Old 21st June 2006, 04:13 AM   #3
TerryC is offline TerryC  United States
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It doesn't sound like a viable DIY process.


http://www.jenalabs.com/cryogenics/cryo1.html
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Old 21st June 2006, 12:49 PM   #4
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The people who do the "treatment" can't explain exactly what it is doing to the materials (though they will frequently litter their sales pitch with terms taken from a quantum mechanics magazine article they read parts of, once, that neither you nor they actually understand) or demonstrate how doing that particular thing affects sound reproduction or demonstrate statistically that it does affect sound reproduction. They can't show test data on the longevity of the "effect" of the "treatment because there is no such data.

Whether it actually works or not is not nearly as important as your expectations. If they do a good job selling their "treatment", you will hear a difference between the treated item and its untreated equal, whether the difference objectively exists or not. If this sort of result is what you want, then I say go for it.

It is a matter of faith that you put in the guy who is selling you the process or "treated" device/wire. There is no way to know whether the "treated" item has actually been treated or not other than the word of the guy who has his hand in your wallet. He'll probably provide a certificate of some sort that says "yup, I treated it". But why should he spend money on liquid nitrogen and actually perform the "treatment" if he can get you to give up your money without going to the trouble and expense? Certificates are cheaper than liquid nitrogen.

Here's an analogy that may help. When you are going to marry someone, she will expect you to buy a diamond. Without getting into the history of this strange custom, let's look at the process. You take some vast amount of money that you worked and suffered for and give it to some guy in a shop who shows you a rock that looks like a diamond. Is it a diamond? He'll put it under the microscope for you so you can look for yourself. Do you know what a diamond looks like? Still not entirely comfortable, he hands you a piece of paper that says, "yup, it's a diamond". How is that piece of paper linked to that stone? He says it is, and well, you're under pressure from her and him to conclude the deal so you don't ask too many questions, you just hand over the money. How much? Depending on where you live and local economic conditions, anywhere from 1 to 6 "month's salary". Who decides this? The people selling the stones! What was the point of the whole exercise? To show her and her family that you want her so badly that you are willing to be self destructive in sacrifice to her. This is only the first of many times you will have to do it throughout married life. Eventually, it will become a daily requirement. Having passed the first test, you become hers. But, I digress...

It all boils down to whether you trust other people to be good stewards of your hard earned (or inherited) money. There have been many examples of people trusting others with their money and getting a bad result. On that basis I recommend NOT handing your wallet to strangers, even strangers with liquid nitrogen candy.

I_F
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Old 21st June 2006, 03:19 PM   #5
jcx is offline jcx  United States
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cryo treatment does have real, objectively measurable metallurgical effects on some alloy systems and the huge temperature excursion does have mechanical strain effects in devices with mixed cte's – maybe the manufacturers' of some precision resistors would use this to artificially age the products for greater long term stability – but I don’t see much use of precision wirewounds in audio electronics or utility to knowing their R won’t drift at the sub 10 ppm level over the years

I would caution against it for most electronic assemblies because of the mechanical effects - most semis, ceramic caps, especially smt components on normal pcb materials simply aren't expected to survive such large temperature excursions - if not immediately failing from the stress due to the differing thermal expansion coefficients they may have subtle cracking/delamination that slowly lets moisture in and may fail years later
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Old 21st June 2006, 03:41 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by jcx
cryo treatment does have real, objectively measurable metallurgical effects on some alloy systems and the huge temperature excursion does have mechanical strain effects in devices with mixed cte's

I would caution against it for most electronic assemblies because of the mechanical effects -- if not immediacy failing from the stress due to the differing thermal expansion coefficients they may have subtle cracking/delamination that slowly lets moisture in and may fail years later
After being involved in semiconductor packaging design for a number of years your comments mirror what comes to my mind when I think about what might be happening during this process.

Past Military grade components would be put through a torture test called thermo-shock testing to verify the design robustness. I doubt that most of the availible packaged parts and PCB's are designed with this type of severe stress in mind, and most of the effects would show up over time (long past the treaters warranty (if they were generous enough to (pretend to) give one.

I'd proceed cautiously here.

Mike

Mike
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Old 21st June 2006, 04:34 PM   #7
poobah is offline poobah  United States
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I_Forgot, jcx, and MikeB, are telling you straight here,

Cryo is what you use to destroy or stress things to reveal flaws. It is also handy for putting a 1.001" shaft in a 0.999" hole.

Cryo is loads of fun to play with at lunch time... putting sandwiches and twinkies in the LN2 to see what they'll do.

Most electronic devices are designed to keep themselve together at temperatures from -50C to +200C... beyond that... the designers don't care. There are even morons that put vacuum tubes through this. I cringe when I think of what that might do to the glass metal interfaces. Then, when they pull out a destroyed tube, they say, "See? found another bad one...".

These crooks selling this garbage don't know a damn thing about quantum anything. If they did, they would have real jobs, and wouldn't need to stoop to this nonsense... now would they?

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Old 21st June 2006, 04:45 PM   #8
anatech is offline anatech  Canada
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However,
The process is perfectly valid for gun barrels (not your AK-47 or M-16 spray the world kind, UZI fits there too). Target rifle barrels improve shot to shot accuracy after the process.

The material is verrrry slowly cooled, held at the target temperature, then verrrry slowly warmed to room temperature.

For electronic assemblies I'm sure the ultimate temperature is somewhat warmer than used for gun barrels. The cycle may be longer to reduce thermal shock. All bets are off for tubes!

I wonder if gun barrels need repeat processing due to the normal thermal shock they endure during firing?

-Chris
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Old 21st June 2006, 04:54 PM   #9
poobah is offline poobah  United States
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We use to stamp some aluminum enclosures. The aluminum was shipped and stored on dry ice... 24/7. The metal was stamped and sheared cold. As the metal came up to room temperature... it would harden... weird huh?

I'm sure cryo has real effects on materials in electronic components... I would bet that nearly all said effects are bad.

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Old 21st June 2006, 04:59 PM   #10
anatech is offline anatech  Canada
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Hi poobah,
That's what I'm thinking. I don't think I'd give them a perfectly good amplifier to do this to.

Mind you, some of my stuff is stored in the garage. It can get cold enough in the winter if they aren't taking it down too far. I should charge for this?

-Chris
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