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Passive mass filter


Price (when reviewed): 2,700 PLN

Concept Tower
ul. Grzybowska 87
00-844 Warszawa


Provided for test by: QAR EARTH GROUND ENERGY

ntil quite recently, i.e. up to two to three years ago, the types of Polish products proposed for tests in “High Fidelity” were most often speakers and tube amplifiers. The HF edition that you are reading now (No. 161) mentions representatives of both groups, but they are not a “hot” topic now, unlike two other types of products: power supply units for audio devices and products used for conditioning power supply and mass.

Until recently, they had been put together into a bag with the “voodoo” label, but as the market matured and music lovers, manufacturers and (probably most importantly) audio journalists became more and more experienced, these products started to be perceived as “interesting”. Their influence on sound is easy to demonstrate in any audio showroom, so it would be hard to say that this is all “hogwash”. It is nonsensical to claim that they do not change sound and if an educated person says that only on the basis of their beliefs and not experiments, we are dealing – let me put this straight – with stupidity.

The QAR-14 is a representative of the “new wave”. It is a product labeled as MASS FILTER, as it serves to eliminate high frequency currents flowing through the mass of an audio circuit. It creates virtual (i.e. not connected to the “earth”) mass – an element which absorbs these distortions. At the time of the test the company was only being registered and the tested product was the first one to be sold. It only has the symbol QAR S-15 on it and the code contains the name of the owner and constructor, Mr. Kuba, his wife Aneta, who strongly supports him, takes part in listening sessions and is responsible for details that create a real product, as well as the surname of the young couple: Ryś. Having said that, let us add: ALL THE BEST!!!

Owner, constructor

WOJCIECH PACUŁA: Tell us a few words about yourself, please.
KUBA RYŚ: I come from Siedlce and have permanently been living in Warsaw for several years. I have been interested in the audio domain since my school years, when I read different magazines, stared at photos and dreamt of having such toys one day in the future. My interest turned into a passion when I was able to earn some extra money during holidays, thanks to which I bought my first Dior WS 504 amplifier, the CD Pioneer PDS-501 player and Tonsil Rondo 300 loudspeakers.

My requirements have changed over the years, but I can tell you one thing: fulfilling my dreams has given me a lot of joy. Today I listen to music using the MC2 MC1250 studio power amp with the Audio Research LS17 preamp, the (modified) CD MHZS CD88 player, Magnepan QR1.6 loudspeakers, and Oyaide, Nordost, Vovox and North cables. I listen to almost all music genres: metal, rock, jazz, blues, vocal and classical music.

How did you get interested in (still) such an exotic topic – mass filters?
I dealt with a mass conditioner for the first time in the second half of the year 2016, when I had the opportunity to connect the Entreq Silver Minimus conditioner to my system. I listened to it with a little distrust, asking myself how it was made.

After some analyses and Internet search, I created six prototypes made of silicon carbide, tourmaline, vermiculite and rock crystal (in different proportions) and they kind of worked, but I was not fully satisfied with the effects, for example because the bass was too boosted. The prototype indicated a minimum charge of ca. 0.023 mV. Prototypes made of these materials were given up, as it still was not what I heard with the Entreq conditioner.

The next step was the analysis of other minerals in different proportions, which resulted in creating six new prototypes. They were often assembled and analyzed until early morning. There was a breakthrough in March/April 2017. I decided to write about it on the forum, where I found people interested in my conditioner. So, I had an opportunity to listen to how it would work in other systems and make the necessary modifications. A few units from that series were bought and then the name QAR S-15 was created: QAR – Kuba/Aneta/Ryś, 15 – diameter: 15 cm.

How different is the version supplied for the test?
The QAR S-15 supplied for the test is completely different, as it has a ceramic housing with a bamboo lid. Inside there is a group of minerals – I selected the weight of each and the order in which they are put in the housing. In a cross section, it is built from blocks and does not indicate any charge flow, and everything is covered with epoxy resin that also has influence on sound. A correctly built mass conditioner cannot hold any electrical charges, as its function is to receive electrostatic charges and provide electromagnetic protection. It is very important to use very high quality and pure minerals.

Earlier, I was guided by information found on the Internet, but now I have rejected all that and listened to myself – this is how the S-15 was created – a fully original and completely my own product. Audio devices are built using capacitors, resistors, electron tubes, integrated circuits, etc. With time and under the influence of temperature, the properties these elements can change and they start to function as aerials and microphones. Moreover, the elements of a circuit influence and affect one another. With time, electrostatic charges are collected on the housing, which can be felt and heard when we touch the device, as the charges jump.

The function of the S-15 is to eliminate all charges gathering both on the housing and in the PCB of the connected audio device. The S-15 is the most effective when the device is continuously connected (I call it “digesting”). It is also necessary to mention the cable connecting the filter to an RCA socket in the system. The cable is handmade. The conductor is silver wire (3 mm in diameter) covered with a double layer of Teflon (it is not a pipe), a protection layer that I designed, heat-shrink tubing and external wrapping made of polypropylene braid. It is a device with a soul, so a potential client will get the mass conditioner in a very good quality suitcase.

What are your plans for the future?
I am planning to make and already finishing testing something really original. It is a tube of 6 cm in diameter and a length of 28 cm, connected directly to loudspeakers using a cable with an angled loudspeaker connector at the end. The function of the tube is to directly filter noise created in the loudspeaker-speaker cable circuit. The filling is based on minerals of a different composition and arrangement than in the S-15.

How about your dreams?
My dreams? My dreams are getting fulfilled. I have a beautiful wife who supports me and shares my passion for music and sound. A dream to be fulfilled is to run a small Polish QAR company, combine my long-lasting passions (music, acoustics, audio equipment), then conquer Europe :) I would also like to meet Per-Olof Friberg, as he is my mentor in a way.

The S-15 filter is round in cross-section. Its housing is an example of how to resourcefully use an element available on the market: a ceramic food container with a bamboo lid. It looks very nice and, contrary to what one might think, really professional. At the side there is a drilled hole, where a gold-plated loudspeaker socket is placed. We connect it to the mass of any device in our audio system.

Companies solve this problem in different ways (see: Tara Labs, Verictum). Mr. Kuba has chosen an elegant solution, i.e. a cable which connects the filter to a device has a gold-plated loudspeaker connector at one end and a WBT RCA connector at the other end, with a removed positive pin, leaving only the ground connector. The color of the tubing of the connecting cable matches the gold-plated elements of connectors – thanks to Mrs. Aneta. As the company owner has said, the filter is sent to us in an elegant metal suitcase. It is a complete product.

I can only tell all those who think the suitcase is an exaggeration and would like the product to be sold in a cheaper packaging that money saved in this way very rarely makes the retail price go down, but is “consumed” by the manufacturer’s profit margin.

The QAR S-15 mass filter was listened to in a reference system and connected to an analog input of the Ancient Audio Lektor AIR V-edition player. It stood on the top shelf of the Finite Elemente Pagode Edition rack. The test consisted in listening to and comparing A/B/A (A and B known). During the first part of the test, ‘A’ a was the system with a connected conditioner, while ‘B’ was the system without the conditioner. In the second part of the test it was the other way round.


  • André Previn, After Hours, Telarc/Lasting Impression Music LIM UHD 051, CD (1989/2011)
  • Antonio Carlos Jobim, Nights of Quiet Stars, Verve 559 733-2, „Quiet Now Series”, CD (1999)
  • J.S. Bach, Solo & Double Violin Concertos, Anderw Manze, Rachel Podger, Academy of Ancient Music, Harmonia Mundi HMA1957155, „Musique D’Abord”, CD (1997/2016)
  • Polish Jazz Quartet, Polish Jazz Quartet, Polskie Nagrania „Muza”/Warner Music Poland, „Polish Jazz | vol. 3”, Master CD-R (1965/2016);
  • Thom Yorke, Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes, Hostess | LANDGRAB RAB001J, CD (2015)

Japanese issues available at

Both you and me more and more often deal with products of this type – i.e. ones that serve to condition (improve) sound by eliminating distortions that come from high frequency currents flowing through the mass of audio circuits. Based on listening sessions, it is hard to believe why we have been doing nothing with them for such a long time. It is even harder to believe that we have never heard this before. The QAR S-15, like other successful products, changes sound clearly and unambiguously. These are not changes that are hard to perceive, ones that will only make “extreme audiophiles” excited, placed in systems that cost more than a good new car bought from a showroom. It will be possible for everyone to hear it, in any system, also in one costing as much as a second-hand German car.

Mr. Ryś’s conditioner functions on several levels, i.e. modifies the sound of a system independently for tonality, dynamics, attack and differentiation. All these elements are significantly better with it. The change in tonality is the easiest to assess, as tonal balance changes quite significantly. As you will see in a moment, it is a subjective change and, objectively, it is about something else, but this is the way we will perceive it. What matters is emphasis on the midrange and treble. The bass is not shortened and the sound does not get dry, but the first impression is unambiguous: we get sound with the center of gravity placed higher, i.e. with more treble.

I purposely do not write about a “larger number of details”, as detail is something secondary and can often kill, while there is no music in it anyway. The QAR improves differentiation and also resolution. It is connected with more details and flavors, but they supplement the basic change, i.e. the fact that we can “hear more”, literally. Although we will be surprised with the amount of information that we will get in very expensive systems, we will be truly shocked in the case of inexpensive products that will suddenly “rise from their knees”.

A very important advantage of this product is the improvement in clarity. I think this is what the filter is about, or at least I suppose so. The musical message is more credible, lively and interesting. Some recordings will simply sound different, as more will be happening in them, thanks to which we will focus more on the unfolding course of events, on the recording’s inner dramaturgy. We will acknowledge that already with inexpensive products. With more expensive ones, we will also get much better differentiation, i.e. building the credibility of a recording by capturing its special features. Then we enter music more deeply, everything is more interesting and colorful.

Resolution, definition and attack improve. It is the better and faster sound attack that makes us hear more and perceive what earlier seemed very good and totally acceptable to us as a little defective after connecting the QAR. I would like to be understood correctly: one can live without this filter, even live well. After we disconnect it from our system, if the system itself sounds the way we like, after a day or two it sounds as good as before the test. However, it is enough to connect the S-15 for a few minutes to ask ourselves again why we “have not heard this before”.

Does it mean that this is a universal filter? No. It is a coincidence, of course, but the way it changes sound is similar to what happens with the Acoustic Revive RPC-1 supply voltage filter. That means sound is clearer, more accurate and characterized by higher resolution. However, it all makes us focus our attention on those parts of the sound range where information is added. Although tone color does not objectively change, we get such a subjective effect. So, if our system emphasizes the treble a bit and lacks filling, the QAR S-15 will not help it, but will rather do harm. If bass in the system is a bit thin, the filter will not fill it, but, let me repeat myself, will subjectively make it thinner.

Some mass filters that we have written about, including Entreq devices, subjectively make sound warmer because of the saturation of the lower midrange with information and its better differentiation. So, these filters do not only prove helpful, but constitute a “medicine” for systems that sound too light or too dry. The Polish filter is not such a medicine, as it does not “cure” anything. It is rather a kind of a “trigger”, i.e. one that “launches” the capabilities of the given system. It does not mask anything, but rather demonstrates. It functions as a high quality high-end device.


The QAR S-15 has its price, which automatically makes people who own expensive systems pay attention to it. It is good, as the filter will prove the most effective and helpful there. However, it is worth trying out in systems from the basic and medium price range, as such an experience will teach us a lot and let us know which direction we want to choose.

Expensive systems will gain better differentiation and resolution. The increase in information in the treble is so significant that we can talk about a new quality. It is possible that at the same time little sins and imperfections that had been hidden before will come to light. Very well, this is ultimately what the whole thing is all about –hearing more – and the QAR S-15 guarantees this.



- Turntable: AVID HIFI Acutus SP [Custom Version]
- Cartridges: Miyajima Laboratory KANSUI, review HERE | Miyajima Laboratory SHILABE, review HERE | Miyajima Laboratory ZERO (mono) | Denon DL-103SA, review HERE
- Phono stage: RCM Audio Sensor Prelude IC, review HERE

- Compact Disc Player: Ancient Audio AIR V-edition, review HERE

- Line Preamplifier: Polaris III [Custom Version] + AC Regenerator, regular version review (in Polish) HERE
- Power amplifier: Soulution 710
- Integrated Amplifier: Leben CS300XS Custom Version, review HERE

- Stand mount Loudspeakers: Harbeth M40.1 Domestic, review HERE
- Stands for Harbeths: Acoustic Revive Custom Series Loudspeaker Stands
- Real-Sound Processor: SPEC RSP-101/GL
- Integrated Amplifier/Headphone amplifier: Leben CS300XS Custom Version, review HERE
- Headphones: HIFIMAN HE-6, review HERE | HIFIMAN HE-500, review HERE | HIFIMAN HE-300, review HERE | Sennheiser HD800 | AKG K701, review (in Polish) HERE | Ultrasone PROLine 2500, Beyerdynamic DT-990 Pro, version 600 - reviews (in Polish): HERE, HERE, HERE
- Headphone Stands: Klutz Design CanCans (x 3), review (in Polish) HERE
- Headphone Cables: Entreq Konstantin 2010/Sennheiser HD800/HIFIMAN HE-500, review HERE

- Portable Player: HIFIMAN HM-801
- USB Cables: Acoustic Revive USB-1.0SP (1 m) | Acoustic Revive USB-5.0PL (5 m), review HERE
- LAN Cables: Acoustic Revive LAN-1.0 PA (kable ) | RLI-1 (filtry), review HERE
- Router: Liksys WAG320N
- NAS: Synology DS410j/8 TB
System I
- Interconnects: Acrolink Mexcel 7N-DA6300, review HERE | preamplifier-power amplifier: Acrolink 8N-A2080III Evo, review HERE
- Loudspeaker Cables: Tara Labs Omega Onyx, review (in Polish) HERE
System II
- Interconnects: Acoustic Revive RCA-1.0PA | XLR-1.0PA II
- Loudspeaker Cables: Acoustic Revive SPC-PA

System I
- Power Cables: Acrolink Mexcel 7N-PC9300, all system, review HERE
- Power Distributor: Acoustic Revive RTP-4eu Ultimate, review HERE
- Power Line: power cable Oyaide Tunami Nigo (6m); wall sockets 3 x Furutech FT-SWS (R)
System II
- Power Cables: Harmonix X-DC350M2R Improved-Version, review (in Polish) HERE | Oyaide GPX-R (x 4 ), review HERE
- Power Distributor: Oyaide MTS-4e, review HERE
- Stolik: SolidBase IV Custom, read HERE/all system
- Anti-vibration Platforms: Acoustic Revive RAF-48H, review HERE/digital sources | Pro Audio Bono [Custom Version]/headphone amplifier/integrated amplifier, review HERE | Acoustic Revive RST-38H/loudspeakers under review/stands for loudspeakers under review
- Anti-vibration Feets: Franc Audio Accessories Ceramic Disc/ CD Player/Ayon Polaris II Power Supply /products under review, review HERE | Finite Elemente CeraPuc/ products under review, review HERE | Audio Replas OPT-30HG-SC/PL HR Quartz, review HERE
- Anti-vibration accsories: Audio Replas CNS-7000SZ/power cable, review HERE
- Quartz Isolators: Acoustic Revive RIQ-5010/CP-4

- FM Radio: Tivoli Audio Model One