Footers- Break In? Such A Change.

So, I know components and cables break in and this has always been a source of mystery, not to mention the EE’s and the naysayers who believe firmly it is just not possible.

I am of the mindset based on my actual experience that electronics need power run through them for a time to perform their best. And that may mean hundreds of hours of electrical energy running through the item to fully form.

So, with this understanding I use this as the preamble to what I will describe next.

Footers. You know those little devices we put under our components, speakers etc., to isolate or stabilize the item.

Well, I must disclose that I have always been a tweaker and have tried many of the accessories we add to get the best out of equipment. I have also tried so many footers, many brands, types, even some DIY etc.

Critical Mass makes racks and footers. I have always wanted their racks, but due to my needed configuration just never have tried a rack. But I have tried the footers. The ones I have are called the Center Stage 2(CM2). I have them in the 1.0 and the 1.5 versions. There is also now a newer version called the 2M.

Anyway, these CM2’s is amazing. When you first place them under the equipment the music becomes dull, soundstage is narrow and the highs/lows are restricted. First comments you will have is; WTH?

But, wait about 7-10 days and these footers really open up and improve in all aspects that is important in sound reproduction.

How the heck a footer breaks in is amazing to me? The only thing that makes sense is that they must be adjusting to the weight that is on top of them and it takes that long to adjust.

Anyway, these are kinda relatively expensive but since the newer versions are now out perhaps you can grab some at a good discount. These will probably be the last footers I will ever own… Maybe?

I highly recommend them, even as strange as they are with break in.



Expensive footers was always something I read about but never seriously considered. Until a few years ago I purchased one set of Stillpoints Ultra SS out of curiosity and it blew me away. Amp, DAC, even power distributor, it did not matter which component it went under, it brought a noticeable improvement to each of them.

The only problem I need another 5-6 sets to fully complete my system. An expensive proposition but one I will eventually get around to.

In the meantime Stillpoints released a V2 version of their footer line. Apparently giving 30-40% more performance.

The guys on Whatsbestforum has been big on the Critical Mass footers. The new CS2M, as Ozzy has. It's a bit of a PITA to have a 7-10 days settling time, it makes things hard to A-B compare, especially if things go so negative in performance during this period as has been reported.

I would like to know how the Stillpoints Ultra SS v2 and Ultra 2 compare to the CS2M 0.8 and 1.0 as they are price comparable.


Thank you for your post. I have tried the Stillpoints Ultra SS and they are good, but the Critical Mass footers are in a different league. Both companies now have revised versions, not sure if the gap has closed or widened.

BTW, I am also using the ISO-Acoustics Gaiai 1’s under my Clarisys planer’s.


I’m a Symposium user, so I’m not anti-platform or footer, but did you ever consider that the CMs make your system sound bad for a week and then maybe it just comes back to what is was originally?  But it sounds better now because it’s back to normal, which is great compared to the week of crap. 

+1 @ozzy The difference with good platforms is very distinct and quantifiable. Live Vibe platforms also have a break in period, but it is so worth it.