(Jolida) Black Ice Audio Foz SS-X Sound Enhancement

I could find only a few reviews of this device and a few forum entries here. They were all favorable. I sorely needed the bass enhancement circuit for my Maggie 3.7s. I have a Marchand X.26 crossover handling them and the sub but the integration was not ideal. The pre and amps are Cary Audio Class A mono blocs. The source is transparent and very revealing. I did not want anything to upset the glorious sound of the tubes. I also needed something to offset my small-ish listening room. The Maggies ’stand watch’ but I can’t get the distance I need for them to bloom. The SS-X seemed to fit the bill - tube driven, clean specs and a solid designer pedigree. I respect Jim Fosgate.

I ordered the SS-X on the strength of his engineering expertise, particularly in tubes, viz-a-viz Jolida. Not having heard the device it could be considered a leap of faith or a plunge into disappointment. I held my breath.

Straight to the chase: Maggies now have a sweet bottom end, the sub has been dialed back and has disappeared and the top to bottom synergy is spot on and very satisfying.

But wait, there’s more...

The spatial imaging adjustment: Well, I listened to several of my favorite studio recordings. Clean, thankfully. I then put on a nightclub recording of the late Ben Webster live in Amsterdam. I nearly fell out of my chair. The speakers disappeared and I was looking around for the cocktail waitress. The drum kit, the piano, the double bass were all present in the venue with all of its ambiance and Mr. Webster was doing what he did so incredibly well: swinging the audience ala Ellington with that big smooth sax. You could hear everyone present as if you were sitting there.

I’m still waiting for the cocktail server. Incredible device and worth every penny and the anticipation.


Apos Ray 12au7 really takes the sound of SS-X to another level.

This tube is mentioned in other posts here, and is featured in many glowing reviews.  Highly recommended.

@sgordon1 Good info.  I have owned an SS-X for a few years.  When you say upgraded version is that a custom sent into BI upgrade or is it a newer version of the SS-X?  If newer version how do you identify it has beed upgraded? Also, on the tubes what tubes did you compare the Apos Ray tube to that it bested.  Thanks

Great thread. May have to try the FOZ.  I will call Black Ice, they are good people, once owned a Jolida Fusion preamp, a great product for the money. I recently purchased a pair of the Apos Ray 12au7s for my Rogue Audio Sphinx V3 to replace the stock JJs.

The upgrade was done by Black Ice.  I am not seeing this option now on their website.  The current “V2” designation is strictly cosmetic.

I am using a Synergistic Research fuse.  I think quality cables and proper vibration control are important.

I have little knowledge and experience with tubes.  When I got the idea to change it, I wanted a new option that I would want to keep.  This resulted in following recent information touting the Apos Ray fuse.  This is working well for me.

”I’d rather be lucky than smart.”