Hello everyone. I consider the Ether one of my favorite planars, Yet since none are perfect, there is always something to pick at ! So I decided to try to improve upon the issues that bothered me, and since being successful on three Ethers so far, I will now post them here... Ok so here we go... First off , Why mod the Ether? 1- Because Dan booby-trapped it. 2- Because we can Even though the unit itself is booby trapped, by being glued together inside, we don't need to access the rear driver or insides anyways... The body itself is highy rigid and built very solid, so however Dan tuned it, I trust it is optimal by the sheer amount of resolution I hear. To have details coming out of a planar (and not loosing them out the rear or sounding distant) requires good design and/or proper damping behind the driver. So I doubt Ether ever needs mods in the rear (like HE560). The issues to deal with are actually on the front side, so this can be adressed. .. Namely, the material choice (and lack of ), that is used around the front driver's four sides... It is a black self-adhesive foam material. In the early photos, it had more, all around the four sides...(a clue) *pic* In later units like mine, it has only foam on top and bottom of driver sides.. *pic* This black foam material is NEEDED to preserve the bass coupling, from driver to ear. The problem with this material, is that it also imparts a sense of added proximity and unfocused bouncy bass. For an example of , If you compare the Ether bass to an LCD or HE6, you would notice that both LCD and HE6 are able to hit/slam at stronger/harder/higher level without saturation or bloom/bump. The Ether bass, on the other hand, seems to feel bouncy or saturated, for lack of better description. In this mod, we aim to correct these issues of proximity and also lack of bass focus from inner side reflections.. OK, so onto the mods.. We will break this into THREE PARTS. The individual improvements with each step are subtle but verified and very important. So for full effect, all three parts are recommended and advised. Step One: 1-tiny side pieces mod.. Step Two: 2- slim side strips mod added over. Step Three: 3-Top & bottom foam replacement mod (maximum soundstage).. This is adhesive felt material used: *pic* Step One: Highlighted in red felt, we see the pieces used for the sides: *pic* Step Two: Then adding another layer, clarifies soundstage further: *pic* Finish next side. Step Three: Then replacement of top and bottom pieces with four layers of felt material cut same shape, for maximun soundstage. *pic* Primary guidelines to the mod: 1- keeping the top and bottom materials the same height/ thickness as stock, so that it meets at the surface exactly like stock. 2- do not cover driver holes at sides. 3- use of material that will not absorb frequencies which change tonality, So in this case, felt is used. Feel free to improve upon material choice for this mod. I now leave it up to others who may want to try and hopefully achieve better results. What this mod accomplishes: 1-Bass more textured and dynamic without proximity effect. 2-Less overall sonic reflections around driver, giving more spacial clues clarity. 3- Sense of satisfaction. Another huge benifit is that the soundstage overall improved. So It's more open type performance, and the bass will now hit clearer. I feel the Ether now gives a nice presentation and I am very satisfied with the results. So bottom line is that the stock unit actually can be improved upon. Based upon these findings, don't be surprised to see future Ether upgrades, On the same areas that we are discussing.. haha Also a reminder warning, do not touch those Ether screws...at all.!