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Audioquest LaserGuide: treatment fluid for Compact Discs

[Italian version]

The LaserGuide is a fluid for the proper care of any kind of optical disc: CD Audio, Laser Disc etc.
It is available as a spray bottle that costs less than 30 US $ (here in Italy).
Being a spray it is difficult to guess how many CDs can be treated with a bottle of LaserGuide, it clearly depends on how much fluid do you spray over the disc surface.
The LaserGuide is a silicone-based fluid, like other similar CD treatments, and it claims to give a smoother, less irritating sound, also more dynamics and a better 3D imaging.
When used with LaserDiscs it claims to improve the overall performance with sharper and better focused pictures and with less *noise* too.
We'll see if these promises are real or just hype, at least for the audio part.

How does it work

Just spray a little amount of LaserGuide over the CD surface, then spread it with a soft cloth and wipe till the disc is clean, dry and clear.
The fluid is very easy to use and odourless though it should be kept away from eyes and children.

How MUCH does it work

The claimed results aren't just hype: this fluid works.
The overall dynamics increase as well as the detail, especially in the mid-to-high range.
Sometimes it even succeeds in minimizing the harshness of some bad digital recordings though I noticed no impressive improvements of the 3D soundstaging.
The overall effect of the LaserGuide is very similar to the one I noticed with the
Claro by Shinpy and, actually, the working principle should be more or less similar.
The bass and mid-bass range remains unchanged and according to my experience any CD fluid doesn't improve significantly the performance in these frequency ranges.
Like the Claro, the LaserGuide by Audioquest isn't exactly a *cleaning* fluid, it is rather an optical treatment that improves the overall readability of the disc, minimizing the errors and hence the interpolation effects of the *notorius* CD errors correction circuit.

The improved resolution and detail in the mid-to-high range could be, with certain systems and discs, too much of a good thing, in the sense that even every little shortcoming of the recording is revealed without mercy so, don't complain if bad CDs seems to sound sometimes worse when treated with these fluids.
I'd like to point out that, with the several hifi systems I've used to test these fluid, the overall result has always been *positive*, even with bad recordings.


The CD treatment fluids work. They do not make wonders but they CLEARLY succeed improving the readability of any Compact Disc.
The LaserGuide by Audioquest works, it is very user-friendly and doesn't cost an arm and leg (though I guess it is way cheaper in the US).

Copyright © 1997 Lucio Cadeddu

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