WELLFLOAT Babel Review.

I am always excited and interested in projects, brands, and products that capture the imagination with different approaches, push boundaries, and have strong connections to already proven concepts from other industries. So when the opportunity to try WELLFLOAT Babel presented itself, I did not hesitate to accept the offer to evaluate it. 

The story

G CLEF Acoustics was established in Osaka in 1978. For over 40 years, G-Clef's main business has been supporting and developing systems for professional mixing consoles and recording equipment such as SSL, Studer, etc. Customers include concert halls, TV broadcasting companies, local authorities, research institutes, universities, and other large companies in Japan.

The original idea of the pendulum in WELLFLOAT can be traced back to the childhood of chief designer Ryoji Nagata. Based on his 40 years of experience with G CLEF, WELLFLOAT was designed to bring this innovation to the high-end audio market.

The WELLFLOAT Delta Inserts/Insulators for Piano, Cello, and Bass Insert Delta Insulators are already used not only in professional studios but also in concerts. 


The new Wellfloat Babel was developed by Ryoji Nagata of Wellfloat and designed by none other than Shiro Nakamura. Babel works at the molecular level (measured at the nanoscale) and deals with the elimination of mechanical vibrations.

Mr. Shiro Nakamura

Shiro Nakamura, a world-renowned car designer who has created numerous masterpieces such as the GT -R and the Fairlady Z at Isuzu Motors and Nissan Motors, also knows a lot about music, being an amateur jazz bassist and plays classical cello. And because he regularly uses Wellfloat for Instruments, he decided to work on developing Babel as the ultimate, world's best isolation device.

The Babel is the highest-grade model in the WELLFLOAT series, which eliminates sound distortion thanks to their patented hanging structure that has a reputation among audio enthusiasts all over the world.

Babel controls the oscillations down to the molecular and non-measurable levels by the multilevel pendulum (4 levels), which is also used to detect gravitational waves.

The upper board is made of solid aluminum, minimizing the squeals of the board, and adapts to high-end devices with metal housing without changing the mechanical-sonic synchronicity.

The typical isolation devices available on the market have a three or four-point support and are not have a mechanism that takes into account the center of gravity of the equipment being set up. However, WELLFLOAT Babel is shaped to accurately support the center of gravity of the equipment.

Since it is difficult for audio devices such as CDs to support the center of gravity of the bottom plate, WELLFLOAT has also developed the "Center of Gravity Position Moving Option Board" to support all bottom plate-shaped equipment, including spikes, and to be able to set up an ideal center of gravity for all devices.

Babel is designed to provide remarkable sound quality improvement not only for high-end audio electronics and CD /SACD players but also for PC audio equipment. 


Maybe you can not see it in the photos, but WELLFLOAT Babel is a pretty massive device with 175 mm diameter, 65 mm height, and 2.9 kg weight compared to the "usual" devices. 

Babel consists of twelve small WELLFLOAT mechanisms: three machines, and four layers of stainless steel and finely machined solid aluminum. 

The setting of Babel is as simple as it gets, but still, there are some steps to be followed. 

Babel must be oriented so that the WELLFLOAT logo is visible from the front. For maximum effect, it should be adjusted to exactly match the position of the unit's center of gravity.

When used under higher, upward-facing components or on equipment where the center of gravity is not optimally placed, some effort and attention are required to balance it so that it does not tip over or fall.

If on the bottom of the electronic device there are some screws or larger bolts or there is no clear space in the center of the balance, the optional WELLFLOAT board is recommended.

Once Babel is installed and set up, the movable top should not be held or moved as it can be damaged. Even before that, a sufficiently flat and firm floor surface must be prepared so that Babel can sit firmly. 

The maximum load capacity is 250 kg under static load. A heavier weight component must be placed unhurriedly and must not be seated suddenly onto the top platform of Babel to avoid internal damage.  

The Music

As always, when it comes to an objective perspective, here are some of the reference titles/albums used during this review.  

Wellfloat Babel has managed to consistently maintain its qualities and not mix the negative and positive attributes (as with many audio accessories) in the variety of music and the implementation with various electronic components. 

This may sound exaggerated, but it is for a reason and serves to make a clearer point: We can tell in a few hundred milliseconds whether the music sounds right or wrong by the power of our human supercomputer and all the receptors. Especially if we're exposed to live and recorded music perpetually. And Babel has this unique quality of stringing music together in a very different way, closer to reality, closer to the essence. 

The mark of WELLFLOAT Babel was immediately apparent in the iconic KLF song "Last Train To Trancentral," arranged by Snelle Fjöll and performed by Orkester Mandolina Ljubljana, conducted by Andrej Zupan.

The beauty of sound that can be obscured by distortion is exactly what WELLFLOAT Babel is battling against. In "Last Train To Trancentral," the orchestra was presented with an expanded vertical and horizontal virtual proportion and a clearer focus that let the mass of music unfold more easily. This shift-up was not unawares.

There was no tinkering with the treble and high aural firmament, but rather the music was permitted to flow freely while the musical narrative remained in the foreground and the instruments took their clear place. Here the tree/forest analogy was sublimely put into practice. 

In its impact, WELLFLOAT escaped the auditory scene analysis, too often instantly evoked by mechanical imprinting of audio accessories. Instead, Babel allowed the music to be accessed first and foremost for its rich, vigorous and emotional content. 

Just a week ago I had the pleasure of hearing the Liv Andrea Hauge Trio from Norway live ten minutes away from me. The repertoire was the same as on the album Live from St. Hanshaugen, which Liv Andrea Hauge recorded in her living room a few months ago, accompanied by Georgia Wartel Collins on bass, and August Glännestrand on drums. 

I intentionally played Live from St. Hanshaugen every day for more than a week and twice just a few minutes before the concert to get under my skin and fully comprehend the live performance as I love Nordic jazz and this particular kind touches my soul. 

Liv Andrea Hauge Trio's lyrical chord progressions, sparkling harmonies, and stand-out musical energy by the addition of Babel captivated even more attention, deepened the interaction, and further brought the performance to the music's melting point.

Each piece on the live album has its captivating silver lining, but perhaps it was most apparent with the upbeat and enchanting "Telthusbakken."

The whole album takes the listener to a wide-ranging swath of sounds that with "I august" mimic Nordic folklore with eerie compositions expert wizardly of double bass, drums, and piano. 

With Babel, the attention to melody mirrored what was happening live, especially the raw energy that had more density and a larger amount of sonic focal points allowed note overlays to sound richer, the decay and delays phases to stretch out a bit more, and the leading edges of the notes to be less rounded.  

I was more than surprised by the extent to which WELLFLOAT Babel managed to reveal even more fabric of the music, touching on the main, most emblematic virtues of live music.

It is rare that a mechanical device comes along with such potency, and exceeds expectations, and yet the WELLFOAT flagship device managed to shape a far better musical experience than I could have imagined.

These qualities have been further developed and revealed with Avishai Cohen's album Seven Seas, where I have not lost attention to a forward-pushing presentation that sparks some footers and similar devices. Babel has also avoided exciting or cutting certain frequencies. 

On the upbeat "Seven Seas," the instruments were not accented and simply accumulated in the sound sphere. The Babel added physical authority, revealed the necessary dynamic variety, and "tuned" into the close proximity to real-world timbre and tone. 

Cohen's double bass became a bit less fuzzy, gaining clarity and balancing act, not sounding overblown or overpowering, but rather fixated and focused.

When a balance is achieved, performers gain credibility and tactility and feel less like they are virtual entities.

I never look for exact, analytical, laser-sharp focus in music, but Babel significantly expanded the precise mapping of instruments (and performers) by achieving more adequate projection by removing an extra layer of focus distortion. 

The Ellington album All Too Soon comes with a unique time stamp, a time capsule differentia that hauls the listener back in time.

Babel has significantly increased clarity and resolution, which translates into less distortion. Celebration Of Duke was rendered with a better holographic sphere, making the three-dimensionality of the vibraphone even more apparent. A rare phenomenon also occurred. The beginning and end of each note were more precise, tight in microscopic scale, and with more exactitude in time.

On "Caravan (Instrumental)," Pass's guitar gained distinctive vitality along with the vibraphone, fanning out in the middle as if the glue were falling off, allowing the guitar to float more freely and find its obvious place at the epicenter without being diverted by other instruments or merging with the upper middle bass notes of the double bass, which can happen all too easily.

Carter's bass was also better controlled without overshadowing the other instruments and without altering the mellifluence. 

A footer or accessory that depends heavily on steel and rubber inlays tends to lose its primary energy through deformity rather than dispersing it. Here Babel works on the contrary by introducing a well-thought-out balancing act, keeping the music in line with the forces of the music. 

A variety of different accessories used under the electronic component can push La Mer - Claude Debussy - Charles Münch and the Boston Symphony Orchestra to reminisce interworkings of an old arcade game or the famous Star Wars intro text roll by falsely causing music to sound like a stop-motion sound framing. Artificial and distant.  

With Babel, Le Mer was openly distributed in time and space with sparking momentum and mastery, accumulating depth and sublime level of details, echoing the conductor's elevated plane by encountering the orchestral momentum with all its splendor and drama. 

Through the use of WELLFLOAT Babel, the glorious crescendos of "De l'aube à midi sur la mer" appeared from an unexpected place letting it occupy the environment with a sounder palpable presence. 

Babel takes an unusual approach to its mastery. The taps into the brain in a way where the aural balance complies with what happens in a real-life situation in a real concert hall. 

WELLFLOAT Babel's resounding mechanical heart paves the way to music crux, not the other way around. Many high-end accessories too often draw the listener's attention to their sonic signature, rather than supporting and elevating the music, and disappearing as they do their assignment.


Designer Ryoji Nagata of Wellfloat started with a blank canvas and each mechanical part was thoroughly thought out and researched. 

What looks like a simple approach from the outside hides the complex mechanics under a stylish design by Shiro Nakamura. 

Babel has a linear quality, where the individual elements work together in concert as a strong whole to absorb unwanted vibrations and serve to efficiently engross and dampen violent shocks and dissipate mechanical bustle and noise. 

WELLFLOAT Babel is a tribute to the material-industrial-mechanical design, where the mechanical heart is the core and essence, with strong roots in industrial design.

Babel acts as a mechanical foil cocooning the music with a substance that creates a better sonic environment for the operation of electronic devices. It was furtively designed and conceived from scratch to honor the unique and individual qualities of materials. 

Babel's raison d'être lies in harmonizing the individual qualities of materials and concepts that define the essence of the final product.

WELLFLOAT Babel skillfully combines individual technical approaches and elements that work together as an overall console, avoiding structural obstacles and precincts.

Many similar devices can introduce all kinds of negative side (de) effects audible in the dynamic range, but WELLFLOAT works quite differently, dealing with mechanically induced feedback, taming and eliminating resonances, dispatching polyphonic noise and micro-vibrations that constitute most objective interference.

Each electronic device is conceptually complex, even a small change can change and affect the sound 

As with time and phase in both analog and digital domains, mechanical hysteria is very subtle yet remarkably distinct. Its reduction or attenuation affects the way the ear and brain decode the incoming sound data, 

With directly presented signals, our sensory mechanism clings to these triggers at a high rate of rejection when something is wrong. This affects not only the ears but also the incoming acoustic information deciphered through bones and skin and then forwarded to the appropriate centers in the brain. 

WELLFLOAT Babel is primarily concerned with the optimal elimination of mechanical noise from electronic devices, such as transformers' resonances.

Babel's unconventional approach does not overexcite. It is laser-based, hits the sweet spots, and takes control of transients that, interestingly, are directly related to even/odd harmonic content and wave anomalies.

Babel's response to all types of peculiarities results in demonstrably better sound reproduction that does not sound utilitarian but conveys better presence and even removes the transistor fizz that is closely associated with the reduction of some odd harmonics content.

But not only that. WELLFLOAT Babel also works in the lower registers, affecting the timing and our neural response via vibrotactile and vestibular pathways.

Audiophiles and music lovers who have made it this far will want to know how cathartic the result is.

The fast zebra crossing logic can not keep up with what Babel does. The WELLFLOAT device is a powerful extension of careful research and development that ultimately brings music to a natural balance that can be perceived through the auditory system.

Many similar mechanical devices can suppress the raw energy of the music. Babel works in contrast to this. It gives a factual naturalness and allows the mind and ears to relax and dive deeper into the enjoyment of music.

WELLFLOAT has an almost universal appeal, which was confirmed in various electronic devices, from preamplifiers to amplifiers and phono stages.

The aural tactile experience was surprisingly distinct and far more "hands-on" than I expected. It resulted in an unexpected restitution quality, something out of the ordinary, allowing for a smoother, natural sound, scrutinized with musical realism and dynamic evenness, with the music less likely to deviate from its predetermined course.

WELLFLOAT Babel is the result of concentration, commitment, and sheer will to create something extraordinary. The obvious value reveals itself with the music reproduction 

When the electronic component is out of balance, it becomes a victim of sonic porosity. Babel amends this in a controlled way resulting in a newfound sonic balance.

It's the detail that matters, that's all. Especially with the mechanics and the WELLFLOAT compliance, a kind of auto-focus or even better to say anti-shake ability is instantly evident to the same extent as with cameras,  something that photography aficionados will immediately understand. 

The music comes from the Nero Opaco blackness, which makes it naturally warm and dark, as in real life, and deals among other things also with bass modes where that can penetrate components and construction at the special crunch points and change the music.

Babel also skillfully avoids toning or attenuating down the music force that can vanquish the essence of the music. This alone makes WELLFLOAT an outstanding gem.

WELLFLOAT Babel was undoubtedly built for high-end audio connoisseurs who want to finally customize their high-end audio system.

There's something timeless about Babel, a blend of Bauhaus minimalism, and Haute Horlogerie with a strong sense of Japanese grace that evokes a sense of bespoke Grand Seiko craftsmanship.

The extraordinary design of WELLFLOAT Babel is a dichotomy between science and art, consisting of different materials and mechanics, where even the setting of the screws affects the sound and is closely linked to rigidity.

WELLFLOAT Babel provides a more controlled environment with wide-ranging appeal, connecting the listener to a more perfected, physically distinct, and painterly experience as if the pixel count were increased by effective resolution. 

Babel may seem to impose its form, but it actually allows the chosen materials to behave at their will and with a specific designation. Through its design, Babel deals uniformly with the varying weight/mass of its components, surprisingly combining the juxtaposition of damping and stiffness.

The WELLFLOAT Babel has very little or no natural vibration interval, nor self-oscillation which leads to the adaptation of vibrations and micro-resonances into a harmonious whole with a sense of autonomy, without compromising the indivisibility of sound and music. 

Due to its design, it operates in the realms of stiffness, following the laws of physics, like everything else where energy is transformed or changed desirably and intentionally to achieve the expected result. 

While some high-end audio feet and supports can take the sound to both extremes, far from this, the WELLFLOAT Babel is a potent amalgam that introduces harmony to the sound and music and transcends the usual idiom by leaps and bounds, taking away the various levels of fuzziness and blur from the music.  

When I first unwrapped the WELLFLOAT Babel, my internal sensors triggered a familiar sensation associated with my reaction to and affection for the workings of mechanical watches.

I love the industrial, minimalist, yet highly technical design of WELLFLOAT Babel, which immediately bestows an interesting solid-standing aura. Even without putting it into practice. 

Babel looks substantial yet feels elegant and refined, an art object that is solitary and stylish even without its functionality being engaged. 

It is rare that when form follows function, the result is both esthetically pleasing and powerful, but Babel combines these two apparent opposites in the most elegant way.

Thanks to its design, there is no friction or wear and tear with Babel, so it not only appeals to a passion for novelty but also offers a substantial, timeless design that will last and perform for years to come. Babel feels indestructible. 

For what it represents technically, design-wise, and sonically, I wholeheartedly give the WELLFLOAT Babel Mono & Stereo 2022 Upper Echelon Class Product Award. •

Matej Isak


  • Design: 12 small WELLFLOAT mechanisms (3 machines x 4 layers)
  • Material: Stainless steel, well-machined solid aluminum
  • Dimensions: 175mm in diameter, 65mm high
  • Weight: 2.9kg


Postcode 563-0023
1-10-19, Iguchido,
Ikeda-shi, Osaka,

Email: Link