Damn it........... Cables matter!!

245

Comments

  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 8,965
    Yes. The Rotel is probably providing some surge protection, but I suspect it is restricting DTCD, and possibly degrading the sound. Just conjecture on my part, based on my old Panamax power conditioners.
  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 6,589
    edited January 7
    There is some nice interconnects out there. I have made some nice sets but keep finding myself back at AQ diamondbacks. Used their pretty reasonable. They AQ golden gates are newer and reasonably priced also.
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    BlueFox wrote: »
    Yes. The Rotel is probably providing some surge protection, but I suspect it is restricting DTCD, and possibly degrading the sound. Just conjecture on my part, based on my old Panamax power conditioners.

    Could you elaberate? I'm afraid that my experience is limited when it comes to power conditioning equipment. This device has onboard batteries. I was hoping for voltage stabilization of supply electronics more so than anything. The amp is on its own 20 amp circuit.
  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 8,965
    Sure. A good start is too read, and watch, the Shunyata technical videos, FAQs, and articles. Nobody understands power better than Shunyata.

    http://www.shunyata.com/index.php/support/technical-articles

    http://www.shunyata.com/index.php/support/videos

    http://www.shunyata.com/index.php/support/faqs
  • FTGVFTGV Posts: 3,490
    mhardy6647 wrote: »
    Me, too, I suppose. In my case, I have always found my hifis to sound much better with cables than without them.

    The one exception is the blackness of the background. That's a bit better sans cables -- but the tradeoff is that the foreground's kind of black, too.

    ;)
    Likewise I find dynamic range vastly improved with cables than without. ;)

  • PolkMaster1PolkMaster1 Posts: 847
    Folks...

    CABLES CABLES CABLES...

    You invest in quality audio equipment? Then you better invest in quality audio cables.

    They do matter when it comes to fine audio quality. I have been saying this for years.
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    Agreed
  • machonemachone Posts: 697
    Yeah, I just upgraded by Hafler DH500 with a new power cord and could not believe the improvement.
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    I just ordered a used set of MIT interconnects for pre to amp. Also a set of 10 gage bi wire jumpers.
  • treitz3treitz3 Posts: 11,903
    Atta boy, crashb4. Welcome to the real audiophila. Down the rabbit hole you go!!!

    Tom
  • VSAT88VSAT88 Posts: 477
    Experimenting with DIY interconnects now using Belden microphone cable. I can make them up any length I want and I like that. So far so good, but as said above we will see.
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    I ordered some 28 gage silver wire. I figured that I would do a little experimenting with interconnects as well. We'll see how that goes.
  • tonybtonyb Posts: 27,215
    Keep in mind, not everything you try is going to float your boat. That said, don't waste your money buying retail, this stuff depreciates faster than a Kardashian taking a selfie.

    Take it from those of us who have decades playing with this stuff, buy used name brands and your less likely to have a turkey on your hands.

    MIT, Analysis Plus, Kimber, Audioquest, Acoustic Zen, Harmonic Technology, Wireworld, Transparent, and many others.

    Look at sites like Audiogon, HIFI Shark, US Audio Mart, your local Craigslist or right here in our own FM.

    Remember, your system is only as good as the weakest link, and cables are part of your system.
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    tonyb wrote: »
    Keep in mind, not everything you try is going to float your boat. That said, don't waste your money buying retail, this stuff depreciates faster than a Kardashian taking a selfie.

    I agree 100%. All cables are second hand. I try to make sure that I purchase cables that I can recoup my money on if I don't like them. Adds a second layer to the choices made and ensures that they are fully researched.
  • treitz3treitz3 Posts: 11,903
    Buying used IMO is the way to go. After more than 15K spent on just IC's on my rig over the years, I do not recall ever buying one new. Just spend a little extra on Caig De-Oxit to clean them up and they are as good as new. Just make sure the connection is solid and you are good to go.

    My general observations with the sonics of IC's over the years are as follows;

    Silver - Very detailed, sometimes harsh on the top end and some vocals, slight loss of mid bass to lower bass. Horns and string guitars sound great. Great for low level listening or getting detail out of a speaker that isn't as revealing as one might prefer.

    Copper - IMO, the overall go-to cable for a complete and linear frequency soundscape. Great bass, complete highs, less of a tendency to get bright during loud passages. Overall, a very well rounded cable.

    Metalurgy - This is a mixture of metals. These typically combine the best of what silver and copper have to offer. These cables can vary widely as to what is offered sonically, so it is a hit or miss, depending on your system.....but with risk, sometimes there is a reward. Best to get feedback from an experienced ear when it comes to mixed metalurgies and try with an open perspective.

    Network boxes - This is where the magic can happen. Not all cables that have network boxes attached are the end all to be all. Some that I have tried matched what I had heard with all of the other aforementioned cables with a few differences here or there. Others that can start as low as around a Benjimin/pair can make the difference between a good system and the start of a great system. Transparent and MIT come to mind when I think about cables like this.

    With that said, IME out of all of these various types of cables, the network box type cables have had the most positive effect along my own personal audio journey. I'll get back to those in a moment. Another thing you may want to try out or research is battery packs that come with certain IC's (think AudioQuest). You get the same benefits as the cable itself but with a lower noise floor along with shielding that helps to prevent any additional noise from entering the signal. What this means in layman's terms is a cleaner signal with less interference from outside sources, which in turn, provides more of the music to come through to be amplified.

    Back to the network type cables. In my experience only, this is where my audio journey took a turn for the better. Much better. I tried some various MIT cables and I was impressed but (for me), their was something about the coloration, if you will, that I wasn't too fond of. Many, MANY people prefer the MIT's and by all means, I am not bashing them. In my particular case, it was when I discovered what a Transparent cable could do for my system.

    I got hooked up with a pair of low end Transparents that I think I bought for around $175 many, many, many moons ago. I was very surprised with these cables because what I thought was a room issue turned out to be a cable issue. Here's what happened.

    When I installed them into the system, a mid-bass hump disappeared. I had always thought this was a room node.....never once did I think it was a cable issue. Quite the lesson for me along my audio journey. With the loss of this "reverb" or "overloading" of the mid bass spectrum of the frequencies, along with the seemingly constant overponderance of the mid bass, all of a sudden all of the detail and masked musical information, subtle nuances and detail were easily heard. That meant that the bass and mid-bass regions got tighter with more impact, texture was greatly improved, shimmer and decay along with natural rolloff was so much more natural and realistic within the reproductive effort.

    I was so impressed that I decided to look up the line for the next step up. Long story short (I don't want to bore you), I ended up being equally impressed with the next step up that I went up yet another level. It is at this point that I am done with cables as the Transparent Reference (to me) offers everything I have always yearned for in a cable and then some. Well, that and I can't afford to go up to the next lineup without my wife divorcing me.

    Anyhoo, I just thought I'd share a little audio wisdom that I have personally collected over the years. You can take it or leave it as I know you have only recently popped your cherry with regards to cables and what they can do. There will be exceptions to my observations as every system is different. I have cables (Yes, I still own most of the cables I ever bought) sounded great in one application and as soon as I switched out a component? Yeah, all of a sudden, they didn't sound so hot. So back to the cable box I went. Cables that sounded great to outstanding in other systems I had heard, didn't sound so good in mine. Everything matters and every component is dependent on every other component within the chain.

    What you are looking for is a cable that will offer you synergy with YOUR system. I wish you luck on your search but I will say this.....have fun along your journey. You may be happy 3 cables from now. You may not be happy yet 100 cables from now....but when you find what you want, you will know.

    Then don't change a darn thing. Sit back and enjoy the music.

    Tom
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    Thank you so much for your incite and experience. One can spend many years gaining the knowledge that can be learned by one post such as this. Much appreciated!
  • treitz3treitz3 Posts: 11,903
    Thank you for the kind words. You are welcome.

    Tom
  • DSkipDSkip Posts: 12,905
    It's all hogwash. Spend 5 minutes talkin with Tom and you figure that out quickly. >:)
  • treitz3treitz3 Posts: 11,903
    Hahaha, I know, right? Congrat's on your newborn chief.

    Tom
  • lightman1lightman1 Posts: 8,051
    Tom and I have had a few listening sessions. At times he would get so analytical that I wanted to slap him. B)
  • Joey_VJoey_V Posts: 5,701
    Only caveat, not all silver is harsh. A lot can be due to type of wire, stranded or solid core, geometry, purity, etc.

    For example, no harshness or Midbass leanness on the AQ Wel, even compared to well known copper cables like AS Satori and AQ Oak.
  • mikeyb128mikeyb128 Posts: 2,187
    Every cable in my system is silver. No harshness here either.
  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 8,965
    The only silver cable I have experience with is the Revelation Audio Passage Cryo-Silver Reference DB-25 umbilical power cable. This replaced the stock Pass cable between the preamp and its power supply, and this cable resulted in a virtual upgrade to a new preamp far beyond the stock XP-20.
  • crashb4crashb4 Posts: 134
    MIT interconnects arrived today. Got a chance to do a little listening tonight. Immediate impression: further clarity in upper end frequencies. Most notable however is that the cymbals have moved from the background and are now front and center. Their clarity is remarkable. I also hear much greater depth in vocals with heavy reverb. It's much easier to hear and is very clear. All in all, a nice improvement. Next up will be silver interconnects for my source equipment. Note that some of the improvements may be due to the RDO-194 tweets. They are hitting the 50 hour mark and seem to be widening in their response. The 10 gage bi wire jumpers are due tomorrow to replace the lame originals. I can't wait to get the move behind me. Then I can concentrate on the crossover upgrade. I guess it never ends, but it sure is fun.
  • VSAT88VSAT88 Posts: 477
    Only silver I have used is some silver bearing solder I got at radio shack. Used it to solder a few cables up for testing. I used Switchcraft SWC-3502A phono/RCA jacks and Belden copper/ tinned microphone cable. I just got thru making up four of them and all I can say is that they sound better than what I had and that was a mismatch bunch picked up here and there mostly used. I have always known interconnects would make a positive difference and now I get to learn by all of your experience here on CP. Thank you.
  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 37,344
    BlueFox wrote: »
    The only silver cable I have experience with is the Revelation Audio Passage Cryo-Silver Reference DB-25 umbilical power cable. This replaced the stock Pass cable between the preamp and its power supply, and this cable resulted in a virtual upgrade to a new preamp far beyond the stock XP-20.

    The Revelation Audio silver umbilical cords are beyond amazing.
  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 37,344
    Crashb4, you'll get even better results using all MIT cables, especially their speaker cables.
  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 8,965
    F1nut wrote: »
    BlueFox wrote: »
    The only silver cable I have experience with is the Revelation Audio Passage Cryo-Silver Reference DB-25 umbilical power cable. This replaced the stock Pass cable between the preamp and its power supply, and this cable resulted in a virtual upgrade to a new preamp far beyond the stock XP-20.

    The Revelation Audio silver umbilical cords are beyond amazing.

    You heard these eh? I was floored when I installed mine.
  • tonybtonyb Posts: 27,215
    The thing with silver, just like copper too, is the cheap stuff is where you'll get the noted harshness. Better quality like all things cost more, and that is where noted harshness in silver separate paths.

    Some cables too have a combination of silver/copper, to offset the weaknesses of each other.
  • Joey_VJoey_V Posts: 5,701
    Enjoying my new AQ Wel power cords. That's all I gotta say

    Cable believer I am
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