The Wire thing PT2

weavercrweavercr Posts: 289
Let me say there is a Difference in wire. But at what point is it cost effective.

The Best wire I have ever heard cost me 2.00 a ft in 1979/80. reindex for inflation 4.68.

It still one of the best out there even today.

That was before the big wire war and overpricing and Hype.


Here is an interesting magazine articale I will repost it even clains there is a difference but not that great of one:


AUDIO CABLES-THE ULTIMATE TEST OF INTEGRITY
There is no subject or component category that has been as revealing of the magazines', and their reviewers', (lack of) integrity as audio cables. In less than 20 years audio cables have gone from an afterthought to a major investment in most systems. The prices have also skyrocketed from less than $ 50 to many thousands for the (so-called) "best".

Simultaneously, the cable companies have slowly become some of the largest advertisers in almost every audio magazine. In return, these magazines have published 'reviews', and "recommendations", of the "better known" (most heavily advertised) brands and models. Meanwhile...

Virtually nothing else has been printed about audio cables by them. (There is one magazine, The Audio Critic, that claims that all cables sound the same. They don't receive cable advertising.) So, one may ask, where is the problem with the magazines' self-proclaimed integrity? They're honest and open, aren't they?

Well, prepare yourself for a totally new perspective about audio cables and the audio magazines:

LACK OF BASIC INFORMATION
I used the expression "cable companies" in the above paragraph. Did you think it was an oversight on my part that I didn't use the word "manufacturer" instead? After all, that is the word that all the magazines (and the 'reviewers') use, or at least imply. I didn't use it for a very good reason: It is not true. What is the truth? That's very simple:

Virtually every cable company you have ever heard of (or ever will hear of) does NOT make its own cables.
Are you surprised, or even shocked by this statement? Don't worry, I was too, and remember, I have been in the audio business for more than 20 years. In fact, I even discovered (from the actual manufacturers) that many cable companies don't even design their own cables. They just choose among different designs, materials, colors, terminations and the overall volume (total length). Then they are quoted a price, and that's it. Some companies may do some custom terminations at their "factory", but that's all the "manufacturing" they'll ever do.

The magazines (and their 'reviewers') know all of this of course, but they make sure that their readers don't. Why do they suppress such basic information from their own subscribers?

The magazines realize that the word "Manufacturer" implies huge initial expenditures and investments of time and money, plus true size and importance. Simply ordering 50 or 100 pairs of cable from some large, 50-year old manufacturing plant, at their normal volume discount, doesn't even begin to convey the same image of scale, the same sense of expertise and commitment, or earn the same amount of respect or prestige, does it?

It's obvious that anyone with some money to invest can do the same thing. Magazines don't want their readers to think that any of their advertisers are just "anyone". The only serious monetary "investments" any of these cable companies will ever make is in "marketing" their products.

LACK OF PROPER AND THOROUGH TESTING
Unlike most other components, audio cables are easy to compare with each other, and now even with a "straight bypass" (a direct connection of two components that bypasses the cables). It should be obvious to all that the closer any cable is to the bypass, the better that cable must be.

One cable company, Wireworld, came out with the Comparator, a device which allows any particular cable to be compared with both a "bypass" position and one other cable. They use it themselves at audio shows, and a few of their larger retailers also use it. (Audio 'reviewers' always avoid the Comparator at shows, during public hours, for fear of exposure.) There is another, older device, the ABX switcher, which also makes it very easy and convenient to compare cables with each othernot against a pure bypass.

How many magazines use these informative devices, including the (free for them) Wireworld Comparator, with its ultra-revealing bypass position? Easy answer: None of them! A few 'reviewers' used the Comparator once, when reviewing some of Wireworld's cable, and never mentioned it again.

Even when they did use the Comparator, the results were always "inconclusive"; all the cables just happened to be "equally different" from the bypass.

The fact that the magazines refuse to even make these simple tests, let alone publish the results, is irrefutable evidence of their continual efforts to protect the inferior models. This means the "inferiors" will still be able to sell their products, give away "review samples" and pay their bills, most importantly their numerous advertising (AKA protection) invoices.

LACK OF COST/PRICE INQUIRY
As we enter this new decade, it is no longer even slightly surprising to see cables for thousands of dollars, even for short lengths. Some cables are now above $ 10,000 a pair. Just 15 years ago, the most expensive cables were all $ 200 or even less, and some of them even used pure silver. So what has happened?

Well, the cable companies discovered that some customers were prepared to pay more, a lot more. Even more important, they also found out that the magazines never questioned, let alone challenged, the prices they charged; $ 500, $ 1,000, $ 2,000, $ 5,000 etc. (Retailers weren't complaining either with this new development; A $ 200 sale became a $ 2,000 sale!)

No one, not even those cable companies that didn't advertise, was ever asked to justify their prices. It didn't matter what the cable was made of, or its build quality, or its terminations etc. No questions asked. Why?

The magazines are afraid, almost to the point of terror, that the readers/customers will discover that the markups on cables are now very similar to those on "illegal drugs", over 1,000%! The outraged reader may even lose his Audio Faith. (See the next subject below.)

LACK OF PRICE/PERFORMANCE COMPARISONS
The magazines' "don't ask, don't tell" policy doesn't stop there. For further protection, they will not even compare any of the (now rare) reasonably priced cables to any of the high-priced models, unless they already know that they are inferior (a fix). Why?

The magazines know that if even one low-priced cable is better, the entire myth that all high-quality cables must also be high-priced will be shattered, permanently.

The magazines have never compromised their "total package of protection" for the cable companies. That's why there exists today a "reference speaker cable", with "rave reviews", from a very well known "manufacturer", which retails at $ 9,500 for an 8' pair, while his own cost is less than $ 100 from the real cable manufacturer, and he can still "sleep like a baby". (Yes, under $ 100 dollars, including terminations!)

SUMMARY
The audio magazines, self-described as "your friends in the audio world", have shown a strange method of demonstrating their "friendship". They have allowed and even contributed to the illusion that ordinary individuals are actually large and serious "manufacturers". They have avoided even the simplest and most basic tests on cables with extraordinary claims and prices. No retail price, even above $ 10,000, has ever been questioned, and any reasonably priced cable is shunned as if it were the audio equivalent of "truth serum". In short, they have completely ignored every serious concern and question relating to these audio products.

There is an obvious consistency and pattern of behavior in evidence here. Audio cables have presented a revealing and ultimate test of every magazines' basic honesty and integrity.

"Ultimate" because there is no other situation in audio where, simultaneously, the readers are so uninformed and vulnerable, the magazines tempted by huge advertising income and their 'reviewers' by "gifts", while the respective 'manufacturers' have unprecedented amounts of gross profits (90% or more of sales) to spread around to anyone who can help them. How many magazines have actually passed this "Ultimate Test"?

The magazines can be "friendly", in fact they can be extremely friendly, but the real question is:


Who are their real friends?
Post edited by weavercr on

Comments

  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited May 2002
    Thats one way to look at the wire debate,
    thats a good post by the way.
    I look at wire not by brand...but by sound.To me I always drulled over Kimbercable.It was my favorite brand untill I got the chance to test it.It to me is a bright sounding cable,If your using dull for a lack of a better word,It can bring some life to that speaker.As a bright amp can.
    I perfer nutral sounding cables more on the warm side.I like my music to have a real sound to it.Being a musician all my life alloud me to create my own music and experience music from the inside.
    I said it before about all the tech speac's,what its made out of ,how much it costs.....whatever....my bottom line is simply this, if I like the way it sounds,I like that wire.
    Again not all wire works with all speakers and amps/preamps and such.Matching up the right combo is the hardest part.Just like some amps shine with some types of speakers, and in the same breath sound like **** with others.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited May 2002
    I agree whole heartedly with the premise of the article. I would also agree with the premise that if a person actually (raise your hands, who has actually done it?) did a double blind test between cables, could you differentiate? Bob Carver did much the same thing with amps a number of years ago, I wish I could find a copy of the famous "white paper".

    All I am saying is, everyone hears what they hear. I absolutely have no problem with that. What I do question is that if somenone says to me, without hard, statistical data, that Brand X is superior to Brand Y. On what basis can you make that claim? This is my big **** with salesmen. SHOW ME THE NUMBERS. You will notice that Bose is VERY reluctant to produce stats and always preface them with the statement that they don't mean anything. Maybe, maybe not. What the numbers do give you is a more firm basis for comparison.

    Added to that, my thing on wire is this: it should transmit the signal with as little compromise as possible. Same thing with my preamp and amp and source. They should all pass the signal and amplify it with as little addition or subtraction as possible. I want to hear what the recording artist intended, not what Carver thinks it should sound like or Adcom or Monster Cable or whatever....to me, it's about maintaining the integrity of the recording.


    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited May 2002
    Finally,
    we are getting somewhere with the wire thing.Sound quality is the be all end all.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited May 2002
    when WEREN'T we there??

    J. Garcia (of the Dead Garcia's)
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited May 2002
    I hope sound quality is the be all , end all....what else would it be?

    I still haven't heard any data (from anyone) on why one cable is better than another. I think if you want a certain 'color' to your sound, audition tons of high-tone wire. If you want it clean, and neutral, get the fatest, shortest run of ofc, and terminate it correctly......

    How do you know cable A is bright, and cable B isn't? Maybe your tweeters ARE BRIGHT, and cable A is xmitting the best signal, and cable B is coloring to your personal preference.

    It's a pissing match, everyone likes the cables THEY have (or drool after). I'm telling you guys, I don't see the point in dropping major coin on this, or buying a more expensive 'brand' of the essentially the same cord.

    All in good fun, but I pretty much think everyone has put their cards on the table, and truth be known, only a dbt would HELP to prove a point, one way or the other. If we can ever get together, I will personally sponser the dbt, and bring an assortment of speaker cable.

    Cheers,
    Russ
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited May 2002
    Russman,
    you need to have a wire sound test with different kinds of wire.Forget the hard data thing, if you want that , there plenty online about wire, go read for yourself.

    Don't buy any of it.....just go to a store that has different kinds of wire and have a salesman do a test.Forget about what he says that this wire is the best on the planet and all that other bull salespeople say.....just sit back and listen, thats the only way....the only way.
    (WAVING MY HAND).........BRING YOUR WIRE WITH YOU........I WILL BRING MY WIRE WITH ME....(.WAIVING MY HAND AGAIN.).....YOU WILL HAVE A GOOD TIME.......I WILL HAVE A GOOD TIME........AT THE END YOU WILL LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CRAZY PEOPLE ONLINE TALKING ALL THIS CRAZY STUFF ABOUT WIRE....I WILL LEARN WHAT ITS ALL ABOUT.................You not watto or jabba the hutt so mind tricks will work on you!!!!


    Im so pumped to see the movie...in just 1 hour 52 mins
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited May 2002
    I really don't know what to say to that. Thanks so much for the great advice. I left my decoder ring at home, so I'll have to decipher it later, but I'm sure it's great.

    Data? Give me ONE link, just one.... I've been searching since Al Gore invented the internet, yet I only come up with speculation and opinions, no scientific facts....

    As far as a get together, I am speaking of a group of forum members, getting together on a weekend, for an audio 'event' at someones humble abode, as we have spoke of in the past....

    -R
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited May 2002
    I have the space. I will provide a reasonable amount of food and drink.

    You guys get here and I will host it.


    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited May 2002
    Common Russ,
    no humor???I tried really I did.Look The hard data i simply won't provide.If you look hard enough, you will find your answers.Go read transparent 's web site.I might sound like salesman ****, but then again it might not.
    This is the last time i will say this..........you need not proof in tech spec's....you need hearing it proof.Then and only then will you learn if wire makes a difference.
    It could go one way or the other.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited May 2002
    before i forget.........

    MAY THE WIRE BE WITH YOU.......ALWAYS!!
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • Norm E. DickeyNorm E. Dickey Posts: 36
    edited May 2002
    Try this site for some hard data, it is from an actual manufacturer and designer, but it is also pro-thier cable. It just makes a lot of sense to me. Hopefully I'll pick up a pair, soon, and report any findings.

    http://www.analysis-plus.com

    go to: THE DESIGN
    Welcome to my home, enter of your own free will and leave a bit of the happiness that you bring. -D
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited May 2002
    Did you see the prices of those wires?????? 100 dollars a foot??? gimmie a break.

    I will agree that the numbers don't mean much without a good demo. I still think, that unless a manufacturer can provide hard data (and what's the harm in providing it by the way?) and show how it translates into a better product I am still going to be skeptical. Bose is famous for this "forget the numbers, we will not provide them because they are meaningless. It's all about how it sounds" Yeah,in the demo environment of thier own choosing and don't believe for a moment that anything in a Bose demo is not well scripted.

    Given that scenario, hopefully one could understand why a person is skeptical about unfounded claims about wire.


    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
  • mantismantis Posts: 15,296
    edited May 2002
    Now that everyone has posted there opnion on wire.Nows the time to go test it.Without testing it the post isn't usefull.
    Go test some wire against the wire you believe in and post back results.
    That would be interesting.
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.
  • RuSsMaNRuSsMaN Posts: 17,995
    edited May 2002
    I concur, nuff said for now.

    Cheers,
    Russ
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.
  • nascarmannnascarmann Posts: 1,464
    edited May 2002
    No, huff not said!

    Do not spend more than $.50 a foot for wire period! How, nuff said!:lol:
    Oh, the bottle has been to me, my closes friend, my worse enemy!
  • bounty5bounty5 Posts: 20
    edited May 2002
    Wow, this site can draw blood!
    RE: the wire thing. Since the wire is simply a conduit to transmit electricity from one point to another, wouldn't there be some generic (non affiliate/non biased) study within basic electrical physics which would provide some of the requested "hard data" mentioned in an earlier thread? I know that some metals (not thinking guage here) transmit more freely than others, why would this not be a good starting point? I seem to recall a great deal of research in recent past by IBM or somebody about new metals used in the design of faster transfer, and equally quick cooling of metals in processors. I would think this might be somewhat transferable information which could be used in a discussion about speaker wire. Since hard data is only as good as the ears/eyes that hear/view it, maybe this is a moot point. I was really hoping that I could simply luck into, or become aware of some industry wire trade secret to make what I have even better.
  • TroyDTroyD Posts: 12,638
    edited May 2002
    bounty5....this is a very emotional subject for some folks........Wire, I think, is probably the most subjective item in audio. From what I've been able to scope out, there is NO hard out there to justify many claims that wire companies make. If there were, my theory is, it would be READILY available. I'm not saying that all wire is equal or some isn't better or different, I'm just saying it depends on the listener. This is a subject with no absolutes or right or wrong answers.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut
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