Recommend me some Hi-End Power Cords, USB and IC’s.

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by fish, Oct 16, 2021.

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  1. blakep

    blakep Forum Resident

    That is certainly not what I was saying or suggesting and you're telling him that none of it will make any difference (or it will make minimal difference not worth the financial outlay), which is clearly not his experience. He's already told you and everyone else taking that position exactly that.

    What I was suggesting is that he would like to hear from people with experience with the actual cables that they might be recommending and information as to how they performed and sounded (albeit in another user's system), particularly compared to some other cables. Which I think is a very valid approach and one that I might actually take.

    He doesn't really give a **** whether someone a) doesn't believe that cables can make a difference or b) has no experience with any of the cables he might be interested in pursuing or auditioning. Perfectly reasonable and logical to me but obviously not to some others participating here.

    I haven't really weighed in with any recommendations for the OP because all of the wire (power cords, IC's, speaker cables) I use in my system falls quite a ways short of what he might be prepared to spend as outlined in his original post. (It's all listed here in my system anyway).

    I am certainly not in the "wire is wire" camp but I also draw the line in fairly low budget land when it comes to the wire that I use in my own system.

    I have, however, cryogenically treated every conductor in my system (if it has not already been treated so by the manufacturer) at a (to me at least) very reasonable cost in terms of how it's enhanced performance and also paid for burn in on devices like the Audiodharma cable cooker or Nordost Vidar, post cryo. Both of which would certainly leave me open to ridicule from the "wire is wire" crowd. But I really don't care about that.

    By my calculations I might have about $1000 into wire in a $12-$15K system. My view on wire is that it is indeed a component and that cumulative effects have to be taken into consideration. That's not to say that I don't find some of the audiophile wire out there to be very overpriced, because I do. But I'm getting older now and starting to feel that way in general about components as well.
    macster likes this.
  2. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    You just made a long rambling vent and not once did you offer the OP anything.
    Only correcting me. Do you see the irony?

    I believe I have the knowledge base to comment on cables: power, signal, etc.
    Without hearing them.
    Both sides never hurt. I'm not telling anyone to stop saying they hear big changes, only that I don't, and can't quantify a reason why one would.

    Whether he attaches import, that is up to him.
    You telling me what to do is a waste of electrical power. So conserve.

    When I ran a consulting engineering firm I would not have been in business long with a throw $ at it and see what sticks mentality.

    I treated the client's $ (both private sector and governmental) as if were mine:maximum benefit per expenditure, IF they needed to spend it at all.

    There is a reason there is a large used cable market, upgrades, etc.
    All I'm trying to do is state to take your time, change one variable at a time, but before any of that make sure what you have is optimized and the cable is the issue.

    If it's being done just for fun, ok too, but have realistic expectations.

    He already has some very nice cables.
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2021
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  3. fish

    fish Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA

    Oh man, yeah some of the above. Always hunting down interferences.
    No issues going on, noise floor must be ridiculously low.
    rooms been tweaked too.
    Now im just tweaking and improving cables.

    Not using a battery but im going to modify the mac mini with a linear power supply soon enough.
    Also installing a few SR Tesla Plex SE outlets shortly.

    Im also trying out some ICs between the W4S DAC and the Marantz.

    Alalysis Plus Copper Oval
    Copper Oval-In Micro Interconnects - Analysis Plus
    Great Bass, rich but not bloated. Nice polite high end, extended at times.
    Smaller soundstage than I can get with narrower layering front to back.

    JPS Labs UltraConductor 2
    UltraConductor 2
    Very Big and Focused soundstage. Detail is sharp and precise. Far reaching image with lots of defined layering in the mixes.
    Not much weight to properly support the mids and highs. But the extension is there, its more so noticeable in the subs.
    I can see these being overly revealing and fatiguing on Mid-Fi or poor source.

    I want a combination of the 2!
    I want something better than either of them.
    Each does something the other doesn't.
    Each around $350 msrp.

    Thats the hardest part.
    Detail and Soundstage - or - Richness and Weight.
    Analytical - or - Musicality
    You need ALL of it for it to be right but its not easy to find. Few ICs can do it all and when someone finds one, they charge allot of cash for it. Like mushrooms.

    Moving up the budget opens up more choices that give you more of both worlds with less compromises.

    And at some point you hit the max potential for your components, find the weak links and know its limits.
    Im Nowhere near Hi-End Audiophile with little to no compromises.
    But im happy working my way up.
    Calvin_and_Hobbes likes this.
  4. fish

    fish Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
    So you know. Someone I know that has been retailing audio gear for decades had a contract with Apple some years ago - very confidential at the time. They bought and borrowed TENS of Thousands of dollars in cables; power cables, interconnects, speaker wire... He wasn't allowed to talk about it for a while. Now he can, obviously. But the Apple team involved were researching the sound of wire and connections for upcoming products and later chose and developed the wire used to best maximize the sound and video quality.
    They told him that the White Flat power cords used on Apple products like the Mini were tuned to make it sound and look better and that much of the products they bough from him contributed to the decisions they made.
    Apple cares and listens.
    Calvin_and_Hobbes likes this.
  5. searing75

    searing75 Forum Resident

    Western NY
    Belden 9271 for all interconnects.
  6. Ilusndweller

    Ilusndweller S.H.M.F.=>Reely kewl.

    Columbus, Ohio
    One of (more than) a handful of Stereoland topics that will never cease to go

    Last edited: Oct 21, 2021
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  7. fish

    fish Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
    HA! Ive used lots of Belden wire. Great for the turntables usually and long runs. Studio days...
  8. konoyo

    konoyo Well-Known Member

    That’s fascinating - what do you mean by White Flat power cords, and do you mean HomePod Mini by “Mini”?
  9. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Scottish Borders
    I swapped out some mains cables a year or so ago. They didn't sound massively different on my setup, but I kept them all the same.

    The £10 cables remain plugged in still and are highly recommended. The JPS Labs and Russ Andrews ones they replaced were subsequently sold on Ebay.
    Swann36 likes this.
  10. fish

    fish Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
  11. fish

    fish Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
    Might be the Active Speakers.
    I have a pair of older KRK Series2 V8 studio monitors. The V8's back then were highly used in studios across the world. It was the days before the corp buyouts when KRK was awesome. Not so much today. The ones I still have were around $1500 new almost 20 years ago. The sub was closer to $2000.
    KRK V8II Active Studio Monitors User Reviews | zZounds

    I tried cable rolling in them and the effect was small at best.

    I had the V88 as well! Sold them.
    KRK V88 Monitors | Jared's Shop | Reverb

    "These are a hidden gem in KRK product history. Made only for a few years starting in 2001, they were the initial top of the line in the V series monitors. This is also the period of time where KRK components were all USA made in Huntington Beach before KRK switched to using Chinese amps & tweeters on their newer products."
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2021
    macster likes this.
  12. Barnabas Collins

    Barnabas Collins Senior Member

    These threads make me so glad I can't hear differences in cables. I've tried several and I've not noticed any changes whatsoever. Yes, my profile is filled out. Some were more boutique/high end than others but I eventually just settled on Blue Jeans for most of my needs. I just don't know why anyone here thinks anyone is going to change anyone else's mind about the subject. I'm not such a d*ck that I'm going to tell others they're not hearing what they think they are hearing. If aftermarket high end cabling makes one happy, I'm not going to argue with that. After all, it's just a hobby. An expensive one, but a hobby all the same.
    bever70 and macster like this.
  13. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Scottish Borders

    Though having been through many interconnects and many mains plugs and mains blocks in the last 15-20 years or so, with many systems, I've yet to find a plug, cable or block that ever did more than moving my speakers around by a few inches proved to be a game changer.

    Of course, they're valuable - accessories I mean - but the real truth of this game is down to great recordings, well mastered, in systems that are replayed in a well thought out home setup.

    The "everything is important" notion in our hobby is misleading and pulls hobbyists down unnecessary rabbit holes that does nothing for the credibility of the hobby.
    elvisizer, krimson and Ilusndweller like this.
  14. elvisizer

    elvisizer Forum Resident

    San Jose
    not at all! first, the USB port receiving the signal should be capable of rejecting the jitter. But . . . not all USB ports do a great job of this, so if you're using badly made 15-foot USB cables along with a poorly designed usb input on the receiving device you could measure some jitter on the receiving end of the cable run. ASR forum tested that once, and corroborated it. Still not enough jitter that it should make the output sound different . . . . but IEEE isn't wrong here.
  15. elvisizer

    elvisizer Forum Resident

    San Jose
    not sure what the wire core is, but apple does do a good job at making sure the power cords and power supplies they build into their products are properly shielded and quiet.
    I still remember the first gaming pc I built, I hooked up the realtek audio output and started hearing all this interference from the power supply- I thought it was broken- since I'd only had Macs before that I'd never heard a computer make that noise before! :laugh:
  16. fish

    fish Forum Resident Thread Starter

    NY, USA
    I think so too. And apple went way beyond shielding. The team was interested in hearing all the different wire and how it sounds, what other people in their retail database thought and bought. They took it very seriously and acknowledged the difference in both audio and video quality from different wire regardless of the spec which all easily reach the minimum levels.
  17. Ilusndweller

    Ilusndweller S.H.M.F.=>Reely kewl.

    Columbus, Ohio
    Having said that, I also subscribe (and even more than the above ) to the "if it sounds good(better) then it sounds good(better)" theory, even if this is bc of knowing what is what and buying into the schmarketing. I could care less how people spend their money, or what makes them happy/floats their boat. Im just giving my opinion based on my experiences.
  18. motorstereo

    motorstereo Forum Resident

    To answer the op's question here's my recommendation Supra LoRad Power Cable CS-US with Terminations: Madisound Speaker Components ( Reason I recommend these reasonably priced cables is because it made a difference enough that it required adjustment on my new sub. Call it snake oil, snake pis or whatever anyone cares to as I know I had to lower the sub's level 3db as it's louder now than it was with the stock cord. To me a 3db change is significant. To other folks it may not be audible.
    FWIW I'm totally uninterested in debating the merits of cabling and I'm just posting an answer to a question and relating my hands on experience with the product I suggested.
  19. SteveFord

    SteveFord Forum Resident

    Shnecksville PA
    Or if you want to DIY, this is the Supra LoRad distributor and you can buy the power cord by the meter:
  20. Synthfreek

    Synthfreek I’m a ray of sunshine & bastion of positivity

    Just get the Sherwood.
    patrickd and Barnabas Collins like this.
  21. MikeMusic

    MikeMusic Forum Resident

    Surrey, England
    A long time ago in a forum far, far away...

    There was a bloke going on about how power cables made his system sound better.
    Knowing he was wrong or needed a change in medication I decided to try some cheap Russ Andrews / Kimber cables on my then Linn/Naim system so I could forget about it, sell the cables back on Ebay and move on.
    Very surprised to hear improvements. Swapped them back and forth a few times.
    Dragged the boss in to check if she could hear the improvement. She did.
    Upgraded the system and cables many times since.
    I only buy if I can hear improvements.

    More music being delivered
  22. Ontheone

    Ontheone Poorly Understood Member

    I didn't have the patience to read the entire thread but my advice is to simply buy and try used cables. You will be able to sell them for about the same price you purchased them at if you don't like them. I have found that there isn't much difference between decently designed/implemented power cables and there's no need in my systems to go beyond a $200 Audio Envy cable. Where I have noticed the biggest difference is which amps respond best to power cable swaps as not all amps/power supply are designed equally with respect to noise rejection. I could hear zero difference between a stock and $2000 power cord with my Pass amp but even a minor upgrade to the stock power cable that came with my Sugden A21SE made a huge difference. In general, cables of any type are literally the last thing I choose to focus on in my system just based on a lot of trial and error/buying and selling. Good luck on your cable journey.

    Edit: This interview with Nelson Pass does a good job explaining how some amps can be designed with circuits that do a better job than others rejecting noise on AC power lines.

    Power According to Pass
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2021
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  23. MLutthans

    MLutthans That's my spaghetti, Chewbacca! Staff

    Closed due to incivility.
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