|I trolled ebay and audiogon for around 3-4 weeks looking where to make my final purchase of my ic's and speaker cables I needed. I wanted to spend enough money where I was satisfied I wouldn't need an upgrade for many many years. Audiogon auctions and ebay auctions atrracted me, so zu cables on ebay, and verastarr or stealth or timbre on audiogon all looked like products that were bargains at auction prices. But for some reason, Mike Powell's VeraStarr IC's and speaker cables were going for decent prices on audiogon and ebay, with absolutely zero reviews written about them, which signaled to me that word of mouth on verastarr is strong. I also stumbled upon mike's page on a volvo web site where he describes his car which seems to have bi-wired speakers running off of tube amps.... in his car. It seemed like mike was a true enthusiast, so I emailed mike about a small discount if I purchased all the cables I needed in one shot, he agreed, and I finally stopped going dizzy trying to read all the reviews and threads I could find on ic's and speaker cables. I was previously using bedrock speaker cable for the 10ft. run from the amp to my speakers, with 3$ a foot monster cable for the run to my bass cabinet and heresy's. I also use diamondback for the IC's. I had been running up to this point the jolida 202a amp that i own at around 12'oclock (around half) and the proceed cdp at 50 (around half) to fill up my 25x20 room that i have at my maximum tolerance volume for the daytime. I am writing this review after only 20 hrs. of burn in on my verastarr products, but feel compelled nontheless to get threads started on mike's wonderful products. I had to turn my amp down to 10-30/11oclock and now run the proceed at 40 for maximum daytime volume, there is that much more bandwith in the system. When i first upgraded to the bedrock 10 ft run, it sounded like i opened up an extra 5-10 hz in the lower frequencies and similar upgrade in the highs. The verastarr with only a 20 hr breakin add another 10 hz in the lows easily and similar extension on the highs, maybe even moreso with the highs since the silver really lends itself to sharp, crystal clear highs. The bass notes have roundness on the bottom, like they could go lower if that was the true note that was needed. The harmonics hint at greater headroom on the lows and highs, if required. Perhaps this is what some people call soundstage, you can hear space around the notes. The interconnects are constructed with two twisted 20 gauge runs of silver coated long grain copper. Each 20 gauge is individually teflon'd, then around both of the twisted 20 gauge runs is an unattached (at the ends) silver plated copper shield. On top of the shield is another layer of teflon, then the nylon jacket on top of that. WBT mini's on both ends for those tight jolida connections on the back. I will email mike and ask him to check my review and post a follow-up if I described the design of his cables wrong. Where mike's products seem to shine is that each run of wire he uses is individually teflon'd, then he uses the same material that he uses for wire as a shield design over the bundled runs, then he teflon's the outside of that -again-, just to be sure. This concept is used in his speaker cables as well. Hopefully others will post their additions to the verastarr thread, i'm sure someone else out there has some things to say as well. Rather than describe some individual track on 'remember shakti' with john mclaughlin and zakir hussein, which maybe .03% of you have heard if i'm lucky, all i can tell you is the notes have harmonics with them, and the harmonics hint of extra headroom on the lows and highs, if needed. Also I had to turn the volume down 10-20%. I had great sound with the bedrock and diamondback's, which i purchased for almost 600$ from a store, but never the hidden headroom feeling, with that much space around the notes. Mike Powell's company is called Darkstar enterprises. Apparently I was the first to figure out that he got the name from a favorite song both he and I share. 'Darkstar crashes, pouring it's light into ashes. Reason tatters, the forces tear loose from the axis. Searchlight casting, for faults in the clouds of delusion. Shall we go, you and I, while we can?'. Great product, thorough on the design, nice guy, great price. |
Proceed CDP, Jolida 202a modified by parts connexion and upgraded to harmonix el34's. VeraStarr IC and speaker cables, 10 ft. run, 1ft. run, 3ft. run. Going 4 ohms into Klipsch club reference speakers, La Scala and Heresy's, the la-scala's are double cabinets, one for mid-highs and the bass cabinet separate, bi-wirable if wanted. Metal trim on all the edges, black, scala's rated 150 watts and heresy's rated 125 watts. I use the bass crossover on the mid-high cab since running the 4ohm load with heresy's. Approx. price for everything is 5-6k (purchased used on ebay, except the cables and jolida purchased on audiogon).
audioquest bedrock speaker cable, audioquest diamondback ic's.
by Tuffgong on 09-28-03