$150 for an adapter? Yes, it was worth it. It all matters.
I recently purchased a pricey S/PDIF cable. I knew it would be easier to re-sell if it had RCA connectors on both ends. The digital input on my DAC has RCA only, the output on my Empirical Audio Off-Ramp 5 has a choice of BNC, AES and I2S. So, I started with a $3 adapter on one end of the cable. A month later, I tried a $35 adapter.
This S/PDIF cable had received very favorable reviews. Unfortunately, with these adapters, it never sounded as good as I had hoped.
- With the brass adapters, the sound was diffuse & bloated. The sound-stage was flat as a pancake.
- With the nickel-plated adapters, the high piano notes were never true.
- I avoid rhodium-plated adapters or connectors since the HF always sounds harsh in my system.
So, I took a $150 chance and purchased a Purist Audio adapter from Albert at Porterhouse Audio. Voila! The Purist adapter completely changed the nature of the cable. Now, the S/PDIF cable sounds wonderful. Beautiful rich tone and along with a deep/wide sound-stage. Jim Aud of Purist said that he uses his expensive wiring for connecting the internal leads in the adapter. So, a taste of his wiring is added to the mix.
Perhaps, I should have ordered the S/PDIF cable with the correct connector to begin with. What I’m hearing - sounds great. Now, I’m trying to figure out how to afford a Purist cable. If their adapter is that good, their cables must be amazing.