The Morrow Audio cables are another alternative in excellent low-cost cables. I am using the Morrow cables in two separate audio systems, and the sound quality is outstanding.
There is a lot of discussion in the archives regarding whether pairs of cables need to be matched in length. The consensus (if there is such a thing in high end audio) seems to be that you probably won't hear the difference, but, considering retail value and the fact that you will probably always wonder if the sound could be better with matched-length runs, you are probably better off to buy your cables in matched length pairs.
Thanks Cincy_bob, for your input on both questions. What other cables have you compared with the Morrows in your decision-making process?
I found the Anti-Cables to be very fast and detailed and actually louder in volume than what they replaced, possibly due to their minimalist design, but they tended to be on the bright side, which I dislike. The prior owner of the Anti-cables, who had a 5-8 watt Almarro tube amp and horns said the same. But it all depends on your equipment
Somec59, I hate overly bright sound! My amp is quite "warm' for a s. state, however, and I could do with a bit more clarity. What are you using for amplification?
I tried the following amps: Adcom, Rotel, PS Audio, Yamaha and I settled on a 20 year old and mellow 75 watt Onkyo with a tube pre and Shaninian speakers
I performed several extended cable auditions, and ended up with Audio Art cables all around - very musical and balanced, compared to the Anti-Cables which I found overly spotlit the highs, shortened depth, and ultimately became fatiguing. YMMV, of course, as i find cables are very system dependent. But these have served me well - they have stayed even as my system has progressed. Website is www.audioart.com with which I am NOT affiliated; I just enjoy their cables!
Stuartk, I am not a big cable-swapper, so I can't cite a litany of cable comparisons for you. However, if you check out my virtual systems and my other posts here, you will see that I listen to a lot of acoustic music and prize transparency and timbral accuracy. The Morrow cables will give you that. They compare very favorably with the Jena Labs cables, which are another very well balanced and natural sounding cable.
Thanks for your suggestions. I need long (30 foot) runs and audioart only lists up to 12 foot runs on their site, Slaw3. Cincy_bob, I have contacted Morrow about the question of long runs, am waiting for a response. I also spoke with Paul at Clear Day (what a nice guy!) and he had concerns about such long runs, but unfortunately, I'm stuck with 'em. Mapleshade advertises cable they say is specifically designed for long runs, so I may try that, too.
Call Robert at Audio Art, he'll custom make you anything you like, and will discuss your system and specific needs at length.
30 feet sounds expensive and may not be worth it. Various DIY speaker cable recipies may be worth looking into
Because of the cost, if it was my money I would buy bulk canare 4S11 and use bare wires instead of bananas or spades. If it is visible I would add Techflex to the outside and heatshrink the ends. It is a well balanced cable that I have found to be neutral-warm sounding and does reject interference well. I ran it through walls and bookshelves near AC and it is easy to run, is not stiff, and is the equivalent to 11 gauge. That should be a sufficient gauge for your long run. At that distance, resistance becomes an issue, so check out the electric measurements of any cable you buy. Good luck!
Slaw3, thanks for that correction re: lengths at Audioart. I will call them. Somec59/Tgrisham, I'm not typically an electronics DIY'er, and as I'm currently in grad-school, I don't have the time. Nevertheless, I do appreciate your suggestions. At this point, I have Clear Day, Morrow, Audioart, River Cable and Mapleshade on my list.
I can't afford to buy trial cables from all these vendors, so I'm going to have to narrow it down more. The Mapleshade Clearview Golden Parallel is advertised as designed specifically for long runs, but I don't have the experience/tech. knowledge to evaluate that claim. It's actually one of the lowest priced of all the above. Anybody know anything about it? Paul at Clear Day quoted me a great price, but cannot offer me a 30 day trial, due to the long runs. Anybody heard his cable?
I have the Mapleshade Clearview Golden Parallel speaker cable for my surround channels. I got it because it goes easily under my rug around the edges of my room with no noticeable lumps. The cable is VERY thin and a little delicate. You have to be careful the green coating does not get scrapped off! It can be taped down under the rug. It is very bendy and if handled too much it gets out of shape but can easily be bent into any shape. It is much better than the cheap stuff out there. It is very clear sounding and delivers nice surround effects. If you order directly from Mapleshade they do offer a 30 day money back.
I evaluated Mapleshade cable products and was not impressed. In comparison to my then reference Cardas Cross and Kimber ICs and speaker cables, their ICs were tipped up at the high end, somewhat glary (sp?) and while they sound good at first listen, they ultimately become fatiguing over time. (Reminded me of the Anti-Cables in that respect). I sent them all back.
Have not heard Clear Day cables. I've settled in with my Audio Arts and got off the cable merry-go-round.
Slaw3, I just got off the phone with Robert, per your suggestion and have decided to definitely demo his cables.
Joeyboynj, your referenece to using Mapleshade for a surround system is a bit of a red flag for me. In fact, the Mapleshade website describes this cable in terms of the very same application. I don't mean to sound elitist, but the simple fact is, my system is for music; it's not an extension of my tv. Also, the "delicate" nature of the cable is not excatly a selling point for me. Thanks to both of you for your feedback! Slowly but surely, I'm making progress, thanks in a large part to audiogoners.