any other XLR interconnects i should demo?

nearing what i think is the end of my IC comparisons. want to see if there is anything that i've missed. not that i want to try every IC ever made....just want to make sure i've covered most of the more readily available IC's.

i say readily available because i'm looking used/preowned. would consider new but prefer the value in preowned

IC is for my consonance cdp too krell integrated s-300i, feeding aerial 7b's. have tried out 4 so far with one pair inbound. none have jumped up so far and said "i'm the one". understanding that no one can tell me what "the one" is, other then myself.....just looking for things to demo before deciding.

would like to stay under $500 used. would love to spend alot less. listen to 50% rock/alt rock, 30% jazz/smooth jazz, 20% classical.

what i've tried and what my thoughts are so far (read opinion).

Cardas Gold Ref: too warm/veiled

Acoustic Zen Silver Ref II: tad too bright

Audioquest Colorado: bass not tight enough.

Audioquest Columbia: bass not tight enough and a little harsh up top.

Tara Labs Air 2: inbound. will try next week (would appreciate any input on these as well)

if i had choose between the 4 i've tried....the audioquest colorado would be the current front runner.

so has anything flown under my radar that is worth a try? (based on what my feelings are regarding the ones i have tried).

thanks for your help.
Synergistic Research Tesla Accelerator.
Kimber Select KS 1116.
Anti-cables...don't laugh.
Grover Huffman SC, Magnan Type Vi, Chimera Labs Advantage Audio all worked well in my system.
Hi, veen hearing a lot about the Anti-Cables, are they shielded??
Kimber Hero Balanced XLR.
$100 used and sold here on Agon all the time.
Hero's are a great value IC.
They are also more easily resellable than most others if and when you move on to the rarifed world of $X000.00 IC's.
Rnadelman.. stock Anti-Cables are shielded...that is, the ground wire wraps around the hot legs which look like a slinky. It does not have a solid shield. One of the places I use balanced cable is from the turntable to the preamp. I was concerned that it would hum, so for no extra charge they made me a special double shielded cable. I tried that one and compared it to a "regular" balanced Anticable interconnect. The result is that there was no hum/noise at all with either interconnect...the regular one was slightly more open sounding, so I use the regular.
tars labs the one ism cables are really nice. I've owned az silver IIs and cardas golden reference and these do the best of both of those. They're a bit more in price, but worth a try. Shunyata's are nice too, but I'm selling mine so can't say that without looking like a sales pitch.
I would suggest the Harmonic Technology Magic Link II's, The Shunyata Research Altair, and the new Argentums.
The Anti Cables XLR interconnects appear to have two wires per interconnect. If this is true, then they are not balanced interconnect cables, which by definition must have three, neutral and ground.
I have a few pairs of balanced cables sitting around with nothing to do. If you'd care to check them out send me an email and I'll loan them to you. Not really looking to sell them and they aren't in the same price class as the other suggestions but maybe one will surprise you.
...which by definition must have three, neutral and ground.
Tvad (Threads | Answers)
Sorry, this isn't correct. Balanced cables don't have to have a shield...just two conductors (positive and negative).

However, phono cartridges have three conductors (+, -, ground), so phono cables and interconnects should have three conductors to maintain the configuration, provided the electronics are balanced.
With your taste and budget, you can't go wrong with the XLO's Signature 2 or Signature 3. The best in tight bass and detail in the high but not harsh. It is made of very pure copper material, so the mid is not bad either.

Used Sig. 2 can be had for less than $450 and the used current Sig. 3 will be around $600.
Analysis plus solo crystal, to me is a better choice,
bettered my xlo sig3,on midrange clarity,smoothness,and way more transparent,XLO has tighter base,the solo crystal is a full sounding I/C, very difficult to beat in it's price range
Does a balanced connection really make sense if it's not carried through the entire system from source to amp? When carried through the system that way, I was under the impression that the cable quality did not make that much of a difference...Mogami or XLO the only difference should be how much you spent. Someone correct me here if I'm missing something as I'm not speaking from experience - if you are only using XLR for a single connection, all bets are off, as I understood it, and that largely defeats the advantages of a balanced system.
...if you are only using XLR for a single connection, all bets are off, as I understood it, and that largely defeats the advantages of a balanced system.
Jax2 (Reviews | Threads | Answers)
That's my understanding, too. If you're not running a balanced source, preamp, and amp, then there's no benefit in running balanced in only one connection because the signal becomes single ended anyway.
That's my understanding, too. If you're not running a balanced source, preamp, and amp, then there's no benefit in running balanced in only one connection because the signal becomes single ended anyway.

So, Grant, what about the second part of of my statement? That is, that once you're running balanced from one end to the other (assuming all components are truly 'balanced'), that the difference in cables becomes far less pronounced than with single-ended options. Whereby an average pro-audio cable is not likely going to be distinguishable from a $2k vanity cable (as it may be using the single-ended option).
Not so sure about that one, Marco.

Ralph Karsten maintains that if one maintains the 600ohm standard, then the effects of interconnect cables become negligible. However, in several discussions with him, it's apparent that almost no high end audio manufacturer other than Atma-Sphere adheres to the 600ohm "standard". He couldn't provide any other examples, and owners of BAT, ARC, Pass Labs, Rowland, Modwright and other companies who manufacture differential balanced gear all reported output impedances other than 600 ohms.

I've heard differences in my system between Mogami and Oyaide wire when using an Atma-Sphere MP-1 into differential balanced amps from other manufacturers.
some great suggestions here. looks like i'm not that close to the end of this process lol!

obviously can't try everything but would like to find something i like alot asap....then struggle with "perfection" and a cable to love long term. will be upgrading almost everything over the next year or so making perfection seeking a waste of time (if perfection even exists in this hobby).

should have mentioned that i'll be upgrading my starter system. separate amp/pre-amp is in my future. not right away but within 12 months. upgrading my source cdp first. hopefully in the next month or two (going with DAC/transport). will revisit cables next year when i'm done with this madness. just looking for something i like right now. learning alot while i look/listen too.

stingreen-i'm not laughing at anti-cables. just scared because of the lack of insulation/shielding?. got a hornets nest of cables tangled up behind my equipment(did i mention i was new at this stuff?).

XLO's and Kimber's are 2 i can find pretty easy. will give them a go. keep an eye out for some of the others too. thanks for the suggestions.

Timrhu-what a gracious offer!. the world would be a much better place with more individuals like you. thank you. will let you know if i decide to take you up on it. got alot on my plate already but *really appreciate* the offer.

gotta comment again on how awesome you guys are for taking the time to help newbe's. i have a few other hobbies and boards i frequent regularly (watches, shotguns, cars). gotta say that you audio freaks are the friendliest most helpful bunch i've seen.

thank you!
Try Monster SP1000 Proline XLR Mic cables at $49/each (performance is equal to some IC's costing $6K plus), purchase at wt no hassle return. Also, Mogami Quad Gold XLR IC for about $39/each from the Guitar Center..Tvad is familiar with the latter cable and source. Bottom line is that for $100 or less you can have world class sound without compromise:O)