Audiometallurgy Ag-0 as a Subwoofer Cable?

I’ve been experimenting with using silver to improve bass quality for a couple of years. I first wrote of those experiments in a thread under “cables” at Audiogon entitled, “Creative Cabling for Bass Quality” where I reported silver helps with LF definition.

I was (am) also a big fan of Audiometallurgy ICs and their magnetic technology, an affordable alternative to MIT (my favorite cable brand when I can afford them). I wondered to myself if a silver blend version of an Audiometallurgy IC would help quicken the bass of the woofers. However, at the time AM wasn’t making silver ICs. I wrote Sandi and asked if they’d ever thought of doing ICs in silver, and she confided they’d just started planning for the Ag-0 ICs.

Changes to my system over the last year got me thinking again about trying silver in the preamp – amp interconnect. First, I stopped biamping, using only a TAD60 tube amp to drive my main speakers, and then upgraded to biwire MIT Shotgun S1 speaker cables.

I next added a Von Schweikert subwoofer to take a bit of strain off the tube amp (and for movies/TV watching); with music I keep it set to a low volume and low crossover point (since my main speakers run full range). I tried various dedicated sub interconnects, including Monster 600, Analysis Plus Super Sub Oval and Audioquest Sub 3, but for music anyway I didn’t feel the Von Schweikert was quite keeping up with my speedy Legacy woofers. I didn’t know if it was the subwoofer, or the cables, but . . .

Enter the Audiometallurgy Ag-0 IC I picked up in an auction for $96 for a 1.5m pair, and had Sandi combine into a single 3m cable. I can report that it is an awesome subwoofer cable. After about 30 hours break in time, it became quicker and more musical than using any of the dedicated sub cables I had, resolution was the best I’d heard (including a MIT IC I tried).

To test SW cables I switch (in the preamp) the main speakers to “small” (in my preamp that’s called “Crossover,” which I then set to crossover at 60hz) and turn up the subwoofer so I can better make out what the sub is contributing. On one tune I often use to test bass, “Stop That” by Bob James (Grand Piano Canyon), the deepest bass notes came through cleanly distinct from one another. Cassandra Wilson’s percussionistically brilliant interpretations offer some of the most difficult challenges to LF resolution (I swear she puts a mic on her bass drum), but “Just Another Day” (Belly of the Sun), “Lay Lady Lay” (Glamoured), “Death Letter” (New Moon Daughter), and from her album with Jacky Terrasson, the great piano-bass combo in “Chan’s Song” (Rendezvous) . . . all came through cleanly resolved. When I returned my speakers to “full range,” I found the sub blended seamlessly.

So the Ag-0 seems both a real bargain and a great SW cable. If anyone else experiments with using the Ag-0 as a subwoofer IC, I would enjoy hearing of your experiences.

Happy listening,
What was your total cost after customizing to the longer length you needed?
I also have heard regular full range interconnect wiring get the job done.
But when a designer specifically creates a sub-woofer cable to outperform his own standard interconnect, it can be done, too. Even though I may not know exactly how the magic works.
One such manufacturer is Joe Mazzaglia's Auricle Audio Design.
Listerner57 - My total cost was $96 plus $12 shipping, the same price I won the auction for and normal shipping cost. Audiometallurgy was happy to accommodate my request since it actually saved them a pair of connectors.

Regarding designing a subwoofer cable, my thoughts on that are they design it leaving out materials that they think are unnecessary to LF conduction, so it is less expensive to produce. But any interconnect in one's system, say connecting amp and preamp or CD player and preamp, ideally should conduct a full signal. So it seems to me that any good normal IC will be a good subwoofer cable too. I didn't mention it in my thread post, but I had a chance to try an MIT Shotgun S1 IC and it was great. I didn't want to pay for it however, which is why I have Audiometallurgy ICs (GA-0s) throughout my system, which I think comes as close to the neutrality and resolution power of MIT as I've heard.

The main thing I think is important is that using some silver in the sub cable doesn't seem like a concept that's fully developed yet. I don't know why it's so (not having access to testing facilities), but my experience with silver blends has been that it tightens bass and makes it more musical.

Thanks for reviewing your method to check out sub-woofer performance.

Another recording worth hearing for stupendous weight and pitch accuracy of lowest electric bass notes is "The Road To Ensenada" on Lyle Lovett's album of the same name. I have a pre-release CD which may have been for a reviewer, and I presume it sounds like the regular commercial release.

The grand daddy of weighty musically accurate bass drum beats is to be heard on a Wilson Audio CD recording (probably also on vinyl) "Winds of War and Peace" if I recall the title accurately. It surprises the unwary listener with its power during the first cut (? track title)on the CD. This selection has been included on one of the Burmester demonstration CD's given out at audio shows. The original Wilson CD also contains subtle quiet very deep drum beats which are a different sort of challenge for a sub-woofer.

By the way, Joe Mazzaglia's "Magma" sub-woofer cable, as well as his usual full range design, both include the silver content you feel contributes to the sound you prefer.
Audiometallurgy, Just dont to ask for a refund if you dont like them.
It took me 2 months to finally and emails to get my money back!
Listener 57, Thanks for the suggestions, I'll definitely check out Lovett's album (I'll have to pass on the Wilson piece, too expensive for my budget).

Regarding silver in other cables, I've seen it in several, including Signal's Silver Resolution. I wanted the Audiometallurgy cable in silver because of the magnetic shielding technology. After being impressed with the quality of the GA-0s, a couple of years ago I tried Synergistic Research cables because of "active shielding" and thinking that should work even better, but I didn't hear them as neutral, producing the sound stage, or mellowing digital "edge" as well as the GA-0s. I think AM is really onto something by eliminating any shielding but an EM field. If only the cables weren't so stiff and awkward to use!

I might add that the Ag-0s are still breaking in (going on 50 hours now); I thought they were great at 30 hours, but last night I heard them open up more. Bass notes have always been the last to come in with cables I've tried, both speaker and ICs.
Hey Les, nice review. Could you please go into a bit more detail re the AG-0 vs the Synergistic Research cable comparison? Also which model SR sub cable did you use?

I am looking for an xlr interconnect that delivers non-boomy, tight, articulate bass on a dedicated subwoofer for the lfe channel.

Since you have done extensive bass cable testing, if you have done any power cord comparisons on subs please comment on your results.

If anybody else wants to comment on how the bass is with the AM cables, please feel free. Another company is doing magnetically shielded interconnects called High Fidelity Cables, but no xlr available and too pricey for a sub interconnect.

The Synergistic sub cables have always been my reference for fast, articulate bass, but if the AM cable can give similar performance at much less cost, then I would Like to try it.