Audioquest Water vs Kimber KCAG


Until a couple of weeks ago I was using a mixture of AQ and Kimber interconnects. In this configuration.

Music Hall mmf 9.1 (Lyra Delos) to Audio Research PH8 - Kimber KCAG .5m RCA.
ARC PH8 to ARC LS27 - AQ Niagara RCA.
ARC LS27 to Musical Fidelity M6prx amp - Kimber KCAG XLR

This combo was well broken in and sounded great. Neutral, wide open stable soundstage, micro-dynamics, everything good. I just added an OPPO Sonica DAC and wanted to buy another IC XLR from my trusted dealer. While I was there the dealer offered me a good deal to trade in my two Kimber KCAGs on a pair of AQ Waters. I get great advice and support from this dealer and I trust them very much as they have never steered me wrong and they generally do not try to sell me anything that they don't believe is a clear upgrade.

I replaced the KCAGs with Waters in my system and after only 5 or 6 hours I am disappointed. Lost detail, not as smooth, loss of warm mids, and a muddled unstable soundstage.

Opinions wanted please.

How long should I expect burn in to take?
General opinions on the AQ waters?
Did I make a mistake?
Any advice?
I really like the AQ Niagaras. They are silver like the KCAGs, am I missing the silver?

Thanks in advance for any opinions.

















pilrem
I have four pairs of Niagaras and owned the Waters at one time. If you like what Niagara does then Water is as you are describing by comparison.  Not a bad cable just not the right fit. 
5 or 6 hours burn in is Nothing!  Please give the AQ cables about 200 hours before judging.  Patience is a virtue!

The AQ Water cables are going to be much more laid back than either the Niagaras, and probably even more laid back than the Kimbers.

I've had the Kimber Silver Streak and the Niagaras here. I found them both  aggressive, and forward compared to the AQ Colorado and AQ Sky cables.  (which I still have and like)  

The Waters are the warmest, most laid back AQ I have tried. What your hearing is the same thing I heard with them.

YES.....you are missing Niagara.  AQ Niagara is just a great interconnect and can be bought used for pennies on the dollar.  
Water update. After 50 hours burn in things are better. The Waters have finally opened up, I am not sure how else to put it. To my astonishment, they are as fast, open and detailed as the KCAG but with a better midrange nuance. I would have never thought this. I have used Colorado in the past and the Water is superior in my system. I was ready to take these back for a refund (my dealer will take them back at anytime) but now I am very happy with them. 

My opinion at first was that the new Water was a cosmetic upgrade but I now know that the performance is a pleasant jump from the Colorado and is in league with the Niagara (at least) and betters the Kinber KCAG.
AQ make amazing cables be it interconnect, power, loudspeaker cables.. be it copper or silver... I've owned a lot of cables over the years and I couldn't recommend them more! 
My system: Triangle Magellan Cello II < AudioQuest Everest DBS 72V < BAT VK-600SE < AudioQuest NRG WEL DBS 72V < AudioQuest WBY XLR DBS 72V < exaSound e22 DAC w Paul Hynes SR3-12 Power Supply < Squeezelite w Logitech Media Server < UpTone Regen Amber < 2x AudioQuest Diamond USB DBS 216V < MacBook Pro i5 13' w Samsung 850EVO 512GB SSD < Omicron Harmonic Stabilizer & Gold SE/Classic < IsoTek Sigmas GII w IsoTek Optimum EVO3 < Furutech FT-SWS < HiFi Tuning Supreme 3
If you like the Waters, Try AQ. Earth. It's even better. I preferred it over Niagara in "my" system...
Can you describe the difference in sound between the Water, Earth and Niagara cables? Warm/cold, analytical/laidback, smooth/ forward
The Earth, at least to me, seems to have more natural sounding detail and a bit larger (deeper) sound stage. The Earth/Niagara comparison was much closer. The biggest difference to me was the Earth had a tad more powerful sound in the bass. It wasn't a huge difference but It is what ultimately swayed me toward the Earth interconnects. Remember this is in "my" system. YMMV.
Cheers,
Tim