Your question is as difficult to answer as, "What is the one color that is sure to be everyone's favorite?"
In addition to being system dependant, people differ in what they consider to be listenable highs.
I will begin by giving my opinion, and unless Audiogon has changed greatly in the last few hours, almost every brand of cable will be suggested in the posts that follow.
I dislike any brightness or harshness at all, so I prefer Purist Audio and Cardas. Both of these (on many speakers) are extended, smooth and manage to maintain layering and texture into the uppermost frequencies.
If your gear is sensitive to the cable, one with too much inductance will roll-off your highs. A cable with too much capacitance can cause overshoot or ringing in the high frequencies which can be perceived as more detail, to some. Now if your amp is nice and "robust" it can handle too much inductance and/or capacitance without a problem (up to a certain limit of course.)
Hi Albertporter. I'll give you a couple of suggestions. I know you'll get a lot of replies. I don't know what is the best in your system for you but two cables that come to mind are the acoustic zen satori[ which I own]. It replaced nordost red dawn as I was trying to get away from "ultra detailed" highs in my system. The nordost allowed too much "zip" on the fast newform ribbons. I was looking for more timbre fullness...also, I very much like a siltech Generation 3 cable I've heard on martin logans with moon gear and arcam 9 and 23 cd players...It is blue[I don't remember the model number} but it has lovely ease to its highs...I'm sure there are many more great cables. It is impossible to hear everthing. We must buy a lot of cables to keep everyone in business, eh? Good luck. Cheers, Bluenose
I goofed. My reply should have been to BWhite, not Albertporter. See what happens when I haven't had my monring coffee? Sorry Albert....regards, Bluenose
My advise is to borrow as many cables as possible. The results are very system dependant.
I would secound the vote for Purist, I played with a pair of Dominuis for a week and found then to be extremely detailed and transparent but at the same time very smooth. My present reference, FIM Gold were only slightly less detailed but that was really the only difference. Both cables have similiar tonal qualities and no coloration. So Purist, FIM would be two to look at if your in that price range.
Hi Everyone, Thank you for the responses! Perhaps I should explain myself further.... This time I think I have gone off the deep end.
First let me explain my speakers. They are Wilson-Benesch Act One's. It is a three way speaker with two Scan Speak drivers and a relevator tweeter. The speaker is constructed out of Solid Cherry Wood and Carbon Fiber which rests on a thick metal ported base. The speakers can be tri-wired but come with thick plates to jump the three binding posts and allow use of a single cable. The trouble is that as with most jumper plates, mine plates sound horrible...
If you aren't familiar with these speakers, you can see them on theWilson Benesch Website
After trying many methods of joining the binding posts via jumpers, stranded bare wire, solid wire, etc, and using one pair of speaker cables, I have decided to just go ahead and tri-wire the speakers.
This has posed an interesting dilemma because when a cable is split up for the purpose of internal bi-wiring or tri-wiring, it looses virtues in the process. I have found that the shotgun approach is the best. And... different cables from various manufacturers have better attributes. Today I use a pair of Kimber Select KS-3035 for the midrange only and a full range pair of Cardas Golden Cross for the low frequency. This produces astonishing results from the top-level mids all the way through the lower bass region. The Golden Cross is about the best bass only cable I've ever listened to and the KS-3035 is a fantastic mid-range cable (I however do not like the highs of this kimber product). Currently I use a 1 inch solid core silver wire to jumper the midrange to the high frequency and I'm not too happy with it.
My next step in the tri-wire fiasco is to find a good cable for only the highs on my speakers. I realize that experts advise against mixing and matching speaker cables but... why? IF the end result is a more listenable system and better overall dynamics what's the harm other than a brief spat with insanity?
Using different speaker cables might work, but there are minor differences in the impedance and inductance, which may or may not blend well together. By using the same manufacturer and same length, you can be certain that you are not introducing minor frequncy and phase changes into the crossover. I use double runs of Tara Ref Gen 2+, soon to be upgraded to Air, and have found the HF control to be quite smooth, natural and extended... after break-in of course. By experimenting, you may eventually discover a magic combination of 3 different cables, but whatever you do, try before you buy.
I would suggest you give Acoustic Zen Satori a listen. I have tried many diffrent cables and have always heard strenghts and weaknesses, with the Acoustic Zen it just seemed to be right. It is quite reasonably price too.
I have owned several of the highest of high-end interconnects out there,....and the in-expensive ones that are sold on the InnerSound site should not be overlooked. They are why I sold all of my big-buck ones.
All I can say is to at least put the Audio Magic Sorceror/Illusion on your short list.
Bwhite. In case you do not know, Purist Audio will build a tri wire speaker cable from any quality level in the line.
The end product is a single cable with three custom terminations, cut exactly to length for each input of your tri wire speaker.
A member of my audio group went through this same issue with his top of the line B&W speakers. Before it was even properly broken in, he forgot about any future upgrades, It resolved every issue he had.
I am very happy with Zcable's "Live" balanced interconnect between my SACD source and preamp. They have a 30 day evaluation program and exceptional concern for customer satisfaction. Their lower priced "Jazz" cable is supposed to excellent but is only available in single-ended configuration. I am also using both of their power cords, and can recommend them as well. The Zcable website is www.zcable.com
Sorry, I didn't notice the "speaker" part of your cable recommendation request. I am using Zero autoformers instead of speaker cable with spectacular results with OTL amps.
Walker Audio has a Mk. II version of their High Definition Links out and I highly recommend checking these out. They will probably tame any high frequency stridency you may currently have.
Given the "speed" of your speakers, your response to the Kimber on the upper octaves is not surprising (lack of air in harmonic core of note, energy loaded at the attack transient, etc.). Money doesn't seem to be an issue here, so with that in mind:
1. NBS Statement series I Blue sheath
2. Purist Audio Dominus Rev B
3. AudioNote (Kondo) KSL
The NBS will slaughter the Kimber on the mids and highs; AudioNote will best Cardas on the lows. My recommendation, however, is to use a speaker cable from one manufacturer (although I do recommend in many instances using IC's and spkr cable from different makers). Purist is a nice compromise. If it was me, and I was an experimenter with money falling from a tree in my yard, I'd listen to the NBS/AudioNote combo. Just don't be surprised that as your sytem improves in "musicality" (the ability of a stereo to catalyze a deepening musical perception in the listener's mind) that at those deeper levels, you perceive discontinuities when cables are matched, even good ones.
It would also help to know the rest of your system, IC's & PC's included, and, if an issue, whether you listen to digital or analog predominantly, and, of course, listening preferences.
Asa, As I have been trying to tame a live room in a new, furnitureless house, I have migrated my system from Chord Amps/Pre and Marantz SA-1 to 100% Electrocompaniet. I/C's are currently Nordost Quattro Fil from my CD to the pre-amp and I use a Cardas Golden Cross I/C from pre to amp.
I have a Shunyata Viper V2 on the EMC-1 24/192 CD, a Cardas Golden PC on the Amp and a Shunyata Sidewinder on the pre.
The sound is "close" to what I am looking for but could use help. I've spent a significant amount of time over the past several months swapping components and especially cables.
As for cable with the highs (the root of this thread), I currently use a run of Audioquest Sterling.
Any advice would be appreciated!
Given solid state system, I would:
1. Cardas Golden Ref IC's all around.
2. Sterling is good spkr cable for bass(great application for subs actually), but you should go with Purist Proteus Rev B for cable on all the runs. Go with above recommendation and get a tri-wire.
3. Dump the Cardas PC on the amp (!) and find yourself an original Electraglide Fatboy PC.
4. Upgrade Viper to King Cobra on CD, version I, not II.
5. Work on the pre PC. Switch the Viper over from the CD to start off.
6. Take the Nordost out back and shoot it.
7. Get some furniture, rugs, plants, etc. At this level of system juggling, until you do you are just listening to slap echo at all frequencies. You'll run around in circles forever.