I will also caution that this is one of the poorest sounding cables on the market. Do yourself a favor and try something (anything) else in your rig. Your speakers and your ears will be glad....
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It's as good as anything else. On this site you have the knee-jerk crowd that always seem to bash certain brands. Polk, Monster, Bose and all the Japanese stuff. The only problem with the XP is that it does not cost enough. If the MSRP was a Thousand Dollars, they would be drooling over it. Being able to buy it at BestBuy does not help either. The ONLY considerations when buying wire (speaker wire) is Guage and the length of your run. Go to Blue Jeans Cable, they are honest. See what they say about wire, and they are in the wire business.
I wouldn't say it's as good as anything else. I would say its not bad though for inexpensive speaker cable. I'm in the midst of a cable search for my system and have found a good bit of differences in all types of cables.
I've tried Blue Jeans and found it to be cleaner, but lacking in midrange response compared to Monster, but better highs and tighter bass.
I ended up with some pretty expensive MIT Matrix 28 speaker cables which have made a dramatic difference in my system but am using a relatively inexpensive Kimber digital cable which has enhanced the sound even further. I agree with your assessment that cost alone does not make a cable worthwhile but will argue there can be significant differences in sound signatures between cables of all types.
Your post was thoughtful and reasonable. I am not into the wire thing, but I respect your views. Now, a REAL CAUTION concerning Monster would be their interconnects. I have broken two pieces of equipment trying to remove their turbine style RCA interconnects, they fit like Vise grips. Thanks for your post. Refreshing to hear reason in the wire world.
I agree with this. Plugs have to make good contact with the jacks for good signal transfer, but they don't have to mutilate them. I won't use Monster RCAs unless I take a flat screwdriver and slightly bend the turbine-cut collar outward a bit to loosen it up.
In the mid-'90s I got some Monster M1 (or M1000, can't remember which) speaker cable that was incredibly 3-dimensional over the StraightWire ribbon-8 I replaced it with. I wish I'd kept it. At Audio Advisor's closeout price it was killer for the money.
I like AudioQuest's RCAs. They make excellent contact yet plug in and unplug smoothly. Ditto for Kimber and Zu.
I am also using Monster IC's and they Are very tight. In fact I had to return a pair because I broke turbine collar trying to expand with a needle-nose. A better way is to run the connection in & out a bunch of times on an old shot cd player or tape deck. This is not as risky as trying to pry open.
I am using Mons 400i at this time and they are super. In fact I used them on the Roscoe Remasters.
The directions that come with the Monster XP speaker wire clearly states that the inner layer of PTEF insulation need to be removed. I have used 1000's of feet of Monster wire for internal wiring in my speakers over the years, in the early years XP for the tweeter and M1 for the rest of the drivers, when the M1 was discontinued we changed to the M1.2 still using the XP for the tweeter - Monster makes good wire.
We have since changed to Canare as Monster got too big and too difficult to deal with, Canare is equally good wire.
As always, Good listening
I just found out that my Mons XP is only 16 gauge. It looks thicker than that to moi.
Bluejeanscable sells the Canare and also the Beldon 10 & 12 gauge. They say the bigger the gauge, the greater the conductivity.
I wonder though-- would the only difference be that I would have to change my vol, B & T tweaks to accommodate the new wire w/o out any real change in sound quality?
Thanks for all the responses in this topic. r
I periodically try to downgrade components in my main system. Why keep all that capital tied up? I have tried Monster XP and Blue Jeans interconnects and Canare speaker cable in my main rig and found them to sound not remotely as good as cables such as Audience AU24 and Cardas Golden Reference. However, I routinely use mid-level Monster cables for Home Theater and for my bedroom system and in those applications I am very pleased. The BJ interconnects and Canare would be fine for those applications as well, IMHO.
I have found downgrade experiments to be wildly unpredictable. Sometimes it works, but more often, not. Some years ago, for example, I was surprised to find that the Cary SLI-80 gets me most of what I want in a preamp / amp combination, and I was able to sell off my Conrad Johnson monoblocks and premier preamp. The Cary is not as good but it is wonderful (with some tube rolling) and fits my need just fine. However other integrated amps that I previously tried - because of their amazing reviews - were laughably weak compared to my CJ setup. Sigh.