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Speaker cables to make a huge difference. For me, this improvement was more than interconnects and PC's. My first expensive speaker cable was an old AudioQuest Volcano. It brought out the missing bass with my then Revel Salon 1. I even chopped it up in half (done by AQ) and used with mono blocks, even better sound (mostly the monos). Surprisingly, after not using it for 5 years and forgetting about them, I tried TMRAudio to sell them and got an incredible price for them.
I currently use Audience FrontRow and Conductor SE speaker cables and sometimes the Benchmark speaker cables, if my amps have SpeakON terminations. I need to buy another set of speaker cables in the future and it will be FrontRow once more.
Listen to your dealer, especially if he/she will allow a no obligation home demo.
Those who say cables/wires make no difference just haven’t experienced a meaningful difference in their system or they can’t understand why a specific cable might make a difference so they deny it without trying. Doesn’t much matter to me why.
It may because their setup didn’t need the help, couldn’t exploit the help or that cables truly make no difference. It also depends on the electronics, the length of cables, etc, etc. Blanket statements are frequently incorrect be they from the evangelist or the atheist. Try for yourself because there are alot of factors at play. Your room, your power, your electronics, your speakers, your preferences tonally...don’t be afraid to try and if you don’t hear a meaningful improvement, it doesn’t mean that cables don’t make a difference, it just means you don’t need what that particular brand/model brings to the table. BUT, if someone is telling you that cables don’t make a difference for your system they are incorrect and have an agenda, pro or con. It defies logic that they are denying what you may or may not be experiencing in your room with your gear.
I bet he did, because he's an entirely disinterested party. Quality cables do make a difference, but there's a law of diminishing returns. You don't need to spend anything like that much to achieve complete satisfaction. Take a look at Zavfino and Inakustik.
I am going to pass on my dealers suggest to purchase their 10ft AQ Redwood cable pr., since they are much too long for my purpose. My speakers spread 'center to center' is 7.5ft, so space available give or take is just 6.5 ft. (78") to place MC611 mono amps and rack with preamp C2700, Niagara 5000, HIFI Rose 150, MEN220 room adjustment and MCD600 or MCD12000 SACD/CD player. So i suspect I only need 1m or 1.5 m speaker cable with a single 4 level rack will be tight. I may have to spread the speaker a foot more. They also want to replace all the equipment power cords with AQ products.
I am a firm believer at establishing a base level for speaker comparison purposes. I suggest purchasing a pair of Canare 4S11 speaker cable from Blue Jeans Cable or the vendor of your choice. This "star quad" cable is made in Japan and a 6-foot pair with the termination of your choice is only $90 plus shipping from Blue Jeans.
You won't be the only audiophile on this site using them, and not just for their low cost.
The only way to know is by trying different speaker cables in your system, in your home. That is the only way to know for sure which is best--for you. Either ask your dealer to lend you a 3-4 different AQs (or other brands/versions)--or go through The Cable Co. I just did this for power cables (for amps) and what I chose was not what I went in thinking would be best--for my ears/system. It's more work but it will be worth it in the end.
Before you invest for an expensive cable connect a cheap cable to do the job. Usually dealer can install a standard cable for free after a big purchase. After that start auditioning some used high end cables if you think they sound better. Always buy a used high end cable, prices are dramatically less when you buy them used. If it doesn’t make a significant difference, try another one at another price range. Have playlist with detailed jazz songs, try same list on two different cables.
Your dealer offering demo Redwood for $6k is far closer to a kick in the teeth than a favor. That model has been discontinued for at least a couple years, and is now highly depreciated on the used markets. The model above it, Wildwood (also long discontinued), is significantly better in ever way (twice the silver content, much better sound) and 6K is still way too much even for THAT model. 8ft Wildwood have gone used as low as low 2K recently. Dealer seems like he wants to offload old stuff on you for premium prices.
Five months later and I finally finished gathering my equipment, as mentioned above: Speaker-B&W 800D3, McIntosh MC611 pair, Mcintosh ref. preamp 12000C/ST, McIntosh MEN220 room conditioner, AudioQuest Niagara 5,000 AC conditioner, HIFI Rose 150B streamer, setting on Solid Steel Hyperspike series stands. Cable lengths for equipment and speakers 1m. My dealer has agreed to provide a few of AQ speaker cables and IC to try with this system. We may do this before we add 4x Auralex 2"x4'x2' panels behind the listening couch since our room ceilings are high and the room echo's. It has been a full year in preparation and affording the expense. Now to chose cables. Any general suggestions on Silver vs Copper, which cable placements will most likely make a difference as well as if I should replace the AC cables on any of the equipment (of course the Niagara does not come with a power cable. Thats everything so far.
My experience, many AQ models over many years:
It appears AQ has not mailed the cables to my local audio shop, so in the interim I have created a list of possibilities using AQ cables without auditioning.
Speaker cables (3Ft-3.5Ft): WIlliam Tell (silver) combo, Thunderbird Bi-combo, Firebird Bi-combo.
Interconnects: 3-sets of Black Beauty XLR (1m).
Thunder AC plug (1x) for Niagara 5000.
Not cheep but would like your opinions especially if you have auditioned these cables.
I have a pair of MC611s fed by the C2700. I'm using AQ Hurricane PCs, and AQ Tbird interconnects. To my ears, the cables just reinforce the MAC sound. Incredible bass and mid-bass and a liquid midrange. The highs are not as precise but typical of MAC sound. My wheelhouse is from midrange down, and highs are not important to me. I plan to experiment with Firebird IC to see what it would do for the highs.
I would suggest upgrading PC to at least hurricane (which is the best value in AQ''s line). You are very performance-light on IC's (the Tbird is the sweet spot there). You have a reference preamp, and it should be treated that way. I can't offer speaker cable advice since that is my next journey.