Interconnects be as neutral as possible?

I'm thinking about replacing my generic cables (both ICs and speaker cables). I assume realistcally the components of a system (without cables) have its aggregate sonic signature (bright, warm etc.). Should I get neutral ICs first so the system's sonic signature is not affected. Then I can buy speaker cables last to tailor the sound of the system to my personal preference. Does this approach (thinking) make sense? Thanks for any opinions. Mike C
You just have to get started, and decide what cables are right for your system. Simple as that. Audition first, and then buy. It doesn't matter if most people think the ones you try are "neutral", or not. It's an overused expression, and no cable is without its inherent signature, and neither is a SOTA system, for that matter. Just get started, and be happy, cause there are no shortcuts.
The Cable Company is a good place to start.Tell them what your system is made up of and they will recommened a cable.Do 1 at a time.Dont do both IC and speakers at the sime time.Your best cable should go from source to pre amp.THe Cable Company will let you try them out which is nice.Happy hunting.
Your logic makes sense but you'll surely never know until you experiment. Stereophile has recommended & described the Synergistic Research Resolution Reference MKII & Designers Reference interconnects as very neutral. You may or may not value their opinions (many 'philes are on both sides of that fence) but I have them & like them. Long break-in though, if you purchase new. It took mine about 2-300 hours to settle down (I finally ran them on a dummy load for a month - then they were fine). Even the dlr's broken-in demo's fluctuated for quite awhile. I would try to install new IC's first, then spkr. cables, then the AC cords. There are just so many variables; this is more art than science.
Whatever brand you decide to try, do not buy new if you can find some used here or elsewhere. The retail price of most cables is a stunning rip-off, one which many otherwise sage audiophiles have been a victim of. Everyone has their favorite, because each cable reacts differently in every system. I will recommend Van den Hul, a brand not carried by many retailers because they do not pour thousands of dollars into glossy advertisements in the audio mags. Stores carry what sells, and maybe they'll pickup some new brand if it's the flavor of the month. Van den Hul has been researching different aspects of audio for many years, quietly obtaining patents on several items. Their cables approach neutral as closely as those costing far more. They are just not a very high profile company, and their products are not "revolutionary" enough for most US audiophiles. If you read any European mags, however, their cables are frequently chosen for use in the "reference" systems. A little speaker company called B&W uses VdH wire inside their speakers. Must be okay stuff!
Like Carl says, EVERY cable or component will impart its own sonic signature. The tricky part is that each component / system will respond differently to the impedance changes that take place when you swap a cable of any type. This is unavoidable. Since cables WILL affect the sound, you might as well consider them as a component of the system like any other piece that the signal passes through. Since no cable or piece of electronics is truly neutral, you might as well mix components and cables to achieve the sonic results that your looking for. Keep in mind that each interface ( component 1 via cable to component 2) may act differently than in another part of the system ( component 2 via same cable to component 3). It is therefore not uncommon for a finely tuned sytem to make use of several different types of interconnect cabling between the various components. You can balance out the sounds of each source via different cabling between the source and the preamp. After all, why should the same source recording sound measurably different when going from CD to cassette to vinyl to tuner ? It shouldn't if all of the components are up to the task. Once you've achieved a good balance from source to source, you can then "juggle" the entire system by playing with the cables between both the pre and power amp and along with the cables between the amp and speakers. This approach is called "voicing" a system. This paints one consistent picture, regardless of what source you choose. Keep in mind that there is NO best or worst cables. Some may work wonders in a specific system and sound like hell in another. It's strictly a matter of trial and error and what works best to your ears in your system. Good luck and don't overlook many of the excellent DIY approaches to wire and cables. Sean
Sean, I mostly agree; and that was very well said/thought out, also. It's nice to see others that have educated themselves in the ryhme and reason of cabling.