I my honest opinion Nordost are the most over priced snake oil cables on the market. Use your ears and dont let hype get the best of you.
Nordost = SNAKE OIL
Nordost = SNAKE OIL
Omegaman, I would suggest you might want to put on your audition list the Acoustic Zen Absolute reference IC's, that retail for $2400.00 a pair. I compared them to Nordost Valhallas and liked them much better in my system. $2400.00 is not exactly "chicken feed", but these cables compete with some of the best stuff out there and are much less expensive. Hope this helps.
have had alot of cables come and go over the years and i always come back to xlo signature 2 for ic's....they are utterly neutral with incredible resolution all the through range (in my opinion) always do a listening test)
kinda pricey @ $600 meter but will go toe to toe with anything 3x to 4x its price so it is a bargain imo...).
i think once you go over $600-$800 there might be really minor improvement and a super steep decline of diminishing returns
Omegaman, I did not mix the Acoustic Zen IC's with the Nordost Vallhalla speaker wires when I was auditioning the Nordost products. My hunch would be that the AZ IC's would give the transparency and details that the Nordost speaker wires have to offer, but also add a "liquidity/warmth" that I find lacking in Nordost products in general. So, they might give you very good synergy together in your system, but you would really have to audition them together in your system to really find out what would happen. I think it would be worth running the experiment.
Mapleleafs3, I have used my own ears...and I can tell you that Nordost Valhallas are OUTSTANDING cables. Usually, I take audio writers' opinions with a grain of salt, but when a very large number of writers and reviewers praise the Valhallas, I take notice. At my last C.E.S./ THE SHOW which I attended in 2004, Valhallas were being used in many rooms, and was possibly the cable most used at these Las Vegas venues.
So, have you actually tried using cables in the Nordost line? And if so, with what equipment? Or do you have some other agenda here?
I have no agenda with Nordost and agree with Mapleleaf. I find Nordost and Valhalla especially, to be quite grainy. They may sound good in some systems but only due to other flaws therein. The highs are very fatigueing and with any highly resolving speaker virtually unlistenable. IMO there are at least a dozen more natural and musical sounding cables.
As far as their use in the shows, we all know there are many factors involved including dinners, lunches, vacations, freebies, discounts, and reviews. Lots of recording studios use B&W speakers and they are hardly the reference or even close to being one of the best speaker on the market.
Judy426, which came first, the chicken or the egg?! I have heard that the Valhallas are merciless in revealing any flaws within a system. I would think twice about using them with SS gear, or a speaker that is know to have a "hot" top end.
I agree that marketing and promotions can result in product placement, but the degree to which the Valhallas swept the market upon introduction makes me think that they are more than just hype and are certainly not "snake oil". I am quite happy with their performance in my system, but as we both agree, this cable can be very system dependent. But I think that ANY cable can be system dependent, as well!
BTW, which cables have bested the Valhallas, in your system? SS or tube gear? Speakers?
Well, I am too not a Nordost fan... till i have problem crank up the sound of my CD playback versus that of my analog playback system. It was unlistenable, somehow and somewhat. I have the Burmester PC and I decided to give it a try to change the IC between my 970DAC to the preamp. First I got Nordost quattrofil and to my great surprise the sound improved so tremendously. It allows my Burmester 969/970 combo to show their strengths in music playback. I was truly satisfied with the reproduction of sound. Due to greed, I couldn't stop but to get in a pair of Valhalla. What can I say....wow! the presentation again has been transcended. Both ICs from Nordost have given me two totally different enjoyment but they have one thing in common-- that is to reduce the noise floor of my digital playback further with significant effect. I can now enjoy the best from both my analog as well as digital playback system.
For a good performing cable for a lot less money, you might check into LAT International. I have tried their products and, although they are no longer my primary cables, I have to admit that the system sounded very good and was not obviously lacking in any areas attributable to the cables when they were in. This was with their older IC-100 and IC-200 ICs...I have not tried their newer line. They may not be the best (or they may be), but they would probably be satisfactory for your long run. If not, they are returnable (I think).
fatparrot, Nordost spend more money on advertising than anyone else. They buy and pay for thier reviews. Plain and simple. I have had them in my system, and they where no better than Alpha-Core entry cables and worse than any Audioquest entry cable I have tried. Judy hit it on the nose over priced over hyped snake oil.
Mapleleafs3, you state:
...they where no better than Alpha-Core entry cables and worse than any Audioquest entry cable I have tried...over priced over hyped snake oil.I would suggest that either you have a problem with your system, or a problem with your hearing!
BTW, I think that Audioquest spend just as much, if not more, for marketing than Nordost. And you wouldn't believe what the AQ's mark-up is!!!
I would suggest fatparrot I have neither of those problems. I listen with my ears and the ears of many friends who come over. Never do the big $ cables out preform the lower cost ones. Audioquest on the lower end of the scale are as good as any high priced Nordost, MIT. Its a shame you listen with your wallet and like to brag on how much you spend. I guess it makes you feel supperior cause you spend more. I would put my system against yours any day. I have no problem with that. My money is spent on gear not snake oil.
Mapleleafs3, friends, Romans, and audiophiles, lend me your ears :-) Hey, enjoy your rig, whatever you paid for it! Many people are "gear-o-philes" rather than truly enjoying the music. I don't spend my money for "braggin' rights". I also use my ears, and take the advise of people who have had many years of audio experience, and who have heard more gear than you and I will ever be able to listen to in our life times. I see some rigs that other Agon members have, and although I would love to have some of the systems, I have neither the money, nor would I feel justified in spending such amounts, even if it was possible.
But I won't condemn someone who spends such large sums of money, nor would I call their gear over priced and over-hyped snake oil. The fact that you state that high priced cables NEVER outperform low priced cables, and that you'd put your system against mine any day (even though you have no idea what components I have) indicates a testosterone fueled bravado. Hope that you never race for "pink slips" in a similar manner, or you'll get a very costly education!
Fatparrot -- thanks for your comment to make this forum an even a more interesting place.
As for Nordost cable, I throw my money to this company wholeheartedly ...no choice till you hear for yourself and feel in your heart with the music comes out from your system. Of course, anything in high end got to do with combination.