Don't flip out...your cables are fine.
To answer your question:
I have often heard from audiophiles and dealers that you spend more money on your interconnects than your speaker cables because they are more important for your system."
Dear God...don't let my new friend Karamapolice be as stupid as these people want him to be.
If you are happy with your system as is, be happy! You've already done your fair share of supporting the cable industry. For my main system I bought some Cardas Hexlink years ago and my equipment either works with it or it don't - no more "new and better" cable for this kid. I'd rather spend my money on software. :-)
These guys are right, the key phrase to remember is:
"you should spend...."
Dealer markup on cables is more than on speakers. This is fair, because it takes a lot more hype to sell them.
When you bought your last car,did the commissioned salesperson try to add on a rustproofing package and a pin stripe decal for only $150? How about a rear deck airfoil spoiler,when the de facto speed limit is 70mph?
Since you asked first,spend your money on software.
I'm guessing with a system as good as yours,you experimented with placement enough to get it correct,an excercise that did not cost you any money.
I wanted to thank everyone for responding. I might have not written the post as clearly as I should have. I do not buy things just because other people suggest it. I recently upgraded my interconnect from quattro fil to valhalla and it improved it.
So my question was if improving the interconnect made a difference, maybe I should improve the speaker cable. I thought however that since I had been told it was more important to improve the interconnect, I left the speaker cable as is until I made all the other changes I wanted.
I obviously will decide based upon hearing it with my own ears but wanted to know if there was any science to the notion that interconnects are more important (all else being equal to a system than speaker cables. Clearly you need good ic and speaker cables but was wondering whether if you were going to spend more on one than the other are ic's relatively more important than speaker cables and why?
I was told the exact opposite! My old dealer (Sound Images of Westport, MA...I moved out to AZ) was truly interested in High-end audio, and rather than just making a profit, educated each potential buyer. I was told that speaker cables would give you 70-80%, with the I/C's being the "frosting on the cake". I first changed my speaker wires from Nordost SPM's to Valhalla's, and the sonic improvement was mind-boggling!
I then changed my I/C's (CD to pre-amp & pre-amp to mono-blocks) from Quattrofils to Valhalla's, and the change was very noticeable, but no where near the degree of sonic improvement that resulted from my speaker wires. Perhaps this example is unfair, as the Quattrofils are a better cable than the SPM's, but are not available as speaker wires.
Which version of the Red Dawns do you have, the original or Rev. 2's? The Rev. 2's are pretty close in performance to the SPM's, while the originals are not. Either way, they are not even close to the Valhalla's. I don't know how long a run you need for your speaker cables, but take a deep breath, buy the Valhalla's, (they are now showing up with some regularity here at Agon). The micro-dynamics will vastly improve, and you will notice a more precise soundstage location, greater separation and un-muddling of vocal (especially female) harmonies, and chord decays that seem to go on to infinity!
If you would like to audition new cables ask your local dealer if he has a couple pair you can borrow over a long weekend. If he has specific recomendations that inch up into the multiple-thousands-of-dollars range also ask to demo them. Most manufacturers have demo programs (different payment terms) for dealers that allow the customer about two or three weeks demo with high-end cables that the store is not neccesarily ready to invest in.
If you don't see a marked difference in sound quality simply don't buy new cables. Go buy some software.
Keep in mind that cables (even expensive, thick, nice-looking cables that come in vacume-sealed suitcases) are still just wire.
I've read speaker cable was the more critical.Because,most amplifiers have low output impedence,and speakers are also low impedence(dynamic impedence as well),so cable length and construction can cause large effect to that relationship.
Most sources or preamps have high input impedence(10-50k ohms)and low(75-300ohm)output impedence.So you typically end up with good drive and low impedence into stable high impedence inputs.
Fatparrot, do you prefer the weather in AZ or MA? :-)
Pops, do you prefer your system, or a Bose system? :-)
I see what ya mean! I go to Boston about every 4 weeks on biz and just can't believe how brutal winters are!
Fatparrot...As a stockholder, I'd prefer Bose.
Pops...Brutal winters do make for good football teams.
And besides, only Massachusetts could bring you John Kerry, Ted Kennedy, and...oh never mind.
Eldartford, I grew up in Massachusetts. I agree with you, there are many reasons for moving to Arizona besides the weather! :-)
To try and answer the question guys, I use an all Acoustic Zen loom and introducing Hologram speaker cable made a startling change, in comparison with the benefit from Silver Ref interconnects. I had recently changed my Living Voice auditorium to Avatar speakers. Well the jump in performance was very similar. Come to think of it, with the cost of high end cables, it should make a big difference.