I have his entry level ICs and liked them for a long time. I was always afraid of the fragile nature of the design but they've held up well. The locking connectors are a bit of a pain but they stay put once you've tightened them. I believe Pierre doesn't offer the locking connectors anymore and I can't attest to the newest versions.
Right now, there's an offer for about $100 more for the entry level Darwin Silver ICs and I can tell you that they are better. They offer more insight, detail, layering, extension and ambience and not at a cost to musicality.
If you let us know your budget, you'll get lots of recommendations, even at the price point of the Mapleshades (about $135/meter)./
All the best,
As Ralphie's dad said "Fra-geely, that's Italian".
Mine got fried when a visitor stepped on one. Sent it in for repair and they quoted so high(about 75% of new pair cost) that I told him to throw them away. Very disappointing.
Sonically, I like them. Cheers,
Sonically OK, biggest PITA to use I've encountered in 40+ years in audio,very fragile as well.
Great marketing, not so great cables. Were bested by many "budget" cables in a month long shootout, including Audio Art and Kimber PBJ especially. They went back to Mapleshade. Not recommended by me, but YMMV.
I find many of Pierre's ideas ridiculous. Bookshelf sized speakers a couple of inches off the floor on his maple "stands"? Only if your favorite seats in the auditorium are in the rafters!
Thanks for response's guys...using acoustic zen silver ref's...not unhappy with them...just kickin tires.
That's what this is all about. Take your time and you won't get burnt like the rest of us. :-)
All the best,
My favs are the Mikro Omega cables, the really fragile ones. One assumes they are still available. I was at the show with Pierre way back when and spent a lot of time with the Omega Mikros. They're the ones with the 54 ga conductor.
Try to find a used pair of Nexus cables. They were really expensive when new, but I picked up my last meter pair for $300.00. I use them between the turntable and phono, and from the phono to the preamp.
Their catalogs and listening tips are quite amusing. I've found them helpful, when constipated.
I can't say anything from experience about Pierre's interconnects, but I really love his HDMI cable and a few of his other products. The HDMI is the same design as the IC's and speaker cables, but it has held up to a lot of plugging and unplugging during the 3 years I have had it. The upgraded one costs $165 and is clearly better than the all silver I2s PS-Audio sold until two years ago for $1k. The CDs that he produces and sells are top notch too. All the recording equipment is setup on maple platforms using his brass feet and cork/rubber blocks and the sound is very fine indeed.
Lest anyone accuse me of being too much a fan boy, I am currently 2 years into a boycott of his store over a disagreement about support for the digital scale he sells under his name. Mine got crazy and displayed a code saying it needed to be reset. I called Mapleshade several times to try to get them to ask their importer for the reset procedure that should have been included when new. They didn't want to waste the time on supporting such a cheap product that I admitted was under warranty. But, give the devil his due: some of his crazy-sounding ideas have proven to me and many others to perform way above expectations. Some of the other ideas, maybe not true genius. To set the record straight, all other dealings I have had with Mapleshade have been exemplary. If you are concerned about the IC's, I can tell you from experience, Mapleshade has been honest and fair and does not hassle about 30 day returns. I might have gotten Pierre on a bad day.
Agreed...don't have the experience with the all that you went through...His passion for better audio is clearly evident though...and ya have to dig that...
especially when it comes back to customer in a fair priced product...my 2.
About half a year a go or so Pierre was on Capitol Hill lobbying for Congress to keep the A-10 Warthog and F-16 jet in service since both the pilots and the military love them. He was the lead engineer on both of them. He has the credentials and a love of audio so he does have something to add to our hobby.
All the best,
It's a different threat gestalt now than fifty years ago. Pilotless planes are cheaper and less risky.
USAF brass has always hated the A-10.
One they have no real interest in supporting infantry, low and slow is dangerous.
Two -the A-10 just doesn't cost enough to make sure brass retirement "jobs" in defense-complex are fully funded.
In RVN the thing that brought joy to an infantrymans heart was a prop A-1 Skyraider coming in at a hundred feet flown by a South Viet pilot.
The South Viet pilots were skilled and VERY brave , would come out in any weather and attack like tigers.We still owe them .
Well, the brass might hate it but the pilots love it. It can take more fire than the average ground attack craft and deliver the goods (funny how we call arms 'goods').
All the best,
'Gestalt' isn't used enough nowadays. I hope it doesn't fall into disuse.
The Gestalt is the huge profits in building drones.
A drone is ok for blowing up a sleeping family, its a toy compared to a A-10 throwing 4200 rounds of 30mm AP a minute down range at a force that can fight back.
The real next step up from an A-10 is a nuke.
My brother purchased a couple of pairs. He sent them back because A) they sounded bright in his system. B) they were extremely fragile, and a PITA to use.
I have both the Mapleshade ics and the Omega Micro Analog 7 ics and Planar speaker cables. The Mapleshade are decent at the price the Omega Micro are in a totally different league. They have ended my desire to continue searching for better, they just pass the signal through with the least degree of coloration and offer a much more natural presentation of any cable I've listened to. If you want flavor there are many to choose from, certainly these probably aren't for you. They are fragile to the point that you have to hold your breath when you touch them, extremely thin and a tenuous connection. I sure wish I could find something I like as well without dealing with the fragility which is even more of a PITA than the Mapleshades and they are quite expensive, the thinner the better the more costly.