Clio09, I would suggest that you audtion one of Acoustic Zen's speaker wires. The Satori at around $650.00 is just a great bargain and really matches with many systems that I have heard. The Hologram II is another wonderful sounding speaker wire that costs around $1100.00 and is a refinement of the sound of the Satori. In my system that I bi-amp when I audtioned the two wires I decided on the less expensive Satori because the performance was so close I decided not spend the extra money. Recently, I replaced the Satori with AZ's new wire,the Absolute, which is a couple of steps up based on its sonic performance, however it costs $2800.00. I could have easily lived with the less expensive Satori which sounded great in my system, but treated myself to the higher performance of the Absolute at a much more stiffer price. I hope you consider listening to one of the AZ wires in your audtion process because its performance vs. cost ratio is a great bargain. A final note I had audtioned Blue Heaven,Red Dawn,and finally Vallhala in my system and found all the Nordost cables not very musical even if their quite detailed and transparent. That's just my personnal taste and not trying to put down Nordost products that I know that many other people enjoy. Hope this helps.
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Thanks for the responses. Nordost SPM was under consideration even before I started this thread. I am using an older pair of XLOs now circa 1996. I don't know the model, but the cables are thick and are of the green/lavender variety (the shrinkwrap around the terminated ends is solid green or lavender, while both jackets around the wire are green with one having a lavender stripe on it).
I'll be looking into the Goertz and Acoustic Zen as well as Paul Speltz which seems to have gotten a lot of attention on the forum.
I'm looking very closely at the Anti Cables. Heck, with the money back guarantee I'd be an idiot not to see if they would work in my system. I pretty much know what I'll get with Nordost SPMs and I can easily live with them. However, if I can save some dollars in the process with the Anti Cables or Goertz's then I"ll be able to buy more stuff I don't need later on :) In any event I have read some posts concerning proper positioning of the Speltz cables. Can you comment on this. They seem to be very sensitive to positioning and not very flexible due to their solid copper design. The Goertz's seem to be lower maintenance. I also like the flat design ala Nordost.
Actually, the Speltz cables, though a solid core cable, can be shaped- carefully- to fit most applications. I've found the following points to be important:
1. Elevate the cables, about an inch off carpet.
2. Run the cables side-by-side, with a distance of an inch or two between them.
3. The spades are fairly thin...dont bend them around too much.
4. Let the cables run in a day or so, but there's no need for crazy break-in times or procedures.
5. When you listen, try not to think about how inexpensive they are :)
6. Do the neatest installation and cable routing you can, then give yourself some time to get used to looking at them. They're not pretty, but beauty isn't everything is it?
Enjoy. You may find these cables to be not just a bargain, but an absolute reference in some respects. Of course system synergies remain an important factor, but these cables may just be the ticket for you.
It's the first two items on your checklist that worry me. I realize its not a big thing to accomplish, but I have cats and they would have a field day hurdling the set up (I live in an open room loft, lots of space but little separation). I'm sure there is a work around but I just need to think it through a bit more. The price or the looks aren't important. I'm looking for a open and very musical sound to compliment my gear.
I have read about the use of the Zobel network with certain amps to avoid having them oscillate. Is this correct? I assume the network is an external application. Can you elaborate a little more on what types of amps would require this network and why? I also seem to recall reading that this applies mainly to ss amps. Since I run a tube amp will this still affect me? I'm a little confused on this piece of the puzzle regarding Goertz and may actually steer me away from these cables if it becomes too complicated. I'm looking for an easy plug and play solution, which is why the Nordost SPMs, price aside, are still attractive to me.
Rather than reinvent the wheel, I'll point you to your answer: "A friend told me that this cable can cause amplifier instability; is this true?".
The Zobel AlphaCore supplies is a simple heat-shrunk RC network just a bit longer than the span between your binding posts. (Look here for Merlin's 'how to' diagram to get an idea of what we're talking about.}
You can attach them easily with your choice of methods:
stick the leads through the holes in your binding posts(if your cables are terminated with bananas.)
attach them directly to the spades with a dab of solder.
solder/crimp on a pair of bananas and plug them in.
if you're adventurous, you could build your own tweaky network using better quality caps and non-inductive wire wound resistors, open up your cabinets and install them directly at the inputs of your crossover board.
Don't let this simple procedure scare you off. It isn't brain surgery by any means. Anyone can do it.
Thanks for your help. I did see that discussion on the AC site, as well as the RCs. I did not know that the RCs were in fact the network, this clarifies it. It is rather simple, although the Merlin set-up looks pretty cool. I take it there is no sound degradation with the use of the RCs, even though they may use lesser quality capacitors.
As a note, I am going to email you about another question I have regarding the Goertz's so as not to go off the subject here on this thread.
I decided to purchase the Alpha Core Python Hybrid bi-wire and MI-2 Veracity. Right now the Veracity is in and it sounds pretty good out of the box. I'm interested to see how it sounds after a couple of days. Interesting that the RC Zobel Network is now integrated with the cable. You don't have to hook it up to the top binding post separate from the cable. Plug n Play.
Thanks to all for the suggestions.