Recommendations on phono cables for the above system?
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Could you describe what you experience musically as the system is now? Do you have any problems you want resolved, or just hoping to find a way to upgrade? I have about a hundred questions that can be important to results you may be getting. What are you loading the Ruby 2 at, what is your current speaker wire, interconnect, power cables and tubes in the ARC?
Thanks, Albertporter. I just bought these speakers not too long ago, the rest of my gears have been around for a long time. I love the sound of Quad 63 with classical music, but I find it too forwarding when I first got them. I have since put in a pair of MIT MI330 CVTII from Preamp to the Amp and it made a big improvement. The rest of the IC's are all Ameralds (phono and from phono to Preamp). I have been using MIT MH 750 speaker cables for years and I didn't change them with the new speakers. I wonder if the MIT MI330 CVT made such a difference, should I get all MIT IC replacing my old Emerald IC? The loading for the Ruby 2 is factory-set loading, I believe is 49. My Ruby 2 is MC (0.35), but I am using the MM mode on the phono stage, because I find the volume level is not as big between each division on the volume knob. The tubes on my Classic 60 are Tesla KT-88. Power cords on the speakers are just factory power cords.
Musically, I am looking for natural sound of instruments. I don't listen to big orchestral music, just chamber music, instrumental and voice solo. Thanks again.
I would change the load on the Ruby 2. Begin with 28K and use a good quality resistor. Next, check the VTA on the Ruby, this cartridge should be slightly down in the rear when viewed from the side. If it is too high in the rear, the soundstage is forward as you describe and bright in tonal balance, there is also a lack of focus and dynamics in the deep bass. Power cords on Quads make a big difference, If you can afford to replace them with aftermarket, do so. Also, I do not understand about the MM input on your phono. Moving magnet input usually requires a much higher output cartridge than your moving coil produces. Does this preamp offer both options? On wire, is the AQ Emerald the older version that is all copper? If so, I would not be too quick to change, it's most likely not the problem. Last, what are the input tubes pushing the Tesla KT-88's?
I had a fair bit in common with you - ESL63s,Classic 60,SP-9. I was very happy with the change on going to Goertz MI-2.
Best interconnect (pre/power) I used (of many) was Siltech FTM-4. Also Audio Note worked really well(less detail, but maybe more natural). Dont use my turntable much, but got good results from my Sony CD player after doing LCaudio mods. There really is beautiful bass in those Quads(if limited in volume).
The ESL-63 and Audio Research equipment is a match that can yeild spectacular results on voice, jazz, chamber and small scale symphonic work. I can tell you that the SP-8 MK-1 and MK-2 do not work particularly well with the 63. Although it does much to tame the rather aggrssive and forward nature of the Hybrid Classic 60,the tradeoff in a boomy bottom octave and a less than extended top end does more damage to the Quad than good. A much better match for them is to reverse the situation you have now and go with a more modern ARC circuit for preamp and try it with your 60. If you still find it unpleasant,try moving backwards towards the D-115 type of all tube cicuit.
I own and sell Sound Lab electrostats and I've owned Quad 63's and 57's. The requirements for a speaker cable for a full range electrostat are a bit different from the requirements for a conventional speaker.
First, because an electrostat typically has a fairly high impedance in the bass, there is not as much of a premium on high current capability. Second, because an electrostat typicaly has a low impedance at high frequencies, you want to minimize series inductance to preserve all the air and delicacy the stats are capable of. Third, you want a very time-coherent cable, because getting everything spot-on timing-wise gives an almost magical "bloom" to the instruments, as well as a bit better soundstaging. Very few conventional speakers benefit significantly from a time-coherenet cable, but full-range electrostats do.
I have investigated cables for electrostats rather extensively, and the best I have found are Magnan cables, in particular the Signature. Goertz is also good, though I've had customers replace their four grand silver Goertz with the one grand Magnan Signatures after an audition in their own systems. Analysis Plus is good bang-for-the-buck. All of these cables are designed to minimize the "skin effect" and are thus time coherent (the Magnans especially so), and all are low inductance (no twisted wires).
David Magnan uses stacked Original Quads as his reference speakers, so it's no surprise that his cables work well with electrostats.