I have Paul's ($60) anticables in my system now. They replaced my Audience Au24. They are more open, more alive and double the bass. All my friends who hear them order a pair for their Low End systems and Hi End systems. You can't go wrong. Send them back if you don't like them.
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I can only speak for myself hear when I tell you that the Paul Speltz speaker cables are very very good in my system. Perhaps it is the fact that I am using them with his autoformers, I am not sure.
I will tell you that before the Speltz speaker cables, I had Nordost SPM reference then Synergistic Designer Reference and finally Audioquest Dragon 2 which are all well thought of cables.
Just for the heck of it, I bought some of Paul's speaker cables when I purchased the autoformers. They were very inexpensive so I thought why not. Well much to my amazement the Speltz cables were much better than any of the above...so much so that I sold the Dragons and now use the Speltz speaker cables exclusively. They don't look like much but they really do the job for me!!
I have a very revealing system with a Joule OTL and LA150 preamp. I run a pair of Magnepan Tympani 4a's which will reveal any weak spot in a system. I would highly endorse these cables and as travelstead has mentioned, you can send them back if you don't like them so what's to lose here.
Good Luck and Happy Listening!!
The anti-cables are very good - just as good as my Audioquest Volcano cables that cost a lot more. But they weren't any better, either. My only criticism would be that, although they are very small, they are also stiff. I could not get them to smooth out so they were just as unobtrusive, if not more so, than thicker conventional cables that have a jacket. There may be some way to get the kinks out that I am not aware of. Best of luck.
Folks, I'm curious if you built your own, or if you bought them from Paul assembled. If you bought them assembled, I'm curious as to the geometry he applied (ie, are they just just running side by side, are they lightly or tightly twisted, are they wrapped together, etc). I built a pair (since I needed biwires) using Luminous copper spades tightly compression crimped to the bare wire, and then lightly soldered. I have the four conductors spaced about an inch or two apart (alternating negative and positive strands) suspended about three inches off the floor using thin pieces of pine with holes drilled through to create an effect that looks not dissimilar to a pair of high tension electric transmission lines. I think they sound very good, but I do slightly prefer my Goertz MI-2 to the Speltz cables. The Goertz cables sound just a little more dynamic, a bit more extended and are overall slightly more neutral than the Speltz cables. While I know that altering the geometry of the cables will change the sound, once the wire is "formed" in any fashion, it will be difficult to undo any geometric changes. Hence, my question as to how Mr. Speltz supplies the assembled cables. Either way, they are a bargain. Regards,
I have an all solid state HT system (all Cary SS). My system can be on the bright side for my taste and was considering saving up for Cardas crosses.
I'm thinking about giving the Anti-Cables a try, but I'm worried they might not be great with a solid state system. I'm using AQ Midnight +'s right now, and like the sound overall, but I find the sound fatiquing and a bit forward after very long. Any idea how these would compare?
I have had good success with the Paul Speltz anti-cables, which easily bettered my AudioQuest GBC-8 cable. The anti-cables were clearer, more open and extended, and less strident than the AudioQuest. For their price-to-performance ratio, these have earned my unhesitating recommendation. They can, for sure, be a little stiff and unruly, but nothing compared to Millersound and JPS cables. I run them loosely, side by side. Paul gives instructions on how to unwind the anti-cables without kinking.
I have a 10' run w/spades arriving in a couple days.
It will take me a while to place them properly as Paul suggests.
I dont know what my cats will do when they see wire dangling in the air.
Im excited to try these on my new speakers as I've been using MIT T-3's to tame my Thiels.Im still using them on my Soundwaves.
I have a gut feeling from all I've read on these cables,they are going to sound superb.
I'll give my impressions in a few days.
These are excellent cables for the price but not even close to really good cables. I put back Satori im my sytem. The acoustic environment is back, recreated beautifully, much better extension at both ends, voices back in my room. Anti-cables totally kill spatial cues. If you call it clarity... Bass not extended, without any texture, just tight and and dry. Once again, very good cable for ...hi-fi systems.
Those who replace with them better cables must have impaired hearing or theirs systems are not up to the... It's OK because they save some money, but they mislead others and that's not OK. Instead of giving discription of their vertues, an honest evaluation, use slogans like wonderful and beautiful.
I was thinking of giving these cables a listen. If I may ask a couple of questions and not to steer away from Rbtwsp55's thread. With my particular amplifier, an Innersound esl amp, there have been past issues I heard from another Agon member with the amplifier ossiculating(sp?) using wires such as Nordost or Goertz with planars, particularly Magnepans. Maybe because the Innersound amp has high voltage? Would the anticables have the same problem? I'd like to really try these cables, but also don't want to risk any damage to my equipment. My equipment is: Cary 303 cdp, Rogue 99mag pre, Innersound esl amp, Analysis Plus Oval 9's shotgun speaker cables, and Magnepan 1.6. Thanks in advance for any responses.
Jkuc: Depending on how one configures the geometry of the "Anti-Cables", they can very easily introduce a lack of spacial cues and high frequency information. That's because as one spaces cables further apart, they increase the inductance. As one increases inductance, high frequency roll-off increases. Combining higher inductance cabling with a lower impedance speaker reduces the hinge frequency where roll-off begins to occur at, causing even more loss of "spaciousness" and high frequency articulation. In extreme cases, the upper mids begin to roll-off and the harmonic structure / musical overtones get lost or turn into a blurry mess. As such, you can reduce some of the problems that you noticed with this cabling by bringing it closer together and / or converting it into a twisted pair.
As a side note and on the opposite side of the coin, if one has a very bright and / or piercing system, the use of higher inductance cabling can help, but with the aforementioned drawbacks included. That is, by playing with the spacing between the individual conductors in this cabling, one can somewhat fine tune the high frequency response of the system. You can't really do this with other cable designs outside of "shot-gunning" multiple runs and spacing them apart.
Other than that, I'm glad to see more and more folks catching onto the benefits of solid conductor speaker cabling. I've been an advocate of this for many years for multiple reasons, long before Goertz cabling was even available. If one is interested in the technical aspects of how's and why's, one might want to check out this thread over at AA regarding solid conductor speaker cabling, sonic differences, bandwidth, linearity, dielectric absorption, power transfer, etc....
Bradz: An amp should never oscillate with Nordost cabling. This cable has a much higher nominal impedance ( 100+ ohms ), limits power transfer at any given frequency and isn't all that low in inductance to cause problems. Then again, one will never get the amount of warmth or bass output out of these cables that they can out of other cabling that is better engineered. Try reading this thread over at AA about Nordost vs Goertz from a first hand user and then a brief comment in this thread about the same comparison.
As to the Goertz cabling, these can send specific amplifiers into oscillation. The very low nominal impedance combined with their very wide bandwidth can tend to play games with amplifiers that utilize a specific design and / or are very wide bandwidth. Using the factory supplied Zobel network ( impedance compensation ) should solve this. If it doesn't solve the problem, the amp itself has other problems outside of high frequency stability.
As to the Innersound amps, these are built for them by Coda to their specs. Many of the engineers at Coda used to be affiliated with Threshold / Forte', which were amps that were also known for oscillating with low inductance / low impedance speaker cabling. Having run Goertz speaker cabling in systems using Threshold / Forte' amplifiers, i can assure you that so long as you use a Zobel network at the speaker, you shouldn't run into any problems. This was also discussed over at AA in a similar thread about the Innersound / Goertz combo. Sean
I just recieved my anti-cables in the mail.
Very fast shipping!
They sure are stiff,more than I imagined.
I havent installed them yet but have read over the 'manual' Paul includes.
Im a bit confused with what he writes.
"The stiffness of the wires will help you keep them suspended in the air.Do your best to keep them a few inches away from anything,including the carpeted floor.Extra long Anti-Cable runs (Mine are 10') can be better managed by attaching a small plastic cable tie (included) every couple of feet.This will help the wires move as one,without adversely affecting the sound"
He then notes "Keeping each wire somewhat seperate minimizes the magnetic fields of the wires from interacting with each other" Huh?
I want to install these properly but now Im a bit confused.
BTW,they look very well made and are quite heavy.
I've received many emails about the subject of wire geometry / configuration, but i don't want to taint this thread any further than i already have. At the same time, i don't want to respond to a dozen individual emails either as it doesn't serve the greater good of those interested in such things. If someone wants to start a thread about speaker cable geometries and the electrical / sonic results that occur with different designs, i'm sure that there might be at least a few responses and questions posted there. Sean
PS... Something "strange" is going on in this thread as material that i posted last night is no longer to be found. Why and who pulled it, i don't know.
Bradz: See my response to you in the other "Anti Cables" speaker thread.
As to my previous comment about "strange things" going on, the only thing "strange" is me. I forgot that there were two different threads on this same topic, hence my confusion. That's what i get for posting very late at night when i should be sleeping : ) Sean
Only cables that are extremely wide in bandwidth and / or have a very low nominal impedance ( very low inductance ) can cause problems with your Threshold. The Anti-Cables are not capable of such a low impedance or low level of inductance regardless of how they are configured. Even if one were to use a cable that could cause the amp to self-oscillate, the addition of an inexpensive and simple to make Zobel network would solve any of those problems.
Using the Anti-Cables or any other design that physically separates the two conductors by a measurable distance drastically reduces bandwidth and raises nominal impedance. In effect, the Anti-Cables will act as somewhat of a smaller gauge zip cord with an increased tendency to roll-off the treble as spacing between the conductors is increased.
The treble roll-off may fool some people into thinking that the treble is cleaner, especially on digital based systems that tend to sound bright or ringy. The solid core conductors are what give the cable the majority of their "special properties", but the lack of other specific electrical traits are what limit the bandwidth and power transfer characteristics.
Like i've said before, buy and use what you like. These cables are a step in the right direction and can be even more than that, but you have to know how to get there in order to achieve the best results. If you already knew how to get there though, you would have chosen a different point to start at though. With that in mind, i'll never discourage someone from finding out what works best for them and / or learning along the way. That's why i said that i was glad to see people learning / experimenting with a type of product that i consider to be a stepping stone to better sound reproduction. Sean
I asked Paul Speltz about how to configure his cables; he allowed me to quote him here:
The last time I went on the A-gon discussion form, they chopped the entire discussion out. I must have broken some "rule", so I'll stay out of it.
I have not tried twisting the Anti-Cables. You should ask Sean if he has tried it, since he seems to be recommending it.
Feel free to post a quote of what I have said below on A-gon if you like. Let them know this is what I told you.
It is true that twisting the wires decreases the speaker cable's series inductance, but it also increases the cable's parallel shunting capacitance. Shunting capacitance tends to make amplifiers with feedback (as most do) unstable.
Now, getting back to the series inductance issue... Any series inductance in the Anti-Cable run is almost always offset by the tweater's's inductance. After all, it is a "voice coil", and coil has much more inductance than a
straight piece of non coiled wire.
Usually a tweater's's impedance rise, due to inductance, is much greater than even a very long run of Anti-cable wire, so any impedance rise due to series inductance in the Anti-cables can be disregarded.
Just look at all 3 speakers reviewed in the most recent issue of Stereophile (April 2005):
Page 139, NTH speaker impedance rises from 7.0 ohms to 7.9 ohms in the top octave.
Page 146, Linn speaker impedance rises from 3.0 ohms to 4.5 ohms in the top octave.
Page 159, EPOS speaker impedance rises from 4.0 ohms to 5.4 ohms in the top octave.
Might I be so bold as to suggest, there is the possibility that the extra treble information people hear when using a low inductance (high capacitance design) could be amplifier oscillation bursts that add spatial information. After all there is a company called TDS Audio (True Dimensional Sound) that makes a produce that intentionally created transitional oscillations to add spatial information.
So, to answer your 1st question... run the wires separate, if it is to messy, use tie wraps every couple of feet to clean it up. If the sound degrades, you can easily cut the tie wraps off again.
Use your own ears, and trust yourself.
Please let me know how it goes.
Paul's comments are valid but there is SOOO much more to cable design that just the capacitance and inductance figures.
The nominal impedance of a cable goes up as one spaces the conductors further apart, which lowers the amount of long term and short term power available from the amp. On top of that, the greater the impedance mismatch, the poorer the transient response and greater amount of signal reflections created.
Other than that, Paul's comments about high frequency oscillation may very well be valid. This is why i suggested the use of a Zobel network with any cable that is very low in inductance and wide-bandwidth by design.
Other than that, i have used similiar cabling to the Anti-Cabling as configured in a twisted pair in the past. I recommended this configuration as being a great cable for the money invested on the net appr 10 years ago when i first logged onto the internet. This cable design was also listed in my modification notes for the "Classic" series of Klipsch speakers, which was posted on their website many years ago. Sean
"....the extra treble information people hear when using a low inductance (high capacitance design) could be amplifier oscillation bursts that add spatial information."
This means, the better the cable the worse the cable. The better the cable the more oscillation bursts and unstability it causes as only good cables are able to pass through spatial information and good amplifiers are able to recreate the venue atmosfere.
On some recordings there is much more spatial information then on others. You can hear it on compilations spanning many years eg. How low inductance cables are able to dfferentiate it causing oscillation bursts, strong on some recordings weaker on other I don't know.
I hear what I hear and anti-cables kill almost any spatial information, the recording venue is just sterile.
Midrange lacks detail also, voices are not in "there", artist's breath , nuances are suppressed.
The cables definitely need break in as they were smoother on top and more liquid after 20-25 hours.
Paul is a great guay, very understanding and flexible but his theory doesn't convince me. I hear what I hear.
Jkuc: venue information i.e. "space surrounding the instruments or performers" is directly related to high frequency speed and articulation. Higher levels of inductance attenuate higher frequencies, causing a reduction in spatial cues. This is why i've recommending using a geometry that is lower in inductance than the more traditionally used spaced conductors with this product. Not only is linearity improved, other benefits derived from increased linearity also become more apparent. Sean
I bought three twisted pairs of Paul Speltz's Anti-Cables about six-months ago. I use them for my front right, left and center channels. I would use them for my rear channels also, except those wires are built into my celing and are not accessable.
The cables made a very clear improvement in the sound of my system. The three dimensionality of the sound image staging was markedly improved, probably due to improved phase convergence. You can sharply tell where each player is located, if the recording is made properly.
In addition to improved staging, the beauty of the sound is also much improved, both for spoken voice and music. I had been using type-4 Audioquest speaker cables to my B&W speakers. The Speltz Anti-cables are far superior to the Audioquest cables. I use the same audio system for CD, DVD, and HDTV and all are improved with the Speltz cables.
I am a member of the Audio Society of Minnesota. We had a speaker cable duel meeting about a year ago and auditioned multiple sets of speaker cables with otherwise unchanged audio equipment and music source. It was a blind audition (we didn't know what cables we were listening to until it was all over). The Speltz cables were far and away the best, beating out some very expensive cable competitors. That meeting convinced me that speaker cables make a big difference in the sound of a system.
Paul Speltz also makes component interconnect cables of equally high quality. I highly recommend the Paul Speltz cables.
I use a threshold amp + Maggies and have tried both ways, spaced apart 2" and twisted about 3 turns per ft. I find the twisted to sound better in my system, better vocals with nicer highs, soundstage seems little more open. But it was a week when I was playing around with a few things so take that for what it is worth. A friend did a double run of twisted ( not bi-wire) and gained a nicer bottom end with a very very slight loss of highs.
Jeremy, did you twist the pairs yourself or buy them twisted?
A couple of months ago, I bumped against one of my Speltz pairs and it rubbed up against the chassis of my amp and shorted. Got a little poof and a smear of white on the cable jacket. No harm, nothing damaged, but it worried me. The cable insulation is very minimal.
I have had almost everything immaginable as interconnects and speaker cable - including multi-thousand dollar silver stuff from a variety of manufacturers. My system is all top of the line Ayre Universal, preamp, and amp, and I bi-wire to Vandersteen 5A's. I find that the best wire was Audioquest silver, and Anti-Cables. I found it hard to tell the difference - they were both great. I use Anti-Cables because of the cost, both interconnects (balanced) and speaker cable