Harmonic Technology Truthlink (approx. $150-$175 for 1 meter used). I use it between my EMC 1-UP and Bryston BP-25 pre. A less expensive option is Signal Cable Analog Two (less than $75); you can try it for 30 days risk free.
I think you would be happy with Cardas Golden Reference cables, they are warm but not as warm as the Golden Cross and they are slightly more resolute with more natural(to my ears) midrange. It may be a stretch to find them for your price but as long as you don't need a long cable you may be able to find one if your patient. I've had great luck with Cardas with BAT gear in the past, the sound was VERY enjoyable.
Magnan Vi warm, smooth and super wide sound-stage. This is what I presently use, now for many years.
Transparent Balanced Music Link Super XL.
Take a look at LAT International's IC-200. I run it between my Chord DAC-64 and my McIntosh C200 preamp and between the preamp and the McIntosh MC402 power amp. Check the reviews on audioreview.com - I support the most enthusiastic. Burn-in takes some weeks, though, but LAT offers a 45-day-trial-period. See their website www.latinternational.com
Hey Peter, good choice on preamps! I'll 2nd the transparent recommendation. I'd go with the balanced version. I'd describe it exactly along your desires. Good Luck.
i've been very happy w/ synergistic research looking glass which is designed w/ tube gear in mind. my comparisons have been: transparent music link plus, stealth m7, cardas hexlink 5c, modern audio design pearl, purist audio colossus, kimber hero and nirvana moet.
I'd like to try the Transparent cables, but I could use a bit more advise! There are so many versions out there... and my price limit remains around $300. As for the Musiclink Super, there is the original, the XL version, and now the MM version. Transparent says each one is a significant step up. I think I might be able to afford the XL version, but the MM could be too pricey. And there are countless other IC's that Transparent makes. Any further advise on which one to choose within my price range?
Man, Peter you sure go through a lot of cool gear! But I see the ProAcs are still in your house.
Which components do you like to match with your 2.5s? I've been using a Blue Circle preamp with a BAT VK200 on my ProAc 1SCs. I'll be getting a VK3i any day now.
Didn't you run Aleph 3s and 5s, and also a Bruce Moore amp with the 2.5s in the past?
Gunbei - yes, I did run a number of amps with the Proac 2.5's, including both Alephs, an ARC VT100 mark ii, the Bruce Moore. Among those, I like the Bruce Moore slightly more (!) over the ARC, and both more than the Alephs (which had a nice smooth tone balance, but sounded more "flat" with the Proac's. Right now I'm powering them with an Odysee Stratos Dual Mono, which I think also sounds great. I got rid of the Bruce Moore because it didn't drive the Quad 988's all that well. Still looking for the right amp for those speakers. I guess it takes alot of effort to make them work, especially regarding room placement and acoustics. Feel free to contact me if you want to discuss the Bruce Moore amp. Those Proac 1sc's are wonderful, I heard them at a dealers in Phx. They need some bass support, but the image beautifully and have great tonal balance. All the Best, Peter
You might include the Coincident CST in your search.
most cables fall into 2 camps...detailed yet warm doesnt fit.
warmth kills detail.
most cables are very colored or too revealing. that is not a bad thing depending upon your system and taste.
the two camps are:
1. fast/images well (ie xlo, coincedent)
2. Bloom/body/warmth (cardas, tara, magnan)
i would try mixing and matching cables to see what sounds best. i have tried most cardas cables and they are too warm/colored for my system.the neutral refernce wasnt bad, but the xlo was still better imo and my system.
i have good luck with xlo seconds from fatwyre (it is a discolored signiture II) the cable is extremly neutral and doesnt get in the way of the music or components.awesome cable for the $$$. $300 for 1 meter pair.this is one of the most transparent cable i have heard ( including zen, harmonic, cardas, tara, etc..)i would start there or a used pair of xlo sig 2
the coincedent is pretty good also, but lacks the bottom end and incredible imaging of the xlo.but for the $$$, it is hard to beat.can be found for $175 used.it is pretty close to neutral, the top end is pulled back in the smallest amount.
i have tried transparent plus in the balanced form- it greatest strength is it a very coherent cable ( have to hear it to understand, it is pretty amazing) but it is very, very recessed in the top octaves and has no air and top detail
may want to look at wireworld eclipse. i am expecting a pair of eclpse v this week. i will keep let you know.
take care & try to get as many cables as you can to find out what sounds best in your system. after a couple of trys your prefence will fall into one of the camps.
Hi. what length do you need?? If it is 1/2 meter I would say AudioQuest Anaconda, a 1/2 meter can be had for around 300.00 or so. This is a great cable and will give you all the detail you want and more and will not be aggressive at all. I know that you max is around 300.00 and others have given you VERY good choices in the couple hundred $$ range but if you can fit a 1/2 meter for the used price you will fall in love with this cable IMHO. Best Regards.
Well, I have a pair of Musiclink Plus MM's and a pair of XLO Signature 2's coming. I'll try them out with my current setup, and when I get the Aesthetix, and provide some feedback here. Thanks all for your suggestions.
Go with Virtual Dynamics, they will change your whole system! Soundstage, detail, bass, mids, highs, unreal sounding cables! I have tried a more cables than I can remember, and nothing sounded as good as these. If you can afford the "Nite" series you will never look for another cable!
Magnan Vi is a great cable, it goes with almost any CD to Pre. I am looking for a signiture series, anyone got one to spare ( XLR type )
Not sure on its current price, but try out Audioquest balanced Diamond interconnect.
I can second Auaarons recommendation of Transparents Super Balanced XL. I just put in a lenghty run from my ARC ls15 to my Plinius SA 100Mkll and what a stunning difference over my MIT rca cable..Big time bass and soundstage, smooth mids and highs.