Review: Virtual Dynamics Master Series AES/EBU Interconnect
I recently had the opportunity to compare two expensive five meter AES/EBU digital cables, the Virtual Dynamics Master Series(retail-$2250.) and Audience Au24 AES/EBU($1800.) cables in my modified TacT system.
Listening took place over a period of two months to allow
both cables to break-in.
Most of my listening was done using live jazz recordings.
The final show down was done using Kenny Werner's live
Recently, there's been a lot of talk about VD's "speed of light" magnetic technology, which is used in the Master Series cable.
The VD Master is much larger and heavier than the Au24(see picture). Its weight and stiffness can easily tip over light weight components.
When the VD Master was first installed, it sounded like
a loudness contour switch had been engaged. Everything
seemed to jump out at you. As the cable burned in, this
extra dynamic effect diappeared.
On first listening to the Au24, it seemed overly relaxed,
but with use it opened up, revealing musical information
I hadn't heard with the Audience Conductor cables I was using.
So let's fast forward two months and get to the bottom line.
After two months of use, the dynamic difference between the cables was greatly reduced. The VD Master still seemed a bit louder in the mid bass region.
The major difference between them was in their presentation of the soundstage, inner details and musical overtones. The
VD Master cable greatly reduced the size of the sound stage in all directions, rarely moving pass the outside of the speakers. Its sound was smooth and powerful, but once the Au24 cable was in the digital signal path between the Tact
RCS and digital amps, everything opened up along with all the excitement of the live recording.
I'm at a lost to understand how two digital cables could sound so different.
For me the choice was very clear, the wide open musical sound of the Au24 always won out.
Both cables are very expensive compared to my five meter Conductors($200.each), which also produce a wide open soundstage. I was very happy with them until I heard the additional information the more expensive Au24 revealed.
I'm sure there are other great digital cables out there,
but I recommend that anyone looking for a digital cable should take Audience up on their 30 day trial period and listen to the Au24s. I don't think many people will send them back.
Tact-2.2x,M/S2150,Budge Khorus speakers
Cal Delta,Genesis Digital Lens.
Audience Au24 and Conductor AES.