Are you sure you hear a difference? Or do you think you hear a difference because you want to hear a difference? ;-)
50 responses Add your response
Wellfed, I think you think he thinks you are indifferent to what you think he thinks he hears a difference. = P
BTW, are we thinking in terms of digital cables here? You might want to look into better powercords for your digital equipment if that is the case. The results might be you're only thinking you're hearing glare but you're not.
The Van den Hul carbon fiber cables are exactly as you described; the First was even better, but I had hum problems with it. If you like the sound of the VDHs, no reason why you shouldn't stick with them; if you want cables without that glare you find in others that, from my memory of the VDHs, give you even more in the way of detail and soundstaging, give a listen to the Kubala-Sosna cables.
I agree with Nighthawk regarding the AU24s. Both the interconnects and speaker cables are the least prone to exhibit digital edge and glare of any I've used.
I'm quite sensitive to this characteristic and felt that using too many AU24 cables throughout my system masked some of the metallic shimmer naturally present in some percussion.
In my present set up I've found a combination of Acoustic Zen interconnects and Audience speaker cables to offer the best balance of musicality, soundstaging and detail for my taste.
Wellfed, get a new digital camera soon! :)
Friggin' Viggen is confusin'!
In my system
the AU24's have an incredible soundstage, detail in spades,
are very holographic, and have a wow factor. They do have an "edge" to them that I hear with every cable I have tried except the Van Den Huls. Audience says that they need a 2-3 hour break in. I have only had 8 hours on them so far. We will see if they get better and lose that edge with time.
Zilla, your AU24 are only 8 hours old?! I think 200-300 hours is more like it before you get the full benefit and are able to hear what they should truly sound like.
I hope you allow enough break in time for all your cables. Depending on the cable their sound can change dramatically during burn in. Some are very subtle, but I have a pair of Ridge Street Audio Poiema that kept doing a crazy chameleon dance on me the first week. It was almost as if Kirstin Dunst morphed into Janet Jackson, then Rosie O'Donnell, before finally settling on Nicole Kidman. A really weird and wacky modulation of sonic shifts!
I'm not trying to fan the flames here, but is it possible that your cheap, mass market Sony is introducing the digital glare that you hear?
You have a very expensive amp and speakers, but you're using a mid-fi digital front end.
I would bet that a high end CD player like a Resolution Audio Opus 21 or (insert high end CD player name here) and a Radio Shack Gold interconnect will KILL the Sony sonically, regardless of what interconnect you pair with it.
I'm not saying there aren't differences in sound when using different cables, but I do think you might be missing THE BIG BOAT and looking for a dingy to "float your boat".
I could be wrong and the Sony 333ES might be one of those rare "you get WAY more than you pay for" components, but I doubt it.............
Your last statement just painted a very scary picture for me. If the Poiema had stayed Rosie I think I would have quit the hobby! Thank goodness.
I've heard differences changing in both directions, but in general I'd agree with your statement. The impact of losing Roselyn Sanchez and being left with Whoopie Goldberg in her place would be too shocking to survive.
With all the Audience products I've owned I've noticed very little changes in break in compared to other brands, so the numbers you quote might turn out to be correct. I've never heard your Sony player, but I was going to suggest what Reubent did. You might want to also reevaluate the Audioquest speaker cable.
Just to put my two cents in. I too think it might be the sony. Have you tried an RFI filter on your powercord? Try it. Buy a Shakti on-line, or AudioQuest clamp on rfi filter, or some comparable brand. Install it on the powercord just at the base of the sony, It will knock that digital edge off of your sony.
Being so blinded by the Stereophile light is a big mistake. You've had multiple people tell you that the AU24 shouldn't have glare, and the SCD333 may be the cause, but you blindly hold onto the word of a magazine reviewer.
I'm not saying we're right and he's wrong. What I am saying is that if you ignore the advice many, you may end up chasing an audio fairy you can never capture.
Have you considered that the Van Den Hul could actually be masking a deficiency in your system?
Zilla- You said it yourself- cables do "tune the sound" in some respects, kind of like REALLY expensive tone controls.
I've tried so many I can't keep count, but I must say the AU-24 should not be the source of any glare. They will however let everything higher in the chain through.
I would'nt take offense at recommendations to consider another digital source. I too like JA at Stereophile,but I owned a Sony SCD-1 that was SMOKED on redbook by the Resolution Audio Opus 21.
If you don't want to experiment with your digital source, you may just want to settle in with the Van Den Hul cables, or try something in the upper reaches of the Cardas line.
Gunbei - I detect lots of AU24 lovers in this thread. The prevailing sentiment in this thread is that people seem to hold the AU24 in a special light, and that those who cannot hear it that way must be wrong, or their systems poorly-matched.
I particularly find Nighthawk's comment: "If you find AU24 edgy you have a problem somewhere else." just too simple and one-sided to be useful.
If someone's system doesn't acheive some result (or does) doesn't mean that it's deficient because it doesn't accommodate the AU24 properly. What kind of logic is that?
Zilla,I am not putting down your sony. In your equipt list you did not list a power cond. My point was made because if the power in your town is really dirty it will effect digital. You would be suprised what a "shakti on line" will do. As far as Stereophile I haven`t had an opportunity to listen to equipt they have reviewed in the last couple of years. But thru the 80s, 90s and early 2000s when I could listen to equipt they had revieved, most of the time I agreed with them. You would have to admit that they are not the same mag they were before they were sold to the company that owns them now.
One thing you may have not thought of is your listening room acoustics.
Oh, I didn't realize that you were so well informed. Yes, Stereophile and Monster Cable are two of the "Experts" in the Audiophile world. You obviously have done your homework!
Please accept my apologies. None of my current equipment is on the Stereophile list, so obviously I'm not a qualified poster and my experience shouldn't be considered.
Interestingly, I've recently sold several items that were Stereophile rated. To me, my current system sounds better. Maybe I should put that Monster Cable Power Filter back in my system..........
Reubent calm down. If only money was not unlimited. Doing the best that I can. I trust JA's ears. I was going to get the Modwright Platinum Mod of the Sony 999 but some speakers just became available that I have been searching for for three years. Modwright is on temporary hold. Wallet you know.
Update: Au said 2-3 hours break in.
Well 15 hours in to breaking in and much of the glare is gone. So much for the 2-3 hours.
Just did two 15 minute session with each cable.
I like them both.
Vanden Hul is fuller bodied and more relaxing to listen to.
It is a darker sounding cable. Not a bad thing in digital.
Au's are more intense and the detail is awesome.
They have a somewhat more defined soundstage.
I really like both cables.
Au's are going to get a full break in. 50 hours minimum.
My Dali's took 200 hours.
Here is an ear candy treat. Must have in my opinion.
Jean Michel Jarre's Laser light show from Houston Texas. Drefus music 1987.
Wow. Really shows off the system. Going to post this under music.
So no one take any offense as non is intended. Just sharing some experiences with you I have had with our audio HOBBY.
Reubent, as June said to Ward, "You were a little rough on the Beaver last night!" I do understand where you're coming from, but OUCH you slapped Zilla kinda hard there!
Zilla, I've broken in several pairs of Nordost I/C's and speaker cables, and I've always noticed a "tizzy-ness" when I first play them. After playing overnight, the high end sounds much more "civilized". The next thing that improves is the soundstage (imaging and location becomes more precise), and by 72 hours I'm 90% there. Stay with it...some cables do take time to burn in. Do you know how long the manufacturer recommends for burn-in?
Wellfed and Gunbei, thanks for the laughs!
I think you missed the point of my response to Zilla.
This really doesn't have to do with how special the AU24 is, but with Zillas' response to the advice he'd been given. If you want to talk about simplistic statements how about this doozy?
"My Sony is being filtered by a Monster cable power filter. I like Stereophile and believe that what JA hears I hear. I have always agreed with him or should I say his ears. Again with the Van Den Hul Cables in place there is NO shrillness or fatigue."
Whoaa!!! Good thing Jim Jones and Reverend Moon aren't near by. A lot of people took time to consider Zilla's situation and we get hit with that zinger in response. Why even create this thread in the first place? He already had his mind made up as to who he was going to listen to for advice anyway.
Au24 in a special light? Nah. I think the speaker cable is damn good, and so do a lot of other people. I'm not as enamored with their interconnects so I can't really be counted as a flaming AU24 lover. But like 'em or not, I think one thing just about every person that has tried them will agree on is that these wires don't produce digital edge. I think most people would say they're a bit on the dark side, and some would even say rolled off. Sure on the surface maybe Nighthawk's and my responses were a bit simplistic. But there is a lot of testimony to back it up.
Tuning an audio system is a lot like trouble shooting a computer. It's a process of elimination. And based on experience, many people voiced common opinions about what the causes could be. Could we all be wrong? Possible, but unlikely. But why completely ignore us after asking for advice?
Gunbei and all of you gentlemen .
Can anybody suggest a cable that would tune the sound into soft Marylin Monroe voice type.If I get that ,I will let her whip me with it.
PS.I have to be honest and declare this statement.I do believe in cables up to a point,after that I just buy them for the "look" they add into my system.I have a feeling many others do the same.
The Poeima! sounds like a stuck up kangaroo? Definitely bring that over, Dean. I'd like to play with her...
The above suggestion of Lat International probably comes close to Marilyn Monroe. I find it's characteristic to be fluffy/airy with a marshmellowy mid. Too mellowy for my ears as it kind of robs some details in the highs.
I personally owned many great Stereophile rated CD players including the CAL trans/dac, a B rated unit, and the NAD 502, a C rated unit. Both sounds better than the Sony 333 though.
And what is that Monster filter crap. Take the damn thing out. I am so sick of Monster...
BTW, I think my OTAs sounds as clean as Milla Jovovich's body.
Yioryos, I think I'd like to be whipped by Marilyn too. :)
The Audience AU24 would hurt really good because they are so damn skinny, but maybe the Cardas Golden Cross with its nice layer of womanly fat would have the effect George is talking about.
I lent Marilyn to Viggen for a couple months and he used her in ways no other man ever dreamed of. Who ever thought Marilyn would be able to swing that tush as a digital cable?
I like Latin and Mediterranean women myself, so which cable would you gentlemen suggest? I'm currently using Acoustic Zen and Audience. I suspect the AZ Silver Reference II is more Grace Kelly, and the AZ Matrix Ref II is a bit Sophia Loren, so using them together I'd end up with something like Isabella Rosellini. Which ain't bad at all! When I sit down for a listen every night I always greet my digital cable as if I were addressing Rita Hayworth. It makes her very happy and helps her to sing like an angel and dance like a temptress.
I proclaim, that from this day forth all audio equipment should be reviewed and described as women in show business, past and present!
Wellfed, I hope you're talking about the YOUNG Rosemarie Clooney! The stock tubes in my Blue Circle preamp reminded me of a young Phyllis Diller.
My apologies to Zilla and all. He did not ask for an opinion of his digital setup, however, that's where I think he may be getting the digital glare that he is trying to fix with cables (but what do I know).
Anyway, sorry I got so spun up. When I saw the disproportionate amount that Zilla spent on Amp and Speakers vs. the digital rig AND he defended it, I figured he was part of the "bits are bits" crowd.
I should have stuck with my response to the "fidelity" post from later in the day.
"If it makes you happy, don't worry about it".
Zilla, I used a Monster HTS-2000 for a few years and after eliminating it from the chain gained noticeable dynamics and transparency.
Recently, I replaced my wall outlet with a Porter Port and started using a Furutech eTP60 power distributor and clarity and soundstaging have been stepped up a couple notches more.
At the very least try plugging your BAT directly to the wall and see if you notice a difference. In some cases, a power distributor with active filtering can constrain dynamics. The Furutech addresses the negative effects of mechanical vibrations and uses no active filtering.
40 hours break in and the glare and edge are gone. As for the monster cable power filter I have listened with it in and out of the system and don't believe that I hear any significant difference. I have it there to prevent damage should I have a lightning strike. If pressed I would say the bass is very slightly stronger without the filter, and with it the treble is ever so slightly smoother. These are slight differences.
The AU24 interconnects move you up a few rows compared to the Van Den Hul interconnects. The Vandys are smoother, fuller and allow me to turn the volume higher. The AU's are cleaner and clearer with more detail. I really like them both.
Zilla, the increased dynamics you noticed when removing the Monster from the chain is something many people notice when running their power amp directly to the wall without power conditioning.
In my case with the Monster gone, I noticed an improvement in focus and everything seemed to open up more so than the increased bass dynamics. Everything just became much clearer. This may be manifesting itself as the smoother treble you notice when using the Monster.
When I auditioned the BAT 300se I noticed a hollow metalic glare that kept me from purchasing the unit. I use nht 2.9 and they are revealing, at the time I used AQ granites (now Nord blue heaven) and the AQ reduce glare. I really liked the BAT, especially the way it controlled the bass drivers. The glare was more pronounced in the right channel and I think the current 6h30 is inferior to the nos version. There is no 6h30 sub but maybe try a new pair-I tried unsucessfully to get nos. I was sold on the BAT except for that ever so slight issue but for that much money i wanted my needs matched perfectly and ended up spending more as a result.
So I hooked up a new used pair of JBL 250ti's (1998 Classics, minty by the way) to compare to my Dali MS4's. The interconnect equation change. Now I prefer the silver generic interconnects to the other two, but the difference is so slight as to be virtually insignificant.
Interconnects make a difference on the Dali's to a much greater degree then they do on the JBL's. Don't get me wrong the JBL's have many strengths, and are very warm and fuzzy(in a good way). They seem to react to changing interconnects to only the slightest degree.
Perhaps the cable argument for those that don't hear a difference is real as they do not have speakers or equipment that is resolving enough to be able to hear the differences.
Two different speakers both excellent in their own ways.
holograpic or (three dimensional)
violins and cellos (wow)
exciting to listen to
totally non fatiguing
Clean and clear plus wow factor
hugh natural but warm solid bottom end
these JBL's are a bit laid back ? ? ?