Transparrent Ref XL vs Opus

I currently have Transparrent XL throughout my system and I am thinking about upgrading the speaker cables only to Transparrent Opus. Has anyone mixed cables like this upgrading only the speaker cables and leaving everything else intact? Any comments on Ref XL vs Opus? 

System: Audio Research Ref 10 Line-Stage, Ref 10 Phono, VPI Titan Turntable, DCS Vivaldi Stack, DAgostino M400 Monoblocks, Wilson Alexx V speakers. 


I’d ask the question of the Audio Afficianado forum. Your system is of the caliber of most folks there. There is likely to be a number of folks that have both and made the transition.

Mixing and matching Transparent cables is fine, but the order of your upgrades depends on which Generation you currently own. We just upgraded from Ref XL Gen 5 to Gen 6 and the improvement was startling. If you have G5 interconnects I'd upgrade them first, before moving on to speaker cables.

@arcguy I have been wondering if the Gen5 to Gen6 upgrade was as large as previous upgrades.  Previously the mantra has been that the upgrade is about the same as 1.5 levels.

What improvements did you notice sonically and can you give more description to "improvement was startling"?



I can attest the move from Gen 5 Super to Gen 6 Ultra in speaker and interconnects was indeed startling. It was as if my system could go magically lower in frequency response than it had before. The weight of the bottom notes was more present than it had been before. Also the space between instruments as very noticeable.

With Ref and/or Opus level Transparent I would expect equal measures of improvement. At this price point make sure you can home audition. This was never a problem in the hey day of HiFi and Transparent had their home audition kit. I would look to see if this is still possible or give them a call up in Maine. They are a small company and should be able to guide you well.

I am very fond of their products and while gear has come and went, Transparent Cable is the only thing that has been a constant since 1997. 




I believe the Gen 5 to Gen 6 upgrade is comparable in magnitude to the previous upgrade to Gen 5: that upgrade really opened things up with much more air and transparency, with superior dynamics and life.

In the 5 to 6 there is more information and air, again, with bass "faster" (clearer and less smear) and more impactful. 

The improvements are immediate, you don't need to sit there and think about it. I recommend doing an A-A-B if possible, listening to the first product twice before switching to the other. Many times what we hear second sounds better--even if you know the system and music well, there is a certain familiarity and seeming improvement with the second listen. Then, what you hear third (the B) stands out in bolder contrast to the first, whether for better or worse.