Any volunteers at the Bristol show? To ask the likes of Denon, Yamaha, Onkyo etc., the non too exotic vendors, their thoughts on cables and why they ship kettle leads. Any offers please
A slightly more interesting question (IMO), would be to round up a bunch of 'golden eared' enthusiasts from the show as an audience and ask a number of the aftermarket mains cable manufacturers to participate in an ABX test - though I doubt it would have got much support from the manufacturers.
If we could find neutral territory (a hifi dealer who doesn't flog fancy mains cables?) it might be worth having our own test with mains cable proponents bringing along their favourate cable to try.
Perhaps WHF would publish the results.....
To be honest I am rather disappointed about how this thread has turned out, I haven't bothered reading much after my last comment because its all turned argumentative. I was not looking for an argument, most of us have been around here to know what the cynics think. I personally find it all very narrow minded. There are people on this forum who would try new things and tell us about them, Cno, PP, Acalex to name a few and I'd always read intently about their experiences. Sometimes I would get to try some of what they are talking about and get back saying "Hey it really works or it didn't work for me" instead of "Pah, that could never work because here is what the scientists think about it". Its all getting to be a giant pain in the behind, can't we just have people who say nah it didn't work for me instead of just blindly disputing it? Well you are welcome to have your petty debates here, I'm off.
P.S if my experience ever gets you to try a mains cable, it would all be worth it so please do let me know.
Maybe next time you should ask nay-sayers to stay away!
I was always very sceptical about cables, assuming they couldn't make any difference unless they were really badly designed (I'd had one such, but thought it was an isolated incident). Then, thinking my DIY Cat-5 speaker cables looked too untidy (multiple strands of coloured cable held together with sellotape...), I replaced then with Van Damme studio blue - if it couldn't change the sound, at least it would look better, right? Wrong. Completely ruined the sound. I've described it before as being like dumping a duvet over the speakers, and I think that's still the best description. I gave it a while, hoping it would improve (or I would get used to it), but no. I needed to get a new kettle lead for another appliance, so thought I would take a punt on something slightly more expensive, if not too extravagant, just to see. I ended up with something made of several silver cores (Connex Audio), and, still not really believing it could solve the problem, tried it out. The sound was changed again, dramatically. Music was clearer, brighter (though not aggressive) and almost back to how it had been before. Close enough that I thought I'd live with the Van Damme for the time being (although Chord Rumour has since taken its place, largely for length reasons in a new place, although the sound did change a bit...). I decided to make a copy of this mains cable, on the cheap, and found further, if less marked, improvement when used with other components. Since then I've done the same with interconnects and found a small but still discernable improvement in terms of imaging, perceived volume and lower end detail. I should say that these have not been expensive 'upgrades', but just following a pattern that has yielded results before. And that the improvements have been noted by others who didn't know about them...
So I've been forced to conclude that, despite everything telling me that it shouldn't be the case, cables, particularly mains in my case, make a big difference. It makes no sense, and doesn't appear to have been cost based, but I'm stuck with it.
After all that, and as a bit of an aside, I also got more and more irritated by the fact that the 'centre' of the recording seemed skewed to the right. I played with speaker position, but nothing really made a difference. So I tried one of those Belkin power filters (pf30 I think) in place of the ineffectual Tacima and guess what? Sound centred with more width and depth. Wasn't even slightly subtle. So for me it was all about the mains. You're all welcome to doubt me if you like. Just thought I'd let shafesk know he's not alone!
Shanling T-80 CD (modded)/Clearaudio Concept (Ortofon 2M Black)/Squeezebox Touch-->Jolida Music Envoy pre-->Jolida JD502P-->EB Acoustics EB2; X-Cans-->Sennheiser HD650/Shure SRH940
Going back to the point about the mains travelling miles and miles before reaching the upgraded cable, it's perhaps relevant that the national grid operates at many kilovolts, so the point at which it's serving our HiFi is the point where it's at its lowest ebb, so to speak....
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