Question and answer
Maybe by using the word 'who' he was limiting it to humans and excluding amphibians?
HiFi / A/V / Bedroom
Try to borrow a decently priced cable, say the Supra 2.0 and compare it with a freebie or a USB printer. Only you can say whether it sounds different or not. I think the Supra is selling at GBP 29/metre.
HiFi: ClearAudio Concept TT, Musical Fidelity M6i and M6 DAC, M1s (CDT, CLiC, ViNL), Onkyo TA2600, SONY MDSJA20ES MDP, ProAc D18 with full Siltech cabling.
HT: Samsung UA55B7000 LED, OPPO BDP 95-EU,Marantz DV4003, Yamaha RX-V2067, Philips DVDR7300H, Infinity Primus Center, Wharfedale WH2, SW15 Sub, Mission M34i with full QED cabling
Bedroom: Apple AE, Bose WAVE Music Sytem III, Musical Fidelity M1 HPA headphone amp, Bose Over the Ear
HeadFi: Alessandro Grado MS Pro, Beyerdynamic T1, Bryston BHA-1 headphone Amp.
Office: iTunes, UD110 USB DAC, Bose Companion II, Bose AE2w
Not bad advice, but to save the OP time, the answer is...no difference.
If you had bought an expensive USB cable, you might feel the need to believe it made a difference, otherwise you'd feel like a right lemon.
Mac mini > AVI ADM9Ts
All USB cables will function the same and will not effect the sound in anyway.
My advice is to go for any cheap one that looks well made (you don't want to have to replace it in 6 months time because it's falling apart).
PC > AVI Neutron Five 2.1
Sony NWZ-A847 64GB Walkman > Westone UM3x
On the contrary, I am using an el cheapo cable...regardless that I did hear a difference with a USD600 USB cable when I did a review on it. Mainly because I am not a true CAS fan....so would not spend that amount of money on USB cable.
And the main advice above is actually borrow and decide by yourself...
I'm assuming he meant he has that many kicking around due to always receiving a free one when he buys some equipment (we'll ignore the fact that they aren't actually free and the price is incorporated into the price paid for the piece of kit one purchases).
I'm also prepared to accept that he may have stolen them, which is why mine always seem to go missing. Or that he used to purchase them all the time, so has no need to "these days".
Desk-Fi: Mac Mini - NuForce Icon HDP - Fostex PM0.4n - Audio Technica ATH900x - Sennnheiser HD595 - Grado SR80i
Bedroom system: Esoteric RZ-1 - PMC DB1i / iPod Classic - Onkyo NDS1000 - Firestone Audio FUBAR IV
As an ex engineer, most of my posts on here have to either help someone with a technical point or challenge the absurdities in some of the claims made for mains cables / speaker cables / interconnects ......
However in the spirit of fairness, there are situations when the design of a USB cable can matter. In fact, it is only when a USB cable is used for async transfer in a design where the DAC is not powered by the USB cable that I would put my hand on my heart and say the cable could have no effect. If anything, the situation can be worse than the pig's ear that is S/PDIF -
1. USB powered DAC - while not exactly HiFi, by my definition, any DAC that is USB powered will be getting its supply down the USB cable. The DAC needs a clean, low impedance supply. Thin conductors, badly shielded construction, poor connector quality could impact this.
2. Synchronous data transfer - Just as with S/PDIF, in this mode the DAC will be deriving its clock from the incoming data stream. Badly shaped pulses, noisy data lines, could lead to an increase in received jitter in the DAC.
So, in any proper USB implementation (DAC not powered from the USB, async data transfer), any USB cable that doesn't fall apart when you plug it should be fine, but if the DAC is USB powered or the DAC derives a clock from the data (sync transfer) the cable could just possibly matter.
I would concur with most of the above,
However I did once purchase a very cheap HDMI cable to go between a blu ray player and TV and resulted in an awful picture with a lot of interferance.
I swapped the cable for another and got a perfect picture, I can only think that the first cable was damaged in some way. So I probably go with chebbys
advice and not to go with bargain basement.....................
...regardless that I did hear a difference with a USD600 USB cable when I did a review on it.
blimey, who charges $600 for a USB cable, and have they actually sold any ?
TV room : Samsung 60" plasma-ATV3, -AVI ADM40, DM5 in 4.0,/Sonos ZP90,, Sky using Sonos for On Demand, PS4, Sony BDP S570 thru a Yamaha RXV3067.
HiFi : Sonos ZP90 - AVI ADM9 RSS + AVI SUB
Bedrooms : 2 x Sonos Play 3
IPad Air for Sonos & Spotify / AKG K551
This might interest you.
What a load of clap trap, A digital interconnect only carries digital data, NOT audio or video.
As for the rest of the gobbledygook on the website, words fail me; I had to look twice to make sure it wasn’t April Fools Day.
It's probably one of the most honest, informative and educational HiFi websites there is , but I accept you might not see it way.
Source 1) "Inspired" Manticore Mantra turntable c/w Rega RB 301 arm, Goldring 1042 MM Cartridge, Graham Slee Reflex M phono stage, Graham Slee CuSat 50 interconnect
Source 2) Cyrus CD8 SE CD player
Source 3) iTunes (ALAC), iMac, Devolo Homeplugs, Apple TV3, Toslink, Arcam rDAC
Source 4) Technics SL-7 linear tracking turntable.
Roksan Kandy L3 amp, Spendor A5 speakers.
Other rooms: more Airport Expresses and Homeplugs with Denon AV system and Denon Mini system.
Google for Kingrex Unanimous U-Art Y cable.... They have been selling well but they didnt manage to get USD600 from me
So, in any proper USB implementation (DAC not powered from the USB, async data transfer)...
andyjm, as an engineer you might be interested in another current engineer's view view on async and usb power:
IS THE ODAC ASYNCHRONOUS There’s a lot of marketing and other hype lately surrounding asynchronous DACs. Much of it is myth. Just like op amps got a bad name from the old 741 released many decades ago, so did USB audio based on early synchronous designs. But most modern USB audio devices use an adaptive interface where alocal clock controls the DAC and is only loosely coupled to the PC’s timing. Contrary to popular belief, with an adaptive interface the data is not directly clocked by the USB port. This method has been refined over the years and can work very well. It’s also natively supported by all major operating systems. Most methods of true asynchronous USB audio require proprietary drivers under Windows and proprietary drivers are rarely a good thing. Judging a USB DAC by whether it’s asynch or adaptive is a bit like judging a car by the engine configuration—i.e. an inline six in a BMW vs a V6 in a Nissan GT-R. Other aspects of the design are more likely to limit the performance and there are plenty of examples of outstanding USB DACs using adaptive interfaces.
USB power has a number of practical advantages:
Power Noise Below the DAC’s Noise Floor – It turns out ground and conducted (electromagnetic) noise are typically as significant as noise on the USB power line. Because a connection to the PC’s ground is required regardless, simply using an external power supply doesn’t automatically mean freedom from USB bus noise. With the ODAC the solution involved careful routing of ground currents, different power supply conditioning for the digital and analog sides, careful capacitor selection, and inductive filtering. The result is the latest prototype’s noise floor is mainly determined by the DAC IC itself not the USB power bus. Put another way, an independent power supply wouldn’t make much difference.
Basically, with careful design, the above points are not design limitations that cause any audible issues.
There is difference between free usb printer cable and expensive ones.Expensive one usually accentuate bass,high,mids,remove sibilance or add it .This depends I think on wire material used inside:copper,silver etc... But all this means that expensive usb cable might not work in your system and might disintagrate sound .As example in my systems furutech formula doesn't work well because system already has balanced sound enough bass and nice mids and highs and furutech pops more bass and sound becomes disintegrated even more bass,tamed midrange.But if your system bass shy it might work very well
Harbeth SHL5 ,Technics se-a3000,su-c3000,Bryston BDA-1,V-Link192,self made usb cable from flat tasker red copper cable ,Atlas titan interconnects,atlas hyper2.0 speaker cable
There is difference between free usb printer cable and expensive ones.Expensive one usually accentuate bass,high,mids,remove sibilance or add it .
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