I use a basic USB cable (with a Chord Electronics QBD76 DAC) which I bought at the local market for £1.
All the best
Rick @ Musicraft
Ah dont worry. A better cable would probably have been wasted ... unless you meant you paid £1 for the chord.
Rick's use of brackets showed exactly what he meant.
Oh, terribly sorry
Pretty ... and pretty proud of it
Mine's gold plated, so I'm confident it's the best contact. I've see how the digits can get lost in the gap, bit like jumping on the tube when drunk.
JRiver MC17 -> Cambridge Audio DACmagic+ -> Roksan Caspian M2 -> ProAc D18
PC > AVI Neutron Five 2.1
Sony NWZ-A847 64GB Walkman > Westone UM3x
hence I want to hear from actual users.
I tried a £50 Wireworld USB cable on an MF v-dac and the difference over a printer USB cable was negligible. I returned the cable.
A few system upgrades later, I repeated the experiment with Siltech and Oyaide cables and heard a clear improvement over generic leads. I happily own the Oyaide.
The main point I would make is that I only heard differences in the digital cables after changing to high quality analogue interconnects and good speaker cables.
As to whether it's money well spent, only you can decide. I think the first priority should always be the components (source, amp, speakers).
dont know about usb but i tried a minijack to 2 rca purchased from a hypermarket. then i got a qed reference. i am not experienced with hifi as many here but the difference was serious.
i couldnt hear the difference yet between some cheap speaker cables and medium priced ones though.
i have a wireworld ultraviolet usb and i will get a cheap one to test it against just for fun. i will.call a friend and we will do blind tests.
Audiolab 8200CDQ / 2 x Audiolab 8200M / Wharfedale Jade 5/Spendor A5
See if you can borrow an expensive USB lead. After you have convinced yourself that it is absolutely no difference to a cheap one, give it back.
Sonos Connect, Cyrus DAC XP Signature with PSX-R
Cyrus Mono X 300 Signature, Wilmslow Phoenix with Bass Extenders.
If you listen to an expensive audiophile USB cable and to you it makes the sound quality better, keep it, the sound quality sounds better. Hifi and music should be a route to happiness with music and IMO anything that makes the listening experience better is worthwhile.
Just beware that the evidence that a USB or indeed any other cable can inherantly (as in its construction, materials used) affect SQ in any way is nil. And please do not suggest to anyone else that because it sounds better to you it is a better cable than any other USB cable.
Internet - laptop - DAC - amp - lots of headphones.
"A music lover will stop what he's doing and stay glued to a favorite piece of music even if it's coming over a 3" speaker or a public-address system..." - Ken Rockwell
I'll open by saying that I don't use USB for audio and it's unlikely I ever will so cannot comment from experience.
It seems to me that there is a risk of assuming that all audiophile USB cables are equal. I doubt they are. There are most likely some which are just bog standard cables with bundled audiophile marketing aimed at emptying your wallet. There may well be some that are genuinely audiophile being built by people who really know their stuff. All I'm saying is that a single comparison will likely not be decisive, unless of course you happen to have included a genuine audiophile cable in the comparison.
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.
In the current (Jan 13) HFW, their "Wishful Thinking" for Christmas presents, lists Vertere D-Fi Cables...and I quote:
"No-one questions the sonic differences between speaker cables any more - but there are still those who nay-say the gains a good USB connection can make. Well there's no nay-saying the quality of Vertere's D-Fi range. Hook up a Laptop to your hifi and the extra detail and musical detail they convey is astonishing.
Decent recordings are shorn of their sometimes mechanical digital sheen and come across with real authority. The brainchild of Roksan founder Touraj Moghaddam, the cables provide a startling demonstration of what can be achieved by the most unpromising of sound sources, if you take a little care".
I don't play music through a USB cable, so these are the words and findings of HFW....but bear out what I believe I heard in the demo evening I attended.
Well I know hi-fi companies vouch for USB cables, most of them have highly revealing and hugely expensive systems through which I'm sure differences shine. I was thinking more of the Average Joe with his mid priced setup. The Vertere cables seemed to have made a differece to a modest setup but I can hardly justify spending 100 pounds on a usb cable for a 220 pound dac, I don't know if it'll make as much a difference to the HRT as a change in dac will to the setup if I get a sub 400 pound dac for instance. Surely people have tried cheaper options right?
Denon DNP-720AE network streamer, Mordaunt Short Mezzo 6, Cayin A-55 T, Technics-SLQ210, Denon DP-29F turntable, 540p, Dac-magic, Marantz 5004CD and 6025 Turntable, Mac ,Pure AV interconnects, QED Revelation speaker cables, QED Performance interconnects.
Akg K702, Grado SR60i, UE Triple-fi, Musical Fidelity X-cans, HRT Music Streamer 2+
And to Shafesk:
IMO no difference between any USB cable whatsoever. I'm more concerned with hum / ground loops using this type of connection to a PC, and IME it's down to the DAC manufacturer. There wasn't really that much difference between DACs when I tested some of them, let alone cables. I use a £5 or so gold plated thing from Amazon, sounds the same as the £15 gold plated monster wrapped Lindy.
I predominately use black ones as they match my kit, I suspect they sound better than grey ones, which can look a bit dull.
I changed the usb cable from the standard one that came with the rpac to one with these RF filter type things on and couldnt hear a difference. Maybe the standard cable was better but im just guessing.
Tempted to try a kimber to answer the question for myself once and for all, if nothing else, (and yes i understand the underlying tech). Especially on the rpac which uses usb for power and data.
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