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Cables Galore Speaker cables, Interconnects & Power cords

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  #171  
Old 07-05-2020, 12:11 PM
PeterMusic PeterMusic is online now
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Of Puma Cat's two photos, the second is more telling to me. The downward slope of the V10 from its IEC connection is different than that of my Transparent Premium. It is more abrupt, suggesting the Venom is indeed more flexible.

In order to move the process along, I have e-mails out to Shunyata, Transparent, and Furman; the answers I get to my questions should help me get closer to a decision on what to do about either power cords or interconnects. Again, I'm not displeased with the Transparent HPPCs, it's just that I wonder if there'd be benefit from having noise-reducing PCs on the sources, or getting better ICs for them; no money for both! Transparent Supers are thicker than the Plus I have now, and they supposedly have greater dynamic range; maybe they're heavier gauge too.
I hope you are thinking of flexibility as sort of a threshold issue (as in, it's flexible enough or it's not) and not trying to choose based on which cable is most flexible. Having experimented a lot with cables, my take is that some cables in some systems can make a big positive difference, some negative, some insignificant, and it has been impossible to predict in advance. I've spent a lot on cables, but would never buy without demoing at home for a few days first. Good luck
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  #172  
Old 07-09-2020, 06:25 PM
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I hope you are thinking of flexibility as sort of a threshold issue (as in, it's flexible enough or it's not) and not trying to choose based on which cable is most flexible. Having experimented a lot with cables, my take is that some cables in some systems can make a big positive difference, some negative, some insignificant, and it has been impossible to predict in advance. I've spent a lot on cables, but would never buy without demoing at home for a few days first. Good luck
I'm guilty of that, somewhat. Flexibility isn't the only criterion, but it's become bigger than need be. I'll retreat and rethink. Thanks.
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  #173  
Old 07-31-2020, 04:40 PM
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I heard from Transparent finally, and it's not anyone I've corresponded with previously. Having provided a complete list of my equipment, his first recommendation is I audition some Transparent speaker cables. They design their stuff to be in a matched system, and he/they believe that would yield the most profound changes. I've never had any complaints concerning my Kimber 12TC, but a networked cable matching my gear would yield real results, Transparent says.

As for the PCs vs. ICs, they recommend I start with the interconnects, actually. That means going from Plus to Super before the HPPC to Premium upgrade. The IC swap, even with the upgrade program discount, is still more money than the PC swap. Auditioning any of this is tricky these days, but the dealer I worked with on my PC upgrades might arrange one.

So some things to think about, even as the overall idea of upgrades has cooled a bit. Cooled, but not cold.
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  #174  
Old 08-01-2020, 08:40 AM
PeterMusic PeterMusic is online now
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I upgraded my Transparent Plus ICs to Super a year or so ago--between my DAC and pre amp, and between my pre amp and power amp. I was stunned by the improvement in each case. I then tried going up to Ultra, and struggled to notice a significant difference.

So--assuming you have a dealer that will loan you a set or two for a few days--I recommend moving up to Super ASAP. Good luck!
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  #175  
Old 08-01-2020, 01:11 PM
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As for the PCs vs. ICs, they recommend I start with the interconnects, actually. That means going from Plus to Super before the HPPC to Premium upgrade. The IC swap, even with the upgrade program discount, is still more money than the PC swap.
Yes, and this is why they want you to go with ICs first.

You can take this to the bank: all things being equal, PCs by far are more important with respect to overall system performance and audio quality and bring bigger improvements than ICs. Just one example, better ICs won't give your power amp, preamp or DAC the dynamic current transient response it needs to perform maximally. They also can't prevent the reflection of noise coming back out of the component's power supply to contaminate other components.

In my experience about this after over a decade of experimentation is: if you don’t sort out the power system FIRST, you will forever be chasing your tail with component upgrades and swaps and cable changes. Power cables are not tweaks after you have done everything else. They are foundational and at the base of the audio pyramid. For example, the most significant and meaningful upgrade I've made, which respect to across-the-board peformance and and taking the presentation to a completely new paradigm of music reproduction was getting the Shunyata Everest power distributor powered by the new Shunyata XC for Everest and NR series of power cables for components. These improvements have been more significant in degree and kind that upgrading amps, preamps, and speakers.

Assuming there's no single cable that is notably lower in specification or performance relative to the others in the system, in decreasing order of importance, the impact of cables is: PCs>Digital Cables>SPs>ICs. And the power distributor is the "central station" for getting that current where it needs to be.
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Last edited by Puma Cat; 08-01-2020 at 06:48 PM.
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  #176  
Old 08-01-2020, 10:08 PM
PeterMusic PeterMusic is online now
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I agree with Puma Cat that clean power is essential. My Nordost QKore and QBase grounding system with a single Frey 2 cable into the wall were pricey, but a huge improvement over stock power. Interestingly, once these 3 components were installed, I could not hear additional benefit from upgrading the stock power cables into the QBase.

But as I noted in my last post--it's critical to demo any cable change for a few days at home. Some cable upgrades will help a lot, some will hurt, some will be neutral.
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  #177  
Old 08-02-2020, 01:19 PM
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I have replied to Transparent's reply, asking for specific prices. I'd like to see what going through the upgrade program does for the IC prices. Then, if this gets as far as an in-home trial, I'd try one Premium PC and one pair of Super ICs. Just in case, I asked for prices on a 4ft or 5ft pair of their Plus speaker cables; standard length is 8ft to start ($900 MSRP and too long for my needs). Since I bi-wire using two pair of 12TC, the price then doubles.

Question: Given the noise-reducing power of the Premium PCs on my preamp and power amps, is it still possible for the amps to pass noise to the speakers? Transparent speaker cables all have noise modules on them, as the Transparent rep pointed out, but would I really need that?
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  #178  
Old 08-02-2020, 02:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prepress View Post
I have replied to Transparent's reply, asking for specific prices. I'd like to see what going through the upgrade program does for the IC prices. Then, if this gets as far as an in-home trial, I'd try one Premium PC and one pair of Super ICs. Just in case, I asked for prices on a 4ft or 5ft pair of their Plus speaker cables; standard length is 8ft to start ($900 MSRP and too long for my needs). Since I bi-wire using two pair of 12TC, the price then doubles.

Question: Given the noise-reducing power of the Premium PCs on my preamp and power amps, is it still possible for the amps to pass noise to the speakers? Transparent speaker cables all have noise modules on them, as the Transparent rep pointed out, but would I really need that?
Here would be my advice: when you do your cable evaluation of the Premium PC, rent in a couple Shunyata Delta NR v2s and compare those as well.
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  #179  
Old 08-03-2020, 07:57 AM
PeterMusic PeterMusic is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prepress View Post
I have replied to Transparent's reply, asking for specific prices. I'd like to see what going through the upgrade program does for the IC prices. Then, if this gets as far as an in-home trial, I'd try one Premium PC and one pair of Super ICs. Just in case, I asked for prices on a 4ft or 5ft pair of their Plus speaker cables; standard length is 8ft to start ($900 MSRP and too long for my needs). Since I bi-wire using two pair of 12TC, the price then doubles.

Question: Given the noise-reducing power of the Premium PCs on my preamp and power amps, is it still possible for the amps to pass noise to the speakers? Transparent speaker cables all have noise modules on them, as the Transparent rep pointed out, but would I really need that?
Unfortunately, yes. The PCs reduce noise coming from the wall. But you will still have noise from the amp and (I assume) from the speaker cables themselves.

Let's go back to the process though--there is no need to do this all at once, or even to speculate on a grand plan. You can do this piecemeal and in a relaxed way. My cables and grounding system were purchased over 4(?) rounds of demos/upgrades as I compared several levels of ICs and PCs. My expectations were often wrong in doing this, but each round yielded a significant improvement. You should get Transparent or your dealer to send you a few things to try. Then buy anything that makes a significant positive improvement. Then, if you till have budget remaining, get them to send a couple of more things to try.

Also, don't be surprised or discouraged if some "upgrades" yield nothing you can hear or even make things worse. If that happens, you've either maxed out on a given brand, or you do not like that brand.
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