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Which is the best optical cable under $300? - Page 10

post #136 of 168
i got a 17 foot hosa cable that is nearly as thin as a hair. it is plastic fiber. i compared it to a $450 one meter glass cable. no difference i can hear. i was glad to find a thin cable to snake through the floor.

edit: i am surprised this cable even works as thin as it is. cool. i take it this is not the hosa cable that has been recommended here in the past? it works fine.

music_man
post #137 of 168
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post
my favorite 6ft dayton glass toslink cable costs $45, does it break your argument at all? or is $30 the hard limit?
Cool thanks for the recommendation...my 3ft Dayton Glass GOC-3 toslink cable arrives tomorrow. Only $35...not bad at all.
post #138 of 168
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by music_man View Post
i got a 17 foot hosa cable that is nearly as thin as a hair. it is plastic fiber. i compared it to a $450 one meter glass cable. no difference i can hear. i was glad to find a thin cable to snake through the floor.

edit: i am surprised this cable even works as thin as it is. cool. i take it this is not the hosa cable that has been recommended here in the past? it works fine.

music_man
Very interesting, can you send us a link for the hosa cable please?
post #139 of 168
Hosa OPT-117 | Sweetwater.com

i cannot honestly say if all optical cables are the same or not. i have not tried enough of them. i will say this one meets my expectations for sq. like i said, it is a marvel that it even works as thin as it is. it is not fragile either. i tugged and pulled on it. where the philips fell apart this one did not. it is intresting that everyone wants glass. the experts recommend plastic. i don't have links to those comments, you will have to take my word for it. glass is really designed for multi mile runs. it is also too fragile to be pushing through floor boards so i could not use it for this. also, all those toslink cables with fancy metal ends are just "covers" over the plastic connector. the connector is always plastic inside that metal barrel. this cable cuts way down on the bulk. i was told where i bought it(the store also owns a large studio) that it is used throughout the inside walls of their studio for years.

btw, i think it says 16.5' it is an even 17 feet. they make them up to 30'.
music_man
post #140 of 168
@MacedonianHero: ok, let us know how it goes if you like

@music_man: yes, usually the thinner the better...but FWIR they need many strands to make it through the plugs.

a hair thin silica fiber can drive 100 Gb/s over 7000 km: Optical fiber - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

glass has much better optical properties than plastic, better sharpness, constringence and less distortion(I personally cannot stand plastic based glasses...they make me feel half-blind):
Abbe number - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
mtf sharpness - Google Search
post #141 of 168
I recent purchased a Van Den Hul Optocoupler MK II, because I like Van Den Huls house sound. It sounds very smooth and is definitely an improvement over the cheaper belden type cable I had before.

Don't overestimate the difference between cables though, it is fairly noticable to my ears, but no where near night and day.
post #142 of 168
i just don't see how an optical cable can sound different. well, they don't not to me. except when they are malfunctioning. which is the case with many cheap cables. the new one must sound much better simply because the old one was not working properly. not because it is "better". it is better because it is constructed better. i feel either they work or they don't. however not working can be subtle. so i see why many of you move up to a more expensive one and it does sound better.

hosa is known for making quality stuff for cheap. it is used in studios. i think it is one solid plastic fiber but i could be wrong. it could be multiple fibers. silica is glass? the hosa is plastic(pof). the big thing with glass is it can carry signals much further distances than plastic. it should not make a difference for us. other than your cheap plastic ones that did not function properly. so indeed the new glass one sounded better. try this, take two different glass cables at the same price range from quality manufacturers. do they sound different? analog cables i agree 100% but not fiber optics. we are not transmitting electricity. either the light pulse arrives fully intact or it does not. i am not a hater by any means. i just cannot hear a difference in ones that are working. plus with high end dacs the most important part, the clock signal does not have to be transmitted intact.

the hosa is intresting that it is thin and seemingly not fragile. the thicker cables have cladding since glass is fragile. with glass as well, less strands is better i am told. so those cheap 280 strand cables are not the better ones. if you want the "better ones".
i think the best ones have about 67 strands.

if you have a good dac the hosa(or other qulaity inexpensive pof cable) should work as good as any. for a nonupsampling/reclocking dac it may in fact might make a large difference. i wouldn't know. so i guess it is possible. with my da924 and dac1 i cannot hear a diffenrece between the 17 foot hosa and a $450 one meter glass cable.

music_man
post #143 of 168
Sure would appreciate some help here!
I have a DVR that has both a Coax Audio Out port and an Optical Audio Out port (S/PDIF?). I want to convert either of these to a female USB port, into which I can plug the USB cable from my BOSE Companion 5 speaker system.

The Bose only has this one USB connection---the system is designed to plug into a computer (It is a Great system for that) Bose tells me that they can use the digital audio signal that comes out of these ports. I just need a way to connect them together (without soldering) Thanks, everyone!
post #144 of 168
Okay we get it you like your hosa cable and it's well-constructed, don't have to say it a million times.
post #145 of 168
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post
@MacedonianHero: ok, let us know how it goes if you like

glass has much better optical properties than plastic, better sharpness, constringence and less distortion(I personally cannot stand plastic based glasses...they make me feel half-blind):
Abbe number - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
mtf sharpness - Google Search
Alright, I was a little skeptical about a digital cable making a difference...ok, really skeptical. I understand the theory of transferring data digitally over cables (as much as a Chemical Engineer who has worked in the electronics manufacturing/design industry for more than 15 years) and I just don't get what I am hearing.

Being the "digital skeptic" that I was, I went out and picked up a 1M Monster Optical cable on sale at Bestbuy and never thought about it until I read leeperry's post. Since I seem to agree with him and his ears on many previous subjects, I thought for $35, why not.

So that brings us to right now and I am no longer a skeptic. Listening to the SACD version of Brothers in Arms by Dire Straits (remaster), using the CD layer through to my PS Audio DLIII Dac via optical (and my HD800s), I can certainly here an improvement.

On the very first track, "So Far Away", the cymbal hits on the drums seemed two dimensional, bright and lifeless. The bass was good, but seemed a little weak and not very taught. So I swapped out the 1M Monster cable with the 1M Dayton GOC-3 Glass Toslink cable and viola!

The cymbal smashes became three dimensional with a better sense of space, they were better located in the sound stage and no longer too bright and came to life. The bass surprisingly tightened up even further with better definition.

So being an engineer, I am back to doing some more A-B comparisons to collect more data, but so far I am very surprised and a little humbled.

Thanks leeperry for the recommendation!

BTW, the construction of the cable is just fantastic and very similar to many of my Kimber Kables. So far a happy skeptic...er customer.
post #146 of 168
np! I also love mine

cables, opamps and tubes sure have magic to them...the hell w/ the reasons why
post #147 of 168
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post
/the hell w/ the reasons why
Tough for an engineer to just let go!

A former coworker about 12 years ago was also a magician and he always said he loved to do magic for engineers because he knew we would be up nights trying to figure out how his tricks worked.
post #148 of 168
well, much higher optical MTF sharpness and bandwith than any kind of POF, far less optical distortion(meaning far less jitter), polished silica strands(the same that can drive 100 gb/s over 7000km ), high quality/properly installed metal plugs, good QA = better SQ

the guys on the forum I quoted earlier even said that this cable would kill coax...they can't all possibly be shills

it's funny how m2tech state in their FAQ that jitter over toslink is terrible and that it's limited to 24/96...but I was told on another forum that 24/192 was entirely possible over cheapo POF toslink, and did they even try silica toslink to run their jitter tests? ah well, "if it sounds good to you, it's good"
post #149 of 168
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post
"if it sounds good to you, it's good"
I completely agree!

And thanks again!
post #150 of 168
sorry to rub in the hosa. i did not mean to brag about a $10 cable.

the dayton looks like a huge bargain. i'd want one but i need more than 12 feet. plus that is some big holes in the floor. not a great idea for various reasons. even if it did not sound better to me that is one nice cable for a steal price.

the aq that is the same which comes in the length i need is $1,100. i am not doing that for internet radio.

music_man
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