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post #16 of 835
Thread Starter 

hmmm, what do you think about the Fiio e5 0.0....why are you using that if....

post #17 of 835
Quote:
Originally Posted by travisg View Post

The difference is in the sound stage. Clearly to my ears its way more open than a 10.00 cable. As far as the 3400.00 Locus Cynosure cable I would say that its for people who tend to have at least 50.000 in their equipment and feel like they may need to squeek out every advantage they can. Once you get up to 100,000 any upgrade at all I would guess would be a minimum of 5,000 dollars.I have over 30,000 dollars in audio gear and therefore feel like 550.00 for a cable that obviously makes a difference to my ears is a fair price to pay.Also yea it looks cool.



I agree.

 

I've also heard differences from USB cables.

post #18 of 835

Old profile

post #19 of 835

Ok everybody you got me, I bought the cable just because I can. It sounds no better than a free cable. HAPPY? Just like my old FIIO E5 sounds better than my Isabellina. And my Ipod ear buds sound way better than my JH16's

post #20 of 835
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by travisg View Post

Ok everybody you got me, I bought the cable just because I can. It sounds no better than a free cable. HAPPY? Just like my old FIIO E5 sounds better than my Isabellina. And my Ipod ear buds sound way better than my JH16's


Don't have to be mad, but I haven't experienced your setup so I can't give a definitive answer, but they are just saying could you tell the difference on a blind test
post #21 of 835

USB cables have a digital and an analog component to them. The digital component transmits the actual audio data while the analog component provides power. A "better" USB cable will provide some filtering along with shielding the data and power lines in order to provide the DAC with purer power.

 

I notice a difference between my Kimber cable and the cheap USB cables I had lying around, so for me the extra cash was worth it.

post #22 of 835

I second the idea that USB cable makes a difference. It is not all about 1 and 0 because USB audio has got no error correction built within it and waveforms can get distorted when it reaches the DAC, resulting in misinterpretation on the DAC end.

 

 People always say that if you have the money to get good cables, you should upgrade your audio equipments. That is not true.

 

For example, upgrading to a 'better' DAC from my current one will cost me a lot more money. Getting a 'good' USB to SPDIF converters cost a bomb too.

 

So, I got a WW Starlight USB cable and it improves the sound by much more than what I was expecting.

 

 

It depends on which spectrum you are at. If you are using FiiO DAC, I will not recommend getting an expensive USB cable even if it improves the sound because you will be able to get a better DAC with the cost you are paying for the cables. But if you are somewhere higher, you may want to consider upgrading your USB cable as an alternative.

 

 

post #23 of 835
Quote:
Originally Posted by ABXG View Post

USB cables have a digital and an analog component to them. The digital component transmits the actual audio data while the analog component provides power. A "better" USB cable will provide some filtering along with shielding the data and power lines in order to provide the DAC with purer power.

 

I notice a difference between my Kimber cable and the cheap USB cables I had lying around, so for me the extra cash was worth it.



But most of these expensive DAC's have their own power supplies anyway, do they not?

post #24 of 835

...so how many here actually did study on specifications and logic of Universal Serial Bus and digital transfer before stating its just bit-perfect 0s and 1s that cable can't make any differences? Me too lazy to go through all those so any clarification would be appreciated. I think just talk about clocking issue and error handling should be enough, lets aside the power cord issue first..

post #25 of 835

The documentation for the USB audio transfer standard shows that the standard does not feature error correction, that is true. But again, people seem to have some very strange ideas about digital audio. If your cable has so much noise that it renders a part of a square wave unreadable, it's probably a 99p one off Ebay. If somehow data is corrupted, the result isn't going to be "subtle reductions in sound stage" or a "harsh treble" or anything like that - more like nasty noises.

 

As for jitter, the USB interface is, as usually implemented, inherently more jittery due to the need to reclock the audio - but even then, this quite unlikely to have any audible effect on the sound and has prettymuch nothing to do with the cable. 

 

 

The essential problem with many of the attributes given to these USB cables is that they don't make any sense. Let's assume that, against all odds, my reasonably priced USB cable is somehow degrading the audio signal. Firstly, for the differences people claim to hear to be occurring, it couldn't be just the odd unreadable bit - there would have to be some constant sort of degradation. The kind of subtle, constant differences that people claim really don't make any sense, as using my magic wand to corrupt large numbers of bits would not result in something playable properly at the other end.

 

Take an HDMI cable as a great example. If I plug in a defective HDMI cable that is not standards compliant into my TV between my PS3, I might get noise, or white lines, or a whole array of visible artifacts onscreen. I do not get "subtle dulling of the complementary midtones" or a "reduction in the vibrancy of the most extreme hues."

 

Let's face it, the arguments as to why some analogue cables supposedly sound better make vanishingly small amounts of sense, let alone those pertaining to digital cables.

 

On another note, I sense a move to the Sound Science forum may be imminent.

post #26 of 835

Hey Willakan,

 

All USB and HDMI cables, no matter how cheap they are, are able to carry and transmit most information accurately from one point to another. If not, they will not be sold in the market in the first place because they are outright defective.

 

However, saying that a high grade USB cables could transmit signal more accurately than stock cable does not imply that stock cables are junk. For example in the case of HDMI cable, a good HDMI cable will be able to show the sky in a more vibrant and vivid blue than a stock HDMI cable. It is not that the entire sky disappear, but the preservation of the data at the D/A end is better.

 

There are three types of USB cables:

1) Standard stock cable which most of us use

2) Snake oil cables (marketing gimmicks with not much difference from standard cables)

3) Higher grade cables.

 

To save myself money from getting good cables, I bought my current DAC for the reason that it has excellent jitter rejection and USB implementation. I bought Digital Interface in good faith that asynchronous USB transfer eliminate the need for good cables. Thing is, USB cable still make a reasonable impact on my sound - quieter, cleaner, more accurate.

 

This topic has been brought up and debated so many times that repeating the debate all over again is useless. If you have the opportunity, listen to Furutech GT or Wireworld USB cable. I have heard them and they do impact the sound. I am not so sure if the same holds true for Kimber/Monster USB cable.

post #27 of 835

And that's where we'll agree to disagree - IMO the HDMI cable will not make a difference and if it is standards compliant will never make a difference, because it's impossible. But that's probably not a discussion for the cable forum, and I'm certainly not going to buy them myself on the offchance conventional science ceases to apply. smile.gif

 

EDIT: Comparison may not be entirely fair, as I'm pretty sure the HDMI standard has some provision for error correction, but the basic idea still stands.


Edited by Willakan - 5/16/11 at 6:42am
post #28 of 835

Haha yeah we will leave it to other people to debate and save our breath =)

 

Anyway Willakan, if you ever get an opportunity to listen to a comparison between a good and standard USB cable, please don't forgo that opportunity but instead make use of it to prove to yourself that USB cable will not make a difference.

 

I came from that path myself normal_smile%20.gif

post #29 of 835

I can't say that a high-end USB cable will make an audible difference, but your understanding of how binary numbers are "moved" around in a circuit is very misconstrued. But it's not your fault, popular culture of the last 20 years has led you to believe what you do.

 

There are not literally zeroes and ones flying around inside your electronic devices, and it's not true that the ones, as you call them, "make it through" and the zeroes "don't (rarely happens)." If zeroes never "made it through" then you'd just have ones "making it through" all the time.

 

What really happens is that our idea of binary numbers are simply an abstraction, or representation, of voltage levels within a circuit. Yes, at a higher level a programmer really can interact with binary numbers (but few do). The circuit actually has three states -- no voltage being passed through, a "low" level voltage (we can think of this as being represented by 0) and a "high" level voltage being passed through (our 1). It is a combination of low- and high-level voltages being passed and subsequently grouped together in an ordered manner millions or billions a time a second which allows us to enjoy digital circuitry. If we just had a single voltage level, your notion that only ones "make it through", then we would have two states (off and on) which is useless for any sort of decision making.

post #30 of 835
Quote:
Originally Posted by john mcguirk View Post

I can't say that a high-end USB cable will make an audible difference, but your understanding of how binary numbers are "moved" around in a circuit is very misconstrued. But it's not your fault, popular culture of the last 20 years has led you to believe what you do.

 

There are not literally zeroes and ones flying around inside your electronic devices, and it's not true that the ones, as you call them, "make it through" and the zeroes "don't (rarely happens)." If zeroes never "made it through" then you'd just have ones "making it through" all the time.

 

What really happens is that our idea of binary numbers are simply an abstraction, or representation, of voltage levels within a circuit. Yes, at a higher level a programmer really can interact with binary numbers (but few do). The circuit actually has three states -- no voltage being passed through, a "low" level voltage (we can think of this as being represented by 0) and a "high" level voltage being passed through (our 1). It is a combination of low- and high-level voltages being passed and subsequently grouped together in an ordered manner millions or billions a time a second which allows us to enjoy digital circuitry. If we just had a single voltage level, your notion that only ones "make it through", then we would have two states (off and on) which is useless for any sort of decision making.


 

Hey John,

 

Let's just leave this to computer audio forum.

 

USB audio is not as simple as what you would like to think.

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