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Cable Matters

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  1. Mshenay Contributor
    @iFi audio no problem!

    Some impressions from Audio Envy @AXPONA 2018

    20180415_110826.jpg

    This is the first time I've heard an HD 650 and really enjoyed it! This Copper Cable not only added clarity but also helped clean up what I've always felt was a very thick and overly smooth can.

    Had a chance to hear these at AXPONA and loved their overall clarity! Very impressive, and priced pretty reasonably too at around $300.
    20180415_110848.jpg



    Did some quick cabling rolling with a stranger and was happy to say he liked what he heard!

    20180415_130104.jpg
     
  2. Mshenay Contributor
    Been to long since my last update! Been quite busy these days

    [​IMG]

    Though after spending a number of weeks doing reviews it's nice to finally sit down with my HD 800 and just enjoy it. I've been living with the Audio Envy Copper Cable for around a month or so now and after being away from my HD 800 for about 2-3 weeks I was nervous about firing it up again

    Thankfully, upon listening pleasurably for the first time in a while I really found my self drawn into the music, and "draw" seems to be the biggest difference. My Silver cable really "wow'd" me with it's clarity, but what it also did was remove some naturalness from the music, now compared to the smeared sound of the existing stock Copper Cable, I felt the added clarity was a huge improvement!

    How ever coming back to my HD 800 with the Audio Envy Tone Kraft Copper I found... no lack of clarity but rather clarity with an a bit more naturalness especially in the low end. Where as the Silver Cable presented a some what stripped down low end, with evident focus on the fundamentals which often;
    • Added a slight emphasis to the hollowness of Timpani drums
    • Stripped away some of the harmonic content added by the body resonance of a cello or double bass
    • Presented kick drums with a dry artificial edge

    Switching to the Tone Kraft Copper I found I still had all the impact but without the slight emphasis on fundamental frequencies. So;
    • Both large and "kick" drums had that hollow sound but also retained a little more their from the body resonance - they quite literally sounded heavier and more substantial without being bloated
    • Larger stringed instruments like the Cello and Double bass again sounded more substantial having plenty of texture from the bow/strings but also a softer presence or force from the vibration of the instruments body

    I ultimately found the harmonic frequencies of much of the low end were perceived more clearly without being over shadow'd by emphasized fundamentals. An this is Audio Envy's aim, accurate sound. So I can certainly say in my system which features some rather dry and cold Tube Gear the Tone Kraft made a noticeable improvement over silver!

    Though the only draw back how ever was how revealing the Tone Kraft is, I previously switched to silver to help remove some excessive harmonic emphasis from my HD 800 and with my reference gear the Tone Kraft strikes a nice happy median, but with amps like my Schiit Vali Gen 1 or my Aune B1S I still prefer using silver to help further balance my Headphone within that system.

    So as Captain would say I'm fighting one kind of distortion with another, and while ideally we as audiophiles aim for sound without excessive distortion, I do still feel that there is some benefit to fighting fire with fire. Or rather use cables to correct an existing issue within your system. As often times with high end desktop systems correcting imbalances within a system is usually far more affordable than getting upgrades to remove them all together!

    But if you feel your at a point where your system has plateaued and your pining for just a bit more naturalness without any loss in resolve, give the Audio Envy Tone Kraft a try! I imagine you'll likely enjoy it as I have!
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2018
    Whitigir likes this.
  3. Mshenay Contributor
    Been some time since I updated this, but here's a pic from an upcoming large mini XLR Cable Comparison! Featuring some cables from

    @PETEREK, [who is sadly no longer building cables I believe, but don't quote me]
    @zach915m
    BTG Audio
    @teds headfood
    Audeze Stock
    Another DIY Member

    IMG_20181111_192355.jpg


    And I'm also doing a small USB C to OTG Adapter review as well! Featuring @iFi audio and some other popular brands from Amazon

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Mshenay Contributor
    Starting with the USB OTG C adapters we have three!

    IMG_20181108_202154.jpg IMG_20181108_200437.jpg IMG_20181108_201315.jpg

    One from @iFi audio
    IMG_20181108_200835.jpg IMG_20181108_200743.jpg

    One from Cable Creation
    IMG_20181108_200840.jpg IMG_20181108_200750.jpg

    One from Anker
    IMG_20181108_201156.jpg IMG_20181108_200804.jpg


    Pictures aside how do they sound?

    Well exactly the same assuming you have no data drop outs. So this review will be focused more so on usability and build over time than sound.
    • iFi Audio
      • Had the best balance of flexibility
      • had the smallest physical footprint, least bulk
      • Had no data drop outs while in my pocket
    • Anker Cables
      • stiff cable, little to no flexibility
      • kinda chunky an short
      • Had the most drop outs unless perfectly stationary on a desk...
    • Cable Creation
      • bulkier than iFi but not as much as Anker
      • "Gold" plating wears off after a few months
      • Longest and most flexible
      • Had some data drop outs while in my pocket
    So all in all while there are a lot of brands and options, I do feel the iFi USB C OTG was the best of the three.

    Bulk
    It has the thinnest physical connectors so it doesn't add a lot of weight or bulk when I'm using it​

    Durability
    Over time, the iFi Cable had the least amount of wear compared to the other two!!
    Function
    I again felt it had the right balance of flexibility​
    • Easy to shape/bend
    • Rigid enough to hold that shape while in my pocket
    Often times the Cable Creation was too flexible and would wind up coming up plugged if I was using it with a system in my pocket. An the Anker is just too rigid... I don't feel comfortable bending it to any degree.

    This is a case were a higher price up front yields a low cost over time.
     
  5. iFi audio
    That's very cool, thanks!
     
    iFi audio Stay updated on iFi audio at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
     
    https://www.facebook.com/iFiAudio/ https://twitter.com/ifiaudio https://www.instagram.com/ifiaudio/ https://ifi-audio.com/ info@ifi-audio.com
  6. Mshenay Contributor
    No problem! I appreciate having one to review! Though every time I go to buy extra's they are always out of stock xD
     
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