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Don't get why "Audiophile" USB Cable would improve sound quality

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by throzen0303, May 14, 2011.
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  1. throzen0303
    I have seen USB cable price from $1 to $550+ each,
    I do understand a $10 cable is going to be build better than a
    cheap $1 cable, but, isn't USB, digital in general just transfering 01 signals?
    If it is, isn't it a Yes/No situation? Yes meaning the signal made it through, job done,
    No being the signal didn't go through(rarely happens), How would a silver wire USB cable
    improve the sound quality? Is this just a marketing thing? We see tons of CAT.6 cable,
    the cheaper once deliver the same speed as the more expensive once. at the same length.
    I don't see any audio dacs using USB 3.0 at this moment,
    taking the advantage of the faster speed there for less change if signal loss if any.
    Please do advice. Thank you.
    I am asking this question because I am going to order a NFB12,
    the standard cable that comes with it on the picture are....standard,
    just not sure about the advantage people are talking about with "high-end"
    USB cable.
    Omega17TheTrue likes this.
  2. JxK
    Read that. It explains in relatively simple language (though on occasion it does go into some depth) why cables do not do anything to change the sound quality. Read up, and see why anyone with any background in physics or electrical engineering can't help but be disgusted by the cable scam.
  3. Nuwidol
    I always wander this too.
    Check this cable out...
  4. Mambosenior
    I have my picnic basket ready, a good cigar, and a front-row seat for the upcoming donnybrook. Let the USBullets fly!
    (The first combatant that mentions “1s and 0s” has to sit in the penalty box for a spell and listen to Schönberg through Bose headphones.)
    Oh well, I must venture that I use a Locus Design “Polstar” USB cable. Do I hear the difference between it and an the grey El Cheapo? Well, I’ve told myself that the black background through the LD is blacker than black and that mantra has helped to keep me in the dark about the cable issue.
  5. throzen0303
    I just don't get why people pay over $10 for a USB cable, I don't think gold plating plug will do anything too,
    since the pins of USB connector are inside.
    Pretty insane by those marketing people.
  6. bcasey25raptor


    I agree, I would have trouble paying more then $10 myself. It is just ridiculously stupid that people think it makes a difference. I feel the same about burn in. I noticed no change in any of my headphones.
  7. throzen0303


    I do notice change with IEMs and Tube amp(no experience with solid state), not much with headphones
  8. throzen0303
    mainly BA based IEM i see change
  9. Roller
    I bought a shielded cable with gold connectors and ferrite chokes on both ends for a single purpose, to eliminate any chance of EMI, as well as eliminating any crackles or popping that came up once in a while with the stock cable of my DAC. It worked perfectly because that was the job it was meant to do, and it just did it, simple. BTW, the cable went for $15.
    I have better things to spend money, such as better amps, DACs, headphones, etc. But to each their own [​IMG]
  10. travisg
    Locus Design Axis USB owner. Trust me there is a difference.
  11. Currawong Contributor
    Well, there is the logic that if your DAC is sensitive enough that changing the USB cable makes an audible (or even measurable) difference to the sound, then you should buy a better DAC.  
    However, my latest toy from Audiophilleo comes with a Wireworld UltraViolet cable. I do like how, internally, it separates out the power and data wiring.  I shall be building my own separate PSU, possibly using batteries, for the power side, however. A solution that actually fixes the problem is always going to be superior to a fancy cable, whether or not the cable has any useful effect. [​IMG]
    Champ HkGt likes this.
  12. WrxSTI
    It wouldn't, and it doesn't.
    It just looks better.
  13. travisg
    I use my ears not my eyes
  14. throzen0303

    Can you describe the difference for the USB cable? I understand why a good analog cable is needed, and I do hear the difference. But digital, not so. I saw a $3400 USB cable, for that, just get a better DAC or Headphones
    Champ HkGt likes this.
  15. travisg
    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.
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