- May 12, 2012
- Reaction score
- May 12, 2012
Currently I am using an AntiCables Level 3 Reference Series Power cord for $330, http://anticables.com/power-cords, with 6 Fair-Rite ferrites (get it?) from http://www.kregercomponents.com @ ~$15 ea. (PM me for more info, or if enough people ask, I’ll publish gory details.) All of this is with direct lines to my fuse box through a Furutech wall receptacle with an analog front end.What power cables are you using with your blue hawaii
For the first step in getting to my current configuration, I had a Shunyata Reasearch Ztron Sigma Analog cable ($1995) and their Denali 2000T conditioner ($3495) in house on demo, and did detailed comparisons between that combo and just an Anticable driving the BHSE. Versus many other comparisons I have done of power cords, interconnects, etc., the difference here was rather subtle. The following statements apply to the Anticable, the winner of this comparison. On Peter, Paul and Mary’s Album 1700, Mary was a little breathier and less “hard”, Peter and Paul were more focused in space and stood out more in the mix, plucking of the bass a little cleaner. On Solti’s London recording of Beethoven’s 9th, basses are raspier all the way down, and less “hummy”, violins and violas more beautiful (sorry), are more clearly ensembles of individuals (vs. just “sections”) and are easier to pull out of the mix from the rest of the many performers. The four vocal soloists sounded more “open” with more beautiful integration of all their harmonics and fundamentals. The overall gestalt is more open, focused and cleaner, with clear hall cues and placements. On Joni Mitchell’s Court and Spark, her voice is airier and more beautiful, the cymbals are more “open”, and the guitar is more clearly a wooden box with tensioned strings in a real recording space. The Shunyata combination blew away "stock" power cables and some pretty fancy alternatives (including cables of silver), but not the Anticables Level 3, which is evidently quite a "bargain". ($330 a bargain? Am I warped? Yes. Are we warped? Yes.)
Months later, for the second step, I acquired the 6 ferrites, and compared “just” the Anticable to that with ferrites. In the intervening interval, I have come to like more and more the term “focus” for describing power-source comparisons, in analogy to optical focus. With the ferrites the sound had substantially better focus: I can identify locations, timbers and musical lines of individual performers on Court and Spark considerably more clearly. Under the class of “timbers” Joni’s voice is “airier”, ‘breezier”, more “open”, the bass and electrical guitars have more impact and the cymbals less hashy more metallic: all contributing to greater "beauty". “Focus” is nice. Pictures cannot be “too focused” (unless you are going for interesting effects). Its not like, e.g., low-frequency response, where too much really is too much, leaving an aesthetic judgment at the end. More focus is absolutely good, and the Anticable provides excellent focus (up and down the spectrum) which is improved substantially (in my home on a random day) by the addition of Fair-Rites. IMO ferrites are spectacular performers for benefit vs. cost.
Finally, a word about my goal as an ear-speaker listener. I want to hear what the microphones “heard” during recording, all the disparate lines the the composer or arranger want to contribute to the work and the mastery of the performers. I am not asking my system to modify the sound, e.g., to make me “feel” like I am mid hall for a symphonic recording. I do not mind at all the experience of Joni focused as if she was singing “to me” (as she was to microphone).