What's the best USB audio cable for the money?

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  1. Whitigir

    I agree with your term, hence I have never upgraded my cables to be so expensive. Until I have Utopia, it deserves a silver-gold cables to me :). My favorite voicing for USB cables is Pure copper and then silver gold. Pure silver sounds great, but it feel cold IMO.
     
  2. chicken beer
    Yes! It's slightly cold and very revealing, good for some very light music.
     
  3. drbluenewmexico
     
    Audio-Technica AT-EUS1000otg/0.15 USB Cable OFC Digital Audio 0.15m (JTK)
    ( 191889069702 ) available on eBay from Japan about 4 " long for portable connections,
    they have full size ones also for higher prices


     

     
     

     
  4. chicken beer

    I forgot to ask, just for curiosity which type of cable did you select to pair for your Utopia? I probably won't be able to purchase such legit headphone for now though!!
     
  5. Whitigir

    It depends on your sources. Utopia is such natural and neutral headphones, so cables upgrades will have to be taken into account of your sources. I am using WM1Z and TA-ZH1ES, both is warm sounding with awesome soundstage. I chose Silver-gold.
     
  6. chicken beer
    Oh my. That's great stuff you got, great stuff!
     
  7. Whitigir

    Thank you sir! While we are at it, Silver-gold USB cables is a perfect Interconnect for Walkman to TA-ZH1ES Amp as well. I upgraded my whole system through and through :D, even Powercord, and the Walkman cradle
     
  8. chicken beer
     
    That's amazing. The TA-ZH1ES is quite new and looks very sleek! I am currently considering to switch my own system to a great DAC and a Schiit Mjolnir 2 amp, but haven't got the $ to do so,,,
     
  9. Whitigir

    TA-ZH1ES is a digital amp, it has S-master to do decoding, and great headphones amplifier circuitry. As a whole package, it can replace a stack of 2 pieces, a Separated DAC and an individual amplifier. However, it only offer RCA pre-in/out for analog connections. It is an indication that it does not have dedicated built toward analog pre-in/out IMO. I don't have the need to try it, or to test it out. However, I do know one thing that if you connect analog pre-in via RCA, it will convert this analog into digital and then back to analog again, so it can upscale your sources with DSEE HX and DSD remastering engine.
     
  10. chicken beer

    I see, that's a good thing I guess the upscaled sound will work best being decided again with the DAC engine.
     
  11. pofdstudios
    Well Cnet has this to say: https://www.cnet.com/news/when-are-expensive-cables-worth-it/
     
    Quote: USB (and Lightning)
    It seems the cable manufacturers, finding that you, dear readers, are too smart to buy their mumbo-jumbo about HDMI cables, have moved on to fleecing audiophiles on USB cables. Yep, USB cables. There are even reviews about how, after upgrading to a $1,000-plus USB cable, the sound on their USB Digital Audio Converter (DAC) "came alive" or something. Ahhh, expectation bias.
    I'm also including Lightning because they're effectively just USB cables, with a fancy proprietary Apple nubbin at the end.
    As far as the data going across it, USB is also a dumb tube. It won't improve video or audio quality.
    The exception is with USB cables used to charge devices. Not all USB cables can charge devices at the same rate. I've actually found this, anecdotally, and Wirecutter did some extensive testing and found the same thing.
    Among different USB cables, some will allow more current to make it from the charger to the device. Better-made cables can pass more amps (a measure of electric current) than poorly made cables. So if you want to charge your devices as fast as your charger and device allow, make sure you get a decent USB cable. What's decent? That Wirecutter test liked a $1.23 Monoprice cable best.
    Over time, power throughput can wane. If you crumple up your cables, the minuscule wires inside can get damaged, reducing current flow. I've had some cheap one that lasted, and I've had some expensive ones that didn't. Keep in mind, I'm a digital nomad, so my cables probably get more abuse than most.
    If there's something wrong with your USB cable, or you're trying to pass more data than that cable can handle, you can get dropouts or pops in the audio when using a USB DAC. A different, working, cheap cable is all you need.
    But, to repeat: an expensive USB cable isn't going to make your audio sound better, your pictures look better, or your printouts look sharper.
     
  12. Whitigir

    Those were some mindless words out of some random people who had 0 experiences in high quality audio and USB cables for the matter. But believe what you must, I know what I hear, period
     
    EuropeanEar likes this.
  13. Noobzilla
    Just read through the entire thread (well, skimmed or skipped through the 0/1s and whatnot war). Still looking for best USB cable mini that's under $70. My choice right now is AudioQuest Cinnamon. Of course, if I dont hear audible difference then lucky for me I will just return and save myself money. Tired of this ongoing "it's just data" vs "it does make a difference" war. I'm going to try it myself!! 
     
    Before anyone tells me that cables don't make a difference, I have to say it does (at least for my headphone cables... not sure about USB yet). I bought a $7 ebay cables for my headphones and I am very well surprised how much crappier it sounded. 
     
    Anyways, any recommendation on USB cable mini under $70 besides the Cinnamon? 
     
    Thanks!
     
  14. Blueshound24
    Granted I haven't tried a lot of USB cables except for cheap ones like the Schiit PYST USB, Supra USB and a cheap Audioquest, but by far the best USB tweak I have experienced has been the UpTone REGEN and Intona. Especially the Intona with huge improvements in black background, wide and DEEP soundstage, separation, tone, texture, etc. I feel like I can almost walk around and between all the band members!
     
  15. Noobzilla
    Did my roundup of USB mini cables between $35-$70. Saw other brands but didn't find mini USB or no reliable dealer in the U.S.
     
    Audioquest Forest ~$35
    Supra ~$40
    Viablue ~$50
    Audioquest Cinnamon ~$65
     
     
     
    I'm curious to try REGEN. Haven't read any bad review about it. Going for Audioquest Jitterbug instead since I bring my dac/amp to work each day. 
     

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