Monthly Archives: January 2016

Interconnect Update

I’ve lived with my Silver Sonic cables for several months, which I wrote about this past April.  While they are a clean sounding cable, I am finding the sound to be somewhat thinned out.  Perhaps the silver in the mix is not to my liking.

I have decided to embark on another cable project and make up a few sets of interconnects usinc Cardas 2×21 interconnect wiring.

This particular Cardas cable uses a “golden ratio” of conductors in an arrangement where the inner strands are smaller than the outer.  More notable is that Cardas produces these using litz wire, where each individual strand is insulated with a clear lacquer coating, similar to how windings in a transformer are insulated.  I won’t go into the technical and electrical advantages, but others who have heard Cardas cables mention that they are less bright (some even say they are dark) while the sound is more full-bodied.

This cable is not so expensive that I need to worry about buying enough to make the interconnects.  With that in mind, I am going to go with the Cardas 2×21 and, again, the Neutrik ProFi RCA plugs.  I had considered the Cardas Silver RCA plugs (their lowest cost plug), but it still uses a similar brass core that the Neutrik uses.  Since my RCA jacks on the new preamp (you’ll find out more in a few days 😉 ) will be gold plated, having gold on both the plug and jack will prevent metal mismatches.

Since it has the separate shield, again I will use the floating shield method of building the cables; my Silver Sonic cables remain dead quiet even today.

What’s nice is that I can mix and match these different sets of cables as needed.  If the phono playback is too dull, I can swap in one of the Silver Sonic cables.  If digital is too bright, I’ll stick with the Cardas over the Silver Sonic.

The only caveat with Cardas litz wire is that it requires special preparation–a rosin flux, and tinning.  I may not invest in a solder pot for this project, but the flux is a necessity to flow the solder and melt the lacquer insulation.  (I need to use a heat sink to prevent melting the insulation further up the wire.)