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USB cable comparisons


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hi, build quality of Tellurium's USB cable is good, it feels like a solid cable, although not as well finished as AQ diamond or Ww platinum. it sounds to me more balanced than the other 2, especially the Ww. if you can, test it in your system. I haven't test graphie version, I suppose it is better, but much more pricier...

 

regards.oscar

 

Hi Oscar,

 

I'm somewhat surprised that you found the Transparent Performance USB Superior to the AQ Diamond, which is very highly regarded.

Has anybody else had a similar experience?

 

Jean-Pierre

ASUS Laptop -> Empirical Audio Off Ramp 5 -> Theta Gen VIII series 3

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Hi Oscar,

 

I'm somewhat surprised that you found the Transparent Performance USB Superior to the AQ Diamond, which is very highly regarded.

Has anybody else had a similar experience?

 

Jean-Pierre

 

 

Hi Jean-Pierre,

Transparent USB is not superior to AQ Diamond, but I slightly prefer it in my system to AQ Diamond, that is also a very good USB cable (but pricier).

 

Oscar

MBP 2012 ML 10.8.3 16 Gb and itunes 10.7 > Amarra Symphony with IRC, A+, PM> Tellurium Q Black Diamond USB + AQmicroUSB adaptor> Chord Hugo> Zensati #3 RCA > McIntosh C2500 preamp> Atlas Mavros XLR> McIntosh MC452 amplifier >Atlas Mavros speaker cable > Focal Scala Utopia > Ears > Brain > Enjoyment

Essential Audiotools Filtered Mains Multiplier/Sablon Audio Gran Corona

Analogue:Clearaudio master solution+SME V+Benz micro LP-S+Clearaudio Sixtream phono cable

 

HP: Ipod Classic 160Gb>Centrance Hifi-M8>Audeze LCD-X/Audeze LCD-XC

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi Jean-Pierre,

Transparent USB is not superior to AQ Diamond, but I slightly prefer it in my system to AQ Diamond, that is also a very good USB cable (but pricier).

 

Oscar

 

Like anything audio, what sounds good in one's system might not be superior in another...

The Truth Is Out There

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Like anything audio, what sounds good in one's system might not be superior in another...

 

I am well aware of that, and also very puzzled about how to upgrade my usb cable (currently using WW silver starlight).

Any suggestions?

ASUS Laptop -> Empirical Audio Off Ramp 5 -> Theta Gen VIII series 3

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I am well aware of that, and also very puzzled about how to upgrade my usb cable (currently using WW silver starlight).

Any suggestions?

hi,

test it before buy it. Not an easy best-worst rule in USB cables.

my suggestion:Tellurium Q, but it is only that...

 

oscar

MBP 2012 ML 10.8.3 16 Gb and itunes 10.7 > Amarra Symphony with IRC, A+, PM> Tellurium Q Black Diamond USB + AQmicroUSB adaptor> Chord Hugo> Zensati #3 RCA > McIntosh C2500 preamp> Atlas Mavros XLR> McIntosh MC452 amplifier >Atlas Mavros speaker cable > Focal Scala Utopia > Ears > Brain > Enjoyment

Essential Audiotools Filtered Mains Multiplier/Sablon Audio Gran Corona

Analogue:Clearaudio master solution+SME V+Benz micro LP-S+Clearaudio Sixtream phono cable

 

HP: Ipod Classic 160Gb>Centrance Hifi-M8>Audeze LCD-X/Audeze LCD-XC

 

 

 

 

 

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hi,

test it before buy it. Not an easy best-worst rule in USB cables.

my suggestion:Tellurium Q, but it is only that...

 

oscar

 

Mapleshade Clearlink USB, Plus version. Has a 30 day return guarantee. I like it quite a lot better than the Audioquest Coffee I was using, and it is half the price of the Coffee. I'm not suggesting it instead of the Tellurium, which I haven't heard, but rather as a cable you might add to those you plan to audition.

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> ISO Regen -> iFi NEO iDSD DAC -> Apollon Audio 1ET400A Mini (Purifi based) -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

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just bought the Aubisque filter from Ultra-Fi. I hope it arrives together with the Diamond and Platinum that should be leaving today. will want to see if it makes any difference in my system. would be great if it did, since it's very practical

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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Aubisque arrived today. here my first impressions

Diamond and Platinum arrive on the 9th

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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since I was asked in the other thread just wanted to make it clear here, too: I tested the filter, not the USB cable

Best regards

André

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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I thought we discuss USB cables here rather than filters etc

that is true, but since it relates to USB cables and there is actually a cable with this filter in it (which I don't have) I thought I'd just give a heads-up. I won't share my findings here, I'm just refering to the place where I will be doing so that those who are interested may have a chance to have a look at it

best regards

André

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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that is true, but since it relates to USB cables and there is actually a cable with this filter in it (which I don't have) I thought I'd just give a heads-up. I won't share my findings here, I'm just refering to the place where I will be doing so that those who are interested may have a chance to have a look at it

best regards

André

 

You are definitely an adventurous audiophile, I went to ultrafi website and together with Geoff Kate's Machina Dynamica, I find that almost everything said sounded like some serious snake oil... Any company that mentions years of research without discussing anything about it, where everything is made to look top-secret technology or proprietary and where the owner likes to call himself an Esquire! I would be totally suspicious.

Im glad its working out for you, but even with your observations I am not that adventurous with my money... I guess Im a partial believer in all things esoteric.

PMC MB2S-A / Event Opal ← Audio Horizons TD3.1Sv custom Control DAC ← Berkeley Alpha USB ← Pure Music + ARC 2 ← MacMini i7 ← PS Audio P5 ← Xentek Extreme isolation transformer. Click here for cabling and other details

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You are definitely an adventurous audiophile, I went to ultrafi website and together with Geoff Kate's Machina Dynamica, I find that almost everything said sounded like some serious snake oil... Any company that mentions years of research without discussing anything about it, where everything is made to look top-secret technology or proprietary and where the owner likes to call himself an Esquire! I would be totally suspicious.

Im glad its working out for you, but even with your observations I am not that adventurous with my money... I guess Im a partial believer in all things esoteric.

guydebord,

I've learned throughout the years that even though someone can not necessarily explain what they're doing or when I can't understand the underlying reasoning, I've taken a kind of pragmatic approach to things that are not in my domain of knowledge. I don't understand electronics so I won't pretend to, but that's why there is a 10-day trial period in order for me to evaluate if it works in my situation. the two major differences in my system where actually pretty clear to someone who has a minimum of listening training, though I'm sure that they can and will be different with other variables. the other differences weren't that obvious, but are still there.

that's why I'm waiting on the Diamond and Platinum in order to have at least other USB cables in order to assess if the results will be different. will post once I get the chance to compare the cables and then listen to them with the Aubisque in the system.

what I mean to say is that there are clear differences in regard to what it does, but the jury's still out on to whether I'll keep it or not ;)

best regards

André

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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guydebord,

I've learned throughout the years that even though someone can not necessarily explain what they're doing or when I can't understand the underlying reasoning, I've taken a kind of pragmatic approach to things that are not in my domain of knowledge. I don't understand electronics so I won't pretend to, but that's why there is a 10-day trial period in order for me to evaluate if it works in my situation. the two major differences in my system where actually pretty clear to someone who has a minimum of listening training, though I'm sure that they can and will be different with other variables. the other differences weren't that obvious, but are still there.

that's why I'm waiting on the Diamond and Platinum in order to have at least other USB cables in order to assess if the results will be different. will post once I get the chance to compare the cables and then listen to them with the Aubisque in the system.

what I mean to say is that there are clear differences in regard to what it does, but the jury's still out on to whether I'll keep it or not ;)

best regards

André

 

Hello André,

 

there is a certain likelyhood that there is a ferrite bead in that adaptor. These things are not unusual in USB cables and often used in consumer electronics.

Maybe you wanna A/B the adaptor to a standard bead like this and report back:

3dalugkitlg.jpg

I have once seen a cable that had an USB isolator (ADuM4160) curcuit built into it. I have never seen an implementation of this curcuit small enough for your adaptor, though and it would also need external power to eventually improve anything.

Obviously I cannot prove that. I might be totally wrong, this is pure speculation.

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A couple of newbie questions -

 

Are people finding less of a difference with SPDIF cables than USB?

 

I am surprised to see a couple mention that decay can become excessive. So far I have always seen that - more is better..providing more cues to timbre & how a instrument resonates and the acoustics/sound-staging of room. I can imagine it becoming excessive if instruments become excessively loose or rooms become to reverby/far away...can anyone clarify what happens with too much?

Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not." — Nelson Pass

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A couple of newbie questions -

 

Are people finding less of a difference with SPDIF cables than USB?

 

I am surprised to see a couple mention that decay can become excessive. So far I have always seen that - more is better..providing more cues to timbre & how a instrument resonates and the acoustics/sound-staging of room. I can imagine it becoming excessive if instruments become excessively loose or rooms become to reverby/far away...can anyone clarify what happens with too much?

Savage,

IMO too much HF decay can smear the soundstage. The sound is spacious and big, but not well defined since notes last longer than they start blending into each other. OTOH I just got back from the Meyerson here in Dallas and the decay was long, but still very well defined, which shows that a long decay doesn't have to smear things up. In my case the Clearlink Plus gives me long e clear decay.

Best regards

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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Hello André,

 

there is a certain likelyhood that there is a ferrite bead in that adaptor. These things are not unusual in USB cables and often used in consumer electronics.

Maybe you wanna A/B the adaptor to a standard bead like this and report back:

[ATTACH=CONFIG]5108[/ATTACH]

I have once seen a cable that had an USB isolator (ADuM4160) curcuit built into it. I have never seen an implementation of this curcuit small enough for your adaptor, though and it would also need external power to eventually improve anything.

Obviously I cannot prove that. I might be totally wrong, this is pure speculation.

Progear,

this might make sense. maybe it would only be the effects of a ferrite bead-like structure, but wouldn't be able to use one with my current cable. look at how it looks like: Clearlink USB Cable with PLUS Upgrade - 3 Length-Mapleshade (click on additional images in order to see why).

let's see what the results are with other cables

best regards

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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Today both the Platinum and Diamond arrived from thecableco and I had the chance to sit down for quite a while and get some good first impressions. First I compared the Platinum to my current USB cable the MP Clearlink Plus.

just for the record: these are my impressions in my system, so YMMV. I'm not looking to find the best cable out there, but the best cable for my system. keep that in mind.

 

Platinum

  • is more detailed
  • sound is more precise and defined
  • LFs are deeper and drier
  • is as fast as the Clearlink - in some tracks it seemed even faster
  • has HF decay as long as the Clearlink, but a little more refined
  • has cleaner mids
  • slight emphasis on upper-mids; slight glare
  • overall more refined
  • has a blacker background
  • more transparent, but less clear
  • better timbres and textures
  • better depth
  • clearly better with symphonic orchestras, especially strings
  • soundstage not as wide as Clearlink

 

Clearlink

  • LFs and lower mids less precise and defined
  • timbres and textures sound somewhat smeared compared to the Platinum
  • slightly veiled mids
  • HFs basically on the same level, but a little less refined
  • wider soundstage
  • doesn't emphasize upper mids which makes it sound a little bit more natural in regard to those frequencies
  • is clearer, but less transparent
  • positioning on soundstage is slightly better

Looking both lists it may seem that the Platinum was way better than the Clearlink, but that wouldn't be entirely true. Both are kind of the same breed. The Platinum did better most of the Clearlinks qualities, but it wasn't by a wide margin. The main differences would be the LFs and mids which are cleaner and more precise. There is an overall better tonal balance. If I had to describe the differeces I'd probably say that the Clearlink is clearer (as if being shined upon from above), but the Platinum is more transparent and refined. I hope at least a few get the picture :P

Tomorrow I'll probably post today's first impressions comparing the Platinum and the Diamond.

Best regards

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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Reverendo:

Despite my not posting to this thread (as I have nothing to contribute at this time), please be assured that I am watching with interest and appreciate your detailed observations. As amazing as my system is at this point, I am, believe it or not, still using a 0.5 meter Belkin semi-generic USB cable into my A+>NOS DAC. I am ready and willing to drop up to about $280 on a great cable. I'm sure I'll borrow a couple from The Cable Co. library first, but I'd like to narrow it down before I do.

 

So everybody, please keep these comparisons coming!

 

Thanks,

ALEX

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I am also enjoying and benefitting from all the information here.

But what do you mean when you say something "is clearer, but less transparent" ?

You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star

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Reverendo:

Despite my not posting to this thread (as I have nothing to contribute at this time), please be assured that I am watching with interest and appreciate your detailed observations. As amazing as my system is at this point, I am, believe it or not, still using a 0.5 meter Belkin semi-generic USB cable into my A+>NOS DAC. I am ready and willing to drop up to about $280 on a great cable. I'm sure I'll borrow a couple from The Cable Co. library first, but I'd like to narrow it down before I do.

 

So everybody, please keep these comparisons coming!

 

Thanks,

ALEX

it's my pleasure, since I've dependend on many other people to get a certain short list together for the multitude of options we have out there...

btw, that's a great looking room that you have there and I see that you went all Hovland. now I'm kind of curious as to how it sounds, since I've never listened to any of their kit

 

I am also enjoying and benefitting from all the information here.

But what do you mean when you say something "is clearer, but less transparent" ?

I now see that I chose the wrong adjective (sorry, but English is not my first language). I'll try to describe it: it's as if I were looking into aquarium1 (Clearlink) that is being shone upon from above, but the water isn't as transparent as the water in another aquarium (Platinum) that doesn't have the light. in the first case the shade of the upper part is lighter than the rest, since it's not completely transparent/clear. did that make any sense or did I make it worse??? :D :D :D

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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btw, how do I edit my previous post in order to fix the adjectives? can anyone help me out?

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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btw, how do I edit my previous post in order to fix the adjectives? can anyone help me out?

 

I believe after 10 minutes (time of post, not last edit) you can't, since the edit function is then "off"?!

 

Me too, by the way, I've been observing this thread with great interest. Wondering if the cable you got is all new? If so, the upper-midrange glare might still improve with some run-in time.

 

Greetings from Switzerland, David.

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I believe after 10 minutes (time of post, not last edit) you can't, since the edit function is then "off"?!

 

Me too, by the way, I've been observing this thread with great interest. Wondering if the cable you got is all new? If so, the upper-midrange glare might still improve with some run-in time.

 

Greetings from Switzerland, David.

Hi David,

that's unfortunate. why would they configure it to work that way?

The cables are all burnt-in. they come from thecableco's library.

I hope I get around to posting the second comparison sometime soon.

Best regards

 

BTW, where are you in Switzerland, if you don't mind my asking. My parents live in Basel and I've visited a few audio shops in the region.

LDMS Minix Server>Lampizator TRP w/ VC>Gryphon Diablo>Heil Kithara

Cables: Douglas Cables 'Mirage'', (Power); Douglas Cables 'Mirage' (XLR); Douglas Cables "GLIA" (speaker cables & jumper); FTA Callisto (USB)

Accessories: Furutech GTX-D (G) with cover, MIT Z Duplex Super; Equitech Balanced Power, Sistrum (for Diablo & TRP)

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