An Honest Connection
CES presented me with my first opportunity to make the acquaintance of Stephen Hill and Straight Wire. The Florida company has just released a "push prong" re-usable, solderless RCA plug that makes Straight Wire cable termination a snap. Especially appealing to custom installers, the termination actually leads to a higher level of performance by enabling quick silver-plated termination without piercing cable insulation.
Straight Wire has also recently released the Serenade II interconnect ($400/1m pair) that features locking plugs and a variety of terminations. Internal conductors offer ultra low resistance and reactance. The cable contains eight groups of compressed CDA101 copper (true OFHC), and is designed to eliminate strand-to-strand "jumping." Two different kinds of insulation are available.
Hill says Straight Wire measures every one of its US-made cables before handmatching to ensure that the specs of both cables in a pair closely match. Records are kept in perpetuity to allow correct replacement in the event your beloved pooch chews up one of the cables. Hill recommends alternating different models of Straight Wire cabling in a system to achieve, in his words, "really good detail and effortless soundstaging." (The display was static, making audition impossible).