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audiophile2000
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Silver VS Copper VS Blend

I know this will likely start a bit of a debate but I have been trying to understand what the sonic benefits are to switching from copper to Silver cables. I've read that there are benefits to the high frequency but that you lose the low end extension. 

Haven't had a chance to try it on my setup, but wanted to get the thoughts of a few people that have made the upgrade.

  

commsysman
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Silver vs copper

I spent years trying various cable configurations to make my own cables.

I made a number of cables from silver cable of various types that I was able to get at a wire wholesaler that had aerospace suplus cable.

The results varied all over the place, but I was never able to identify any difference between copper and silver per se.

The differences were much more significant due to various physical configurations of the conductors.

The best I found were where the cable had two inner conductors with a shield, and I used the two inner conductors for the signal and "floated" the shieild ( only connected it to gound at one end).

IMO the idea that silver VS copper would have any effect on low frequencies or high frequencies is absolute nonsense.

Of course, all of this is in reference to unbalanced (RCA) cables.

You can make 100 different Balanced cables fron almost any shielded balanced cable stock, and the result will be perfect every time.

That is why my system is almost all balanced now.

Catch22
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I'm not a fan of silver cables

In my limited experience with Kimber's Silver Streak, I found it to be siblance enhancing with popular recordings and too annoying to enjoy for any length of time. I also have an old AQ Lapis IC that introduced a similar character that I just couldn't live with in the long run. They both had really good low frequency punch and articulation, but unless you want to hear what your recordings actually sound like, (Heh!) you just might find that trying to tune your system for poorly recorded music is a circle without an off ramp. On the other hand, if your music tends to be mostly well recorded works by good engineers, you might have a greater appreciation for the sizzle of the silver.

Allen Fant
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Check out Silent Source

Check out Silent Source cables/cords.

michael green
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good ears

Great ears guys! You have to be pretty careful with some of the materials used in the system. Silver definitely tilts up. And, when it does you have to offset it somewhere else in the system. My favorite cable to work with is 22 guage solid core basic copper, with a PVC jacket. There are different thoughts on this of course, but for an easy to live with full range cable this is a good place to start. I do a heat treatment on mine, but there are a few different things to do to change the flavor.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

Toroid
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I agree.

I master WAV files with a cable I made over 7 years ago with 56
strands of 24 gauge PVC jacket, C101 copper and .05% oxygen.

I have duplicated this phenomenon with the same design over and
over using FEP and FTPE insulation with no audible difference, period.

I guess when people hear the word Teflon or FTPE or FEP they think
it's the best.

geoffkait
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It all depends

These days silver is what you might call cost prohibitive for most things, anyway. Like Quicksilver Gold contact enhancer I do believe good tainted high purity silver might just be the ticket for some applications, however. Naturally no cable is going to sound right until it's cryo'd and broken in on one of those nifty AudioDharma Cable Cookers for 2-3 days.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

Catch22
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I recently put in some Kimber KCAG

These cables are very promising, though it's too early to be sure.

michael green
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didn't like the cryo and other stuff

I don't like the sound of cryo cables personally. Heat treating gives you a more open sound, cryo treating gives a tilt to the top end and can also give soundstage holes. There are people that like this, I'm not one.

If you have silver in your system plus cryo and sense a lack in bass and an unnatural candy coated squeezed type sound there's a good chance you have shifted the tonal balance up as both of these tilt things. If your system is over done in the bass department you might like this to give you balance, but since most high end audio systems lean toward the upper tilt anyway you might want to go the other way.

here's something to think about

Take off the top of your component and look at the cables and part leads. Your part leads are usually tined copper and most of your cables are copper as well. There are some materials that get along with copper and others that will shift the pitch up or down which is an often problem with systems and many times a trading game. Your probably not going to resolder your components to match things (well some do) but you might keep in mind that every interconnect you have is similar to a solder point. The closer you get your cables to the same size and material, without bulky ends the more your sound will be balanced.

Here's an experiement you can do to show you what I mean. Unscrew the barrels on your interconnects and move them away from the rca. By taking away the mass (unless your cable ends are dampened) you will hear your system open up in most cases. Mass has a major affect on your sound and the connections you have passing signal really shouldn't be any bigger than your part leads when you think about it. The industry goes the other direction many times mostly for marketing or a design that is trying to make up for other parts of the audio chain, or even the designer doesn't know what mass does and thinks signal isn't affected, but the simpler you can make your connections the less signal you will loose to mass distortion. If you look at my Picasso interconnect ends http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/t73-mga-cable-accessories you'll see that I don't use a barrel at all.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

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