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High End Cables
Old 13th August 2014
  #301
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Yannick's Avatar
 

Some more interesting reading:

Here's a clue............ - yaukui - Propeller Head Plaza
Cable Distortion and Dielectric Biasing Debunked | Audioholics

And finally this:
SoundStage! Ultra | SoundStageUltra.com (UltraAudio.com) | Searching for the Extreme: Bruno Putzeys of Mola-Mola, Hypex, and Grimm Audio -- Part One

Read what Bruno Putzeys has to say about cables and measurement methodology in general. It is about halfway through the interview.
Old 13th August 2014
  #302
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick View Post
Now I have shown a file with significant differences.
Yes, you did. But from what I understood, they are very low. So low that they have no audible or measurable effect at all. I have no idea how you came to your results. I clearly documented how I generated the plots (I extracted the impulses, windowed them and ran a fourier transform on them, at 64bit fp precision. That's it).

The impulse response contains 100% of the "things" a linear system does. It's the root of all other measurements (decay plots, frequency magnitude, phase magnitude, step response, etc). There's no room for uncertainty at this point.

Linear systems are reversible. That means, it's easy to perfectly undo whatever the system did to a signal (a standard EQ is sufficient for causal linear systems, in doubt, you can always undo the system's effect by convolving it with the inverse impulse response).

Of course, physical properties of the cables have an undeniable effect on the impulse response and thus all derived "perspectives" such as frequency magnitude. These differences a reproducible and measurable. I totally agree with this.

But their effect on the signal's fidelity is extremely small, if not even questionnable. For sure, they are not *zero*. They can't be. I think they are negligible, similar to the Celcuis/Fahrenheit analogy I've mentioned before.

Your links are interesting. The non-linear effects are certainly under-represented in this discussion. Measuring them is a much more difficult business of course. However, you can see from he original measurements that we can exclude the following, typical non-linear effects:

- Level dependency (zero, unmeasurable within my test-range)
- Frequency dependency (zero, unmeasurable)

It's highly uncommon to see a non-linearity that doesn't affect at least one of the above in some way. Few exceptions are maybe "moon-phase dependency" or "an atomic bomb exploded beside my cable dependency".

All that stuff makes me sceptical (thought, believe it or not, all my line and speaker interconnections are kimber cable, lol).

I registered to REW community and will try out the software. Sorry for the "brickwallish" attitude, I don't mean to be personal/offensive.
Old 13th August 2014
  #303
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FabienTDR View Post
Yes, you did. But from what I understood, they are very low. So low that they have no audible or measurable effect at all. I have no idea how you came to your results. I clearly documented how I generated the plots (I extracted the impulses, windowed them and ran a fourier transform on them, at 64bit fp precision. That's it).

The impulse response contains 100% of the "things" a linear system does. It's the root of all other measurements (decay plots, frequency magnitude, phase magnitude, step response, etc). There's no room for uncertainty at this point.
I agree 100%. The IR contains EVERYTHING. It is how we interpret this that changes a lot. If you just look at a frequency plot, you are discarding the time domain. What if a cable behaves resonantly, displacing energy over very short timeframes, so in a frequency plot everything seems normal, while in fact you cannot see what happens because the window is too long ?

The simple test I did is based on the infamous null test. I nulled the files (REW lets you add, substract of multiply IRs), and looked at the resultant file.

To make my point clear I add four more files.
I did them quickly, just a single sweep so the noise floor is higher.

identical cables substracted, IR = almost completely absent. This is what I would call an insignificant difference !
Different cables substracted = IR peaks at -88 dB. Do not forget the original IR is only -25dB NOT 0 dBSF ! This is what I call a significant difference between the two files.

the next two are decay plots, identical cables substracted, and then different cables. As you can see, with the identical cables there is only a 60Hz artifact.
With the different cables there is a clear difference and some resonances when you look closely.

To conclude, for years I have heard repeatable, significant differences between cables. I would not call what I see in the null tests insignificant, especially when comparing to the same test using identical cable !
IMO these null tests more or less confirm what I could be hearing.
Attached Thumbnails
High End Cables-identical.jpg   High End Cables-different.jpg   High End Cables-identical-cable-decay.jpg   High End Cables-different-cable-decay.jpg  
Old 14th August 2014
  #304
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I'm not familiar with REW but I looked at the files in Matlab. I compared Fabien's master sweep to the AES{1,2} and Velox sweeps using the root of the squared differences (RMS error). There were obvious timing issues (at one point the cable sweeps were almost 180 degrees out of phase with the master sweep). Comparing the cable sweeps to each other, the max difference on each cable pass occurred around sample 400:

AES1 compared to AES2 had a max diff of magnitude 0.0738 at sample 396.
AES1 compared to Velox had a max diff of magnitude 0.0781 at sample 407.

In the attached image you can see the error terms of the first 1000 samples of AES1 compared to the master (graph 1); Velox compared to the master (graph 2); and AES1 compared to Velox (graph 3). It seems clear to me that the magnitude of the error between AES1 and Velox is time-related, rather than performance-related. In other words, if the AES1 and Velox signals were time-aligned, the magnitude of their differences would be vanishingly small.
Attached Thumbnails
High End Cables-cable_error.png  
Old 14th August 2014
  #305
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How can it be time related ?
We are talking about 80cm of cable, in a stituation where identical cables have no timing issues. So two different cables of 80 cm each have significant timing differences - this means there are signidifacnt cable differences anyway ?
Old 14th August 2014
  #306
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick View Post
How can it be time related ?
We are talking about 80cm of cable, in a stituation where identical cables have no timing issues. So two different cables of 80 cm each have significant timing differences - this means there are signidifacnt cable differences anyway ?
AES1.wav and AES2.wav are not time-aligned. You can tell by plotting the difference of AES1 and AES2 next to the graph of AES1: the diff looks like a (noisy) time-shifted version of AES1.

I assume the timing errors are coming from the conversion, not the cables.
Old 17th August 2014
  #307
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my excuses for bumping this endless thread again, but a very interesting measurement appeared over at "so-much-gear-so-little-time".

the cable myth. my rmaa measurements with cheap snakes
Old 17th August 2014
  #308
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Old 17th August 2014
  #309
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bogosort View Post
I assume the timing errors are coming from the conversion, not the cables.
i also think so, since the converter clock drifts over time.

the cable difference test is better done in the analog domain only (without using a converter), e. g. with a passive summing device and one of the cables phase switched.
Old 17th August 2014
  #310
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karumba View Post
i also think so, since the converter clock drifts over time.
.
I do not agree. That is why I performed the identical cable tests.
There is no converter drift in these tests ! Or almost none.

Why would there suddenly be converter drift when using a different analogue cable ?
THAT would be a revelation !

Nobody answered about the decay graphs.
Even with minute timing differences due to a few cm length difference between the cables or different material (silver vs copper) this does not at all explain why I see some resonances pop up in the difference signal.

They are quite distinct, repeatable and certainly not noise.
Old 17th August 2014
  #311
nms
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Quote:
They are quite distinct, repeatable and certainly not noise.
..and INAUDIBLE. The kind of hearing resolution you would need to perceive a difference like that would be like being able to spot a fly on a wall from 100' away. Get it? If you have a half decent knowledge of digital audio at all you should have a better understanding of how small that difference is. I'm not saying there's no AUDIBLE difference between the cables, but that microscopic thing you're pointing to isn't it. If you think it is you should be brushing up on the hearing resolution of the human ear.
Old 17th August 2014
  #312
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SCALE

It's so often about scale and conflation.
Old 17th August 2014
  #313
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nms View Post
I'm not saying there's no AUDIBLE difference between the cables, but that microscopic thing you're pointing to isn't it. If you think it is you should be brushing up on the hearing resolution of the human ear.
OK, but which test is going to show this difference then ?

Is there agreement on what the minimum level the human ear can detect is ?
Do you know what the timing resolution of the human ear is ?

I am sorry, but the above posts concentrating on the timing difference, still do not answer my question why all identical cables have very little drift, and different cables much more important drift. (if that is what is causing the measured difference).

I do not have the AD converter at my studio at this time. I will have to run some more sweeps to reconfirm.

Is there anyone with matlab that is willing to write something that would time-shift one file to the exact same position as another file ?
That way we could eliminate this factor.
Old 17th August 2014
  #314
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It seems I have this enabled in REW:

The Sub-sample Timing Adjustment selection controls whether REW adjusts the impulse response timing to resolution below a single sample when setting t=0 at the IR peak or using the other channel as timing reference. Sub-sample timing adjustment requires a resampling of the impulse response to perform the adjustment, which slightly raises the noise floor of the measurement - however the increase is far below the noise floor of a typical acoustic measurement and sub-sample adjustment provides more accurate phase information at high frequencies.

I have to contact the developer of REW to see what would happen with this automatic compensation in my sort of tests.

Without a clear answer to this, speculation is moot.
Old 3rd December 2014
  #315
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpr3 View Post
Has anyone else experienced unshielded Vovox before, and heard what I am talking about? (or any other unshielded solid copper core cable)

I really was happy with the Belden and Mogami that Ive been using thru 3 marriages, but now I am confused because I trust my ears, even with my mind screaming, 'impossible!'.
I did ! The difference in sound with the Vovox cables was truly impressive on my studio monitors, a lot more open with a better centre image especially on vocals, even the low end was improved. And it's not a placebo effect as I just got them for a test as I wanted to see for myself what is was all about. I simply couldn't return them and had to pay quite a bit of money I would have prefered to save !
Old 3rd December 2014
  #316
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Originally Posted by ChristopheB View Post
I did ! The difference in sound with the Vovox cables was truly impressive on my studio monitors, a lot more open with a better centre image especially on vocals, even the low end was improved. And it's not a placebo effect as I just got them for a test as I wanted to see for myself what is was all about. I simply couldn't return them and had to pay quite a bit of money I would have prefered to save !

Great! For an audio engineer, recording this "impressive" effect should be a piece of cake, right?

Quote:
Use this stereo test signal http://www.tokyodawn.net/labs/Analyze.wav and simply upload the results back here.

Make sure to test several cables in order to "cancel out" any degradation coming from your AD/DA converters, as we're purely interested in the relative differences.
Old 3rd December 2014
  #317
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Great.
Could you record two sample files and post so we can hear it?
How did the cable affect timing issues like positioning do you think?

Last edited by Grant Ransom; 3rd December 2014 at 05:55 PM.. Reason: Haha... beaten to the post. Spooky.
Old 4th December 2014
  #318
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How do you guys feel about environment and its effect on cables, like humidity?

EDIT: For the record, I'm all about build quality (Oxidation can happen with cheap cables and when it happens, you don't need a fancy chart to tell you something's gone wrong).
Old 4th December 2014
  #319
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nms View Post
..and INAUDIBLE. .
Greg Calbi explains the wires he uses.

Get some WireWorld cabes for $1k a FOOT!!! Greg says more open and clear.... the other is more "earthy" with more texture in the low end and smoother... !!

Harmonic Technology

Get 'em while they're hot!!
Old 5th December 2014
  #320
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSD_Mastering View Post
Greg Calbi explains the wires he uses.

Get some WireWorld cabes for $1k a FOOT!!! Greg says more open and clear.... the other is more "earthy" with more texture in the low end and smoother... !!

Harmonic Technology

Get 'em while they're hot!!
Is this the part where I remind everyone that Doug Sax uses cables that cost USD$1 a foot?

And that they don’t use one for the verse and one for the chorus?


DC
Old 5th December 2014
  #321
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
Is this the part where I remind everyone that Doug Sax uses cables that cost USD$1 a foot?

And that they don’t use one for the verse and one for the chorus?


DC
What's your point Dave. For every engineer that you quote that uses $1/foot cable I can give you one that uses cable that cost $1k/foot with more Grammys. You're preaching to the choir.
Old 5th December 2014
  #322
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Originally Posted by nms View Post
Does anyone here know the best cables for acoustic dance music?
The ones you can afford and not worry about whether you're using the correct cables!
Old 5th December 2014
  #323
nms
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSD_Mastering View Post
The ones you can afford and not worry about whether you're using the correct cables!
Sounds good. I have to budget for some $500 power cables and an $800 USB cable, but I bet I can get some decent monitor cables for $1k each. Real analog sounding ones.
Old 5th December 2014
  #324
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
Is this the part where I remind everyone that Doug Sax uses cables that cost USD$1 a foot?

And that they don’t use one for the verse and one for the chorus?


DC


the absolute whacky rubbish are audiophile digital and power cables.
companies who sell products as such are cheaters
Old 5th December 2014
  #325
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Originally Posted by DSD_Mastering View Post
What's your point Dave. For every engineer that you quote that uses $1/foot cable I can give you one that uses cable that cost $1k/foot with more Grammys. You're preaching to the choir.
I think it’s obvious: The more you spend on cables, the more Grammy’s™ you win.

And the choir may not have the kind of money you do for $1,000/ft cables, so it’s conceivable they may have to run something like this:

TPR | GrimmAudio

Probably only worth 0.8 of a Grammy™, but hey, you have to start somewhere.


DC
Old 5th December 2014
  #326
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
TPR | GrimmAudio

Probably only worth 0.8 of a Grammy™, but hey, you have to start somewhere.


DC
Why recommend spending all that money on Grimm cable when you can get something that I use that is just as good or better. Works perfectly with my Grimm converters!

Mogami Gold Studio
Old 5th December 2014
  #327
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Originally Posted by DSD_Mastering View Post
Why recommend spending all that money on Grimm cable when you can get something that I use that is just as good or better. Works perfectly with my Grimm converters!
Why? Because I have never won a Grammy™!
Old 5th December 2014
  #328
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teebaum View Post


the absolute whacky rubbish are audiophile digital and power cables.
companies who sell products as such are cheaters
audiophiles?? lets talk about all the engineers that use these $5k power cables first before you go dumping on audiophiles. Clean up your own backyard!
Old 5th December 2014
  #329
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Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
Why? Because I have never won a Grammy™!
No, I thought you were about teaching people to save money and not believe that audiophile snake oil BS? You want good quality, then buy Mogami or Canare.... forget about audiophile cables.
Old 5th December 2014
  #330
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I did some tests above, and showed genuine differences between different cables.
The ONLY response I got was from the non believers, is that my test is not valid.

If I asked why, or if they wanted to repeat the test on their own, nobody answered.

If you want to bury your head in the sand, be my guest.
In the meantime I am making better recordings with my new mic cables.

If any of you, believer or not, are in the neighbourhood of Brussels, just pass by and listen. As I wrote, any guest I have had can easily hear the differences in interconnects and speaker cables in my studio.

If you cannot hear it in your setup, you seriously need to consider upgrading your monitoring chain...
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