Friday, July 18, 2008

Maybe I'm amazed

My Martin Logan CLS electrostatic speakers are now powered by the Audioquest AC15 power cords that I recently mentioned. Each was broken in by using them to power my Threshold Stasis S550e amplifier for 24 continuous hours. There is no contest between the Monster Cable PowerLine300 that I was previously using and these. The first thing to strike me is how much more quiet the backgrounds are with the AC15s in place. On Belle & Sebastian’s “It Could Have Been a Brilliant Career” the gentle hums and buzzes of the guitarist’s tube amp is clearly audible in the right channel as he waits for his turn to enter the song. The acoustic guitar also has more body behind the strings and the piano sounds fuller too. These cords have also made the soundstage more spacious, increased the shimmer around cymbals, and allowed music with lots of layers to really reveal itself much more effortlessly. They’ve also gotten rid of the extremely slight sibilance that female vocals could occasionally take on.

Gone is a slight muddiness on cello that I always noticed on Jacqueline Du Pre and the London Symphony's transcendent performance of Elgar's Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85 conducted by Sir John Barbirolli. The unwelcome hardness of the dynamic peaks at the very beginning of the second movement have also been tamed and sound much more effortless.

The audible effects of power cords continue to amaze me. How much of these changes are due to the ferrite clamps, how much do the Wattgate connectors contribute, how much of it is just the better wire in the cable. It would be hard to know for sure but the overall effect is nothing short of jaw dropping!

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