Does Canada, of all, make better audio cables?

Четверг, 21 Июль 2011, 14:02
Размещено в рубрике English Special и имеет 0 комментариев.

By Vladimir Yelbaev, Chief Editor, YelbTrib


EISA non eligible

Rather than wax philo roundabout the specs and put on a physic’s airs, I (gosh, no!)  connected the 1 m interconnect sample of Challenger-2 by an Ontario producer Ultralink Cables – into my system. The load, naturally was identical with perhaps slightly faster current in Sony-765 BD player / good old Harman-4550 7.1 receiver as against Yamaha-1700 DVD player / same  receiver. Both cases had been properly set up, well isolated and balanced in channel levels and what not. The heavyweight contenders in audio reproduction of varied formats and sounds were the th-thick (multistrand multibalanced screw-tighten and bla-bla!), shortlength too, top-flights from In-akustic/Monitor Audio, IXOS and Audioquest. To make things worse for the former, I (had to!) first cut then resold in place, the cable’s incoming plugs. Whether or not the isolating foil shield regained proper contact was beyond my control, but the piece’s performance sure exalted.

What we normally expect of Canadian audio is about prejudiced by trademark Canadian recorded sound (I mean vinyl records, not CDs). It’s dryish flattened transparent – and pretty big and boomy – presentation. In comparison, US and West European LP presses (the hi-fi gear, for that matter!) always sound sparsier, focused, in-depth and… sweet on condensed and elongated highs. Right?

Well, I got what I was asking for, this no exception and the manhandling none the weaker. Ken Hensley’s latest Live Fire east European project acquired authority of rock in the first place – with the Ultralink. The bass got so much apart it was attenuating the vocalist whose nerve (in so high a presence) was evident. Status Quo’s 2011 “Quid…” CD was proving… er, eventful enough to let one roll on, and Nazareth’s “Big Dogz” was letting ear into the band with discerning (!) quality of vocals which is something – what with the band’s dire recording quality tradition.

The switchover to the said crop of contenders (untempered and well burnt-in, hitherto agreeable)  left no doubt from the word go, as to the leader of the pack. Ultralink Challenger-2 sounded so much healthier and welcome on the psych… it invited so much of genuine live metaphor – it had to be the one. For any purpose I was just lazy to recount here. The Canadian had nothing of the claustrophobia of IXOS, of inert blandness of Audioquest, of the hi-tone playfulness of Silver Edition Monitor. The digital path proved worse still, turning the Nazareth sessions into a squeaky nightmare, for once. I wish I tried one length of the Ultralink for coaxial digital connection as an experiment – but I did not. Even then  US, Europe and Britain suffered their defeat – as an ideology and balanced approach rather than the hi-tech and dearness extravaganza. The relatively simple, no-frill, honest and basic 6N-graded conductor from Canada stood its ground alright. Why, the cable redeemed the Canada vinyl pressings in that it was livelier and hi-extended like LPs rarely do.  

My original intent was to solder the Challenger-2 as phono cable to my vintage Dual turntable’s outputs, but I was scared of extra capacitance and resistance at the interconnect’s massive conductor. However I’d advise the replacement to any owner of whatever turntable. I can almost see how Challenger-2 does that job, all dedicated and asserted, its construction overcoming those engineering standards for tiny phono conductors high on PVC.

I am too preoccupied to either give or comment on the specs, brand’s story etc. I’d care to remark though, the fine American XLO cables pursued own (clean pointed and pure) sound before their Ultralink OEM contractor stance was abolished for the official partner status. Whatever rumour of XLO’s Chinese connection circulate, it be known Ultralink has never been other than genuine Canada producer company, since the 90s.

Ultralink Cables, Russia: New Ambience retail, wholesale and installation service, 9, Godovikova ul, Moscow, 129085 Russian Fed. Tel. +7 (495) 660-9120.

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