The Sound


Speakers are one thing – but what about cables? Well, it turns out many of the relative differences between cables are audible over YouTube. And you don’t need golden ears to hear them.

Here are 15 randomly selected audiophile power cables (and a generic). To keep microphone positioning and noise floor consistent, they were all recorded in one sitting. The only thing that changed was the power cable on the Denafrips Terminator. I did have to allow the High Fidelity Cables to “magnetize” for a longer time, however.

I do have a few power cables here (from other high-end brands) I’ll set aside for a second video. I’ve created timestamps for easy A/B switching between cables. Although headphones are recommended, I could hear the differences via my inexpensive PC speakers.

The power cords:

A few things to keep in mind:

  • Pay attention to the “energy levels” of each cable. Is it calm/relaxed or hyped and exciting?
  • Are you able to pick up the differences in resolution between the cables? Some of them will dig deeper than others.
  • As far as tonal density, some cables are thinner and denser sounding than others. Could you pick out which ones sound fuller?
  • What tonal differences are you able to hear? For example, Snake River Audio Signature Cottonmouth vs. Synergistic Research UEF Level 3. They should sound very different. Pay attention to the male and female vocals.
  • Which one is more forward – the Audience frontRow or the Danacable Source Clarifier?
  • Some cables are slower and softer than others. Transient speeds from the latter string portion of each recording could vary quite a bit. This should also be apparent in the video.
  • Although more subtle, the PRaT also comes through. The difference in articulation, rhythm, and pace of the cable is perceptible.
  • Harshness, grain, and smoothness. For example, you should be able to hear the differences between the generic and the Acrolink.
  • Bass – cables that have more thump in the video – have more thump in actual listening.

I would love to hear your impressions. What are you hearing and which cable sounded best to you? Let me know in the comments. I’ll have the full write-up soon so we’ll see if our impressions align.