I kept thinking about a way to succinctly described my experience. And in a conversation with an audio buddy, I remarked,
Do you remember what it was like to go from standard tube TVs to HDTVs?
I do – I remember asking about who the Asian lady sitting courtside at all the Laker games was because suddenly I could see all this detail. And we thought it couldn’t get much better than this.
Well, then comes 4K TVs; And now you’re not sure if you could just go back to regular HD…
This was the same feeling I got from going from the Atmosphere X Excite to Atmosphere X Euphoria line of Synergistic Research cables.
You immediately recognize the Synergistic Research house sound described earlier. Those characteristics seem more pronounced as they continue to build on their house principles of low noise floor, musicality, and immersion. There were some additional elements and details that really stood out.
I couldn’t help but notice how much texture appeared in Rodrigo y Gabriela’s cover of Pink Floyd’s Echoes (from their upcoming Mettavolution album). You can sense the tightness of the strings – and the resonances that come off it.
I love the percussive nature of how they both play the acoustic guitar. You feel the physical force of the quick transients and almost get a sense of the wood grain of the guitar body. Midway through the nearly 20-minute track, Gabriela starts doing this thing where she’s scrapping the metal strings to create this zipping effect. There’s this raw grit from her fingertips ripping along the steel strings. The microgrooves of the steel are suddenly revealed with palpability.
You’ll easily get a sense of how spacious the Synergistic Research Euphoria full loom is in Vampire Weekend’s new single Harmony Hall. Within a few moments, music seems to just float out and encapsulates you. There’s plenty of emotional energy articulated within the silky vocal and a black backdrop. The presentation is forward and immersive with a deep soundstage. Even as the multitude of instruments and vocals reach a crescendo, the Euphoria loom doesn’t show any sign of strain. Independent air and spatial cues layer each musical component.
Esperanza’s vocals in Ponta de Areia, oozes with a romantic warmth. It also overlays her background vocalists with such coherence. The piano solo dances delicately with enough low-level detail to create an airy ambiance.
But what was most captivating was Esperanza on the double bass. From the initial plucks, you realize something special is going on with the Synergistic Research Euphoria cables. There are a distinct shape and attack to each snap of the bass notes. The decay reverberates from one corner of the stage diagonally out towards you. Quite Euphoric – for the lack of a better word!
Versus the Synergistic Research Atmosphere X Excite
Comparatively – the Excite Full Loom is still every bit as good as originally described. Yet, there is a significant bump in performance going up to the next price range. This is akin to upgrading your BMW 3 series to a 5 series. You’re still getting that trademark BMW performance and style. But by upgrading, you’re also getting something beefier, more spacious, and more luxurious.
The Synergistic Research Euphoria cables do not present the tonal character of vocals and instruments any differently than the Excites. However, what it does is reveals the low-level details in and around instruments – like the piano’s decrescendo and legato when Bruno Mars laments When I Was Your Man.
In addition, the combination with an even lower noise floor, there is a greater revelation of dimensional contours – as in the attack of Eric Clapton’s guitar plucks during Signe. Vocals are smooth and analog-like, with comparatively less grain and edge like when Sara Bareilles belts her sorrows over Manhattan.
With the Synergistic Research Excite cables, the soundstage extends just beyond the walls and begins to wrap you up into music. On the other hand, the Synergistic Research Euphorias completely envelop you in a cloud of music – with a bit more forwardness.
Sometimes with the larger soundstage; you get bits of music and notes at the end edges and at the very center. However, it was very evident in Harmony Hall and Ponta de Areia that you’re getting gradation across the entire space. The larger depth seems to allow busier tracks to be layered out with perspective.