High Fidelity Cables CT-1 Ultimate
- Price: $5,900/meter
Magnets themselves, due to their porous nature, are not very good mechanical conductors but certainly better than fluid or gel. Even Reveal and CT-2 offer excellent mechanical dampening, however moving into the Ultimate’s patented system dramatically lowers distortions over models that do not feature this technology.
This makes the Ultimate extremely musical. High Fidelity cables have always been known to have extremely low distortion and be rich in musicality, starting with the original CT-1. When legendary audiophile Harry Pearson tried our High Fidelity Cables CT-1, he mentioned it had a quality he referred to as ‘flow’. This sonic attribute is highly praised amongst audiophiles who wish for cleaner, clearer, and yet more musical presentation. Still today the CT-1 is one of the most musical life-like and real sounding cables in audio. The CT-1 Ultimate was named after it’s achievement, reaching the ultimate goal of truly musical crystal-clear sound. In the industry today, besides even higher end versions of High Fidelity Cables, the Ultimate is the most clear and the musical sounding cable in the marketplace.
Check out my review of the CT-1 Ultimate power cord here.
Part of the reason why I wanted to start this huge comparison of power cables was to find a cheaper alternative to this $6,000 High Fidelity Cables CT-1 Ultimate power cord. This power cord has been in my system the longest – and I’ve purchased a few more over the years.
Unfortunately, that quest failed. This power cord is unique in many ways. Aside from the patents on the Magnetic Conduction technology and the fact you can’t really just DIY one – its sonic signature is very unique.
First, it’s the quietest and most transparent cable in my possession. You hear everything from ground zero and above. Secondly, it does so at an “impossible” level of balance. It still sounds organic, musical, emotional, colorful, and lifelike. It also has world-class articulation, speed, and ability to project an accurately sized soundstage. Moreso, it embraces tangibility.
As I was testing power cables, every time I plug this one in. I’m always impressed. It’s so clean and vivid yet natural. If it’s in the song, you’ll hear it. And when you hear it, it won’t be clumped together in a messy ball of harshness. Instead, you’ll hear the textures, dynamism, and intent. As far as articulation and separation go – it’s probably the best I’ve heard. The CT-1U is almost surgical in the way it presents tonal gradations.
In addition, it has superb slam, amazing spatial clarity, and ultra-precise imaging. Most importantly, it preserves the essence of the music. It’s able to handle delicacy with authority and confidence. You hear more of the how rather than the what. You hear how the air leaves the throat, the resonances caused by the bowing of a violin, and amount of pressure applied to a piano key. At times, it brought Amy Winehouse back to life.
So something has to give right? Yeah. The sound isn’t meaty and requires a little bit more golden warmth in the midrange to be 100% convincing. It’s more exciting than it is musical. This is why this cable is best paired with warmer and denser gear. It still sounds great individually – which is why I have a few in my system.
|Who should buy this cable?|
|Tone and transparency snobs. It isn’t the most tonally dense cable, but it does everything else very well. It has one of the truest reproduction of timbre and tone. |
Pairs better with warmer and darker gear.
|You might need to add a denser sounding cable upstream. A touch of warmth wouldn’t hurt either.|
|Atmospheric, insight, resolution, accurate, true, dead quiet, detailed, incisive, faithful, “Has it all,” “Wow”|