Thanks for checking out my cables!
These cables are something special, at this point I’ll let the testimonial’s below speak for themselves. Please contact me if you are interested in purchasing cabling, I offer a 30 day return policy if you are not satisfied!
D1 IC and SL 20 SC
Here is an initial impression from Louis, the owner of Omega speakers, posted on audiocircle forums. Omega speakers can be found at www.omegaloudspeakers.com I highly recommend Omega speakers if they fit your needs, they are amazing.
Got the cables in and they look and sound amazing. Replaced my Crimson cables with them and really like the sound with both tube and SS amps.
The cables are fast and very well balanced. I’m getting a clarity that I haven’t heard with the other cables. Still breaking them in, but they are a winner. I even tried them with my Model 7F full rangers that will be in the DIY line. Really smooth in the mids.
My pleasure and it was fun to compare. It’s easy to hear the difference right away.
No worry about the IC as they bettered some expensive IC’s I have here…
You got a winner.”Louis
“Just received a pair of ICs from Dave and have to say right out of the box they are the best sounding
ICs I’ve tried. I agree with Louis about the clarity and detail. It wasn’t subtle, but very obvious improvement.
Highly recommended. Thanks again to Dave and Louis.”
“Got to say – I absolutely love this cable – I as I said can’t wait to get the others in place. Absolutely fantastic midrange and that is almost always the one area flash cables can never do much with yet its the most important. Crazy – but good for you.
I just compared it to a Nordost Valhalla and I prefer it.”G.L. from the UK
SL 20 SC
A short note to let you know I received the Neotech Speaker Cables on 4/25. Didn’t get around to installing until the weekend. I am very impressed with your workmanship, & amazed at the detail, accuracy of the speaker cables with absolutely no edge or glare throughout the entire listening range. These speaker cables are the nearest to a straight wire I have ever heard! Since I have only about 15 hours of break-in, this is truly impressive.
I listen to speakers 50% of the time at low volume in a quasi-nearfield arrangement in a small apartment. The other half is spent listening to headphones late at night at a more realistic volume. I’ve not only been able to turn the listening levels down a few dB (in a low-watt system this is always desirable) but I find myself listening to the speakers longer while not wondering what I’m missing.
The only negative I can find with speaker cables are the banana plugs being a tight fit. But I suppose even that is positive as there is little room for air to oxidize the connectors.
Count me as very pleased & would say this purchase ranks right up there with any audio upgrade I’ve ever made.
Thank you for a hassle-free transaction.”
“”Value” might be the best description for your speaker cables.”SK from the US
SL 20 SC
Here is my impression of your Speaker Cables after break in.
I will break this down into several relevant categories:
Excellent: It was easy to contact you; You replied quickly; Negations went smoothly; Your request for half upfront was reasonable; You kept me informed of your progress; The Cables arrived in a timely manner.
Excellent: The cables appear to be professionally made; Substantial in their appearance.
Excellent: The sound is indeed clear and open; It is as if my system has been allowed to breathe.
Excellent: If it is possible for a set of wires to posses great dynamic range, your’s do.
My system consists of a Class A SS Amp; A Tube Preamp using a single NOS 12au7 Tube; Hoyt-Bedford Type 1 Speakers. The weakness of the Types 1’s is their bottom end control, and your wires help in that regard.”
ZLS, from the US
“BEST SOUNDING CABLES I HAVE EVER HEARD. THANKS DAVE.”D.H. from the US
D1 IC and SL20 SC
“amazing ICs & Speaker Cables got some to use on my cary300sei and my custom shop super6 omegas (by the one and only Louis ) my system now sounds really superb ,dave cables outperformed my dnm and my now to be sold $3000 overpriced and overhyped snake oil garden hose speaker cables, system sounded excellent with the DNM but daves cables sent it to a new level ..soundstage and tonality wise…they are keepers for sure…”dodger4, from the US
D1 vs D2 IC
“I had purchased a standard IC (Dave I) and was really taken by them. I like the SQ of the OCC wire and already having an example in my system was intrigued by Dave’s. After some time on the Dave I, I found the SQ exceeded another OCC cable that I had in place. I sent Dave a ping for another IC and Dave was nice enough the offer audition of the Dave II.
Dave I [D1 Interconnect]
The signature of the cable is clarity and image focus. It is like the fuzz is removed from the edges. On first listen I thought he bass was diminished, but it was in reality just tighter. This became even more so after some time on the cables. They just got cleaner and tighter. Voice is presently nicely and pace an tone are right on. Cassandra Wilson, James Taylor, Sade, the tone and warmth of the mids and treble are very good and clear as a bell. A caveat is I have monitor speakers that go pretty low for monitors, but they are monitors. All of the bass is there, an example is Cassandra Wilson, Loverly, The Very Thought of you. If you don’t have any Cassandra Wilson in your collection, you are really missing out. Piano is done very well, no stridency or muddiness. Keith Jarrett, Kohln Concert is a beautiful thing.
Dave II [D2 Interconnect]
Everything the Dave I does, the Dave II does better. This is not night and day, but clearly better in every way. The noise floor is lower and has even more clarity, liveliness, tone, note decay… Everything is just better. On Cassandra Wilson. Loverly, Dust My Broom, the lead in drum and transition to the bass, the guitar! Off the chain!. Another example, James Taylor, Nearness of You, Don’t Let Me be Lonely Tonight. The warmth and tone of his voice is right on.
I really like the Dave I, but the Dave II is in another league. Benz and AMG, both good, but….
I thank Dave for the opportunity to audition the Dave II IC, which I have purchased. I definitely want give a listen to the higher power speaker cables when available. The cost to performance ratio of his offerings is way off the scale.
Amp Odyssey Khartago mono’s ++
Pre Response Audio Bella-Max(Purity One prototype)
DAC NorthStar M192
Transport NorthStar M192
Speaker Salk HT1
Phono Heed Quasar
TT Thorens TD-125 MKII
IC Source to pre – Soundstring
IC Pre to amp – Dave II – replacing Dave I
IC Phono to pre – Clarity Cable – Harvest
SP Coz bi-wire
Cassandra Wilson, Loverly
Michael Brecker, Nearness of You
Sade, Lovers Rock
Keith Jarrett, Kohln Concert
Tord Guvstavsen, The Ground”
mdfoy, from the US
“good morning Dave,
cables arrived yesterday…thank you. I think they may be the most revealing ICs [D2] I’ve had in my system. LIstening to some of my familiar favorites was fun – I didn’t realize there was that much more to hear. I’m assuming some of the brightness will fade as they settle in. I’ll follow up,”
the cables have certainly settled in some and last night I switched out one of my main power cables which further deemphasized the treble. You are right – your cables are very dynamic. I was listening to one of my favorite piano trio recordings late last night and I continually had to alter the volume in response to the dynamic shifts. I may be misinterpreting what was going on but it seemed that your cables allow even more of the actual recording to come through.
I’ll be returning the basic cable [D1] unless I decide to use it with my tuner. I’ll decide over the course of the next couple of days…
NT, from the US
D1 and D2 ICs
I didn’t get a chance to listen as long as I wanted to. What I heard I liked. If you go to Dave’s website and read the descriptions of each cable, they are on the money, at least in my system. The D1 could cost twice it’s price at least, an absolute knockout for the money. I could be very happy with it. But, wait, the D2 for twice the price is even better. Neutral, extended, smooth, detailed, spacious, you get the idea. Not a harsh bone in it’s body.
I liked the D2 so much, I bought two pair from Dave as well as a pair of 11 gauge speaker wires. The physical quality of these cables is better than anything I’ve seen costing much more money and while sound quality is subjective and system/room dependent, knowing the silly amounts I’ve spent in the past, I think I’m done (at least for a while ).
CA, from the US
D1 XLR vs VH Audio Symmetry
Once again, I would like to thank Dave for allowing me to audition his XLR version of his D1 interconnects. My system description is right below my avatar, and honestly, it would take a little more than 1/2 this post to just describe it, so I refer you there!
I inserted Dave’s D1 cable between my dac (Poseidon’s Voice Sabre 32S) and my preamp (Poseidon’s Voice Lazarus). I felt this position was best due to the way my system is configured – controlled directivity loudspeakers augmented by multiple subwoofers. My ‘stock’ cable is VH Audio’s Symmetry Copper XLR cable which I built myself. As a factory direct retail product, the cost is about $725/meter pair. I diy’ed the product for considerably less, about $400/pair as I received a discount from VH Audio and also a larger discount on the Furutech FP-600 series gold connectors from Parts Connexion. The VH Audio Symmetry Copper XLR cable uses a pair of 24AWG copper solid core conductors with solid FEP insulation and a double shield of foil and silver plated copper spaced away from the conductors. Measurements on the cable are available from Chris Ven Haus by request, as are now Dave’s cables.
I auditioned the cables at the same volume level on my Lazarus preamplifier, initially with quick A/B comparisons and later on with longer listening sessions. The following selections were used:
Every single one of the above recordings I strongly recommend purchasing, they are absolutely fantastic. Chris Jones’ Roadhouses & Automobiles album should be a reference for all references. It is the most analog recording on a digital medium that I have heard to date.
To be honest, my review is going to closely mirror what Launche said. The fact that Dave’s D1 cables sounded quite close to the Symmetry is a complement to Dave’s design and execution. The differences were in fact, subtle. I listen at very high volumes – about 85-90 dB at the listening position, which is roughly 11-12 feet away. To that end Dave’s D1 cables accentuated the upper midrange a bit more and lost some of the smoothness that was apparent on the Symmetry cables. Staging was very similar as was imaging. Dynamic attack was similar, although the bass with Dave’s D1 cables was a smidgen less defined. The Symmetry was a bit more cohesive whereas Dave’s cables accentuated an extreme here and there. I immensely enjoyed Dave’s D1 cables regardless and they didn’t deter me from appreciating the music in the least.
If you were to ask me to tease the differences when blinded – it would be impossible. The differences are subtle and small, at least in my system, and with my ears (which I recently had tested by my audiologist).
What is shocking though is the apparent difference in price, especially if you went with the factory direct retail price of the VH Audio Symmetry Copper XLR’s. One of the reasons for the large differences is that Dave’s D1 cables use a considerably cheaper XLR male/female connector from Furutech versus the VH Audio’s use of the nearly top of the line Furutech gold XLR connectors.
I purchased Dave’s DD cables (RCA) to go from my turntable to my phonostage. I am now thrilled with that purchase after having auditioned Dave’s D1 version of his XLR cables.Poseidonsvoice on AudioCircle
D1, D2 and DD ICs
I auditioned Dave’s RCA cables (D1, D2, DD) and liked them very much. My amp only accepts XLR inputs so I had to use adapters so I may have missed some level of performance with the extra element in the signal path. Not a lot to report as my audition time came during one of those really busy periods with work and life and I just did not have the time or will to do any in depth analysis and I updated Dave on this. My audition system is: Oppo BDP95->Wyred 4 Sound STP-SE Preamp->DAC Cherry Amp->Danley SH50/TH50 speakers and sub.
I listened mostly for relaxation and enjoyment which I needed. The D1 was nice, D2 nicer and DD…well that was the one that just seem to fit the best in my system, though each cable very sounded good. I primary used the DD between my pre-amp and amp. From the moment I Insert the DD everything felt about right and I didn’t want to take it out to switch anything or compare anything. I haven’t heard many silver cables but this one was different from the very few I’ve heard in my systems over the years. In my system it presented an increased level of listening enjoyment.
Well all I could or wanted to analyze was a slight reserved nature from the mids through the top end in my system, which is welcomed. The midrange sounded as natural as it ever has and the top end energy was smoother or less extended or more refined…hard to say which exactly. That made the system just a touch more relaxed and easy to listen too without a thought of anything missing, no distractions that concerned me just a musically centered quality, seeming a touch or two away from neutral in the warm direction but in the right ways for my tastes. The DD was plenty detailed and transparent and seemed to piece the notes together more cohesively than my stock Zu Mission cable. The DD seems to shift the tonal balance a bit lower and give more foundation for everything to rest upon. There was a good sense of appropriate weight and top to bottom balance with the DD, for me a very reassuring sound quality.
As many non-equalized systems are, mine is a little hot on certain trebles frequencies, not harsh but a little pronounced and the DD was a great compliment in that respect.
One night I must have listened to Cowboy Junkies Trinity Sessions five times in a row, just sank right in the chair. When I needed a pick me up Daft Punk’s RAM was great, pushed the system to 95-98 dBs, no problem and little to no treble fatigue beyond the obvious hey that’s damn loud-ness cues. That was a little shocking and I’m not sure what is the cause, if the adapters were in play or what have you but I felt I could push the system harder with lesser ill effects that are typical for those loudness levels. Jazz, classical, blues all sounded just wonderful I cared not to analyze but just listen.
Truth be told I still don’t want to believe the DD cable made the difference, that it might provide that extra layer of smoothness and cohesion. Making the system have the feeling of a little coating of agave nectar that delights the palette and pulls all the flavors together . But I have to say I sensed it when I inserted it and sensed the loss when it was out. Nothing earth shattering but noticeable and welcomed when there. Normally I can adjust to something in or out of the system and enjoy accordingly. I don’t obsesses over every perceivable difference, some things are just different sounding for whatever reason not necessarily better or worse and one can adjust in most cases either way. I wanted to wait a few days before writing to see how I would acclimate to the DD cable being out of the system and it somewhat pains me to say I find myself missing the DD cable. Honestly, if my system configuration were not soon changing I would buy the DD without reservation and frankly I may still buy it.
Thanks again Dave
launche on AudioCircle
D1, D2, DD and D1 XLR
I got the Dave’s XLR cables from Anand about three weeks ago and am just now posting my impressions. My apologies for not posting earlier. Two business trips and care giving for my Father-In-Law doesn’t leave much time for hobbies now a days…
My listening was conducted with Dave’s XLR IC’s and then unexpectedly, I also received a package full of Dave’s RCA IC’s. Most of my listening was done with the XLR version.
The setup for these listening sessions were as follows:
Source: C.A.P.S. v.2+ with JRiver feeding an Exasound E20 MKIII DAC
Amp: Modwright KW-200 Integrated
Speakers: DIY’d Selah Audio TRT Model
Speaker Cables: MG Audio Planus 2’s
I listened to a variety of classical recordings which included:
Beethoven String Quartets recorded by the Cleveland Quartet
Mahler 2nd Symphony – DSD version recorded by Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra
Madrigal Movement from Prokofiev’s Romeo & Juliet recorded by The Cleveland Orchestra/Maazel
Toccata & Fugue from the DSD recording by The Jacques Loussier Jazz Trio
Promenade from the Lucky To Be Me album recorded by Taylor Egsti
I found Dave’s XLR cables to have a very nice quality overall. There was no lacking bass. The mids to my ear had a bit softer quality than the Furutechs that I have been using. The highs were also a bit (and I mean just a wee wee little bit) more subdued than the Furutechs as well.
One of the traits of Dave’s XLR cable which really showed up during my listening of the Beethoven Quartets was the speed of the cable. What I mean by this is that I could hear the inner voices(2nd violin & viola) a bit more clearer on the Furutechs. In addition, the faster figures (16th note runs) were a bit clearer on the Furutechs as well.
This in not in any way saying that Dave’s XLR cables lacking. I am nitpicking. Unfortunately, I am cursed with a classically trained ear and where Dave’s XLR cable might shine on other genre’s of recordings, I preferred the house Furutechs in these listening sessions. In addition, the MW KWI-200 leans on the side of warmness. Especially, in the mids. (in a very musical way) so I think Dave’s XLR cables were just too much of a good thing. In a bit bighter system, the XLR’s might just be the ticket!
What was totally unexpected was when I decided to go ahead and try Dave’s DD RCA cables. I really had no intention of using them as I run balanced but I went ahead and ran them between the Exasound E20 MKIII DAC directly to the Modwright KW-200 Integrated using the HT Bypass, thereby bypassing the Preamp section of the KWI-200 and using the VC from the E20.
The resulting sound was VERY NICE!! Not as transparent as the previous setup but lemme tell you. I really didn’t care. The overall presentation was extremely clean without being harsh. I then went ahead and tried the D1 and D2 cables but my favorite (by not a small margin) was the DD.
On every recording it just sounded good. Sometimes I would be wanting to hear more information but then told myself to just chill out and enjoy myself. Well with the DD cable that is exactly what I did.
For what Dave is charging for some very well constructed cables, you really can’t go wrong.
I appreciate being part of this tour and again my apologies to everyone, especially Dave for being tardy with my comments.
rklein on AudioCircle
D1, D2 and DD ICs
In my system, the best term I can use to describe it is, “listenable”
I did not care whether or not is was the most accurate,
I did not care whether it introduced some sort of distortion,
Once it went into my system it did not come out.
The other cables were good,
The DD was great.
I was not surprised that it revealed detail; silver is known for this.
What really surprised me was the beautiful tone it allowed to come through.
It does not sound like any silver cable I have ever heard.
All of Dave’s cables have a very open sound, the DD is no exception.
Dave, you have a winner and new champion.
ZLS on AudioCircle
D2 and DD ICs
I didn’t try the D1’s only the D2 and DD. The D2 are a very good cable, fast, detailed, linear, with good transparency. Tonal balance is nice and be a good fit in a system on the warmer side of neutral.
The DD were my favorite. They are quiet, smooth, with a beautiful tonal balance. Before break in the midrange was a little forward but are now nicely balanced. They have very good detail but in a musically natural way.
Dave’s cables are an excellent value and I liked them so much I bought a pair.
Jbtrio on AudioCircle
D1, D2, D3 and DD ICs
I just got done with an all-morning listening session, switching between the DD, D2, D1, and my current Sweet Spot Reveal cables (made by Sonny here on Audiocircle). The SSR bested Morrow Audio level 2 and AntiCable interconnects to give you all more common points of reference. I’d say the strengths of the SSR are plenty of body and tonal nuances/shading that make music really come alive in my system, with enough detail and microdynamics to clearly separate instruments and make them seem real and emotional.
The D1 was pretty good, had about the same tonal balance as the SSR, which is good, but smeared sounds a bit more and didn’t quite get there in resolution or microdynamics.
I found the DD and D2 to have significantly more separation of instruments and, delineation of vocals, etc than the SSR. The SSR’s had a bit less clearly spatially defined vocals, and music with a lot of instruments smeared together just a bit compared with these two.
However, I found the D2 to be a little too tonally white washed and tipped up compared with the SSR. It was a bit tipped up compared with the D1 as well. I found it articulate in terms of detail, but lost a significant amount of engagement with the music when using the D2. I just couldn’t connect with the raw emotion of the performance. I also found it tipped up a bit tonally, and not at all something I need in my system.
The DD seemed not quite to equal the SSR in the area of tonal shading and emotional engagement. However, I think what I was hearing was that the slight smearing of the SSR was probably contributing to a bit more body and tonal shadings – probably an artificial effect. This made a few songs more engaging with the SSR, but on the whole probably isn’t something to embrace. On the DD, I heard enough of the tonal shading that I was still really connecting emotionally, but increased delineation of instruments on complex pieces and increased delineation/localization of voices and instruments on smaller group performances. I also thought the tonal balance was just right on the DD. These characteristics are similar to what I experienced going all-silver with my internal speaker cabling to go along with my silver speaker cables.
I’m going back and forth about whether to order two sets of DD, or to send my SSR’s back to Tuan (Sonny) to swap the cheapo connectors out for high end Furutechs, one of each, or both. There’s only one set of DD on the tour, so it would be great to hear what a full run of them would do in my system.
Thanks for the ability to try these out in my home, Dave! The only way to really listen to cables is to be able to swap them in and out in real-time in your own system with music you know well.
Tekton Lore speakers (fully upgraded crossovers, all-silver internal wiring), Clear Day shotgun speaker cables (high gauge silver)
Mac Mini source (2010, Audirvana, tweaks to operating system, SSD, 8BG RAM),
dB Audio Tranquility DAC (with latest gold-level upgrade),
TRL Dude preamp,
NCore 400 monoblock amps (with top level Cardas XLR to RCA adapter for RCA input),
dual subs in distributed array and with EQ for fairly flat bass down to 20Hz at listening position.
Significant GIK room treatment (absorption on front wall and tritraps to the ceiling in the corners, diffusion at first reflection points)
I just wanted to post a quick follow-up. I reviewed the tour sets a while back and at the time was somewhat on the fence about how much value they offered. I wanted to report back that I have actually purchased two pair of DD and couldn’t be happier. They have about 200 hours on them now and are starting to come into their own. Initially, they the sound wasn’t as full as the tour pairs, but they’re starting to come along.
It was actually really interesting, because Dave had actually sent me another tour set of DD and his D3 this time, and I still had those when the new cables arrived. I was able to directly A/B the tour broken-in DD and the brand new ones, so I have a good sense of what they go through from fresh to fully broken-in.
And so I should probably say a few words about the DD vs the D3. My experience was that the D3 had the same kind of tonal balance as the D2, but probably a tad bit more detail and refinement than the DD. I ended up going with the DD because it was really very close and the tonal balance of the DD is a better synergy with my system. But in a system where warmer and fuller bodied isn’t necessary, but more lit up and resolved is valued and a bit more higher frequency energy is alright (compared with the DD anyway, since it’s a bit on the warmer end of things), the D3 is truly exceptional.
genjamon on AudioCircle
Dave the DD is a special IC period. No matter which position it is used in my system an improvement was had. Using the D2 from Plinius CDP [ rich character ] and the DD from preamp to mono blocks. Silver IC used previously were consistently thin in character. Not bright however no meat on the bone to speak of. The DD has weight and gestalt a rare combo for silver.
I am curious about using a silver RCA in lieu of copper. Duelund uses what for their ultra expensive for IC. Would like to have an all silver IC. Oh my !
I have been saying since I received the DD that they are a very special cable. Period. Duelund wire as well as their caps due to lots of dielectric take serious time to stop changing.
Initially they sound dark in comparison to when fully broken in. Bass is there but not defined yet. the top extended but not fleshed out meaning the harmonics have yet to appear in their decay and glory.
With 700 hundred hours on them now they stopped changing. If you own these cables you are going to be surprised as to the end result. Not warm at all. Extremely neutral but without the leanness that usually goes along with neutral. These cables have gestalt [ balls ] that most do not. nothing is highlighted or blown up.
I am a top end freak. It better be natural and non Hi Fi sounding. These cables provide that in spades. Once you experience real like tonality and harmonics at first you may think the DD is rich. It is not it is accurate with zero HI Fi attributes. The sizzle, exaggerated sibilance brightness is MIA. Oh and did I say dead quite.
Now saying all that remember no cable is a “BEST” cable or wire. We can say though accurate tone, harmonics and PRAT is what makes this cable assembly a must try.
The D2 in direct comparison is different. A bit less meat on the bone detailed and a tad brighter presentation. Does that description mean not good ? Not at all just different. I cannot say that enough. We per ferred the D2 with tubed gear as opposed to SS. Especially digital source.
Dave the DD is an excellent product. The “best” ? no such thing a “difference” yes Sir and take that to the bank. The difference is staggering Oh and if you like like them you can keep them. Period.
Rollo on AudioCircle
D1, D2 and DD ICs
I received the D1, D2, and DD (all single-ended) yesterday, and spent this AM listening to all 3 of these. I decided to post my comments here.
So far I have listened in my office system, which uses a PC music server feeding an Audio-GD 11.32 Sabre DAC, a Magnum-Dynalab MD-208 receiver and custom Selah Audio monitors with RAAL tweeters and 5.5″ Revelator woofers. I chose this system out of my 3 because listening nearfield 5 feet away gives a very microscopic view into the sound, while still offering excellent balance, range and transparency. It takes the room out of the picture to a larger degree which I have found to be useful for listening to subtleties of cables, etc.
As I have mentioned here before, I have been in this hobby seriously for 45 years. While speakers are my great interest (~300 pairs owned) I have certainly tried at least 100 models of ICs. The top of my price range is ~$1000/pr, so I have no frame of reference on more expensive options in my systems.
In the last year alone I have used ZU Mission, Varial and Event, Nanotech 207, Anti-Cable ICs, Discovery Essence, LAT 200, Cerious Reference, Grover Huffman ZX, Mojo Lucent, and Acrotec 6N-A2050 in various single-ended and balanced configs.
All these sounded different, some great , some so-so, but at the end of it I had arrived at Grover Huffman ZX as the best I’ve used. They are very detailed, dynamic and well balanced, with a forward presentation that I like but that may not be to everyone’s taste. I wired my 2 best systems with them. At $200 they are a dead steal. They outpointed all the above, most of which cost more. I don’t mind going cheap when the goods are there.
My critical listening used one track only- “O My Seh Yeh”, the opening track from Roy Hargrove’s Habana cd. Of all 10000 tracks in my collection, this 10 minute track is one is the closest it having it all sonically- killer horn arrangements, astonishing electric bass, depth, soundstage ambience, percussive dynamics, all recorded perfectly with little or no processing or sweetening. I’ve used this track as my #1 reference on many systems over the last 10 years, so I know it well.
Enough of the prelims.
My reference IC for comparison was the Grover ZX.
I started with Dave’s D1s. I like them very well. They are smooth, well balanced, and did nothing wrong or offensive. They make for very enjoyable listening, with no caveat. A very even handed choice. Not as revealing, dynamic or incisive as the ZX, but I would choose them over any under $200 choices I’ve used. If your budget is a bit over $100 I don’t think there are any better, period.
However, I was anxious to get onto the main courses.
Next up was the D2. As soon as I fired them up, my first thought was that this is more like it. More open, detailed, with better soundstage definition. VERY well balanced. This is first team performance. I could live with these easily.
Compared to the ZX, they have the same level of detail and range.
The principal difference is one of presentation. The ZX is upfront- like being in the first row, compared to maybe the 8th row for the D2. If you’ve ever sat in the first row and heard a live trumpet you know how edgy and sometimes painful the experience can be. The ZX gives a bit of that; the D2 is a more “comfortable” presentation. Not rolled off, and perhaps better balanced harmonically.
Of the 2 I lean toward the ZX, but others may well like a little easier sound of the D2.
Next was the DD. After the D2 I was very interested to see how much better it could get. Once again, the first 10 seconds (a bass drum beating in a large resonant space) was a good hint of what was to come. The venue ambience is portrayed more clearly and distinctly than I have ever heard. Harmonics are richer and fuller, but with no obfuscation- just the opposite. Clarity and definition both increase notably, but the presentation is less forward than the ZX, yet with no loss of dynamics and immediacy. This is very good stuff indeed- the best I’ve ever had in my systems, period. Refinement, transparency and ease- they have it all in spades.
I got on this tour to hear Dave’s ICs not because I was interested in changing ICs, but I was interested in his speaker cables and wanted to hear the quality of his work overall.
I tried them in my main system and got the same results, and with a varied selection of music. The DDs are the real deal, at a very attractive price for the quality on offer. Although not really in the market, I know when I hear a great thing. I voted w/ my wallet and ordered a pair of balanced and a pair of unbalanced DDs today.
Congratulation to Dave on these great products. The D2 and DD are not dirt cheap, but along with the D1 they really do offer sound that is worth the tariff at each price level. A very sane choice for top quality sound, IMO.
Just an update. I tried them in my main system and got the same results. The DDs are the real deal, totally at home in the best, most resolving systems, and at a very attractive price for the quality on offer.
The 3-D, venue acoustic, and natural instrumental image rendering are all the best I’ve had in my systems. All of this is there with no artificial edginess whatever. These attributes are what separates the best from the very good, IMO.
I voted w/ my wallet and ordered a pair of balanced and a pair of unbalanced DDs today.
I just ordered a pair of DDs for my office system, where they really excelled with the demo pair I had. After taking them out to send them back to Dave, I decided I had given up too much by going back to my other ICs.
So my count is 2 pr. D3s (XLR and RCA), 1 pr. DDs, and Dave’s 14 ga. speaker cables.
I think these products are a dead steal for the quality on offer, which is why I’m outfitting my 2 best systems before Dave raises the price or (God forbid) gets hit by lightning or something.
Jonbee on AudioCircle
D2 and DD ICs
I had the pleasure of reviewing Dave’s cable in my system over the holiday. I focused on D2 and DD IC.
I installed the cable between my Buffalo III DAC and Van Alstine Avastar preamp. I need a 3m pair between my preamp and amp so I cannot test Dave’s IC in that location. The rest of my system consists of DIY Pass F5 AMP and GR Research Super-V speakers.
The interconnect I have been using between the DAC and preamp was a DIY cable using the very same center conductor as Dave’s D2 cable. The ground return wire is the same but without the Litz configuration and using Eichmann Gold Bullet Plugs. The D2 cable’s sonic signature is very similar to my DIY cable but has a little more heft in the bass and seems a little louder. The weak notes of music come through a little more clearly. I would consider the D2 cables are worthwhile upgrade considering the reasonable price of the D2 and the quality of material it uses.
Next up is the DD cable. This set of cable is in a totally different league. The presentation of the music is more or less the same as D2 but everything just got better. The music is more coherent and the bass is even more solid than D2. The image of everything seems to snap into focus. The image does not get larger than the D2 but it just seem more solid. For the lack of a better term, everything just got more musical. Considering the price difference between the D2 and the DD and the performance differences, the DD represents a better investment.
Hanguy on AudioCircle
DD and D3 ICs, SL14 SCs
After participating in the Dave 2 and DD tour, I did some research on the Dueland wire and found out that there was a 2.0 version of the wire. I pinged Dave to get his opinion on the wire and Dave being Dave was way ahead of me and offered me the opportunity to check out the Duelund 2.0 and D3 cables. Below are my finding of these cables in my system. I had a mishap with my digital source and did the review of these cables on my vinyl source. Making lemonade out the these lemons, I got to check out the DD 2.0 and d3 exclusively in my system, switching tem on source to pre, and pre to amp.
Base configuration – set the baseline
Clarity Harvest II on source to pre, D2 on pre to amp, Coz SC
The Harvest II is a nice cable, it does nothing wrong, but cymbals can get a little more tinny than brassy. One of its strongest points is being very quiet due to the damping in the connectors. A nice cable, and we know about the D2, low noise floor, great tone, good detail.
System configuration 1 – DD.2 on source to pre, D2 on pre to amp, Coz SC
The DD allows all of the detail on the record come through and has very good coherence, and very clean. This is a configuration that I had on the a previous except the DD is now the DD.2. An example, Travels, Are you going with me, the level of articulation on the DD.2 exceeds the Harvest in all frequencies. This cut gets very busy, and all notes are clear and present with the DD.2. They get a little messy in the Harvest. mind you, this is only revealed after a listen with the DD.2. Sonic memory is fleeting, but I believe the DD.2 may be a little cleaner than the DD. This was revealed in the next configuration.
System configuration 2 – DD.2 on source to pre, D3 on pre to amp, Coz SC
This combination made me stop using my cables, and just switch position of the DD.2 and D3. It was made abundantly clear that the D2 was not up to par with the D3. The level of detail and flow from the DD.2 was allowed to flow unabated by the D2. There was detail, depth and weight exposed that was not there with the D2. Sketches of Spain, Solea, this is one of my favorite pieces of all time, at the crescendo, just a beautiful thing. The level of clarity allowed to be displayed by the D3 made the D2 appear broken. I won’t say that the D3 smokes or any other colorful words to describe the difference between the two cables, but will just say that I am buying the D3.
System configuration 3 – D3 on source to pre, DD.2 on pre to amp, Coz SC
It is clear the that the presentations of the DD.2 and D3 are different. The level of detail provided by the DD.2 is pretty even with the D3, but the tonal weight of the cables is different. Herbie Hancock, River, Tea leaf Prophecy, Jonie Mitchell’s voice had a warmth that the DD.2 did not, and the piano lower register had more weight. The bass on Cassandra Wilson, Blue Moon Daughter, Strange fruit was just more profound. These differences were not terrible or indicating a weakness, but different. The difference in presentation was further clarified to me when in the next configuration.
System configuration 4 – D3 source to pre, D2 on pre to amp, Coz SC
I brought the D2 back in the mix to check a thought I had on the differences between the DD.2 and D3. Everything in configuration 2 was right on, but the weight and tone was heavier with the D3 than with the DD.2. The same level of detail, body, tone, space, dynamics, space, noise floor, but more solid. The DD.2 would be a Vanessa Williams the singer, the D3 would be is Serena Williams, the tennis player, big, strong agile, and a brother likes a thick chick!
All said, in my system the DD.2 and D3 are both very nice cables and have a quality that is easily heard. Both improve upon the D2. How large an improvement is up to you and your system. In my system, the D3 provided a level of enjoyment that is hard to resist. My system was configured for clarity and accuracy. Choices were made to balance a touch warmer than neutral amp, with touch cleaner tube preamp, speakers are dead accurate. The D3 most clearly enhanced the sound. I am going for in my system. I need to figure out how I am going to get at least 2 pair.
Once again, I thank Dave for the opportunity to participate in the tour.
Pat Metheny, Travels Live
Miles Davis/Gil Evans, Sketches of Spain
Herbie Hancock, River
Steely Dan, Greatest Hits
Cassandra Wilson, Blue Moon Daughter
Amp Odyssey Khartago mono’s ++
Pre Response Audio Bella-Max(Purity One prototype)
Speaker Salk HT1
Phono Heed Quasar
TT Thorens TD-125 MKII, Audiomods Series 5 tone arm, SAE 1000E
IC Pre to amp – Dave II
IC Phono to pre – Clarity Cable – Harvest
SP Coz bi-wire
Happy holidays to all!
Mdfoy on AudioNervosa
This is about the D3 cable.
Previously I have written about how much I enjoyed the DD cable ( I was part of the cable tour.)
Subsequent to that time, Dave asked if I would be interested in comparing the D3 to the DD.
Being an audiophile, and having a chance to hear something new, I of course said yes.
The difference between the DD and the D3 is that the D3 using wire that contains 1% gold.
Now when I first heard about this 1% gold wire (Audiophile Fuses) I thought that it was great marketing, and nothing more.
As is usually the case, I was wrong.
Comparing the two IC’s, I found myself preferring the D3.
The difference, both got the timing right, but the tone of the D3 is exemplary.
There is a rightness to the tone that borders on beauty. Once again I fall back on the expression that it is listenable.
The test I use for tone is the Alto Saxophone of Johnny Hodges.
The cut I used is Jeeps Blues from Ellington At Newport. Not a great recorded CD, but with the D3 you can understand
how Johnny Hodges melts the crowd during his solo.
The D3 does not diminish the DD, which still stands as a great IC.
The D3 is an IC that both nails the timing and the tone.
ZLS on AudioCircle
DD vs D3
I’ve been listening to the DD and D3 for a couple of days now.
I had ordered 2 pair of DDs, but Dave allowed me to audition the D3 before shipping my order. I must say my findings really match the others’ in most regards.
Dave’s D3 cables differ from the DD in that instead of using the wonderful Duelund silver wire, are made from Neotech gold/ OCC silver wire- very expensive stuff, but in this case well worth the cost.
The D3 cable offers the classic benefits of fine silver-very transparent, detailed and focused, but are uncharacteristic of silver in that they are very dynamic, with rich tonality, amazingly powerful yet focused bass, and very impressive image density. A big sound, no thinness or brightness here. Very 3-d.
Compared to Dave’s impressive DD: both are really top notch ICs, but with different presentations. DD is more laid back, with a soundstage deep behind the speakers, while D3 is bolder, a bit brighter, with good depth behind, but also well in front of the speakers. The D3 has very saturated tone, making the images very palpable.
Both the DD and the D3 are at home in the most resolving systems, but perhaps the DD is a better choice in bright or forward systems.
As I wrote in my earlier comments on the DD, I’ve used well over 100 pairs of ICs listing at $100-1000 over the years, and both these simply sound more like real music than the others.
YMMV, but for me, in my system, they are killer good and a great value for truly high end sound.
I changed my DD order to D3s.
Jonbee on AudioCircle
D1, D2 and DD ICs
I put this cable in between my Ray Samuels B52 Preamp and my EAR 890 Amplifier. The cable the D1 XLR replaced was my Kimber KCAG XLR.
With the replacement, the first thing I noticed is that the D1 XLR did absolutely no harm. The system remained musical and extremely enjoyable. Hence, since I did not wince at first listen (a very good sign), I kept playing my familiar test tracks.
The D1 XLR is very inviting and smooth from bottom bass registers to the vocal range. The cable seems to have a somewhat laid back character which enhances the musicality and listenability.
The bottom end seemed to be more round sounding and flowing into the vocal range nicely. Compared to the Kimber KCAG, the KCAG manages to be even more smoother but with much more definition. The D1 XLR maintains the transient information, but the edges of the beginning and ending of a note is slightly blurred. Hence, the D1 XLR makes for a pleasant listen, but loses out on definition that is on the recording.
From the vocals on up, the D1 XLR is reserved. The information is there, but becomes part of the music as more background. The shimmer and air around cymbals seems diminished compared to the KCAG. The information is there, but rounded and somewhat receded. Again, makes for a pleasant listen, but after a while, I was less engaged with the music.
For me, I would probably use the D1 XLR in a system that is more forward or analytical sounding to bring in some “humanity”. It will help to flesh out tones and textures while maintaining a musical poise. However, in a finely tuned system, it must be placed strategically to ensure the system moves in a direction you want it to. I like this D1 XLR cable, but it’s not for me at the moment.
This particular cable was put between my VPI turntable and the EAR 324 phono stage. This is the only area my system used a single ended cable at the moment as the rest of the system uses balanced XLR cables. The D1 RCA replaced a run of Jorma Unity RCA cable which runs $4000 a meter.
The D1 RCA sounded great in this setting from the get go. The top end came in beautifully this time and did not have a recess as in the XLR version. Cymbal work shimmered with very good air, actually excellent air but still less than the Jorma Unity.
Now comes the juicy part! The mid bass on this cable is sublime. The heart of the music beats with colors full of life and vigor. There is a slight midrange oriented sheen on the music, but I absolutely love it. Again, that “human” factor is prevalent in spades. Voices, guitar tones, overtones, bass lines, horns, wood winds, brass instruments come in with stunning musicality. This RCA D1 is just a winner. I don’t see any system it will NOT work in. It is pulling in lots of definition and serving it with such passion, I would not mind having this cable in my stable of RCA cables. Winner for all types of systems.
Again, put between the VPI Turntable and the EAR 324 phono stage, this cable is clearly cut form the same cloth, however, it is slightly more balanced (or read another way, closer to the neutral side of the sound spectrum). Slightly less “fleshy” than the D1, but now this cable is portraying yet another additional level of detail and clarity in the musical spectrum.
Listening to the D2, I feel there is more information coming through the cable, but with further listening it becomes clear that it is the change in presentation that seems to make this so. I feel the top end has opened up more with more definition, the mids and bass, as a result seem less plump but portray more definition again.
In short, I feel the D2 has more definition and transient information coming through with the slight musical plumpness diminished compared to the D1. I actually really liked that about the D1!
D2 is a winner again. I would most likely use this in a more traditionally tube based system. I would probably shy away from this cable in a solid state system unless the solid state has a nice big/rounded bottom end. Definition, linearity, transparency is the name of the game here.
Used in the same position as the others, this is the best cable of the lot for me. This has a blend of both the strengths of D1 and D2 in my system with a natural presentation.
I am now getting the nice bottom end with full musicality without extra fat. The top end is open and airy while the mids are properly fleshed out. This is now closer to the balance offered by my Jorma Unity RCA cables. The Jorma provides even more information in terms of soundstage height, width, depth, bottom end, mids and a much more information in the top WITHOUT being bright.
The DD sounds like a Jorma Unity, but less of everything. I guess, the Jorma Unity gives more in all respects akin to a Mercedes S-Class. The DD is also a Mercedes, but more of an E-Class. This doesn’t take anything away from the DD as sometimes you don’t want to be driving an S-class all the time I really really like this DD cable and think it can easily be used in any kind of system allowing the music to come through without crimping it in any way. This is my kind of cable and the winner out of all three in a finely tuned system. The other cables would work great and could be a better match in a given kind of system. In the end, I guess it all depends on the setup, the room, the listener and the music.
Thank you so much Dave. You are obviously on the right path as the DD cable compares nicely to some of the more expensive cables on the market…just like you set out to do. Congrats on the achievement!
NOTE: I made sure NOT to read any of the reviews of these cables to ensure my thoughts are not influenced in any way. Looks like a lot of the conclusions I drew fit along side experiences of others.
– Marten Design Bird 2 Speakers
– Chord QBD76HDSD Dac, EAR Dacute Dac
– VPI TNT VI “Hot Rod” Turntable, JMW 12.5 Tonearm, HRX Motor, Superplatter or Aluminum Platter, Van Den Hul Grasshopper III GLA Phono Cartridge,
– Scheu Premier III Turntable, Schroeder Model 2 Tonearm, Jan Allaerts Cartridge
– EAR 324 Phono Stage, Jadis DPMC Phonostage, Einstein Turntables Choice Phono, Ray Samuels F-117 Phonostage, Eddie Current Transcription Phonostage
– EAR 868 Preamp, Ray Samuels B52 Preamp
– EAR 890 Amplifier
– Power Conditioning by Exactpower EP15a, Exactpower SP15ax4, Richard Gray 400s
– Cabling is Kubala Sosna Emotion, Kimber, Furutech, Harmonix for signal and power.
Shaizada on AudioCircle
I just received my order of Dave’s speaker cables, so now I have a complete “loom” of single ended and balanced D3 ICs and Dave’s SCs, end to end. All I can say is “Wow”. With no break in of the speaker cables the resulting improvement over my Grover Z+ and Nanotech SCs is even more than I could have hoped for. The result gets me much closer to the event, I feel, with the benefits from highs to lows, front to back and sideways. The result is captivating.
I should add, that as Dave said, the speaker cables do have a strong but extremely clear and clean top end. Not bright, but lifelike, IMO, and this should be considered when deciding whether they will match up well in any particular system. in my case, I needed a little more top end than I had with my previous cables, which are slightly rolled off. The SCs gave me exactly what I wanted, but as always with cables, one size does not fit all. In a too bright system these speaker cables will not help tone it down, but may still improve the sound by virtue of the very clean top end.
The Huffmans and Nanotechs are very good for their price, and I have kept them in my other 2 systems, but Dave’s D3 ICs and speaker cables show them clean heels in a hi-rez sytem.
The performance/value ratio in these cables is very high. They are about 2x the price of what I had been using, but less than many I’ve used, and in my system they trounce the rest, regardless of cost. In fine systems incremental improvement get very pricey, as we all know, but in this case the extra $ gets a larger benefit than I’m used to getting for the $.
All I can say is, with the usual caveats about matchups, give ’em a try!
My system: Daedalus Audio RMa V2, Hypex N-core NC400 amps, Audio-GD C-3 preamp, dedicated Windows 7 music server running J-river 19, Musical fidelity V192 usb converter, Eastern electric minimax dac plus w/ dexa op amps, Sources powered by a PS Audio Power Plant premier chained to a Pi Audio Rev B, lots of good, selected power cables.
Jonbee on AudioCircle
D2 and DD ICs
So I shipped Dave’s D1, D2, and DD cables back to him recently promising to write up my impressions so here they are. Based on what I had previously read on this thread I decided to focus on the D2 and the DD. I started my evaluation by inserting the D2 between my Audiosector NOS dac and my Eastern Electric M88 Integrated. My speakers are the Audiokenesis Prismas which are extremely revealing of downstream component and cable changes so I was confident that if there were differences to be heard I would hear them. The D2 replaced a pair of MAC Palladium Sound Pipes. I used Steely Dan’s “Things I miss the most” to conduct the evaluation.
So what did I hear? Well to be honest, although I expected to hear significant differences between the D2 and the MAC, I didn’t. Could I detect a difference? Yes I could. Could I determine which was better. Not really. The differences were there but they were also very subtle. I swapped the MACs back in and again no major changes. The MAC really held its own against the D2. I guess that isn’t too surprising because the MAC was very well reviewed when it came out and listed at $429 at the time.
OK time for the DD. Out came the D2 in in went the DD. Well now that was a horse of a different color!! Absolutely no trouble discerning a difference this time or noticing which cable is better. The DD lifted a significant veil off the sonic presentation, illuminating and giving texture to the Walter Becker’s bass and giving the entire recording a more organic more musical sound. Steely Dan music is very well recorded but it can also sound a bit clinical and sterile, lacking warmth and emotion. The DD went a long way toward fixing that problem. My toes were tapping and I was smiling. I was grooving on great bass lines that were so well defined and a pleasure to focus on. No longer did I have to strain to hear them. They were right there. And the lyrics? Well let’s just say that I became a lyric man instantaneously. (usually I focus almost exclusively on the music) The lyrics were coming to me instead of me having to fight to understand them if you know what I mean. Oh he misses the Audi TT. Of course! Why couldn’t I make that out before? This cable was uncanny. It was able to make a clinical sounding record come off as more musical and warmer yet at the same time reduce the noise floor so that everything became much clearerand easier to discern, especially where my system had been lacking previously, the bass. It really took me only that one song (played repeatedly in A/B style) to know that I would not be sending the DD back to Dave. From my cold dead hands, Dave. This cable is the real deal. I know I am just one more affirmation of what so many others here have already said. Like everyone else on this thread I concur. The DD is special and represents a new reference in affordable cables. If you have been reading this entire thread and you haven’t pounced on the DD yet what are you waiting for?
Dave, you have really whetted my appetite for your products. Let me know if I can get on any other tours would you?
Bradmorris1 on AudioCircle
D3 ICs and SL14 SCs
Many thanks to Dave for allowing me to participate in the tour. I listened to the D3 IC’s (XLR and RCA) and 14 ga speaker cables (12′ w/ Furutech FT-211 (g) and 212 (g) connectors).
I tried various combinations of D3s and 14 ga speaker cables in the different systems below. The 14 ga speaker cables were used in a single run, and as one leg of a bi-wire configuration. I did not use the jumpers.
(Transport) Sony DVP 9000 ES w/VSE Level 5+ Mods (DAC) Teac UD-501 (Preamp) BAT VK-3i
(Power Amp) Llano Trinity 200 (Hybrid) (Speakers) Gamut Phi 7
(Cables)(Speaker) Morrow Audio; Nanotech (Analog-RCA) Dave’s Cables DD w/Duelund 2.0
(Analog-XLR) Homegrown Audio Silver Lace; MAC Palladium (Digital RCA) Darwin Silver Digital
(Power Cords) Triode Wire Labs; Lessloss DFPC; DIY Furutech Alpha 3; Wireworld Silver Electra 7
SYSTEM 2 – Same as System 1 except for speakers:
1975 Klipch LaScalas (Tweeters) B&C; Crites (Crossover) Alethia Audio Super AA
SYSTEM 3 – Same as System 2 except for power amp: Bottlehead Paramour 2A3 monoblocks
The XLR was from DAC to Preamp; RCA from preamp to amp.
The D3s did many things better than the cables I had on hand. There was a lot of information being projected; images were somewhat better defined and fuller; the acoustic space was easily identifiable; nicely dense stage; bass was slightly fuller. Extended – smooth with some warmth; unflappable – with a sense of control and ease. More of the above with both D3s; a bit less with just one. Given all the things the D3 does well, it is a “must hear.”
The speaker cables were used in a single run, and as one leg of a bi-wire configuration. There was a “liveness” to the sound, particularly in the upper registers, that added an extra dose of realism. Bass lines were clear and easily followed. The acoustic venue was easily discernable. Imaging and staging were first rate.
This is a very linear cable with lots of information in the upper registers. Bass was detailed rather than prominent. The 14 ga mated particularly well with the 2A3 amps and with horn speakers. It also worked well with a hybrid amp and neutral, revealing speakers (as part of a bi-wire run for the “high” section). While this was a successful match, poorly recorded or marginal discs did not get any repreive. Using them on the “low” section was good, but not preferable.
They are likely not a good match for an already lean or bright system. But in the right one, there is a reward to be had.
D3 XLR and RCA and 14 ga.(“high” section – bi-wire)
With all 3, the above characteristics of the D3 complemented those of the 14 ga. The complementary relationship and resulting synergy of the 3 together improved the presentation even more, and would mate with virtually all systems.
Maxima95 on AudioCircle
I haven’t tried a lot of brands of cable but I thought I would share my thoughts on the D3 interconnect. I purchased a D3 IC to go between my DAC and preamp. It replaced a Level 3 anticable. I thought the anticable sounded a little bright and a little bit lean compared to the D3 cable. The D3 was more resolving and yet had a “more meat on the bones” sound. The communication with Dave was really great and I intend to buy a 2 meter D3 XLR to go between my preamp and mono blocks.
Dpatters on AudioCircle
D3 and D4 ICs
Ok, guys, I’ve been holding out on about six months worth of trial impressions from Dave’s cables. It’s time for a big brain-dump. Hold on tight.
Current setup: Mac Mini – Lampizator level 5 – TRL Dude preamp – Job 225 amp – Tekton Lore speakers (with dual distributed subs with active EQ to create a pretty even and fullrange in-room bass response) – full front wall of absorption, diffusion at first reflections
Alright, I gave my impressions way back last fall at hearing the DD and D2 interconnects. I can’t remember if I also commented on the D3’s in comparison. Upshot is that back then, I liked the DD’s better than the D3’s in my system. The DD’s were full bodied, nearly as detailed as the D3’s, and just had the right overall tonality. In comparison, D3’s were more detailed and nuanced, but just sounded thinner and not as full bodied, and didn’t have the “magic” that contributed to greater overall realism in my system.
Then came January and I upgraded DACs from the Tranquility SE to the Lampizator. I had a hunch it was worth hearing the D3’s again, even though the DD’s were sounding great. I got a couple trial pair of D3’s about a month ago and played around with a bunch of different combinations. What I ended up with were D3’s from DAC to preamp, and DD from preamp to amp. I got more spatial definition and soundstage by a large margin, but kept the richness of tone/body that I liked about the DD.
Then I finally splurged for the Audio Magic super fuse for the Job amp. Holy crap, that amp changed character quite a bit from being relatively lean (although wonderfully fast and articulate) to being very richly toneful. Suddenly, the full loom of D3’s didn’t shift the tone too lean or high for me, and the full loom of D3 had a very slight edge in detail without losing magic (although just very slightly).
Ok, now last week I got the trial pair of D4’s. Put the in place of the D3’s between DAC and preamp (I have always found this position to be more sensitive to cable changes than from preamp to amp). Holy shit!!!!
And now I am
I haven’t had them out of the system since I put them in. I had intended to AB and play around with various combinations. Sorry guys, these things are absolute winners. I don’t care that they cost a fortune. I can only characterize what I’m hearing as a significant qualitative change. What I mean by that is to distinguish it from a quantitative change. A quantitative change is more of this or that. More imaging, spatial cues, whatever. More high frequencies. Better bass or PRAT. Better, more, less, of whatever audiophile characteristic you want to mention.
In those senses, I don’t find the D4 to be revolutionary, more evolutionary from the D3. There IS better instrument separation, to a degree, but just a good solid step forward. Pretty much the same tone. Dave had been suggesting it would be ruthless, and I was worried about it being brighter than the D3. I have notice no such thing in my system.
But there’s something completely new that I am hearing – the “qualitative” change. I have never heard this kind of realism before in my system, and I really can’t remember having heard it in any other system either. It’s definitely still within the realm of what cable changes can provide, so keep that in mind. It’s not going to fundamentally transform any system. However, there are “layers” gone between system and listener that truly change the listening experience itself. Like TOTALLY connecting with the musician/artist. There’s a humanity to vocals that transcends the performance. Not just additional details, but details in the right context to have exceptional PRAT and so forth.
Ok, all that sounds totally jumbled and incoherent to me as I write it and as I try to conjure words for the emotional/aesthetic experience of the change. Suffice it to say that things amped up a LOT in terms of my emotional engagement with the music. This is much more than the previous differences between D2 to DD to D3. In an engineering sense, I’m sure it’s easily explanable as a lower noise floor or something, but all I’m saying is that at this level of my system performance, taking this kind of an emotional leap of greater connection to the music was totally unexpected. I honestly thought I was further down the line of diminishing returns than that.
I have ordered two pairs. No hesitation. I sent the DD’s back after the tour visit last fall. It took me several weeks to finally give in and order two pair of those. I’m not making that mistake again. The D4’s are the real deal, and if you can afford them, and if your system is clean and high end enough, I can’t recommend them enough.
But make sure your system is up to the task. I don’t think these D4’s would have been the right ticket at all with the Tranquility SE still in the chain. I think the DD’s were just right for that DAC in my system with my speakers and their characteristics. So, the usual caveats apply, YMMV, etc…
Rock on, Dave!!!
I just wanted to provide one more update. Dave’s quick, and I received the two pair of D4’s I purchased from him in today’s mail. I hooked them right up, and without any burn-in the second pair has removed another veil and has resolved a few remaining passages of songs that were still a bit muddled with too much going on, too much reverb, and so forth blurring the resolution of what was going on. In one of my favorite albums (Cat Power – Jukebox), the second song has always mystified me a bit. The vocals and snare drum always seemed to lack the resolution, imaging, and “snap” that they should, and that other tracks on the album do have. I always thought it was some kind of dynamic limiting or compression in the mixing/mastering process. When I just listened to it again, I found out that there’s actually quite a bit of reverb going on with the vocals and snare on that track! I can hear the initial attack of the vocals/snare and the reverb/acoustic echoes of these notes/vocals now as clearly distinct and fully resolved. Great, great stuff!!!
Full, rich tone, with full resolution – total connection with the music!
My entire body had goosebumps and I had tears involuntarily flowing listening to San Jacinto on Peter Gabriel’s New Blood album… That’s certainly never happened before.
genjamon on AudioCircle
I have listened to D4 sometimes and extremely happy with its performance.
Pardon the cliché but it is really “day and night” difference compare to my existing cables like Wywire gold rca and lessloss rca.
I agree with what you said the sound is very accurate, but I wanna add it can give more details yet not sounding analytical or excessive airy.
Background is supper quiet and for the first time my McIntosh 275 tube amp can play so musical with good decays and quietness.
Also the phase and timing are spot on, and sound stage is rock solid and not wobbly, so it can handle all kinds of music very well.
Beside audiophile cd, I also listen to latest Justin Timberlake and Brianna albums which D4 is performing with flying colors.
Dire Straits’ “Money for nothing” guitar opening is very mesmerizing and realistic, full of kick and not distorted.
I think the greatest asset of D4 is it can portray the nuances of music very well which makes you draw into them naturally and continue the whole album until it finishes.
So I think D4 still got a lot of potentials and it is other weakest links in my playback system needs further to improve. It gives me the feeling that I don’t need to chase another ‘superstar’ cable anymore, this is the strongest endorsement that I felt.
PC from Malaysia
D3 ICs and SL14 SCs
Time for a review…..
I’ve spent a really enjoyable week listening to Dave’s speaker cables and his D3 interconnects. They were used primarily with a 4 watt Decware SEP amp playing CD’s running through a Schiit DAC with Omega Super 3xrs single driver speakers.
I think the strengths of my system are transparency, tone, microdynamics and imaging and the weaknesses are the obvious rolling off of the frequency extremes that single drivers produce and ultimate loudness/macrodynamics.
The cables that were substituted were Decware IC’s and Clearday Shotguns and my methodology consisted of quick A/B tests as well as sustained listening with the two different cables.
I first started with the speaker cables. The improvements I heard were pretty obvious and quick to discern. Right off the bat, I realized that Dave’s cables took an ever so slight hardness and glare out of vocals that the Cleardays were presenting. It’s something I’d not noticed before, but in Audio, it happens all the time, you often don’t realize a shortcoming until it’s addressed in a system change. The nice thing about this change was that even though Dave’s cables took out that edge, I didn’t lose any sense of air or open-ness. Sometimes that’s a tradeoff that has to be made and in this instance it wasn’t.
Maybe the biggest surprise for me with the speaker cables was the bass. I have to say, there were more than a few times where I smiled and thought…”I never knew my Omegas could deliver those low frequencies as nice as they are right now” Not too tight, and not too loose, but rather the bass was able to breathe in a new way. It was a shortcoming in my system before where I knew there were times when I thought the bass was just a little too tight or congested; it wasn’t rolling out into the room like I suspected it should and I knew there was room for improvement.
Another factor which really caught my ear was the way my system responded to micro changes in frequency. All of the sudden the variations in tone in a vibrato were more distinct or in a particular passage where a drummer was hitting a cymbal I could hear that every strike wasn’t identical and there were distinct variations in tone as the drumstick was consistently alternating it’s stike on two different spots on the cymbal resulting in tiny differences in sound. It was startling to me to hear this and I did multiple A/B’s with my Cleardays to confirm that I really was hearing this new level of micro detail. My last example would be sounds way back in the soundstage. Sure I could hear them before, but now all of the sudden, there was some dimensionality to these notes where previously although they were just as noticeable, they were flat in image and presentation.
After I was comfortable with the sound of Dave’s speaker cables I then began switching out my Decware IC’s for Dave’s D3 interconnects. These changes were not so easy for me to describe. Unlike the speaker cables where I instantly heard improvements, I found it very difficult to quantify the changes between the IC’s. Where the speaker cables took out a slight glare, the IC’s tended to just present the upper midrange in a warmer tone. With the Decware IC’s I felt like there was a little more airiness to the upper midrange whereas Dave’s IC’s had more of a softer glow. Neither was preferable, both were nice.
That said, for some reason, I always felt like I was on some level enjoying Dave’s cables more than my own IC’s. For about 12 hours of hardcore IC listening over many days, I tried to convince myself that I was imagining this, but I couldn’t. Time after time, I’d hear something and think…”oh, Dave’s cable is nailing this passage” and I’d substitute the Decware’s back in but I couldn’t confirm what it was that made Dave’s cables make me stop and compare . However, during the eval period I never had the Decware’s in the system and felt like stopping and comparing like I so often was with Dave’s D3s in the chain.
I actually PM’d Dave about it and my theory was that his cables might have essentially been doing everything just a little bit better making it (except for the upper midrange presentation discussed previously) difficult to pinpoint to one thing and nail down specific differences. I wish I could describe in detail why I responded so positively to the IC’s and although in the end I couldn’t quantify it, I really felt there was something intangible going on that I was reacting to and just didn’t have the time to really nail it down. Believe me, I didn’t want to like those IC’s. The last thing any of us wants is to hear something sound better and influence us to spend more money! My last thought is perhaps it was harder to discern the differences in IC’s simply because the Decware’s had a competitive advantage being designed by the maker of the amp specifically for his products.
So I just wanted to say thanks to Dave, as I said, I enjoyed the demo quite a bit and will be contacting him about placing an order.
Seikosha on AudioCircle
First a thank you to Dave for providing me with a set of his 20gauge speaker cables. It has been a true pleasure doing business with you. Dave wrote to me that these would need around 200 hours of use before I can fully hear how they sound. Of course since I got them Friday, i am no way near getting so many hours on them, but Dave also wrote that after 15-20 hours I will get a good impression about how they sound. BTW, the box you shipped them in was properly secure.
Going from sort of heavy duty TaraLabs helix prism 6 to these cables it is a kind of unfair comparison, but never the less a comparison that show how important cables are. An other thing is that the wife left really early on a trip to London to give a lecture there so I was able to optimize speaker and component placement, which also makes a difference in sound. I have been playing a hell of a lot of music during the weekend.
Anyway, these light weight, easy to deal with cables makes a really big difference in my system, more than I thought was possible. Listening to Roger Waters Amused to death every little detail is clearly present, so many things happening in the background on that album. Switching to another favorite, Morphine with Yes and there is big difference in the lower bass end, actually killed my growing need to purchase a subwoofer, at least for a little while. Soundstage is improved and instruments sounds more natural. It seems as the amp and speakers have the right tools to the job they are hired to do, if you know what I mean.
Thanks again Dave for all help with the cotton “stockings” which I found to be both a nice way to have cables visible, and as an extra protection, and for being a nice guy with my special needs. I guess I will email you over the summer and order a pair of ICs..
Jorgen on AudioCircle
D3 ICs and 14g SCs
I want to thank Dave for the opportunity to be on his cable tour and his patience. I took a little too long.
My system consists of the Job 225 amp, IFI Itube used a pre, Zellaton Emotion speakers, and Sony HapZ1ES for the music server. About a couple of months ago,my system really gelled the best I ever have had it. Big soundstage, holographici maging, and very natural and lots of emotion. I thought never ever change it again.
Then I get a PM from Dave about his cable tour. Gee,I forgot I had signed up. Since I am most interested in IC’s and not speaker cables I hooked the D3’s up. The first night I got thin soind, so I figured to just let them burn in overnight.
Second night was thin sounding so now I knew I was in trouble. If the IC’s was thin, I only imagined the speaker cables was just more of the same. On the third night I decided to change the D3’s around and reverse the flow. Ahh, the thinness disappeared. I was getting razor sharp detail, razor sharp focus, razor sharp imaging.
to be continued……….
One thing I have never liked is too many sharp razors coming at me, I lose the emotion and the magic of the sound when it happens. The sound crosses into tha dark side, or maybe I should say the opposite of the dark side. I put my cable back in and the magic came back. My cable that I was using between the Sony and the Itube was a pair of the Rethm silver IC’s that sell for $1400.
Work had me tied up quite a bit, but I finally had time to hook D3’s and the speaker cables in. My speaker cables are also silver, costing $800. Whoa, what happened? All the magic plus detail and focus came to life. The naturalness of my system was better than ever, yet I was hearing more information. Some of my hard soundingCD’s now sounded smother than ever. Hall ambiance was greater, soundstage was bigger, vocals more alive.
One CD I listen to quite a bit is Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories. I was listening to the Game of Love and I noticed a quivering in the electronic vocal I had never heard before. Wow! Pharell Williams can sound a little irritating on his high pitched vocals, but no more. Adele sounded smoother than ever. My French radio station ABC Lounge Radio, sounded bigger and more organic than ever.
I thoroughly enjoyed this set-up, I had thought my system could not sound any better. Just to make sure the speaker wires made that big a difference, I first took Dave’s speaker cables out and sure enough, the magic had disappeared. I then replaced the D3’s and the magic appeared again but the detail was knocked down at the same time. I played Daft Punks The Game of Love, and the quivering electronic vocals all but disappeared. Synergy between Dave’s cables for me is perfect. If you have a high resolotion audio system, you need to try these out.
Now here I sit looking at my excess audio gear, trying to figure out what to sell first. I can see the only way for me to go is to buy the D3’s and the speaker cables at the same time. I want some.
Ozark Tom on AudioCircle
PL11 Power Cable
Dave’s Cables 11 ga. Power Cord, w/ Neotech Gold/UPOCC connectors (older version)
Dave was kind enough to let me listen to his 11 ga PC described above.
(Transport) April Music Stello CDT 100 (DAC) Teac UD-501 (Preamp) BAT VK-3i
(Power Amp) Llano Trinity 200 (Hybrid) (Speakers) Gamut Phi 7
(Cables)(Speaker) Morrow Audio; (Analog-RCA) Dave’s Cables DD w/Duelund 2.0
(Analog-XLR) Shunyata Aries (Digital RCA) Darwin Silver Digital
(Power Cords) Triode Wire Labs 7+; Lessloss DFPC Original;
Lessloss DFPC Originals were used on all components. The Triode Wire Labs 7+ was used on the power conditioner. In lieu of the Lessloss, Dave’s 11ga PC was used on the DAC (I haven’t tried it anywhere else yet).
Dave’s PC sounds similar to his speaker cables. There was a “liveness” to the sound throughout the spectrum, particularly the upper registers, that added an extra dose of realism. Bass was nicely prominent and lines were clear and easily followed. The acoustic venue was easily discernable. Images seemed a bit taller and staging a little wider and deeper. Great speed, dynamics and transparency. And it was smooth to boot. When I swapped other PCs back in, I felt I was missing something. I don’t like missing anything; so I purchased this 11 ga PC.
Maxima95 on AudioCircle
I’m no professional reviewer, but here it is!
“If you’d have told me a few weeks ago that I’d be writing a review for Dave’s Cables I’d have said ‘who’s cables?’. So here’s the story: I was thinking about building a couple of diy power cords, and a search for Neotech wire led me to Dave’s website. I am very happy with my ICs, but was really curious about Dave’s custom Neotech silver-gold alloy wire ICs, as silver-gold alloy is used in my Siltech G6 Forbes Lake cables. I’ve had the Siltechs for six years. In my system they bettered Shunyata Auroras, JENA Labs Pathfinders and Stealth Indras. All of these cost multiples of Dave’s D4 cables. There must be something special about silver-gold alloy with proper twisted construction and termination because I’ve heard it many times when comparing cables. The D4s use UPOCC wire, an advance (AFAIK) over even Siltech’s G6 metallurgy, so I decided to give the D4s a try. But, as I wrote, I am very happy with my Siltechs. I received the D4s last week and have done, for me, a very thorough comparison. Suffice to say that I am selling the Siltechs, something I never thought I’d do. Both cables impart an uncanny, lifelike quality to instruments and voice that I describe as ‘organic’. It’s neither a hifi nor a forgiving quality, just satisfyingly realistic. Where the D4s better the Siltechs is in image focus and density/depth. I think this is what some reviewers call a sense of ‘space’. The D4s also render bass (acoustic, electric, bass drums, etc) with greater clarity. And these differences are not subtle. Somebody’s going to get a world class pair of used Siltech ICs, and that’s a good thing. Just so happens that my new D4s are better. Thanks, Dave!”
JB from USA