ANTICABLES named Product of the Year by Audiophilia!

audiophilia-product-year-smallWe are proud to announce that Audiophilia.com named our new Level 5 Signature Speaker wires as Product of the Year!

The Audiophilia writers listed their choices, including many as “runner up”, “special mention” and “honorable mention”, but if you scroll to the bottom of their Product of the Year lineup, you will see that Martin Appel chose our Level 5 Signature Speaker wires as the Product of the Year.

level-5-signature-awardsThe Level 5 Signature Speaker Wires were originally reviewed by Mr. Appel last September. You can read the entire review HERE, or if you want a quick read of the highlights, here are some snippets from that review:

 

“Along with killer imaging it was apparent that detail, resolution and transparency were off the charts and placed these 5 Signatures in rarified air. Instruments were so well defined — at times it was startling. It was as if each instrument had its own envelope of air surrounding it.”
-Martin Appel, Audiophilia

“I must report, to these ears, the 5 Signatures got the musical timbres of instruments as correctly as I’ve ever heard. I think the combination of characteristics also contribute the fact that the leading edge of notes or transient attack is accomplished without sounding edgy or hard and still produces a full, three dimensional image that is smooth and texturally complete. This is so difficult to achieve that one usually suffers at the expense of the other.”
-Martin Appel, Audiophilia

ANTICABLES would like to thank both Mr. Appel and Editor Anthony Kershaw for their efforts and the recognition we have received from their fine publication.

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Paul Speltz
Founder & President, ANTICABLES

 

Shop Level 5 Signature Speaker Wires

Announcing NEW Level 2.1 & Level 3.1 Speaker Wires and Jumpers

ANTICABLES would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy new year, and with the new year comes a new version our longest loved product line:

Level 2 and Level 3 Speaker Wires and Jumpers have been improved and are now called Level 2.1 and Level 3.1 Speaker Wires and Jumpers.

To help you celebrate the new year, through the month of January you can buy the new speaker wire and jumpers before the price increases on February 1.

Here is how the improvement came about.

Material Scientist Dr. Douglas StaufferAfter observing some batch-to-batch sonic inconsistencies with our #12 gauge wire, and accumulating reels of wire I was not willing to use in product, I launched a research project to find the assignable cause of the inconsistency.  Material Scientist Dr. Douglas Stauffer and I worked together for 6 months and successfully determined the variable causing the batch-to-batch sonic inconsistencies.  Dr. Stauffer called the variable “Dislocation Density”.

In material science, “dislocation” is a crystallographic defect, or irregularity, within a crystal structure. So “dislocation density” is simply the measure of the number of dislocations in a unit volume of the crystalline material.  Now knowing the variable, I could not-only control the variable, but it enabled us to push that variable as far as possible in the direction needed for even better sound. The goal in our case was to reduce the dislocation density as much as possible.

Dr. Stauffer helped me work with the US facility that draws our high purity oxygen-free copper wire to our specifications, to change the wire drawing process to achieve the lowest dislocation density possible. The new process was achieved and the sonic outcome was well beyond what was expected. This new #12 gauge Reduced Dislocation Density (RDD) wire is so good sounding that a new pair of Level 2.1 Speaker Wires sounds better than a fully run-in pair of the previous Level 3 Speaker Wires. Yes, Level 2.1 actually leapfrogged the more expensive Level 3 in these ways: a sense of increased volume, midrange sounds more real, less grain noise, the highs are much smoother (like driving on a newly blacktopped road), more bass and better bass articulation, more exciting and involving.

Even though the new RDD™ wire will cause an upcoming price increase, since the new better sounding Level 2.1 will still cost significantly less that the old Level 3 Speaker Wires, this is yet another example of how ANTICABLES continually strives to offer better sounding products at lower prices. 

With two of the new RDD wires (Level 2.1) out performing four of the old wires (Level 3), the next question is what would four of the new RDD wires bring to the table? Doubling-up the new wire still proved quite beneficial, and will be available as Level 3.1, which when compared to the new Level 2.1 provides: an even greater sense of increased volume, livelier, more harmonic structure through the midrange, an increased clarity of downward dynamics (hear deeper into the recording), instruments sounding more presence in space, and additional bass weight, body and definition.

If you recently purchased a pair of our speaker wires, I have extraordinary news for you. The above research project ran from January to July of last year and we have been making and shipping all speaker wires orders since Aug 1st with the new Reduced Dislocation Density (RDD) wire.  So, if you placed your order as far back as Aug 1st, you already got the sweetheart deal of getting the new RDD wire at the old price.

If you are unsure if you bought your speaker wires before or after Aug 1st, just look at the wires as they come up to the speakers. If there is a piece of red shrink tubing where the wires do a “Y” split, then you have the new RDD wire, and your Level 2 is actually Level 2.1, or your Level 3 is actually Level 3.1.  Enjoy!

If you are considering a new set of speaker wires and/or jumpers, order at anticables.com now through January 31 before the price increases.

Level 2.1 Jumpers 
Current Price: $30/four  // New Price (Feb 1): $35/four

Level 3.1 Jumpers 

Current Price: $90/four  //  New Price (Feb 1): $95/four

Level 2.1 Speaker Wires

Current Price: $6/ft per speaker  // New Price (Feb 1): $8/ft per speaker

Level 3.1 Speaker Wires 

Current Price: $12/ft per speaker  //  New Price (Feb 1): $15/ft per speaker

I would like to publicly thank Dr. Stauffer for his invaluable assistance, Chuck Bottemiller for his help with sonic testing and comparing, and the US wire drawing facility that accommodating our process change.

Paul Speltz
Founder & President, ANTICABLES

ANTICABLES Lab: A History of Improvements

db3ad6a5-a553-4f11-853d-ad5ce5f2f7d4ANTICABLES  Speaker Wires were first introduced in 2003 and were immediately recognized for their sonic merit and value.  They formed a cult-like underground following, and quickly earned seven consecutive “Editors’ Choice” and “Top Products” awards in a row from The Absolute Sound.

Through the years, we constantly look for ways to push for improved audio performance for all our product offerings. Most of the time the improvement comes without a price increase and often times comes without even being announced. We’ve included a historical account of how our speaker wires have evolved.

Looks are Deceiving

Even though our red coated speaker wires still look a lot like they did over a dozen years ago, they are actually quite different and have notable better sonic performance. If you bought your ANTICABLES Speaker Wires years ago, now might be a great time to upgrade to a new pair! The cost of a new pair might yet again be one of the best investments you could make to your audio system.

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Speaker Wires Evolution

2006

  • Reduced red coating thickness from 0.002″ down to 0.001″
  • Even lower dielectric effect distortion
  • Shorter break-in time

Fall 2007

  • Created our own better sounding solid copper spade
  • Greater clarity
  • Fits both 1/4″ and 5/16″ binding posts

March 2010

  • Started testing, managing, and marking the best sounding wire flow direction
  • Proper directionality provides greater resolution and dynamics
  • Increased pitch definition, more presence, and less smeared highs

Nov 2011

  • Started factory twisting the wire pairs together
  • Keeps inductance low for greater ambient information and tighter bass
  • Nicer looking and easier to manage
  • Started using even higher purity copper (down to only 5 parts per million impurities)
  • Smoother and more extended highs and greater harmonic textures through the midrange
  • These two changes marked the point in which they were now called the Level 2 Speaker Wires
  • The price was increased by $1 per foot per speaker, and the “original” version was discontinued.

Feb 2012

  • Went from a generic gold plated brass banana plug to our own gold plated 90% copper alloy BFA style banana plug
  • Brass is simply not a good sounding metal (the sound gets “hard” when the music gets complicated)
  • Sound is now about half way between the old bananas and our best sounding solid copper spades

 Aug 2012

  • Developed an even better sounding banana plug that is made out of a gold plated 99% Copper alloy called Beryllium Copper
  • The sound is now only one small tick away from our 100% solid copper spades.

Nov 2012

  • Introduced the Level 3 series, which is simply a doubled-up build of the Level 2 series
  • Provides additional bass weight and authority
  • Greater musical dynamic impact that makes the music sound more alive
  • Greater harmonic structure through the midrange

Feb 2013

  • Increased the copper purity of our solid copper spades
  • Slightly better resolution

Jan 2014

  • Changed the wire drawing process to a new facility (still in the USA)
  • Improved bass and a smoother top end

Aug 2016

Many thanks from ANTICABLES

ANTICABLES would like to give immense thanks to our customers, for their continued loyalty.

Judy and I would also like to give an extended thanks to our ANTICABLES team who deliver outstanding service and quality products:

  • Thaine, who hand builds all of our analog and digital interconnects.
  • Mike hand-assembles all our power cords, and who recently has also taken on many of our office coordinator tasks.
  • Scott, helps with shipping and building power cords.
  • Ryan, our newest employee (since August) hand assembles all of our jumpers and speaker wires.
  • Thomas, steps in to help with special projects including working at and preparing for trade shows.
  • Lauren & Dan, who help with marketing, including these monthly newsletters.
  • Chuck & Doug , who help with new product development and continued quality control.
  • Dave at Cryo-Parts who cryo treats all our terminations and top-level products.

 


Paul Speltz, Founder & President; ANTICABLES
Judy, Thomas, Mike, Thaine, Ryan, Scott, Chuck, Doug, Dave, Dan & Lauren

Report: New York Audio Show

Image Credit: Audiophilia

Image Credit: Audiophilia

Images courtsey of Karl Sigman of Audiophilia.com

I was humbled when invited to join with Alta Audio and Krell Audio to share a demo room a the New York Audio Show earlier this month.

Micheal Levy of Alta Audio debuted his new $27,000/pr Hestia Titanium loudspeakers. Michael is a highly skilled speaker designer – I have to say, the Alta Audio Hestia Titanium speakers are some of the best sounding speakers I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing. They continually sounded more like real instruments and less like speakers, than any other speakers I have ever heard.

It was a treat to team up with Krell Audio as well. Krell is now back in the hands of co-founder Rondi D’Agostino, who I am sure will direct the company with a “love of music” perspective. Also from Krell was Dave Goodman, who is their chief designer and has been with the company for decades.

Reviewer Karl Sigman of Audiophilia.com declared our room as his “favorite sounding room” of the entire NY Audio Show. Karl stated, “the sound-stage was huge and focused (nothing amorphous) with pinpoint accuracy of imaging, voices had the singer way up high smack in the center and there was amazing bass and detailed tonal accuracy”.  You can read Karl’s entire show report here.

Adding up the total equipment cost in our demo room well exceeded six figures, which is a first for ANTICABLES at an audio show.  We are proud that our products are recognized to be good enough to be a part of such an elite team.
The room consisted of:

Listening to other rooms at the show, I cold tell our full loom of ANTICABLES wires had a significant contribution to the success of our great sound.

I look forward to teaming up with both Krell and Alta Audio at future audio shows!

Paul Speltz (President & Founder, ANTICABLES)

Audiophilia Review: The New York Audio Show 2016

Image Credit: Audiophilia

Image Credit: Audiophilia

We had a great time at the New York Audio Show last weekend! Looks like Audiophilia enjoyed the trip, too — a great show review by Karl Sigman. Check out ANTICABLES featured about halfway down the page, Room 904 with Alta Audio and Krell Audio.

2016 RMAF Show Review by Enjoy the Music

dsc2949Some great press has been coming in from Rocky Mountain Audio Fest!  Here is a show review from enjoythemusic.com.

 

Why Power Cords Matter (Part 2 of 2)

By Paul Speltz

In last month’s newsletter, I presented my theory as to “why power cords matter” to the music. Here I will take that thought one step further and discuss Power Conditioners.

Many power cords make lateral changes, making the music sound “different”. You may have experienced this yourself at some time. Aspects of the component’s sound makes slight changes, some for the better, some for the worst. With those power cords, I believe much of the outcome has to do with how lucky you are with creating synergy between that particular component and that particular power cord.

Using our “first five feet” design model (as discussed HERE), I theorize that a properly designed power cord has the opportunity to help get the noise generated in the component’s own power supply out of the component (so it does not get into the music). Part of why I believe this theory holds true, is because early on, we found that with our power cord design, it sounds better when plugged directly into the mains AC wall socket. It seemed as though when plugging our power code into a power conditioner, it’s capabilities are notable reduced. How could this be the case?

My thought is, power conditioners that are filtering noise on the AC mains by adding series impedance in the noise frequency spectrum, goes both ways.  In other words, if the power conditioner adds an electrical “softness” in the path between the AC mains and the component, that means that same electrical softness is there on the same path from the component back to the AC mains. The theory is, that electrical softness is reducing our power cord’s ability to dump away the noise generated in the component’s own power supply.

The other common side effect of this electrical softness is a reduction of dynamics. For me, musical dynamics is a big part of the difference between live music and playback of recorded music, so I want all the dynamics I can get.

Like Don reported in his findings (as shown HERE), all but two customers have ever reported getting sonic benefit with their power conditioner when using our ANTICABLES Power Cords.  In working with those two exceptions, it comes to find out, in both cases their power conditioners were actually power regenerators.  This makes total sense because power regenerators are not going to have that electrical softness that a passive power conditioner has.

The Pros

If you have on your system’s “wish-list” to add a power conditioner to get better sound, you can re-budget those funds towards getting properly designed power cords. Or, if you already have an expensive power conditioner and find with our power cords you get better sound without it, you can sell it off to help pay for the new power cords.

The Caveat

Power conditioners are multi functional. Each power conditioner design can do any single or different combination of these functions: passive noise filtering, spike protection, over voltage shutdown, voltage and current meters, power up sequencing, over current fuses, power regeneration, transformer isolation, balanced power, etc.

power-regeneratorIf your purpose for your existing power conditioner is only to improve the sound, and if you find that with our ANTICABLES Power Cords you get better sound without it, it will be easy to abandon it. If your power conditioner’s purpose is to try to protect your equipment from power surges, yet you find that with our ANTICABLES Power Cords you get better sound with it, you will have to decide between improved safety or improved sound.

From the experience our customers have brought to me, if you want the protection of a power conditioner without the sonic compromise, try our power cords with a power regenerator.  And yes, our customers have also reported getting even better sound when running their power regenerator with our Level 3 Power Cord.

The Sales Pitch

We invite you to discover why our Level 3 Power Cord have become our top selling product, by trying one in your system. Like all of our products, it comes with our 30 Day Trial Period, our 60 Day Upgrade Option, our Buy Back program, and our 5 Year Warranty.

We think you will really enjoy them.

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It’s All About the Music: Mikaela Davis

by Thomas Speltz

mikaela2Last week I went to a concert at The Dakota Jazz Club  in Minneapolis. When I took my seat at the venue I saw that there was a big beautiful harp on stage. Excitement and anticipation bubbled up inside me as I was not expecting to see a harp. In fact, I had never even heard harp in any of the music by the artist I was about to listen to. Because I spend most of my time seeing theatre, opera, and orchestra it didn’t occur to me that there would most likely be an opening act. Sure enough, Mikaela Davis entered the stage, sat down at her harp, and took my breath away.

When she began to play her first song, My Light Is Always On, I immediately thought of the well known singer, songwriter, and harpist Joanna Newsom, but as soon as Davis started to sing I could tell that she undoubtedly had unique voice of her own. It was amazing to me how she was able to make the harp sound different throughout the piece. At times I heard a harp but other times I heard a mandolin, a guitar, a sitar, a dulcimer. “I think a harp can do anything,” Davis declares, and I’m inclined to believe her.
mikaela3After her 30 minute set I was eager to hear her recorded work. On listening to the two albums I purchased from the merchandise table I discovered that Davis is not a solo performer. In both albums, her and her harp are accompanied by a small rock ensemble. At first I was disappointed that the songs were a total change of pace from what I had listened to at The Dakota. The music was missing that intimacy I loved in a voice and harp. But as I continued to listen I found myself recognizing what loved about her live performance in the mix of the larger ensemble.
In exploring more of her music on iTunes, SoundCloud, and YouTube I was able to get a better picture of what Mikaela Davis is all about. Her compositions and arrangements cleverly combine elements of folkpsychedelic rock, and chamber pop and her voice reveals a wisdom and ruefulness that belie her years. She employee the harp as a pulse, a rhythm, or a texture that seamlessly integrates into the rock-band context. I hope, as I continue to follow her work, that she maintains her ambitious stride in being a singer, songwriter, and harpist.

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Just Released: Level 5 Signature Series Speaker Wires

starcomponent-newWe are proud to announce that our newly released Level 5 Signature Speaker Wires have already won Audiophilia’s Star Component Award, and we invite you to stop in and hear why, in room 1104 at Rocky Mountain Audio Fest this weekend (October 7-9).

Martin Appel of Audiophilia.com stated their “detail, resolution and transparency were off the charts”, and that they have a “life-like realism that was truly astonishing“.

We accomplished this by rolling our excellent ACElectrum™ Silver/Gold alloy metallurgy, proven in our upper level interconnects, into a much larger gauge wire to handle the current demands of speakers.

The outcome was so sonically successful, Martin Appel said they “got the musical timbres of instruments as correctly as I’ve ever heard“.

5speakerwires-awardThese new Level 5 Signature Speaker Wires are so good at resolution and dynamics that he went on to say, “This recording has massive dynamic swings from the quietest passages to full orchestral/choral crescendos and the 5 Signatures handled the performance without congestion, blurring or smearing.  In other words, you get all the music, all the time“.

Mr Appel boldly closes his review by flat out stating, “If problems occur with the sound, it’s coming from other pieces in your audio chain, not these speaker wires.

You can read the entire review HERE.

…and you can hear them in room 1104 at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest October 7th – 9th.

We are also sharing a lobby booth with Spatial Audio and Red Dragon Audio,  so be sure to stop in to say hello.

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