High End Cable review, my 2 cents.

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by fuzzyguitars, Jun 29, 2006.


  1. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    Hey folks.

    I am going to post my thoughts on a bunch of high end cable that i just got and spent the last few hours testing.

    I realize there is another thread going about the same thing but it kinda got sidetracked and is too damn long anyways.

    Ill bring something new to the table and share my thoughts on some speaker cable too!

    First off I want to thank Mark at Lavacable for such fast service and his thoughts and opinions of the cable. He was pretty much spot on!

    For those of you who havent tried the silent neutrik instrument jacks, I highly recommend em. They work great!

    As if discerning the difference between cables wasnt enough of a task, when you start switching speaker cables, it opens up a whole new can of worms!

    On to my review.

    Setup.

    Thorn with limba body koa top with wagner goodwoods.

    cord straight into amp. In this case Peavey JSX.

    Speaker cable

    cabinet ( THD 2x12) Loaded with vintage 30 and classic 80.

    Cable tested.
    Cardas Golden Chord (cdh)
    Vandenhul Integration Hybrid Guitar cable (vdh)
    EA melody
    EA Lyric HG
    Canare g6 with neutriks.

    These cables were first tested with my trusty 12 guage horizons 2 ft speaker cable.

    I should preface the review in that I prefer high gain tones. But also enjoy super clean and slight breakup tones as well.

    (cdh) supple cord, well made. Lots of handling noise. I agree that it can get a little microphonic at loud high gain volumes. Cleans are gorgeous with great blend of clarity and sweetness. Not a very loud sounding cable compared to the others. Very sweet but clear top end with a singing sustain quality. Sounds really good with high gain too on both the bridge and neck with excellent clarity. Lots of harmonic bloom. slighly muted string attack.

    (vdh) a little stiff, but not as stiff as the EA Lyric HG. Zero handling noise. Another very even sounding cable. I agree with some of the other posters that it has a smooth top end. I guess the high end feels softer. All the frequencies are well represented. Good string definition. Fantastic harmonic bloom. Makes notes sustain forever. It has got some weird kind of mojo going on. I would disagree with some who say that it is bass shy. I think the bass is very tight and defined and if you have a cab or speakers that can represent then you would not feel bass shy.

    EA Melody- probably as stiff as the vdh. also zero handling noise. Surprisingly good. Has a more in your face top end. Not brash, but much more noticeable than the previous cables. This translates into quick and responsive pick attack and fantastic note definition. Not as much sustain and harmonic bloom as the cdh and vdh. Just as good with clean as with the high gain.

    EA Lyric HG- Stiff cable. Stiffer than the vdh. Zero handling noise. No microphonics. Sounds best with (you guessed it ) HIGH GAIN! Similiar to the melody with a more refined but very present top end than the melody. It has more bloom and harmonic overtones than the melody as well. Just a tad louder too.

    Canare- A little muted compared to the others. Top end definitly a little more brash and harsh compared to the other cables. Notes not as well definined. Don't get me wrong, still a very good sounding cable. Just in comparison to the other cables, there is a difference!

    George L.- I prefer canare to gl's! I would have to agree with others that this cable sounds a little honky in the mids with a slighltly grating top end.

    Two cables stood out from the others. The VDH and the Lyric HG.

    There is something very special about the vdh. I swear to g-d that my guitar actually sustained better with this cable! I can only liken it to when you are playing semi dirty but with enough volume to get your strings singing and sustaing like you were playing with more gain that you actually are! You can think of it as the two rock, fuchs, d--mble type of feel and overtones of the cable world!

    Lyric HG- Wow. The cable has a totally different vibe than the VDH. It has a much faster and immediate feel to it. Doesnt take off and sustain like the VDH. But still is very good. The difference is like playing through FREDS instead of standard diodes or like really spanking a hiwatt compared to a juiced marshall. String definition and transients are awesome.

    Which cable do I like better?

    It may sound strange, but if i were to record a solo for a track with long sustaining notes i would choose the vdh.

    For rocking high gain crunch with complex rhythems i would choose the Lyric.


    On to the cardas crosslink. I compared this to pro co fat max. Horizon 12 guage. Monster cable 12 guage wire.

    I should preface this by saying that I have been using the monster 12 guage wire for years as well as the proco fat max (8 awg!) These cables really translate the bass!

    The Cardas has a slighltly scooped sound with accentuated bass and highs compared to the other speaker cables. Loudness was comparable. Note separation and clarity were greatly improved. A little bit of "air" was introduced. I guess it sounded a little less "pushed" probably becuase of the more balanced mids.

    The funny thing was to my ears, the combo of the EA melody and the Cardas speaker wire sounded exactly like the Lyric HG and my other speaker cables!

    That being said, I even prefered the Melody over the HG when using the cardas speaker cable!

    Remember when I said that the VDH had that special mojo? Well, I could not believe that the mojo factor was magnified with the Cardas crosslink. It seemed like I could get any note that I grabbed to sustain at will with fabulous harmonic bloom! It changed my playing style to play more slowly just so that i could listen to the notes sustain into feedback! Unreal!

    The flip side is that I thought the Lyric HG lost out with the cardas. the highs seemed a little to harsh compared when using the horizon or fatmax speaker cable.

    Final thoughts.

    Well, this was a pretty limited test with one guitar and one amp. I have yet to try this with some of my other setups.

    Les Paul
    Strat.
    Suhr.
    71 marshalll super
    matchless hc 30
    vintage blackface.
    triple rectumfrier!

    I guess I will comparing cables for a while.

    VDH is a keeper!
    Cardas Crosslink is a keeper!
    Cardas Golden Chord. A little noisy.
    EA Melody- Fantastic combined with Cardas Crosslink.
    EA Lyric - A little harsh combined with Crosslink. Great when used with my other speaker cable.

    just my 2 cents:RoCkIn :RoCkIn :RoCkIn :RoCkIn
     
  2. PlexiBreath

    PlexiBreath Member

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    I was thinking you were going to declare the EA Lyric your favorite, going by your discription, it's what I would prefer. I'm dissapointed the Cardas Golden Chord is noisy, I just orders 3 of those and I don't like handling noise.

    The only real good cable I have is the Fender high-end by Carver, I love it, it's very muscular in it's tone and broad in it's frequency representation but has a very bold lower mid punch and pretty highs, not muted in any way.

    I'm looking forward to the package from Lavaman, I've ordered in ten foot lengths the VHD and Cardas, he's a great guy to do business with.
     
  3. LavaMan

    LavaMan Gold Supporting Member

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    You shoud hear the the vdH with vdH speaker cable they sent a free sample (1 meter) of....WOW....I am working with vdH to sell their speaker cable to me...
     
  4. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    The golden chord does have handling noise

    but i play pretty loud with lots of distortion.

    i also have one of those carver fender cables. sounds just as you described. however the build quality left lots to be desired. mine were not rugged and fell apart after a few months of gigging. the center tip to the jack came out! this happened to both of my fender/carver cables!

    As for the EA lyric, I like it a lot, especially with with my cheaper speaker cable! I have to reserve final judgement until I run about ten hours of signal through all the new cables. THe EA pamphlet says that the cables need to break in before they sound their best!

    :angel

     
  5. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    I really didnt think that it would make such a difference. But when you got a bunch of the different cables to compare to. The findings are actually quite shocking!

    Any chance you can score some of the VDH speaker cable for me!?:drool
     
  6. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Sorry to hear - I LOVE the Cardas' tone, but the handling noise is right on the line of being unacceptable. You hear it whether played clean or overdriven. I was expecting the Cardas to sound great on clean tones, and was happily surprised how fat and smooth it sounds with high gain. Damn that handling noise!
     
  7. jamison162

    jamison162 Member

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    No Sommer in the mix?
     
  8. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    I wanted to try the sommers but i was scared off by ?landruf? review of the cable!:messedup
     
  9. landru64

    landru64 Member

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    i sort of retracted it... but then again, it's not in the same league as the vdh and similar. but as i always say, you gotta try this stuff for yourself.... every rig is different and every player is different and basically these are tone controls to most people....
     
  10. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    that is true.

    But I had read about some other stuff you had posted in the past and thought that you had a pretty good ear. So based on that, i passed on trying out the sommers!:jo
     
  11. landru64

    landru64 Member

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    i would only use someone else's opinion as a guide, anyway. the context is that i've been using my (and tara and evidence) for so long now that the sommer comes off as 'in the ballpark' of canare and mogami, which are inoffensive (good) but kind of flat and veiled. i listened again to my sommer cable (which predates lava--my friend got a bunch and made the cables). i wanted to make sure the connections weren't bad which they aren't. and indeed it's a fine cable. like a good cheap wine. but it's not a $50 merlot, either.
     
  12. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    any chance i can get some unobtainium from you?

    :BEER :RoCkIn :BEER
     
  13. PlexiBreath

    PlexiBreath Member

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    But it's not obtainable. :eek:
     
  14. fuzzyguitars

    fuzzyguitars Supporting Member

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    what makes man so special is that he always dreams the impossible dream!:AOK
     
  15. landru64

    landru64 Member

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    yes, the name was intentional :)

    i have to figure out a secret code word for those who want to buy.
    maybe that and a special drop box in the woods.
     

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