Strictly for fans of Audio Note UK..

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Richard Austen, Mar 19, 2015.

  1. Joe Spivey

    Joe Spivey Your friendly neighborhood Spivey-Man

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Definitely, I'll just sit back and enjoy at this point. Also I'd like to say thanks to everyone on this thread for sharing their experience and knowledge with AN gear. :tiphat:

    I'll set my sights on adding AN interconnects next. Perhaps first with the analog source which will be two separate cables. One from TT to phono stage and another from stage to amp. Then one more from DAC to amp for the digital side.
     
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  2. NielsSS

    NielsSS Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Denmark
    Nice setup Joe.
     
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  3. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland
    Hello,

    Do anyone have experience with ISIS Main cables?

    I have two ISIS Main cables, and the contribution of one on the OTO is indisputable, however, the one on the Dac2.1x Sig. has a questionable effect (for me, listening lacks life).

    What are your experiences?
     
  4. J.Uotila

    J.Uotila Forum Resident

    Location:
    Espoo, Finland

    Are both power cables factory terminated?

    I have only positive experiences with the Isis power cables.
     
  5. slcaudiophile

    slcaudiophile Forum Resident

    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    are the both completely broken in?
     
  6. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland
    Yes both Factory terminated and broken.
    One 1m and other 0,6m, same effect on the Dac.
     
  7. Salectric

    Salectric Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Those are short power cords for sure. For what it’s worth, I have two lengths of ISIS power cords—1.5m and 2.0m—and the longer ones consistently sound a little better. It’s not a dramatic difference but the longer ones are somewhat fuller and more dynamic.

    I doubt the short length of your cords fully accounts for your dissatisfaction, but I am pretty sure you aren’t hearing the full potential of the ISIS power cords.
     
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  8. slcaudiophile

    slcaudiophile Forum Resident

    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    i use 4M ISIS on all of my Level 0 to Level 3 and even some Level 4 demo equipment. I use SOGON or SOOTTO mains on my Level 5 demo equipment. regardless, ISIS makes a favorable difference on anything i have used it on.

    that is strange indeed. it sounds like you tried to swap the power cords to see if it was a specific cable.

    i will dig out the stock power cord for my 2.1x dac signature and do a comparison with the ISIS and report back what i hear. it may take me a day or two to get back to you but i’ll report back.
     
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  9. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland

    Thanks, that's interesting.
    I will not go so far as to say that I am disappointed with the ISIS cable with the Dac, but it seems to me that it reinforces the lower midrange and it gives a feeling of loss of speed.
    My two ISIS cables are fitted with the silver plated Martin Kaiser Schuko Plugs.
     
  10. Don Parkhurst

    Don Parkhurst Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    I use six ISIS power cables in my system. I am sure that Sogon power cables would be even better but the cost seems steep to me. I am quite happy with what the ISIS power cables bring to my system.
     
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  11. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland
    How would you describe the contribution of ISIS cables compared to stock cables?
    Maybe we don't have the same expectations...
     
  12. Don Parkhurst

    Don Parkhurst Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    When I inserted them into my system, I removed bunch of the top model from PS Audio. The AN cables contributed in the manner that one would expect if you had an Audio Note system. In my system with my components and my listening room, I aphid a more relaxed or natural rhythm and tone. Not relaxed as in slower, just not altered or jacked up like some components create. I had a more natural bass with better tone and a sense of cohesion to the sound that I seem to get from every good upgrade that is an AN piece being added. The highs were less pronounced or spotlighted but seemed to go a bit higher.
     
  13. Encore

    Encore Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denmark
    The sound of true resolution, IMO
     
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  14. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland
    How are your ISIS cables Factory terminated?
     
  15. J.Uotila

    J.Uotila Forum Resident

    Location:
    Espoo, Finland
    I've tried several different (Furutech) connectors. I think the silver-plated Kaiser schuko and IEC connectors are the best for my set-up.
     
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  16. Salectric

    Salectric Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    I bought some Kaiser IEC plugs after hearing that AN uses them on factory terminated ISIS cords. However, I never tried them because they did not look adequate to the task of securing the 14g conductors. I have tried numerous AC plugs and IEC plugs on my home-terminated ISIS cords. They all sound different, but the very best IEC plug is the Furutech FI-50 NCF. I also have FI-50 NCF AC plugs on some of my cords but I am just as happy with the much less expensive FI-11M copper AC plug on others.
     
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  17. J.Uotila

    J.Uotila Forum Resident

    Location:
    Espoo, Finland
    I had my doubts too - but I'm happy that I tried Kaiser connectors. In fact AN uses Schurter IEC connectors, which I also tried. I still prefer Kaiser.
     
  18. BettisDad

    BettisDad Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Manchester, UK

    I have been using my Isis cable into my Dac 2.1x and an IsoAcoustics cable to power the Oto for the last few months, I've been pretty happy, but after your post, I swapped them over and I've got to say, it sounds better.... Or I'm just imagining it. To be fair I've been listening mainly to vinyl, but after tonight, I think I'll be playing cd's more.
     
  19. slcaudiophile

    slcaudiophile Forum Resident

    Location:
    Salt Lake City

    ok ... so i tried to duplicate your system (believe it or not i don’t currently have a pair of Js in house to demo ... just lots of Es and a K model and my OTO is on loan) so in the small room i set up a pair of E SPe HE’s, SORO Phono SE Signature, CDT-Two, DAC 2.1x Signature, Lexus speaker cable, Lexus interconnects. ISIS digital cable, and ISIS mains on all pieces except when i swapped for the stock mains cord on the DAC only.

    i used Lyle Lovett, Joshua Judges Ruth cd using the North Dakota track and The TBM Sounds!, cd using the SYT Greensleeves track.

    here is what i heard:

    on the North Dakota track i initially thought the stock cable was a tad smoother sounding but only for about 20 seconds ... when the piano pans in and especially when Lyle starts singing there is less edge and his voice is suspended in air with greater clarity and weight on the ISIS mains. when Rickie Lee Jones comes in on this song with the ISIS mains they are very clearly in different spaces where the stock mains seems to blend them a bit more. there is more impact with drums and i also hear a quieter background on this track on the ISIS.

    on the Greensleeves track Shoji’s guitar is unbelievably real sounding on both mains but on the ISIS there is more energy and a deeper level of realism that emerges. Hajime’s drums have more control and greater impact. the ISIS mains just seems to let more music come thru, at least here on this system and to these ears.

    i hope this helps :).
     
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  20. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland
    Thank you very for taking the time for this test.
    Without wanting to be disrespectful or rude, I don't understand why you want to help me find him great?
    Your review on the ISIS Main cable has no other end than to bring your subjectivity and I don't think I'm wrong when I say that at home, on my dac, the ISIS cable is a little too present at the low medium.
    I am just curious to have other opinions on it cable and in no way say that it is not good or extraordinary in other contexts that I am not familiar with. :)
     
  21. ghasley

    ghasley Forum Resident

    Hey Chris.p.l

    I thought it was very cool of slcaudiophile to run the test for you. While it isn’t identical to your system, it’s close. With that said, if you don’t like the cable, sell it and try something else. Your definition of “too present at low medium” is a little vague.

    good on you slcaudiophile
     
  22. jonwoody

    jonwoody Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington DC
    I've said it before I'll say it again the J's get no respect I swear they're the neglected middle child. :shrug:
     
  23. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Location:
    Switzerland
    To run the test for me ??

    Indeed, it is very nice of Sclaudiophile to have tried.

    Again, I'm not saying I don't like ISIS, I'm asking for reviews from other users.

    If my feelings are too vague for you, I invite you to test for yourself, I'm sure you will find something to say about it.

    I don't intend to sell it either, I have a TTPSU that it does its job very well with, but thanks for thinking about it.
     
  24. Richard Austen

    Richard Austen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Hong Kong
    Some folks like them over the E - It depends on the room. I suspect it's because the price is getting pretty close to an AN E - so would one rather buy an AN E/Lx or a J/Spe kind of thing - trade the cable for an extra octave? The J is easier to position in lesser rooms perhaps as well.
     
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  25. Richard Austen

    Richard Austen Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Hong Kong
    Cables to me serve more as tone controls so it really just comes down to trying them yourself and having a healthy return policy - one of the weaknesses of living in Hong Kong is most places do not allow for home trials.

    And I can never get Gerard Rejkind's (UHF Magazines) quote out o my head for cables. "Selling cables is easier than working, and safer than stealing." And while I am not saying cables sound the same what I am saying is that I am extra extra cautious on them because this is where IMO people get price gouged more than most other things.

    Cables to me make logical sense when the same cable runs end to end - so the tonearm wire is a given type - that goes to a preamp with the same structural wiring inside preamp and power amp and speaker cable and to the cable inside the speakers.

    It all becomes a series of tone controls when you buy the silver speaker wire for you copper wired amplifier from brand X and a different brand W wire inside your speaker and the source is internally wired with brand T and the connectors on the source player is from Brand F.

    So in a system like this
    CD player uses internal wires from A - connectors from B
    You buy an IC from C to connected to preamp
    Preamp uses wires from D connectors from E
    You buy IC from F to connect preamp to power amp
    Power amp uses wires G
    You connect speaker wires to Speakers from H
    Speakers are internally wired with I
    Voice coil is wired J

    Bah - it's all tone controls - you buy Wire from K to stick somewhere and MAYBE it will be better but maybe it won't and given Peter's views on mixing and matching - even if you put in a great cable in that mess of mix and mass - you may never actually be able to hear the goodness because there are 10 different wires in the chain so how the hell K wire is going to "fix" everything is highly dubious.

    It is not that easy to do even with staying with one brand throughout. AN probably does about the best job of this as is possible since the wires seem to be the same but have more strands so at least the design is the same and so is are the internals.

    But I don't buy into the notion that going out and buying an $8,000 Nordost will make a system better. Maybe but it's no more likely than buying a Monster cable and it making a system better. It all depends how the cable will interact with the other 10 cables in the chain.

    And as you noted - the ISIS cable made a big improvement on one component and did nothing or sounded worse on another cable and that is WITHIN Audio Note's line-up - can you imagine doing these sorts of things in total mix match set-up?

    I know one AN guy who prefers the sound of mixing AN Silver and Copper because he feels it is more balanced that all silver or all copper. Maybe a mix of warmth and resolution instead of all resolution. Or maybe he has convinced himself of this because he can afford level 4 and not level 6. LOL - who knows?

    One thing you could also try is connecting the source player to a different line and or the same line to see what you think. My dealer modified a power bar and put some ISIS cable on it since I have a few items plugged into the power bar. In fact it would not be a bad idea for Audio Note to make such a Power bar - like Shunyata or something.

    My building (apartment) kind of sucks because when the air con turns on I get a pop from the turntable. So I occasionally get these drop outs. I have now run 3 meter power bars from the hallway, my second bedroom and 3 other outlets trying to get better sound. It's noise free but I have been entertaining the idea of buying a PS Audio Re-generator or something like it.

    But I get somewhat skeptical of these things - I find my Grant Fidelity power conditioner helped my CD player but did nothing for my OTO. This is fine because it was cheap - but spending $4k on a PS Audio - it better be trans-formative.
     
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