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Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire (Read 4159 times)
Lonely Raven
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Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
01/17/18 at 20:29:20
 

Remember how I said it's all about timing...

http://www.psaudio.com/article/cables-time-is-of-the-essence-part-1/

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deucekazoo
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #1 - 01/17/18 at 21:12:36
 
This will be interesting. Can't wait to read the rest.
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lazb
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #2 - 01/17/18 at 22:08:10
 
"the rest" are available at the PSAudio site in "Copper"  magazine
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beowulf
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #3 - 01/18/18 at 00:35:22
 
I think that is from the engineer who designed the Belden Iconoclast Cables.  Anybody heard these?
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #4 - 01/18/18 at 17:00:56
 

I'm reaching out to Beldon to see if maybe we can get a set of XLR and RCA to try out at CDApS.

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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #5 - 01/19/18 at 00:14:25
 
Lonely Raven wrote on 01/18/18 at 17:00:56:
I'm reaching out to Beldon to see if maybe we can get a set of XLR and RCA to try out at CDApS.



Don't for get the speaker cables for a complete loom Cool
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #6 - 01/19/18 at 11:34:18
 
After reading the below, particularly some of the comments on the Zenwave cables (most transparent/detail, best at reverberation cues, etc), I thought CDAPs needs to get the ZenWave D4 interconnects (and the SMSG speaker cable) for a review...

https://audiobacon.net/2017/11/03/audience-au24-sx-analog-rca-interconnect-revie...
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beowulf
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #7 - 01/19/18 at 20:11:18
 
Dave1210 wrote on 01/19/18 at 11:34:18:
After reading the below, particularly some of the comments on the Zenwave cables (most transparent/detail, best at reverberation cues, etc), I thought CDAPs needs to get the ZenWave D4 interconnects (and the SMSG speaker cable) for a review...

https://audiobacon.net/2017/11/03/audience-au24-sx-analog-rca-interconnect-revie...


I can confirm that Zenwave does make some fine cables and power products. They have great synergy with Decware gear and Omega loud speakers as well. I had a small shootout with a few manufacturers and felt these were in a whole other league. They use the highest quality mettalurgy (almost all his designs use UP-OCC copper, silver, gold or combos of those ) and highest quality connectors out there. One more thing I've come to appreciate is that his site is free of snake oil and hyperbole.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #8 - 01/19/18 at 21:42:57
 
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #9 - 01/19/18 at 23:52:13
 
From the summary of the article - I really feel time alignment (lack of smearing) is very important to what makes music sound "right" or "real" or live or whatever keyword works for you. It's why I've always felt simple speaker designs (single or two driver with minimal crossover) sound so good. Why the amps sound so good without negative feedback and a more pure, fewer parts design. Jitter reduction in digital, as well as why diffusers are so key to a room sounding good. Apparently, timing in the cables is important too!


Quote:
The important thing to remember with all audio cables is that arrival times are more important than raw speed down the wire. We call it “sound quality” when we use the cable, but it really is the time-alignment of all the signals. The human brain hears superimposed time alignment and amplitude preservation first, everything else a distant second. Efforts to manage phase (lower inductance) and VP are important. Attributes (smaller wires, lower L and C) that are time-dependent seem to provide the most benefit.

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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #10 - 01/22/18 at 16:51:00
 
LR,

 I appreciate articles such as this. I will re-read the first installment soon enough. It is not the sort of thing that can browsed through once. I smile at some of the 'instant' reactions to the article in the reply column at Copper magazine. I have little doubt that there is much more to consider than a knee jerk reaction in such cases.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #11 - 01/24/18 at 16:19:19
 
Yeah, the comments are the typical "you really think I can hear a difference of sound/timing at near the speed of light".  

I happen to be having an E-mail conversation with Galen from Belden about this. I'll have more more info in a few days I hope.
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #12 - 01/24/18 at 22:14:09
 
I went through the articles as well as some of the "nasty" remarks back and forth at the bottom of each article.  Frankly speaking, I found the verbal nature of the articles far from being convincing; I am also looking for more hard evidence.

However, I must add that the articles were well written, yet, they were mostly repetition or compilation of what has already been said in a lot of publications.  I wish they had at least provided references (as in an academic article) to some of the literature (they did provide links to some calculations, but not all), or links to the test results, if any, that Galen (the engineer from Belden) claims to have had.

When it comes to audio, most people do not know (actually almost no one does) "what" to measure to benchmark some of the esoteric parameters or terms that we use in defining what makes a component better or different than the other to our liking.  For instance, which parameter or set of parameters would you measure to come up with a scientific explanation for soundstage?  Or how do you measure warmth?  Tightness of bass?  Boomy bass?  Zillions of other parameters, you name it...  Also, think about all the co-integration (parameters changing in a co-related sense) among all the different parameters people are discussing...

Even though these articles have contributed to my knowledge a lot, I sympathize with some of the critics for not providing more hard data.  Unfortunately, such articles tend to give the "so-called" engineer types who believe solely in data and who almost always are critical of anything "audiophile" a stronger hand in their poor discussion points.  In short, they would simply categorize anything that cannot be explained to them with numerical data as "snake oil."  Unfortunately, in this industry, I come across more snake oils than decent products, so maybe they have a point in their attitude as well.

Anyway, thanks for sharing this LR...

Best,

Alper
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #13 - 01/27/18 at 22:57:53
 

Quote:
From the article:

“When you apply a voltage across an interconnect, there’s a momentary inrush of current to “fill” the capacitance of the cable. Cables with lower capacitance mitigate the inrush current issue, but even so, this causes current to “lead” voltage, causing a time shift in the signal.”


Since current and voltage are two descriptors of the same thing (electricity) I don’t see how it’s possible for one to lead the other.  

Also find it interesting how much fuss there is about time alignment or lack of smearing when they likely use amplifiers with negative feedback to evaluate the cables final sound.

-Steve
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maddog07
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #14 - 01/31/18 at 20:35:00
 
I'd be real surprised if they are willing to "loan out" the Belden Iconoclast cables to a few hobbyist that have no clout to promote them within the high-end media establishment.... have you checked the price of these "wires"?  You'd be far, far better off to spend your money on some more Decware components.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #15 - 01/31/18 at 21:52:37
 

I have no idea what the cost of these cables is - that's one thing they conspicuously didn't comment on.

Quote:
Also find it interesting how much fuss there is about time alignment or lack of smearing when they likely use amplifiers with negative feedback to evaluate the cables final sound.


Shots fired!  ;D

I mentioned the same thing. Also, see lack of room treatment and smearing of the sound *in* the room.
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beowulf
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #16 - 02/01/18 at 02:04:16
 
The internet is conspicuously void of pricing on these ... I think there are 2 levels one with OFC and one with UP-OCC (of course the OCC are TOTL).  From what I found so far we're talking around $2600 for a 3 meter pair of speaker cables in the lower grade wire.  There are much better prices to be found in UP-OCC cabling such as ZenWave ... of course they don't use the same Iconoclast tech ... but it would be pretty cool to do a shoot out.
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #17 - 02/01/18 at 05:19:53
 

I realize that when you spend 110 grand on a pair of speakers and 60 grand on a pair of amplifiers that you feel like a naked person in public until you secure cables that cost several grand each... after all balance is the key.

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beowulf
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #18 - 02/07/18 at 01:21:48
 
Just in case anybody's wondering what the cost of the Silver Plated TPC (Tin Plated Copper) Iconoclasts cost ... (this is for a 10' pair of speaker cables and interconnects come standard at 5')

Speaker – Part #AA1Y63522A1010F – SPTPC w/Cardas CGMS-9R large spades. $4,600.00 for the pair.
RCA – 1 X 4, TPC. Part number not assigned. $610 for the pair.
XLR – 4 X 4, TPC. Part number not assigned. $865 for the pair.


Total: $6075 (plus tax)

Well, $4600 for a pair of 10 foot speaker cables is just a tad out of my budget! The total cost for a complete cable loom is more than my amp, preamp and speakers combined! Grin

They mentioned that they are not offering UPOCC for speaker cables.  And beta testers are preferring the TPC over UPOCC when it comes to their interconnect cables ~ but they still offer a UPOCC version of their interconnects for an upcharge.  I'm not sure at what the cost the upcharge was for as I am already way above what I could afford for the entire loom as it is.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #19 - 02/07/18 at 14:22:13
 

Where did you find this out? I've not been keeping up with any of the threads.

Last I heard from Belden, they said they were having a staff meeting about the cables in a couple weeks and would get back to me.

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Lon
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #20 - 02/07/18 at 14:26:00
 
There's information on the PS Audio forum about pricing of those cables. The information about these cables is not interesting enough for me to sell organs to afford some.
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #21 - 02/08/18 at 07:51:07
 
Lonely Raven wrote on 02/07/18 at 14:22:13:
Where did you find this out? I've not been keeping up with any of the threads.

Last I heard from Belden, they said they were having a staff meeting about the cables in a couple weeks and would get back to me.



A sales associate named Bob Howard ... to my understanding the interconnects are still being re-worked into a new design and won't be available for another week or so.

For audition purposes, they require a credit card authorization before shipment. And your card is billed when you decide to keep them or them make you a different length. If you decide to simply return the audition products then your card is never actually charged.

I would take him up on the offer, but since I can't afford them it doesn't make sense to me to audition them in the first place.

Lon wrote on 02/07/18 at 14:26:00:
There's information on the PS Audio forum about pricing of those cables. The information about these cables is not interesting enough for me to sell organs to afford some.


Agree, though if there was a company out there that had the resources to put into designing an all out cable Belden would be one of them IMO and they have peaked my interest, but $4600 seems pretty crazy for a 10 foot pair of Tin Plated Copper wires, of course he said there was more to it than the wire and that the design is every bit as important as the conductor materials  ...

CONDUCTORS – How many, what size, what material, weave?
DIELECTRIC MATERIAL  
DIELECTRIC GEOMETRY (Air Dielectric?)
SHIELD MATERIAL AND DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS
JACKET DESIGN AND MATERIAL CONSIDERATIONS
SKIN DEPTH
TIME/PHASE AT FREQUENCY

He has 10' pairs of speaker cables available for an in home (no risk) 30 day trial and is pretty confident they will best anything I have.  At that price they better! I don't have that kind of money to blow on actual gear let alone speaker wire.  It would be an interesting experiment though!
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #22 - 02/08/18 at 19:52:30
 
From the photo I was sent, the speaker wires appeared to be a braided design like the old Kimber speaker cables. It was just a little spy photo, so I couldn't be sure, but that's pretty much what they looked like and what I believe was described to me.

If they just need to put a hold on a credit card, I could do speakers or interconnects, but maybe not both - I'd have to see, I might have a much bigger credit limit than I thought.

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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #23 - 02/09/18 at 01:44:07
 
Lonely Raven wrote on 02/08/18 at 19:52:30:
From the photo I was sent, the speaker wires appeared to be a braided design like the old Kimber speaker cables. It was just a little spy photo, so I couldn't be sure, but that's pretty much what they looked like and what I believe was described to me.

If they just need to put a hold on a credit card, I could do speakers or interconnects, but maybe not both - I'd have to see, I might have a much bigger credit limit than I thought.



Yes, I believe they use some sort of stranded braid geometry and they are patented (or patent pending).

A few highlights from Bob's email:
  • The RCA and XLR are in process of the first design modification in 3-years. The XLR is moving to a 4 X 4 conductor design where the entry TPC is actually being chosen by beta testers over the previous UPOCC design.
  • Standard length analog interconnects are 5’ pairs while speaker leads are 10’ pairs.
  • Belden’s Galen Gareis spent well over 2-years experimenting with both the known but also often unconsidered variables in cable design before finalizing on the early prototypes. He hand constructed, tested and listened to over 70 different designs.  He wrote everything down in great detail to later be included in the patents. The predominate factor for moving a design forward was not in the R/L & C measurement but in “how it sounded.
  • Who else in the industry admits how their cables test? At Iconoclast, we test and send you the report on each and every product!
  • Speaker leads that present a sound stage that actually articulates the correct height, width and depth of the venue at hand. Cymbals sound like cymbals where ch trumps sh. The formidable concert grand retains its natural warmth and presence from life. Decay is natural. Vocalist can be heard taking their breath with clarity that will have you looking behind the curtain. From the kick drum, kettle drum and even a centuries old cathedral pipe organ, low frequency dynamics are taught and powerful.  In short, musical coherence is off the charts good! The veil is removed and the recording is restored.

Ok, so here's my train of though on this whole premise ... if it's all about timing then how could just the speaker cables work by just themselves? ... According to their whole timing argument, you're already screwed if you don't have Iconoclast as your interconnects as well as the timing will already be "off" before it even enters into your preamp/amp ... then the internal wire of your speakers would need to be included as well as once the signal is passed to your speakers (who aren't using internal Iconoclast wiring) the signal is just as screwed as it was at the start! Grin

That's why you would need a full loom of this stuff from source-to-pre-to-amp-to-speakers (and then internally to the speakers' drivers) to experience the full effect of what these cables can do and only then could you really make an accurate picture of what these can really do.  Any break in the chain "should add timing errors" in the downline.  ::)
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #24 - 05/24/18 at 22:23:43
 
TPC has Nothing to do with tin plating. TPC is Tough Pitch Copper, i.e. not oxygen-free or oriented-crystal.

I have the price-sheet and a technical paper about the ICs, from Belden, but the board won't let me post links yet.
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #25 - 05/25/18 at 00:03:18
 
Hey  EldRick, it will probably take a few posts before you are able to do that, but in the mean time welcome to the forums!
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #26 - 05/28/18 at 00:14:16
 

Welcome to the forums!

I've not heard a peep from Beldon in weeks - I've kind of lost hope of hearing anything anymore.
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Re: Belden Cable Engineer talks about Wire
Reply #27 - 05/28/18 at 21:20:43
 
Feel free to contact Bob Howard at Bob.Howard@Belden.Com. He will get back to you promptly.
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