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  1. #1
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    I was going to ask what replacing a Sub cable would do

    This is my first attempt with HT. When I ordered what I needed to complete my system, I had them throw in a MonsterCable Monster Bass 100. After putting together the system and running the EZQ setup, I started to watch movies and listen to some 5 channel stereo to break in my newly added Center and Sub.

    My main system is a Tube Pre, Stratos modded amp driving Dynaudio 82s, so I have good detailed bass for comparison. The sub is a Mirage 12 sub that was being discontinued and a great price. The bass I was getting while running the HT setup (which at this time includes Pre-out to my main system to drive the Fronts) was pretty much mush. Plenty deep and room rattling but no detail.

    I happened to order some Audioquest Sidewinder cables to hook up all my components and had also ordered a 3 meter pair that ended up backordered and I forgot all about them. Last week they showed up but I realy didn't need them anymore so I decided to swap out the Sub cable for one of the Sidewinders.

    So, I got my answer as to what happens when you put a better Sub cable in place. Now there is detail along with slam. Replacing the Monster cable was a great thing to do but now I am curious as to how far I can go with this. Is there a price point where I would just be wasting time and money or are there cables that would increase the clarity of my sub to the degree the Sidewinder did? Obviously, one does not need to use a Sub only cable as we are led to believe.

    Any comments or ideas would be appreciated.

    Brian

  2. #2
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    Hi Hyfi; you made a great investment in the Mirage S-12 sub. My brother has that unit with the Mirage Omnistat satellites. It is terrific. He has a monster sub-cable(possibly a 100)on it. One thing that affected the bass was the quality of the dvd player. A panasonic F87 changer nor a Pioneer Dv-525 could not cut the audio mustard on that sub against the superb sounding Pioneer Dv-37. Generally, I have found over the years that with higher end systems, one requires quality hardware to have that system play well.

    Taking his sub cable to my system which consists of cheaper components, I did not care for its performance. I did purchase a AR APO52 cable. I like its performance greatly for bass response quality and imaging. I have tried a multitude of different audio only cables and some 75 ohm coaxial cables on this Klipsch SW-10ll that I use. I had one old radio shack audio cable that even made a half-way decent sub cable. 75 ohm cables did not cut the mustard. I have heard of Audioquest cables. If these sidewinders are designated sub-cables and in fact you find they perform well over the Monster 100, I would stick with them. You could end up with an addiction of buying 10 zillion cables playing Mr. Wizard and driving yourself crazy trying to figure is A better than B better than C. yada, yada, yada.

    This may sound stupid but it may not be so stupid. Monster cables generally have a directional arrow on their cables. Make sure the tip of the arrow goes into the input of your sub. The back of the arrow should go into your receivers sub output. There seems to be a phase anomaly involved with subwoofers that I do not quite understand but it is there. On the same token, with any sub cable you use, if you can, try it one way and then another. If you hear a difference, put a sticker on that cord indicating which end to put into the receiver and which end to put into the sub-input. Nearly everything I tried had a polarity issue and could make or break the sound of a system.

  3. #3
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi
    This is my first attempt with HT. When I ordered what I needed to complete my system, I had them throw in a MonsterCable Monster Bass 100. After putting together the system and running the EZQ setup, I started to watch movies and listen to some 5 channel stereo to break in my newly added Center and Sub.

    My main system is a Tube Pre, Stratos modded amp driving Dynaudio 82s, so I have good detailed bass for comparison. The sub is a Mirage 12 sub that was being discontinued and a great price. The bass I was getting while running the HT setup (which at this time includes Pre-out to my main system to drive the Fronts) was pretty much mush. Plenty deep and room rattling but no detail.

    I happened to order some Audioquest Sidewinder cables to hook up all my components and had also ordered a 3 meter pair that ended up backordered and I forgot all about them. Last week they showed up but I realy didn't need them anymore so I decided to swap out the Sub cable for one of the Sidewinders.

    So, I got my answer as to what happens when you put a better Sub cable in place. Now there is detail along with slam. Replacing the Monster cable was a great thing to do but now I am curious as to how far I can go with this. Is there a price point where I would just be wasting time and money or are there cables that would increase the clarity of my sub to the degree the Sidewinder did? Obviously, one does not need to use a Sub only cable as we are led to believe.

    Any comments or ideas would be appreciated.

    Brian

    It would seem you have discovered what all the objectivists say is not possible. Different cables do sound different. I have included the url to Fatwyre. It is local to you and I. New Hope to be precise. You can try a variety of different cables from them. They have an excellent return policy and have lots of used cable from various manufacturers. They are straight up people. As for how far to go with cables. There are cables that cost as much as your gear. I don't recommend them but that is your decision. Cables require some experimenting to find the ones that best suit your gear and ears. Fatwyre's return policy allows this.

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  4. #4
    Color me gone... Resident Loser's Avatar
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    And again...

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    It would seem you have discovered what all the objectivists say is not possible. Different cables do sound different.
    ...continued misinformation to which this objectivist responds: different isn't necessarily correct...just different...

    To expand:

    "... any difference is just that and nothing more...very subjective AND anecdotal in nature...

    Wire is passive...it can "boost" one segment of the frequency spectrum only by attenuating another...it's all relative...

    ...wire is wire...or more precisely: Since there is, at this time, no objective, conclusive and repeatable evidence provided by currently applied and accepted test methodology and within commensurate parameters germaine to the subject under test to the contrary, further augmented by analysis of subjective evaluation produced under strict controls and protocols, there simply is no proof, other than that provided as anecdotal evidence, which is subject to a vast array of potential biases, that there is any significant audible difference in wire of a similar type, length and gauge...."

    jimHJJ(...just for the record...)
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  5. #5
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Have you actually done this comparison without knowing whether or not a cable actually got swapped out? Anytime I've ever done a blind comparison, it significantly reduced the magnitude of whatever perceived differences I thought that I had heard. Also, did you reposition your sub or seated position by more than a few inches when you swapped out the cable? Any changes in positioning can significantly alter the tonal response in the bass range.

    In the lower frequencies, any differences that a subwoofer cable would presumably make are usually not measurable. I will say that a decent interconnect will provide better shielding from outside interference than an OEM cable will, which can make an audible difference depending on the conditions. But, otherwise the bass range does not require as much bandwidth. This is why some hardcore audiophiles that otherwise eschew any kind of signal processing on the main channels will use EQs or DSPs for subwoofer calibration.

    And as you go further into that bass range, the room itself becomes a more and more significant factor. The acoustical effects that a room creates are clearly audible and verifiable through measurements. The short room dimensions on a small to medium sized room will alternately create boomy peaks at some frequencies and cancellations at others. Something as simple as using a parametric equalizer to dial down the largest peaks will significantly cut down on any boominess you hear and even out the overall bass response. A parametric EQ can cost as little as $100, and deliver far greater system improvement than any cable ever can. Fortunately, in your case, the Sidewinder is not an especially expensive cable, so you're not in that ridiculous range where the cable costs nearly as much as the subwoofer itself.
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  6. #6
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    I'm using the green cable of an old Component video cable trio in my new sub...works as well as the ol' Monster 300 cable I have...picture on the sub is terrible though...

  7. #7
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Resident Loser
    ...continued misinformation to which this objectivist responds: different isn't necessarily correct...just different...

    To expand:

    "... any difference is just that and nothing more...very subjective AND anecdotal in nature...

    Wire is passive...it can "boost" one segment of the frequency spectrum only by attenuating another...it's all relative...

    ...wire is wire...or more precisely: Since there is, at this time, no objective, conclusive and repeatable evidence provided by currently applied and accepted test methodology and within commensurate parameters germaine to the subject under test to the contrary, further augmented by analysis of subjective evaluation produced under strict controls and protocols, there simply is no proof, other than that provided as anecdotal evidence, which is subject to a vast array of potential biases, that there is any significant audible difference in wire of a similar type, length and gauge...."

    jimHJJ(...just for the record...)
    I agree with this wholehearedly. After sitting for hours listening to Ray Kimbers cable, I concluded that there was some wires that sounded DIFFERENT, but not necessarily better than the other. At other times I could not discern a difference at all between some of his designs, even though he said there was.

    A panasonic F87 changer nor a Pioneer Dv-525 could not cut the audio mustard on that sub against the superb sounding Pioneer Dv-37. Generally, I have found over the years that with higher end systems, one requires quality hardware to have that system play well.
    Kel,
    I find this statement rather curious in light of the fact that I own a F87 and its bass detail is on par with my Sony upconverting SACD DVD player. And considering the fact that ALL DD and Dts chipsets are standardized, this is really no performance benefits just because the player is different. What would produce a difference in bass is how bass management is implemented within the reciever, not the player itself.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    It would seem you have discovered what all the objectivists say is not possible. Different cables do sound different. I have included the url to Fatwyre. It is local to you and I. New Hope to be precise. You can try a variety of different cables from them. They have an excellent return policy and have lots of used cable from various manufacturers. They are straight up people. As for how far to go with cables. There are cables that cost as much as your gear. I don't recommend them but that is your decision. Cables require some experimenting to find the ones that best suit your gear and ears. Fatwyre's return policy allows this.

    http://www.fatwyre.com/
    Fatwyre has many names. I actually went to pay them a visit when they first opened in New Hope. That was before they really had any showroom or took walk-ins. They were very nice to me though and spent an hour talking about cables among other things. I did not purchase anything at that time but since you reminded me, I may borrow a few for trial. I won't let the famous NaySayers sway my experience. I spent enough time a few years back on the Cables board listening to those who would have me use the $1.99 interconnects on High End equipment because they can not hear good or they only believe what they can see on paper. I won't let this turn into an argument, hopefully, since I have played around with plenty of cables over the years and can hear differences between what I have now and what came in the boxes. I was just wondering if people saw similar results with Sub cables as they do with Interconnects. I played Bass for many years and over several system upgrades could tell the difference in bass detail and overal quality. I can assure you it does not take anything special to hear the difference between mush and individual notes. I realize there are many who can not or just do not want to. The Naysayers are indeed entitled to their opinion but I feel sorry for them since their hearing is so greatly impared.

    Brian

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelsci
    Hi Hyfi; you made a great investment in the Mirage S-12 sub. My brother has that unit with the Mirage Omnistat satellites. It is terrific. He has a monster sub-cable(possibly a 100)on it. One thing that affected the bass was the quality of the dvd player. A panasonic F87 changer nor a Pioneer Dv-525 could not cut the audio mustard on that sub against the superb sounding Pioneer Dv-37. Generally, I have found over the years that with higher end systems, one requires quality hardware to have that system play well.

    Taking his sub cable to my system which consists of cheaper components, I did not care for its performance. I did purchase a AR APO52 cable. I like its performance greatly for bass response quality and imaging. I have tried a multitude of different audio only cables and some 75 ohm coaxial cables on this Klipsch SW-10ll that I use. I had one old radio shack audio cable that even made a half-way decent sub cable. 75 ohm cables did not cut the mustard. I have heard of Audioquest cables. If these sidewinders are designated sub-cables and in fact you find they perform well over the Monster 100, I would stick with them. You could end up with an addiction of buying 10 zillion cables playing Mr. Wizard and driving yourself crazy trying to figure is A better than B better than C. yada, yada, yada.

    This may sound stupid but it may not be so stupid. Monster cables generally have a directional arrow on their cables. Make sure the tip of the arrow goes into the input of your sub. The back of the arrow should go into your receivers sub output. There seems to be a phase anomaly involved with subwoofers that I do not quite understand but it is there. On the same token, with any sub cable you use, if you can, try it one way and then another. If you hear a difference, put a sticker on that cord indicating which end to put into the receiver and which end to put into the sub-input. Nearly everything I tried had a polarity issue and could make or break the sound of a system.
    The Audioquest Sidewinders are not Sub cables but rather entry level HE interconnects. That is why I was so surprised as we are all led to believe you have to use a dedicated Sub cable because they are magically different that an interconnect cable. I guess I just proved a point that any quality cable will sound better than any crap cable whether it is Sub specific or not.

  10. #10
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kexodusc
    I'm using the green cable of an old Component video cable trio in my new sub...works as well as the ol' Monster 300 cable I have...picture on the sub is terrible though...
    I did this for awhile also. But I used the yellow cable from a composite set. Worked fine till I got the upgrade bug and put in a high priced cable. Didn't hear a difference.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  11. #11
    Suspended Smokey's Avatar
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    To narrow down search for cable, one have to know exactly what they want from a cable, or what to look for in a cable.

    For sub cables, look for low frequency shielding property of cable. Double braid are preferable for sub cables.

    For IC cable, look for good low and radio/high frequency shielding property such as foil/braid combination. Low capacitance and resistance narrow down the search even further. And good dielectric and good connection zero in on the cable you want.

    The above approach will be much more fruitful than just pick a cable randomly, or by name

  12. #12
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    Your Lordship, Sir TT; Nice to hear from you. I need to only correct one thing. His Panasonic unit is a F84. I do not think that these DD and DTS standardized chipsets are the thing making a difference here between his F84, the DV-525 and the DV-37. Decoding as far as detail and imaging were all about the same in each player. No changes were made to my brothers Mirage speaker system nor his Marantz 5400 receiver(bass management is all SML with sub set to 80hz) in the test. Even if he pushed up the bass in the MIrage sub, it would have not helped the situation. In fact the sub was blending fine during the test. In playing dvd movies in 5.1, the DV-37 is a wonderbar in audio reproduction against the other machines. I have had the 525 play on my system and it plays fine to me.

    Back in the 70s, he had a powerful Kenwood stereo amp with two Bic Venturi Form 6(I believe) floorstanders. He used a Shure V15-type 3 cartidge on this system. I was using a Fisher X-100 tube amp on my system with two Marantz Imp 6-G speakers with a Shure m95-ED cartridge. One day, I used his cartridge on my system. There was little difference between the two. I then tried the M91ED on his system. It sounded like mud. His system demanded a better quality cartridge and as such in needed the V15-3.

    I know from the list of your equipment and your postings thru the years that you have a sophistacated set-up. But you do not have a DV-37 in your possession to know whether what I have said is true. Last week, I had the opportunity to look and play with some high definition televisions. I was so psychologically affected from what I saw because when I got home and looked at my great 20 inch Sony Trinitron that I use in my living room, it looked disgusting.

    I will take one up on the video performance of the DV-37 and the F-84 in interlaced mode through component inputs on a 27 inch toshiba FST tv set. The one-two three count goes to the Pioneer for its overall picture quality and image stabilization. The F-84 is great but the DV-37 is fantastic.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi
    The Audioquest Sidewinders are not Sub cables but rather entry level HE interconnects. That is why I was so surprised as we are all led to believe you have to use a dedicated Sub cable because they are magically different that an interconnect cable. I guess I just proved a point that any quality cable will sound better than any crap cable whether it is Sub specific or not.
    Hi Hyfi,I own the Mirage Omni S8 sub and found it a great buy as well.Your Mirage should have an LFE terminal and if that route is possible I would recommened the Audioquest sub 1 sub cable.It's simulor to the King Cobra interconnect in certain aspects.It works well with my Mirage making it shine to it's potentail.Just a thought,Good luck.

  14. #14
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi
    The Audioquest Sidewinders are not Sub cables but rather entry level HE interconnects. That is why I was so surprised as we are all led to believe you have to use a dedicated Sub cable because they are magically different that an interconnect cable. I guess I just proved a point that any quality cable will sound better than any crap cable whether it is Sub specific or not.
    I agree with you 100%. I didn't hear differences in cables until my gear (speakers specifically) got good enough to hear the difference. What I hear or don't hear is not always immediately evident. Sometimes it takes days or weeks to hear and acknowledge differences. They are there!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fergymunster
    Hi Hyfi,I own the Mirage Omni S8 sub and found it a great buy as well.Your Mirage should have an LFE terminal and if that route is possible I would recommened the Audioquest sub 1 sub cable.It's simulor to the King Cobra interconnect in certain aspects.It works well with my Mirage making it shine to it's potentail.Just a thought,Good luck.
    Hey, thanks for the feedback. I just looked at the Audioquest Sub cables. It would appear that the Sub-X cable is pretty much a Sidewinder with a different color jacket.

    The Sub-1 would be in my budget so I may give this a try.

    Hyfi

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    I agree with you 100%. I didn't hear differences in cables until my gear (speakers specifically) got good enough to hear the difference. What I hear or don't hear is not always immediately evident. Sometimes it takes days or weeks to hear and acknowledge differences. They are there!
    OMG Don't let the Red & Black Brigade hear you say that!

    Hyfi

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi
    Hey, thanks for the feedback. I just looked at the Audioquest Sub cables. It would appear that the Sub-X cable is pretty much a Sidewinder with a different color jacket.

    The Sub-1 would be in my budget so I may give this a try.

    Hyfi
    Great,the sub 1 is an excellent choice,you won't be disappointed if you choose that.Good luck.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fergymunster
    Great,the sub 1 is an excellent choice,you won't be disappointed if you choose that.Good luck.
    I almost forgot,you live near me.Tweeter at the Montgomeryville Mall has a whole line of Audioquest products in stock.They have the sub 1 there but only in 3 meter lengh.If that's ok then you could try it for 30 days to see if you like it,if not then just return it.Worth checking out and only a short distance from you.Good luck.

  19. #19
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi
    OMG Don't let the Red & Black Brigade hear you say that!

    Hyfi
    I'm too old to worry about what others can't or won't hear.
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  20. #20
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    I'm too old to worry about what others can't or won't hear.
    You make it sound like we are being stubborn. Its not really a question of can't or won't, but is it better or worse. Sometimes its I can't. Wire is such a subjective thing that there are no absolutes. What you might recoemmend as good wire I might not like the sound of it, or might not hear any difference from my last speaker wire or cable.
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  21. #21
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible
    You make it sound like we are being stubborn. Its not really a question of can't or won't, but is it better or worse. Sometimes its I can't. Wire is such a subjective thing that there are no absolutes. What you might recoemmend as good wire I might not like the sound of it, or might not hear any difference from my last speaker wire or cable.
    Better or worse is just as subjective as change or no change. Admitting that one wire works or sounds better is saying they can make a difference. Your response places you firmly out of the Red & Black Brigade.
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  22. #22
    Suspended Smokey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    Better or worse is just as subjective as change or no change. Admitting that one wire works or sounds better is saying they can make a difference. Your response places you firmly out of the Red & Black Brigade.
    I donít think anybody around here believes that cables doesnít make a difference. Ofcourse there will be difference between $5 IC cable from walmart and quality Belden cables.

    The trick here is to find most transparent quality cable And the only way to achieve this goal is objectively as it will be almost next to impossible to do it subjectively (listening).

  23. #23
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    I still have WireWorld Oasis III+ up for a sale. Nobody's been interested for some reason. WHY!!!!!!!!
    http://forums.audioreview.com/showthread.php?t=18148

    I think I'll post it on Audiogon. I figured this was a great place, since HT is majority of members' main interest.

    Maybe I'll send a private message to every single members on AR. Old fashion door-2-door with a modern twist.

  24. #24
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    Better or worse is just as subjective as change or no change. Admitting that one wire works or sounds better is saying they can make a difference. Your response places you firmly out of the Red & Black Brigade.
    What exactly is your interpretation of difference? In the light of modes and nodes of more than 15-20dbs in any given room, do you think that wire can make a difference under those conditions?. Until a person fully tweaks the room first, I do not care what cables you put in your system, it will not be audible to the ears. Also whether or not you can hear any differences under the typical background level of most rooms is suspect. If you are going to be able to hear any differences, the room would have to be as quiet as a THX certified theater or dubbing stage. I know of only a very few rooms that can reach that level, and they have all been built from the ground up.

    There are so many variables that have to be dealt with before I believe there is a audible difference to wires. I do not think even 5% of rooms even meet that level, so I am always suspect when somebody makes any claims about the audible qualities of any wires.
    Sir Terrence

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  25. #25
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible
    What exactly is your interpretation of difference? In the light of modes and nodes of more than 15-20dbs in any given room, do you think that wire can make a difference under those conditions?. Until a person fully tweaks the room first, I do not care what cables you put in your system, it will not be audible to the ears. Also whether or not you can hear any differences under the typical background level of most rooms is suspect. If you are going to be able to hear any differences, the room would have to be as quiet as a THX certified theater or dubbing stage. I know of only a very few rooms that can reach that level, and they have all been built from the ground up.

    There are so many variables that have to be dealt with before I believe there is a audible difference to wires. I do not think even 5% of rooms even meet that level, so I am always suspect when somebody makes any claims about the audible qualities of any wires.
    My room has been fully tweaked. I knocked down a wall in my house to make the dimensional proportions correct. I have room treatments and have used test instruments (some rented) to make the room as neutral as possible.
    In the first place this thread was started by HyFi. He stated that he heard a difference in cables. I only agreed with him. Frankly I'm tired of people telling me and others what they can and can't hear. Who died and made you "God".
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