Ecosse Reference Cable Ltd. And The Baton Interconnects
Review By Karl Lozier
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I received a phone call from Frank Stuppel of FS Audio Web, perhaps best known as the importer of the well-known Heart CD player, which was very favorably reviewed by our Senior Editor, Dick Olsher. He asked if I would like to review some new to the
US.A. cables that had been extremely well received in various U.K. magazines. "No thanks, I replied, I am just kind of tired or reviewing cables right now and my editor, Steven
R. Rochlin, is asking us to cut down on the number of cable reviews".
Frank then said, "these are moderately priced products that perform well beyond their price range and I am certain you will be impressed". It has been true that so far in my relatively short time knowing Frank Stuppel I've found his thoughts and evaluations to be very similar to mine. I relented and told him that he could send samples of the various cables and I would listen, evaluate and review them. I also told him that we are expected to compare reviewed cables with some other cables and that I would have access to some new Monster brand cables for comparison. "No" he almost shouted. He explained that these cables were designed to be at least competitive in most respects with better if not the best cables. Okay, I told him, no comparisons with the Monster cables.
Ecosse calls the design a single wire speaker cable but be aware that each of the two wires (per side) contains almost eight hundred strands per conductor and both the OFC copper conductor and braided shield/screen are silver-plated. Summarizing its performance is surprisingly easy and I have had a comparable situation arise only once in the past two or three years. Briefly my overall summary of Ecosse's The Baton interconnect cable is the same as my considered evaluation of their ES 2.3 loudspeaker cable. In other words, its response is smoothly and musically satisfying. There is no harsh edge added to musical instruments or vocalists. As with their interconnect (The Baton) its behavior remains unchanged no matter what type of music it is handling. It is right at home with Sinatra and Stravinsky as well as some custom CD and SACD recordings given to me at CES in January. It has no really significant flaws though it can be slightly bettered in almost every respect. Bettering it overall will be very expensive.
In general, any thing near the best in loudspeaker cables is much more expensive than the close to the best in interconnects. Separately the Baton interconnect model and the ES 2.3 loudspeaker cables offer remarkably similar performance and a very fair price point. Any slight failings are of the omission category not addition. In other words, obvious distortions, harshness, edginess and so on are not added and musically pleasing sound is the result. It matters not what type of music or musical instrument is being reproduced. A truly good component, and cables should be thought of as a component, is very good in all cases or it would simply not be very good by definition of the words. Used together the result is adding more good performance on top of good performance. Using Enjoy the Music.com's usual ranking system; I can furnish at least close evaluation rankings for some of its parameters. Tonal Balance: 90, Fit and Finish: 80, Value: 92.
The Conductor MK II Interconnects: 1 Meter $100
1.4 Meters $125
The Baton Interconnects: 1.0 Meter $150
2.0 Meters $190
ES 2.3 Loudspeaker Cables: 2.0 Meters $150
3.0 Meters $195
Ecosse Reference Cable Ltd
The Town House, I Park Gate
Glasgow, Scotland. United Kingdom
United States of America Agent:
FS Audio web
3882 Ruette San Raphael
San Diego, CA 92130
Voice: (866) 372-8346
E-Mail : firstname.lastname@example.org