Home  |  Audio Reviews  Show Reports   Partner Mags News 


 

 

April 2015
Enjoy the Music.com Review Magazine
Triode Wire Labs Cable Family
Digital American HP Power Cord, Spirit Interconnects, and American Speaker Cable
One of the best cable bargains within our audiophile world.

Review By Jonathan Lo

 

Triode Wire Labs American HP Power Cord

 It is often said that one cannot imagine how something could get better until he actually hears one that is. This saying well describes the sound of the new Triode Wire Labs Digital American HP (High Power) power cord when compared to a bevy of power cords out there, perhaps including even the other TWL power cords reviewed here previously. Quite a number of power cords have passed through the reference system over the years, and while many were good and some great, the overachieving Triode Wire Labs power cords, especially the Seven Plus and Ten Plus American power cords, have found permanent place in the review system due to their naturally rich and powerful sound. It is not so much that these TWL cords were necessarily the inarguable best in the world; it's just that given the reasonable price points, these cords performed admirably to combine world-class musicality and richness without thwarting clarity and resolution. They were dynamic, natural, and balanced in presentation, able to fit in with many components and systems without bringing their own brand of undesired colorations.

Given the similar prices and sizes, the new TWL Digital American HP power cord was directly compared to the closest competitor, the Seven Plus. Huge sound differences were not expected, as base conductor and overall gauge appear similar. According to TWL, "slightly different dielectric" was utilized in Digital HP compared to the “Plus” series of cords. Connectors are different, and "conductive gold Mylar as well as patented conductive carbonized external sleeving" were used in Digital HP for clean transmission and filtering of RF and interference. The new custom CNC-milled aluminum/carbon shell connector looks and feels fantastic! They exude quality and are said to excel in dampening vibrations and isolating electricity.

Triode Wire Labs American HP Power Cord

Color me impressed. Compared to the already excellent Seven Plus, Digital HP seemed to turn up the detail level, gut-punching PRAT, and harmonic density a notch. I never thought Seven Plus was not great in these departments before, but the Digital HP definitely had more of these qualities. Increased detail resolution is most apparent in female vocals and upper midrange, where another light appeared to be shining on this region, making it easier to hear and see. A byproduct of this was improved imaging and placement in the soundstage. Each performer occupied solid, precise space on the stage, with life and sparkle projecting forward.

The next thing that hits you is the more impactful, solid basslines, which had more pitch definition and punch. TWL Seven Plus has fabulous bass richness and definition already, but it just became tighter, with more solidity in growl and attack. The midrange had plenty of richness and girth, which made the whole sound balanced by holding together the more forward detailing and forceful bass into a coherent, colorful whole. When reading how the Digital HP was designed with digital components in mind, I expected a softer, warmer type of sound to smooth over digititis, but almost the opposite has happened for some reason. This means that those audiophiles with digital front end that may be a bit long in the tooth, overly "hot" or "digital" sounding, may not necessarily find the Digital HP cord to be all that forgiving despite all its virtues described above. Those who own great, smooth digital gear but hope to extract a bit more air, sparkle, resolution, and punch, the Digital HP is the cord for the job.

In another surprising turn, the Digital HP cord worked extremely well with certain non-digital gear. For example, it worked magic with some tube amps, preserving the dense, rich midrange great tube amps are known for, yet expanding bristling detail resolution and frequency extremes. The stout dynamic punch and drive of the cord also gave new life to tubed gear, which can lack these qualities compared to great solid stage gear sometimes.

 

Triode Wire Labs Spirit Interconnects
Unlike the impressive heft of the TWL power cords, especially the Digital HC and Seven Plus, the Spirit interconnects are downright diminutive in size and weight. After handling the power cords and even other interconnects housed in thick jacketing, it may be tempting to write off the Spirit interconnects as probably insubstantial in sound from the looks alone. It's a good thing TWL offers a 30-day trial period because human nature will likely gravitate towards impressive-appearing cables to grab off the showroom. The sound of these Spirit interconnects, however, was anything but diminutive, building the soundscape from bass foundation up with plenty of mass and solidity behind the notes. It is not clear whether it's the aircraft-grade aluminum-bodied connectors or the super low-mass and low-capacitance pins, but the sound also offered bagful of textural information and clarity. It was not the type of etched, spotlit type of clarity that wows the audience in the showroom, but a clarity born out of clean harmonics and lack of distortion.

Triode Wire Labs Cable Spirit Interconnects,

What was surprising was how close the sound signature was compared to an overachieving all-silver interconnect like PS Audio Transcendent, which has been a reference in the review system for some time. The overall tonal balance and level or resolution were not that far off from each other, with the all-silver cable offering a smidge more of the polished-mirror effect and control while the Spirit offered g a smidge more harmonic texture and a touch more airy warmth. TWL is understandably not offering much detail regarding exact materials used and specifics of the design, but the Spirit is known to undergo deep Helium cryogenic treatment and utilize proprietary "hybrid material." Whatever went into this cable, the result is a well-detailed, harmonically complete, warm yet vibrant cable that is neutral enough not to skew a system one way or the other while offering excellent performance to price ratio. One thing is for certain. When one buys a TWL cable, from power cords to interconnects, there is very little chance that any type of nasty imbalance, hardness, leanness, or sterility will come with the purchase, which is a great thing to know.

 

Triode Wire Labs American Speaker Cable
More details into the construction of the American speaker cable is available compared to the interconnect. The speaker cable is built using 210 individual 30 AWG conductors with pure copper Cardas spade connectors, all compressed with die forging technique. The speaker cable is also deep cryogenically treated and utilizes proprietary "Ground Plane Technology" for passive noise suppression and RFI/EMI rejection. Through various techniques and listening, TWL has managed to build a cable loom that has a similar, synergistic sound signature throughout the range, from the power cables, interconnects, to speaker cables. All of them share natural clarity, slight warmth, gobs of textural/harmonic beauty, and an ability to allow the listener to concentrate more on the music and not the sound of the system. The Digital HC power cable is probably the most different-sounding in the family, but it is no wonder as that one has been designed specifically with digital gear in mind.

Triode Wire Labs American Speaker Cable

The American speaker cable probably offers a bit more of the recognizable TWL house sound, and all those 210 individual conductors must be contributing to the sheer sense of sonic energy pumping through the pipes. In addition to great bass foundation, there is a healthy dose of energy in the all-important low-midrange to upper-bass region, which anchors male voices and even female voices with saturated harmonic goodness. All these qualities express themselves in propulsive rhythm and all kinds of groove permeating the room and the listener. Admittedly, there are systems that will synergize better with different sound signatures. For example, a 300B SET amp may require a thin-AWG silver cable that will accentuate the treble and tidy up its loose bass a bit. Don't expect the American speaker cable to "cure" a dull system by accentuating or highlighting the upper frequencies if not on the recording. Combine that with ample bass foundation and girth, certain systems may give the combined impression of slight leaning toward smooth forgiveness, but then there will be many systems that will thrive and dance with TWL.

 

Synergy And Postscript
While many cable manufacturers tout the use of cables from the same company through the system to yield some great synergy, this is not often the case. There are some cables out there that have substantial deviations from neutrality, so that using more and more of the same cables in the system makes the problem worse regardless of how much they cost. Luckily, the TWL cables stay close enough to that illusive neutrality while sharing the similar virtues, and as such, the power cords, interconnects, and speaker cables work synergistically together to enhance their intrinsic sense of naturalness, refinement, and power without tipping the system too much one way or another. The word "organic" is well served here.

As long as the other components in the system are also close enough to neutral, the TWL cables should have no trouble holding their own in world-class systems regardless of the total system cost. Considering that there are cables out there that cost ten, twenty thousand dollars each, there is no denying that Triode Wire Labs represent somewhat of a bargain in the audiophile cable world. Those who are starting out in their audiophile journey may do well by including the TWL cables on the short audition list, especially if big name cables eat into the total budget too much. In fact, long-time audiophiles should also put TWL cables on their audition list, especially those who have been "burned" by high-dollar items that have not met promised expectations.

 

Manufacturer Reply
Thank you for publishing Jonathan's insightful review of the Triode Wire Labs cable loom. Our goal is to produce "world-class" audiophile / videophile cable products at reasonable, common-sense pricing. We design our entire cable line to produce an organic, natural sound while remaining balanced with plenty of dynamics & PRAT (pace, rhythm and timing), to maximize and improve the performance of audio / video gear. We firmly believe we've achieved that with the TWL cable loom. Following the review, Jonathan purchased the cable loom. That is the highest compliment a reviewer can give! 

Thanks again,
"Triode Pete" Grzybowski
Triode Wire Labs, Inc.

 

Digital American HP Power Cord Spirit Interconnects American Speaker Cables

Tonality

Sub-bass (10Hz - 60Hz)

Mid-bass (80Hz - 200Hz)

Midrange (200Hz - 3,000Hz)

High Frequencies (3,000Hz On Up)

Attack

Decay

Inner Resolution

Soundscape Width Front

Soundscape Width Rear
Soundscape Depth Behind Speakers

Soundscape Extension Into Room

Imaging

Fit And Finish

Value For The Money

 

Specifications
TTWL Digital American HP Power Cord
Price: $699 up to 5 feet

TWL Spirit Interconnects
Price: $349 up to 1 meter

TWL American Speaker Cables
Price: $599 up to 6 feet

 

Company Information
Triode Wire Labs
Contact: triodewirelabs@outlook.com 
Website: www.TriodeWireLabs.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     
Quick Links


Audiophile Review Magazine
High-End Audio Equipment Reviews

Equipment Review Archives
Turntables, Cartridges, Etc
Digital Source
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Preamplifiers
Amplifiers
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc

Superior Audio Archives
Ultra High-End Audio Reviews

Videos
Enjoy the Music.TV

Columns
Editorials By Tom Lyle
Viewpoint By Roger Skoff
Viewpoint By Steven R. Rochlin
Various Think Pieces
Manufacturer Articles


Show Reports
High End Munich 2018 Show Report
AXPONA 2018 Show Report
CanJam SoCal 2018 Show Report
CanJam NYC 2018 Show Report
Capital Audiofest (CAF) 2017 CanMania
TAVES 2017 Toronto Show Report
Rocky Mountain Audio Fest 2017
CanJam 2017 Denver RMAF
LAAS 2017 Show Report
KL International AV 2017 Show Report
Click here for previous shows.

Other
Audiophile Contests
Cool Free Stuff For You
Tweaks For Your System
Vinyl Logos For LP Lovers
Lust Pages Visual Beauty

Resources And Information
Music Definitions
Hi-Fi Definitions
High-End Audio Manufacture Links

 


Daily Industry News

High-End Audio News & Information

Partner Magazines
The Absolute Sound
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
NOVO (CANADA HiFi)
hi-fi+ Magazine
HIFICRITIC
HiFi Media
Hi-Fi World
Sound Practices
VALVE Magazine

For The Press & Industry
About Us
Press Releases
Official Site Graphics

Contests & Join Our Mailing List

Our free newsletter for monthly updates & enter our contests!

Our Social Media & Video Channel
      

 

 

       

Home  |  Sitemap  |  Industry News  |  Equipment / Music Reviews  |  Press Releases  |  About Us  |  Contact Us

 

All contents copyright©  1995 - 2018  Enjoy the Music.com®
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.