VH Audio: DIY Fine Silver Interconnect

As on this writing, I made two pairs of this cable, one with Eichmann Silver Bullets and Eichmann 5.3% silver solder; and another with WBT-0102 Ag and WBT 4% solder.  Common to both pairs is 28 awg VH Audio’s unbleached cotton insulated 0.99999 purity UniCrystal™ OCC (Ohno Continuous Cast) silver wire; and VH Audio HyperFlex Teflon tubing.  Additional materials included plumber’s Teflon tape, heat shrink tubing and Techflex sleeves.  No special tools are needed except for a soldering iron.  The detail instruction is found here: http://www.vhaudio.com/diy.html.   

 

Assembly is not difficult but will need some patience as winding and taping the wire may require some try and error to get it right. Also required is some soldering experience.  No need to be an expert but I recommend some practice for those who have never soldered before.  Overall, it took me about an hour and a half to complete a pair.

 

Eichmann Silver Bullet RCA Plugs
Eichmann Silver Bullet RCA Plugs

 

Eichmann Silverbullet version

Chris suggests using the best RCA plugs one can afford with in one’s budget. Specifically he recommends Eichmann Silver Bullets and WBT Silver Next Gen Plugs (WTB-0102 Ag).  The reason for deciding to use Eichmanns for my first pair was simply the price.  In US, WBTs costs almost twice as much.  I used this cable between Audio Note Kit’s 3.1 Signature DAC (now called as DAC 4.1) and Audio Note Kit’s Kit 1 integrated amp (300B SET.)  As soon as I played the music, this cable blew me away then made me smile. Increase in amount of detail and air was just incredible.  Before the cables were broken in, I felt that the treble were little too prominent.  After about two weeks it got much smoother and more refined.  Sound evolved for another two weeks or so then it seemed to have settled down and fully broken-in.  With this cable, the sound coming of my system was natural with most amounts of detail and “air” than any other cables I tried up to that point in time.  They were the most neutral cables I have ever tried in my system.  Yet, the sound was never analytic, bright or harsh.  It had an excellent sound image with expansive sound stage. With no listening fatigue, I was able to enjoy listening to music longer and louder.

 

 

WBT-0102 Ag version

After about a year of using the DIY Fine Silver Interconnect with Silver Bullets, I was fully convinced that I will be sticking to Chris’ DIY Fine Silver Interconnect cables so I decided to make another pair.  The biggest question for me was whether to use the Eichmann Silver Bullets again or WBT-0102 Ags.  After consulting with Chris and getting advices from Audio Asylum members, I bit the bullet and ordered WBTs.   This was a revelation. I had never thought RCA plugs could make such a huge sonic difference!  Level of detail, and “air” was the same but with the WBTs, my system sounded more dynamic, bass was a tad fuller yet more tuneful, level naturalness increased quite a bit and treble was somewhat smoother.  Sibilance became significantly less prominent.  Overall sound was more organic sounding than the Silver Bullets. Sound image improved quite notably.  Clearly, in my system, WBT version sounded much better to my ears. However if one’s system is already bass heavy or on a darker sounding side, then it is easy to imagine that Eichmann version could be a better choice.  

 

Both versions are outstanding cables.   Cost of wires and plugs are relatively high which makes these cables cannot be referred to as “budget” cables but they would qualify as one of the best value audiophile cables.  Based on subjective performance attributes, these cables are at least competitive, if not better than great many “high-end” cables out in the market place.  For me, these are the best interconnect cables that I have used or tried in my system including some costing over $1000 /1m pair. 

 

(November 2012)

 

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