Do Costly XLR Cables Make A Difference?

Serious question here. I currently own a rather good XLR cable that goes between the amp and DAC. I’m considering a better XLR cable to improve things, basically all the good aspects of sound reproduction such as deeper and more defined bass, better separation and detail across the frequency spectrum and an airier and more 3-dimensional sound in the midrange and treble. Will a different XLR cable supposedly one that’s costlier bring me to that direction?

My current XLR cable costs about $2k actual price paid.

I’m looking at an alternative pair up to about $2k perhaps $3k tops if it is proven that the cable is able to bring a noticeable or worthwhile if not significant difference. I am actually looking at the Wireworld Silver Eclipse 8 and Gold Eclipse 8 XLR.

Any experience would be appreciated. 



Mogami xlr makes the best xlr cables that good studios use, and if you want better make your own using neutrik or switchcraft gold plated xlr connectors. You can make your own cable better than most other companies and I’m not kidding, copper and plastic is very cheap no need to pay a lot for it unless it’s gold and some kind of electro plated metal or plastic incasing the wire, even a magnetic shielded cable shouldn’t cost so much 🤑🤡

As mentioned it depends on your system and of course ears. I’ve used Canare which is surprisingly pretty good, great for the money. I use these cables on my drum kit to mic. Later I moved up to WyWires Silver XLR which was a big jump up, everything improved, more refined, separation between instruments both in width and depth. The Canare in comparison closed in, a little rolled off but still a pleasant cable. Still have the Canare and WyWires but now have a Nordost Frey 2 and it’s in another league. Using to run my RME ADI 2 fs DAC directly to my amp and it’s outstanding. I’d like to give all the credit to the RME, which maybe it’s the DAC, but the Frey 2 is letting it show what it’s capable of. I only have the one Frey 2 so I’m stuck running DAC direct to amp, as when I throw the WyWires back in the chain to use a dedicated preamp it’s not as good. Preamp is a ModWright LS 36.5 so it’s no slouch. I’m sure there’s a lot of high dollar cables that are not worth it but many are. As always, trust your own ears.

If the signal path fully balanced through all of your components that kind of cable upgrade probably makes sense. 

If I was looking to spend $2,000 on balanced cables, I’d start with Iconoclast 4x4 cable in the material of your choice. I like that the designed by someone that not only demonstrates that he understands the science behind cables, but also recognizes that there’s more to cables than the measurements. His designs are very weld thought out, but they are also offered in multiple conductor materials. You also get 30 days to send them back for any reason.

I might be able to talk myself into the budget BAV variety at some point. Unfortunately, the rest of well above anything I’d consider to be a reasonable purchase.

At a minimum, read the iconoclast design brief.

You already own "costly XLR cables."

Try and obtain loaners of the cables you want to purchase through a dealer, friend, or The Cable Company, and then listen to them and compare directly with your current cables in your own system. If you really want to verify the value, have a friend randomly change the cables between your current cables and the new cables and then try to choose which you are listening to, or which you like better, without knowing/seeing which cable is in-place. Do that at least 10 times and if you cannot pick the same favorite at least 7 times out of 10, then don’t waste your money.