Interconnect Inductance vs. Capacitance

How do the inductance and capacitance of ICs impact the sound? I have seen some ICs that have low inductance but high capacitance. On the other hand, some ICs have high inductance but low capacitance. One manufacturer even claims that his higher models have higher capacitance.

So can someone explain to me how they impact the sound?
Call TRL and get a set of their interconnects. The Dude will easily drive these cables, which in their own right are very good. These cables were the original design behind the FIM/CRL cables. The only drawback is they are heavy and somewhat inflexible, but the sound more than makes up for it.
Interestingly, TRL told me that Blue Jeans Cables RCA interconnects are good enough. Paul may be right as these BJC ICs have the lowest capacitance that I can find anywhere! This man has integrity!!

TRL's cables are not cheap though. So I am exploring all options. It would be great if manufacturers can offer in-home trial. Then I'll find out if they can beat BJC's $50 10-ft ICs. :-)
You can try cables through The Cable Company for a fee. I did that once but don't remember the cost. It wasn't much.

I've had cables from Harmonic Technology then Cardas Neutral Reference. I tried Blue Jeans 3 meter balanced and could not hear a difference between them and the Cardas. I sold the Cardas. Then I bought some Speltz 3 meter balanced that I'm currently using. I think they might sound a bit better than the BJC in my system but it is very subtle. I highly recommend Blue Jeans Cable. They are so reasonably priced, the people there seem to know a lot about cables and are so free of hype - they just tell it like it is. I found it refreshing.
The Cable company offers only standard length cables for loan. They also charge 10% of the list price of the cables as the fees.

I do have various 1M ICs and I have tried them between the CDP and preamp. I do hear differences among them and I like the Reality Cables the best. But, the difference between Reality Cables and BJC 1M ICs is quite subtle.

The Reality Cables use a twisted pair design for the ICs, which would increase the capacitance. It works great with a short 1M run and the CDP which has a low output impedance. I am not sure that it would work well for the Dude preamp and at a longer length.

I have tried Anti-Cable's speaker cables. I know that they have a lot of fans. But they don't work well in my setup. I heard some artifical coloring to the sound which was un-natural to my ears.
For a twisted pair design, the capacitance and the inductance are a function of the distance between the conductors relative to their diameters and are somewhat inversely related. The closer the conductors the less inductance and the more capacitance. The further apart, the more inductance and the less capacitance. For instance, a lot of ICs might have a pair of conductors that helix around a core that keeps them at some distance in order to achieve a certain design point (this is just twisted pair from a design point). Similarily, the thickness of the insulation itself can keep the conductors separated at some distance in a twisted pair that does not have a 'core'. The capacitance is also related to the type of dielectric used (or more specifically, the effective relative permitivity of the dielectric that the conductors experience). There are other cable geometries that are used that will tend to push the impedances one way or another. In general, all of the impedances (resistance, capacitance, inductance) scale linearly with the length of cable so shorter is better if you want to minimize impedances.

It's probably easiest to try to get the vendor's specs on what impedance a given cable exhibits - if they've bothered to measure them. Measuring inductance and capacitance typically requires a pretty good (expensive) piece of equipment. Low capacitance and low inductance are both desirable, but since you usually hurt one to help the other, going two far in either direction tends to be a mistake. However, I agree with Almarg that capacitance is a bigger factor for ICs while inductance (and resistance) is generally a bigger factor for speaker cables due to the differences in the amount of current involved between the two (e.g. harder for a low current system to charge a capacitance while harder for a high current system to overcome inductance).

Other things that are reputed to affect the "sound" of cabling are the purity of the conductor (e.g. OFC (99.99%), UPOCC (99.9999%), solid conductors supposedly better than stranded conductors, the type of conductor (copper, silver, silver coated copper), effective cross section of total conductors (more cross section, less DC resistance), diameter of individual insulated conductors (smaller gauge wires show less variation in internal impedance with frequency (due to skin effect, DC travels through the entire conductor - higher frequencies move to the outsides of the conductor - so some vendors will say you should have, for instance, a number of smaller gauge conductors (say 8 x 21 AWG) rather than one large conductor (say 1 x 12 AWG) for speaker cables), surface of conductor (smooth/polished is better), the type of dielectric (actual physics here that affects capacitance), the geometry of the conductors within the cable , the mechanical stability of the conductors (e.g. damping and isolation), how well the connector or wire makes contact with the terminals (e.g. type of plating on connectors, type of metals in connectors, surfaces of connectors, contact points of connectors, contact enhancement treatments, oxidation on connectors, vibrations in connectors, etc.), shielding from RFI and EM radiation (more important on ICs due to low voltages and currents and subsequent application of the noise through your amplifier), and various types of conditionings like cryogenic freezing. However, there is great controversy over which, if any, of these types of things has an impact on the 'sound' or whether "great" sound can be achieved with a 'budget' cable.

To be honest, most cables spec's are not going to be a problem from an electrical standpoint - unless perhaps your amp is sensitive to highly capacitive loads (most are designed not to be) or you are running at lot more than say 8 feet of cable. And most of the cable specs are not going to tell you something that will indicate whether it sounds better or worst to you in your system. Even if the cable were to have characteristics that introduce frequency distortion - perhaps you like attenuated highs on your ICs because your gear is bright for instance.

However, most audio folks say that they hear differences between different cable's sounds. Most differences in cables' sounds are 'subtle' and perhaps a matter of taste. To me, it seems to be a bit of a hit or miss operation if you are just looking at 'spec's. It's not clear what measured parameters are important to the "sound" and there's a lot of marketing hype about various other characteristics that are hard to substantiate. If you can actually audition some cables and you like one better than the other - and you feel that the difference in cost justifies the improvement, then go for it - though this could lead to a potentially un-ending cable upgrade path if you have unlimited time and resources. The next best source is likely to be discussion forums of other folks experiences with various cables on various types of equipment (particularly the ones where they decided to go from cable x to cable y).

Keep in mind that some cables reportedly require some period of time to settle into how they will ultimately sound. If you believe in breakin (another controversy), the periods typically indicated for this transition tend to be on the order of a few days to a week or two of active (24x7) use, depending on a number of factors - though most likely related to the type of dielectric. If you are trying to compare two cables - that is also a bit of a dicey operation. Try to keep all other variables constant. Same gear, same room, same speaker placement, same relative placement of listener to the speakers. It may take you some time of listening before you decide that a particular sound is to your liking - what might sound like more definition at first might end up seeming harsh after a while. So it may take more than just flipping back and forth a few times to get to a lasting impression of whether you really like one sound versus the other. Also keep in mind that your listening room may have a much larger effect on the sound of your system than the cables so if that's out of control - perhaps you're better off focusing on that first before you start trying to 'tune in' your cables. Another rule of thumb quoted would be to not spend more than about 10-20% of your system's cost on cabling. If you are spending more that on cabling, you might be better off buying better gear than better cables.

Not much help here, but a lot of things to consider perhaps. From what I'm seeing, seems like perhaps a bit too focused on the capacitance vs inductance issue as the title suggests. Try measuring more with your ears than your impedance meter. However, if you are interested in some more of the technical side, this might be helpful -