Looking for additional cable ideas...

I am currently experimenting with a variety of speaker cables. My system consists of Cary 306, Kimber Hero, Cary SLP 2002 pre, Kimber Hero, Cary Rocket 88 push-pull triode mode driving Spendor SP 1/2. I own Cardas cross and Kimber 8TC, and have on loan Purist Elementa (soft and uninvolving), Discovery, Goertz MI 2 Python, and Nordost Solar Wind. The cable that comes closest to what I am looking for is the Goertz. It has glorious mids, it is open and natural, with plenty of detail. It is by no means bright, but does have some noticeable sibilance. By comparison, the Nordost has a far superior high end performance, with clarity, detail, focus and no sense of grain or harshness. Right now I have the Nordost on top and the Goertz on the bottom and am enjoying the best of both worlds. Naturally however, I would prefer to find one brand of bi-wire that can give me what I am looking for. I am looking for ideas. If I had to choose one or the other from what I have now, I would take the Goertz, as it gives me a better overall presentation. The leanness of the Nordost in the mid-bass/lower midrange robs piano and sax of their natural timbre.
Hi, Mike:

I recently auditioned both the Goertz MI2 (copper) and the Goertz Python (in bi-wire sets), and had a definite preference for the MI2 over the Python. I bought the bi-wire copper MI2 (Veracity) for my main speakers, and the MI1 for the center channel speaker.

Before you make a final decision about which brand/model of cable to buy, try to audition a set of MI2's (copper). If your amp and speakers will accept spade lugs, I recommend you get the cable terminated at the factory with Alpha-Core's silver spades (note: there are two widths of spades). (You can buy a set of MI2's from Alpha-Core and return them before their trial period expires.)

I also installed several pairs of Goertz TQ2 interconnects at critical points in my system (such as preamp to power amp), and am EXTREMELY pleased with the improvement in the overall sound. For their price, the TQ2's offer excellent performance, and I recommend them to anyone looking for a high quality interconnect for less than $200 for a 1-meter pair.
For the record, i found your comments right on the money regarding the "lean" sound of Nordost. I also agree that it is very focused sounding from about 6-800 Hz and up. It is that inherit lack of "warmth" or "body" that kills it in my book. Then again, if one has "tubes in full bloom" or speakers with slighly elevated mid-bass, you might not notice this as it would tend to act in a complimentary fashion.

As to the Goertz, I second Scott's thoughts on the MI-2's. I would take the "less conventional" appearance and improved sonics of their flat cables over the "more conventional" appearance of the Pythons any day of the week. The increased involvement of the dielectric on the Python's is responsible for the high end "sibilance" and slight bass bloat that you might hear with the "round" cables. This is also true of their "flat" vs "micro-purled" interconnects going by my recent experience. The Python's and Micro-Purl's are more suited to HT work as they tend to sound a little more "exciting" or "hyped up" at the extremes. The original "flat" series works better for music reproduction as it sounds so "creamy" and "seamless" : )

The fact that the newer Goertz MI and AG speaker cables make use of Teflon should make them even better than the versions that Scott and i are talking about. In order to obtain the Teflon versions though, you would probably have to contact Goertz directly. I'm sure that most of their dealers have "old stock" at this point in time as their use of Teflon is pretty much brand new. This might not be a big deal though as Goertz would be glad to give you an in-home trial period just to check things out. Keep in mind my "standard disclaimer" when it comes to Goertz flat speaker cables though: their high capacitance has the potential to create problems with specific amplifiers. At least check into the use of the factory supplied Zobel's that they offer for this purpose.

Whatever route you decide to go, please keep us posted. It seems as if you're tastes and observations are very much in-line with mine. Like you, i'm looking for the best of both worlds i.e. detail and musicality : ) Sean
I agree with your accessment of the Nordost as well (I have Blue Heaven) and I have been considering the Goertz MI2 for myself.

Have you tried the LAT International cables? My friend and I have compared the LAT and Nordost cables on his system and mine and had the same results with both systems. The Nordost was a little more extended and had a little more bass (a little bump in the mid bass) but was thinner in the mids. The LAT was a little smoother and warmer and not quite as detailed or robust. We really are splitting hairs here but I think the LAT would be a better fit for most stereos.

I am considering the Goertz cables, can anyone tell me how they compare with the LAT? I just have not heard much about them and wonder if the Goertz are better still.
I used to go the biwire route but I am convinced that single wire cables are better with jumpers. I have gotten the best results with Silversmith and Pure Note brand cables.
Thanks to all for the input so far. It appears I am guilty.
I assumed (I know,I know ) since the Cable Co. and Goertz' own web site said the MI2 and the Python MI2 were sonic equivalents, that there was no need for me to hear the flat MI2. Now I will definitely try them. Scott, can you quantify the characteristics you preferred in the flat design? Sean, VERY interesting observation about the bass bloat. I had noticed a SLIGHTLY overripe bass, but I attributed that to the Spendor/Cary combo, based in part on discussion with Bob Neill. I did the best I could by moving the speakers further into the room, but I am curious now what the flat Goertz may do in this area. I will certainly contact the company directly regarding two other areas. Their web site says that the capacitance problem is only of concern in very few systems, with SS amps utilizing negative feedback and unstable design, coupled to speakers with high impedance at high frequencies. Since I have a zero feedback tube amp, and since I don't believe the Spendors impedance goes too high, I wasn't anticipating a problem, but better safe than sorry. Also, I would like to know if you can readily tell the Teflon version from the original. Sonic brings up a good point, have either of you tried the Goertz in single runs (maybe MI3) with their jumpers?

Sorry bout that. Forgot that you were running a tube amp. I don't see the Goertz cables creating a problem for you. As to "unstable designs", you would have to put Spectral, Pass Labs, etc.. into that category as Goertz WILL "play" with these amps.

I've not tried the newer Teflon series of flat cables. I had mentioned this to Scott just a while back and had wanted to contact Goertz about checking some out, but i just haven't gotten around to it.

As to the differences in MI-2 and MI-3, i happen to like the MI-2's better as a general rule. If you had mono-blocks, i could send you some "shorty" MI-3's to check out as my mono-blocks are currently getting a breather. Keep in mind that i've never tried any of my copper based Goertz with tubes. I've been told that tube based systems work much better with the AG ( silver ) series.

As far as jumpers go, i would talk to Goertz about what they would recommend. I don't see a problem with them making a set of bi-wires. Just keep in mind that their bi-wires are a little different from most others as they only use one conductor per polarity.

Most factory jumpers are crud to say the least. Try replacing the jumpers with a single strand of solid copper wire for each polarity. You can vary the gauge to suit how "hot" or "soft" you would like the treble to be. Heavier will present a softer approach with more midrange weight and thinner gauge will tend to highlight treble detail. I'm sure that you can find a happy medium if you've got the time and resources.

Philjolet, i've never experimented with the LAT speaker cables, so i can't make a comparison. If someone would like to send me a set of LAT's ( or any other cable for that matter ), i'd be glad to post my comparitive results : ) Sean
Another vote for Goertz MI 2's, I did a home audition and never sent them back. They have a coherence from top to bottom that is beautiful in my system. I am using between Classe amp and Thiel 3.6's, they add a slight bloom, or richness, but with perfect clarity and transparancy that the Thiels need. I am also using the factory terminated silver spades..Good luck, I bet you'll like em.
Just an "amen" - Philjolet's ears are dead-on re: the difference between the Nordost and the LATs - I heard the exact same thing in my system. The LATs do have narrower freq. response, but are much more harmonious, and overall were preferable to me.
Look no further than Kimber Monocle X, or XL (single-run) or BiFocal (bi-wire)X or XL --for the price. IC's try Kimber SELECT series and be done with it. Focus, clarity, definition, layering, staging combined with tonal hues/colors that makes music/voice sound like the real thing. These interconnects are excellent. If you can swing the extra bucks, Kimber's Silver/Copper (KS-21 series) or all pure Silver (KS-30 series) will leave you with a dropped jaw! Excruciating long burn-in time with silver series however....1,000+ hours. Cable cooker reduces time significantly.

peter jasz
Another vote for Goertz MI-2. Have upgraded recently to Silversmith but still think the Goertz MI-2 are the best bang for the buck speaker wire out there. I am not as fond of their interconnects. Definitely worth an audition.
Goertz is great for the money, Jayarr is correct, but you need Omega Micro Planar III's (copper)with matching jumpers. Very delicate construction-wise (no cats or young tikes because thin ribbons in thin mesh), but extremely high end (read: musical). $750 used (retail $1700). Not close really. Walker Audio distributes them.
Yes I have to agree with the statements on Nordost. The Quatra-fil I was running from a Wadia 861 to Pass x-350 and later Papworth Audio m200s. 240 watt tube monos both sounded lean and a bit edgy, Since i,ve done a lot a modifying to my Dunlavy,s SC4,As I knew it wasent the speaker,s.
Then I discovered the Jena Labs stuff, currently using the Faugue Ic, $800.00 that Jennifer made me a great deal on I,m now awaiting the Symphany Ic, retail $1300.00 with trade in on my Faugue only $650.00.
I have used Kimber,Audioquest Diamond, Desingner REF. Quatra-fil.LAT, and Cardas Golden.
The Jena Labs line is copper with a very real tonal quality,life like sound stage. I could go on but you get it.
I suggest you call Jennifer.
Well, the decision has finally been made and the winner is the Goertz MI-2, in the original flat design. I bought two separate runs to bi-wire. Thanks Scott and Sean, for the initial suggestion, I did find cleaner, truer bass and less pronounced treble with the flat cables. While I would love to try the Kimber Bi-focal X, they are cost prohibitive in comparison to the Goertz. Some day, when money is less of an issue, I will certainly give them a try. Thanks again to all who responded.