Phono Cable and interconnect compatibility...?

I am nearing the end of my analog upgrade, now I need to connect the pieces. RCA to RCA.

First, I need a phono cable to connect my new VPI Prime to a  Manley Chinook phono pre. (VPI Shlyla cart)

Next, connect the Prime to an Aesthetix, Mimas integrated amp.

Should I use the same cables?

I might consider a short-term,  affordable option and then upgrade when I have the means. The table and the Chinook hit the bank pretty hard.


Phono cables for VPI Prime to chinook and make sure to connect ground.

RCA cables from Chinook to integrated. 

Unless I’m missing something, the TT doesn’t need to be connected to your integrated. 

It would probably easier to audition the same brands. It gets complicated very quickly auditioning all sorts of combinations. 

I assume you have some kind of connector in there now. Probably just cheap. Good.

I highly recommend you listen for many many hours to make sure you understand what your system sounds like. Personally I use DHLabs interconnects as my standard “starting point”. I make sure everything is broken in and settled. Then start thinking about what cables would be good. I have fifty years of experience and know what the major companies sounds like. Audio Quest, Transparent, and WireWorld and Cardas, and a bunch more.


But I recommend getting at least three sets that are at the upper end of your budget and try them. Dealer or lending library… or friends. Take your time… like listen for a day each and switch. The improvement must justify cost.






The high quality of your components can definitely benefit from better cables.  
It’s always best to try cables in your own system to find a sound “you” subjectively like.

Borrowing from friends, dealers, and manufacturers when available is the lowest cost method.

Buying and selling used would also save you $.  Keep in mind it’s easier to resell mainstream brands/models.

The  Cable Company lending library for a fee may be a good option - make sure you know their restrictions 

Iconoclast Cables has white papers that describe how they designed their cables- gives one a basic background on audio cabling design and cost

Copper is generally consider warmer than silver

Silver is generally considered cleaner, quicker, but may be bright depending on the audio chain.

A budget would be helpful, but it’s probably best for you to incrementally/conservatively move up the cable line/expense as you gain experience on what you like.  

Triode Wire Labs. Reasonably priced and excellent build quality and sound. The fact that he teams up with Volti Audio with those high efficiency speakers and it never sounds harsh or strident speaks volumes about the cables, IMO. 

More info... I'm running a pair of Focal 1038 be speakers with 2 REL s3 subs. Using Silversmith speaker cables. I want to stay away from a bright sound as the Focals need to be reigned in a bit...

More info... I'm running a pair of Focal 1038 be speakers with 2 REL s3 subs. Using Silversmith speaker cables. I want to stay away from a bright sound as the Focals need to be reigned in a bit...

I replaced a full loom of Silver Audio cables with TWL for that reason. I was using Audio Physics speakers at that time.

@williewonka  would you say the Zavfino interconnects excel in clarity?  More so than say Audio Envy?

@gochurchgo - thats a tough one - I do not know Audio Envy, but from their web site it appears their geometry and the fact they also use OCC copper, I think, would put them in a similar league to the Zavfino cables, but without hearing both of them it would be hard to make a useful assessment.

You might want to ask that question on the Zavfino thread (below)

Audiogon Discussion Forum

Regards - Steve

@gochurchgo - Thank you for brining Audio Envy cables to my attention

I had a chance to take a closer look at the Audio Envy Cable specs and assembly techniques.

Here’s a "general summary" of the similarities between them...

NOTE: Dielectric Constant of insulation is DK (see below)

                                                                       Zavfino                    Audio Envy

Employ OCC copper                                           x                                  x

Employ low DK Insulation                                    x                                  x

Employ solid copper conectors                             x                                 x

Employ advanced cable geometry*                       x                                 x

* while the geometries of these two cables are quite different from one another, they would both provide similar advantages over the more common type of cable geometry (e.g. twisted pair or braiding) and would allow them both to perform significantly better.

Many big Name Brands at a similar price point seldom offer

  • advanced cable geometries
  • better insulations (like cotton or silk)
  • solid copper connectors (most use some ype of copper alloy at best)
  • OCC copper wires (most use OFC copper)

Unfortunately I could not find L/C/H measurements for either brand, but both geometries would probably perform towards the lowed end of "acceptable"

I do tink that the Zavfino speaker and power cables would have the edge over the Audio Envy Speaker/Power Cables, due to the exceptoinal "large wire geometry" and the Zavfino TOTL Interconnects should provide oteceably better sound, but at a significant premium.


  • Audio Envy is a cut above many other big name brands
  • their price point is compelling for such an advanced cable design
  • if a person were new to cable upgrades, then Audio Envy would be a very good place to start, because they would outperform many name brands, especially those of a similar price point. They demonstrate what higher end cables are capable of.
  • For the extreme TOTL components I still believe Zavfino would provide an edge because of their use of silver wires, which improves on details, image and dynamic performance

I would have no problem recommending Audio Envy cables over more popular brands, especially for those on a tighter budget. They provide very good value for money and are a very reasonably priced product.

Please Note - all of my comments above are based upon my many years of prototyping different combinations of wires, insulations, geometries and connectors, together with significant feedback from other enthusiasts regarding cable construction techniques.

I have not tried either of these bands, but their designs use similar approaches to my own cable construction techniques.

Hope that helps - Steve






OCC Silver Dart Speaker | sixwix1 (