Copper vs. silver? As the French Chef says " No diffawrance!"
I 2nd lak’s recommendation. The Lavricables are high quality constructed and very reasonably priced for a pure silver wire conductor. I use their power cables, Grand (3) and Master (1) in my audio system. They are wonderful sounding additions and I’m very happy that I purchased them.
I use Ocellia Silver Reference pure silver IC/SC. An excellent product but more expensive than the Lavricables products. I would politely ignore those who tell you there is no difference between this or that. Pursue what you are curious about and listen and learn for yourself.
Yes there are budget silver cables.
The issue can be that cheap silver cables can be unflatteringly revealing on your components. The better the silver cables the less harsh they are.
In general: copper is warm and covers up harshness in inexpensive components. Silver coated copper can help reveal detail without giving up bass. Finally silver can be fast and detailed… but harsh and light on the bass. This is for budget cables.
Even for fairly good systems silver can be really bad. Now, high end, the materials become less important as techniques of using dielectric coatings, geometry, and strand size and mixtures of filaments effect the sound.
Having said all this. If you want to try, my go-to budget brand is DHLabs Silver Sonic.
So if your system is warm… and you are craving greater detail._ inexpensive silver may do the trick.
I know silver can brighten interconnects and I have a little experience with silver and speaker cables. I do have some 12 gauge, silver coated copper wires that are fantastic. I’ve had them over thirty years. To bad they are only about 6’ in length or they would be in my main system. Anyway, will pure silver brighten speaker cables?
After experimenting with many various Audioquest silver and copper speaker cables - silver will render significantly more detail for sure. And that detail increase will be weighted more in favor of higher frequencies. But it won’t be strident, harsh, or splashy. And it doesn’t hurt bass nor body, unless you use too small a gauge - but that can be a real problem because of silver’s high cost. The cables that mix both pure silver and pure copper wires can have a lovely tonal balance. My preferences have always been either pure silver or a mix with mostly (> 50%) silver. The new prices on AQ silver cables are stratospheric. But good used deals on older silver models do come up (Wildwood, WEL Signature, Kilimanjaro, Everest, K2, Obsidian, KE-6). Sometimes REALLY good deals. Keep in mind a 6 ft pair of Everest has a POUND of high purity silver in it.
It’s a very similar deal with the AQ interconnects, copper vs. silver. Except there are no hybrids in their IC lines. The lower end silver interconnects (Cheetah, Niagara, Wind) do have less body and weight than the higher-end silver cables.
If your system is already bordering on too bright or edgy, adding silver will definitely not help. Copper can help keep it under control. BUT better would be to resolve the balance issue in your system and then add silver cables to get the most of it :)
I have had great experience with audio envy for speaker cables. Very responsive to customers. Also morrow cable for all manner of interconnects and Ethernet cables. Great companies that you can ask questions to and get guidance and regular updates. Dramatic improvements in speaker outputs and DAC sound
I love the sound I get from Darwin cables. Check out their Specials section. It'll probably cost more than you're willing to spend but you'll never buy another speaker cable again.
All the best,
Having used and experienced both I found that silver provided more detail and an improved soundstage. They can, however, brighten your music a bit too much. I am not sure of your amp and speaker combo but that also plays a big role. Amps I demoed and heard were Boulder, Luxman, McIntosh with Martin Logan, Wilson, Focal among others. I thought silver was too bright with Focals, but the best combo was Luxman and McIntosh with Martin Logan's.
Good Luck and let us know how you make out.
If you need more high-end sparkle and sizzle, silver cables can be the way to go.
I’ve tried silver cables, but prefer copper in my system.
I can’t really recommend a "cheap" silver cable, but I would point you to usedcable . com and take a look at what they have in stock. (I like SR cables, but they’re not really what I would call "cheap".)
You’ll get a chance to try out some brand name cables in your system, and not break the bank.
If you don’t like them, you can always resell them. (I think they’ll let you return them with a restocking fee, if you so choose.)
In a revealing system, you will most certainly hear a difference. It can be rather profound, depending on the equipment used. You have to find what your system and your ears like.
There is some very good advise provided above. One bit of caution, in my opinion if you want true silver interconnects, speaker cables, power cords etc, (of any kind), make sure you purchase 5N silver. A wire that is copper with silver plating will not sound the same, and you should want to be talking apples to apples and not apples to oranges. Also expect about 200 hours of break-in to achieve the best sound.
Thanks for the system info. I don’t know what the sound characteristics of your preamp is. But looking at how many functions it has, I would be a bit concerned it might not be up to silver… would you consider your system to be pretty warm? If yes, then silver may be ok. Again, I would try DHLabs.
I think the thread does a good job of pointing out the possible outcomes. Maybe it would be best to try some from cableCo.
These are very decent for not a tremendous amount of coin. I've run them for years.
The other very good option is Duelund 12 gauge single wire you cut to length you need for your purposes. This stuff is ridiculously good for not much coin. You'll need read the specs. No termination options, just wire and that's okay.
Remember, whatever length you need between component and speaker will need be quadrupled. It's easy to order too little not taking into account the 4 factor.
In some scenarios this could certainly be the case given the many independent variables of specific audio systems. I can say that this sure was not my outcome.
I remain very happy with my current components and have no interest in wholesale changes. The addition of high-quality pure silver cables has been terrific in my audio system.
When swapping components in the ~10 - 20K MSRP range, the differences are significant but matching considerations with the other components dictate whether the resulting system configuration is good or bad. Swapping copper for large gauge solid silver speaker cables provides me a "yeah that’s better" reaction with all the "good" system configurations. It’s not that copper sounds bad, but silver gives more lifelike detail. That, for 2K - 4K in used deals, was well worth it to me - the next level up in components is not going to be achievable for that little extra amount.
This mirrors my experience with high quality silver cabling. In addition to the "lifelike detail", I experience increased openness, air and a more convincing natural tone and timbre. System, component and wire quality dependent of course.
"This mirrors my experience with high-quality silver cabling. In addition to the "lifelike detail", I experience increased openness, air, and a more convincing natural tone and timbre. System, component, and wire quality dependent of course"
@charles1dad, I agree 100%, that's how I would describe the silver wire in my system also. Excellent description.
A happy user of Lavri pure silver cables. I am running them on speakers and interconnects. Power cables are Sinergystic Research Foundation.
On my system and to my tastes, the Lavris sound beautiful. Neutral and revealing but without a hint of glare or coloration. This said my system is 1/2 a notch on the warm side of neutral.
As far as sound is concerned, hardly anything noticeable even with the most sophisticated measuring equipment, including your ears.
As far as your wallet is concerned, a great reduction in its thickness.
Measured in ohms, the difference in the resistance of 24-gauge, 1000-foot-long silver and copper wire is a mere 2 ohms. Your connections are likely to have more resistance since some of them are likely to be brass.
And... you are very unlikely to use 24 gauge wire for a 1000 feet.
Basically, NO DIFFERENCE.
Others who claim otherwise need to see audiologists as usual is the case in this forum.
@cakyol It’s rather sad if you can’t hear the difference in speaker cables. IMHO either your ears and/or system is sub-par. There’s much more to cable design than gauge or resistance. Live happily in your ignorance, but your impressions fly very much in the face of almost everyone here. Either you’re right, or 95% of the rest of us here are right. I’ll leave it up to the OP to make his own decision.
If that’s been your personal listening experience, then so be it. It’s quite a contrast from mine. Very easily heard and distinct differences in my audio system. People will have different outcomes. I don’t disregard yours and you shouldn’t disregard mine. Quality silver cables are unquestionably a sonic benefit in my system.
I'm going to suggest a speaker cable that's silver in name only
Take a look at the Silversmith Fidelium
When I put them in my system the benefits were immediate and significant
Somewhat akin to hearing my entire music catalog in a fresh and new format
Many raise the hair on your arm and head shaking my my my moments
A tremendous price performer, IMHO
Lots of techno detail in this youtube review but if you want to cut to the chase, the readers digest condensed summary version is the Fideliums are game changers
Enjoy the journey
@charles1dad : you are really paying attention to what @cakyol says? You are completely wasting your time and the internet ink 😂. There are a few handful of dudes here, including Jason Bourne (see above, pretty much the very first poster on every single cable thread, never misses), who post the same thing over and over for years. It’s like a broken clock. And it’s their unfortunate life goals, their raison d'être, so to speak
In response, @jasonbourne52 and myself are probably only the few ones here who speak the reality and see past the pretentiousness of being able to hear music in a vacuum or the difference that unobtanium cables introduce.
I don't know cakyol. I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt and respect their comments/experiences no matter if similar or dissimilar to my own. Now if I begin to realize that one is simply trolling for attention/disruption, I'll just ignore them.
Well, I do 😉
There are typically no experiences. They just know
All I can say is: 😂😂
Tell me one thing though. Please help me understand. If the cables is definitely not a topic that interests you much, why do you keep posting on every single cable forum? Logically, if something, anything, does not interest me, I just ignore it. Common sense. No?
Sometimes I wish I were a specialist in psychology and mental health studies. This would be a perfect case study on what motivates people in their life & endeavors