USB cables conducor - help

I am buying USB cable between PC and DAC. I am confused - Is it better USB cable with silver gold alloy conductor or with monocristal copper conductor ?

Thank you for your experience.



As long as you are using a PC, you probably don’t need super expensive cables. Get a streamer if you want to go to the next level.

For digital, I like silver plated cables such as audioquest Cinnamon or Vodka. There are other such a Viablue that are good too.

Others prefer high end copper. I bought some cables from a guy who swithched to Nordost which is all copper.

Get a streamer first.


I mentioned some cables.  These were in the ethernet line.  From PC to DAC is USB so the Carbon is a good silver plated cable.


Not necessarily…. Depends entirely on your bespoke system and listening room acoustics…. and the only way to know is by your own hands-on audition and experimentation.


it may actually be worse ( too bright, too edgy, blah blah ..)

I went with all-Cu CARDAS CLEAR ….terrific .

@akg_ca  I tried to try Cardas Clear.  I really did.  Cable sent to me was defective. open. Returned it and went with AQ at same price point because I could get it next day delivery.   Never looked back.


Metal should not matter - it is only data in packets (as it is with external USB HD).  I would look for quality cable with good shielding.

With PC as a source, get the least revealing cable. Decent copper USB cable should do just fine. Just pick one.
Invest in a streamer instead…PC is a bull 💩 streamer and you won’t be happy in a long run. 

What a high end cable sounds like is a complex combination of factors far beyond just the composition of conductor. Really inexpensive ones will take on the characteristic of the metal used.


If you are looking for really high quality sound, then I have to recommend getting a dedicated streamer. PCs are not good sources. However, if you are happy with what you want and feel like tweaking… a good quality cable may help… like well shielded. I would look at Cardas. You have to try them.


I have tried about every combination of PC, MAC, iPad and moved to dedicated streamers. 

I use an apple usb c cable from my pc which is a asus rampage v extreme edition 10 with a 6850k and using a Modious dac sounds okay and drives pretty loud 

Step #1: ditch using a general purpose computer as a streamer 

Step #2: experiment with USB cables. Slowly 

For your guidance, Nordost uses Silver plated conductors in their Heimdall and above USB cables.


Recommend getting a dedicate streamer first, Bluesound Node (130 latest version) or iFi......either $600 or less, I use the Node. Get a reasonable USB cable, I highly recommend a Supra USB cable.

Check eBay for Supra USB cables and should find the 2.0 version for about $55, or better yet the Excalibur for about $140.....IMO the best value in USB cables....only buy from Zendada who is the official importer

Check out final touch audio , they use a special copper with naturally accruing silver and some specs ofGold in the metal and then pounded into thickness 

it sounds very analog like and natural , Lampizator audio Carry  them 

the Callisto model  look it up many excellent reviews.

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“Don’t pay attention to those whose only answer is to buy a streamer. Using a PC with an audio only…..”

In a way this is true in that all streaming solutions are computers.  Of course, the better sounding streamers isolate from Ethernet noise, minimize internal noise from the computer segment, have really precise clocks and galvanically isolate the USB.  Some do not favor usb due to induced noise caused by the power within the cable itself.  One big difference is the quality of the power supply.

On a more serious note, many vendors have a thirty or sixty day trial period. You can do the A/B test and decide what works best. The problem is that better usually requires more money and that curve is not linear.

jpmanomet’s avatar


36 posts

Don’t pay attention to those whose only answer is to buy a streamer. Using a PC with an audio only purposed operating system works good, very good. A quality cable from a reputable brand is adequate and doesn’t have to be expensive, just keep it as short as possible. I’m calling BS on their BS.

Of course you can choose to have your opinion, backed by actual ownership experience or not. But do you really have to be nasty about other people’s opinions?

“Step #1: ditch using a general purpose computer as a streamer 

Step #2: experiment with USB cables. Slowly ”

+1, @thyname 


If you are not in a position to take step #1, then use a USB isolator to eliminate noise from your PC. You can use a generic USB cable between PC and USB Isolator and a high quality USB cable between Isolator and DAC.

Check out ZavfinoUSA, DH Labs or Supra for USB cables. 

@lalitk gives a good suggestion there. Back when I was using my Mac Mini as a streamer I used the The Wyre4Sound USB Reclocker between it and my DAC

It did help a little.

Another strong vote for streamer first.  iFi Zen stream at $399 offers a lot of sound quality for the $$$ and not a bad way to start, then worry about a better USB cable.