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Feedback 2011

(newest first):

‚Äč

 

December 2011

[Ultimate Silver Dream interconnects] "Hi Alister
The cables arrived yesterday.  I'm using them between my CD Player (Classe CD202) or My Processor (Anthem D2v - which means I can listen to vinyl or radio also) and my Headphone amp (Schiit Lyr).  I'm using the new hifiman HE-6 Headphones. (I heard them both at the Hi Fi Show held in Dublin in November and was very impressed) I was using some basic Van Del Hul cables and your cables made an immediate huge improvement.  I'm letting them run in for a while now.
Regards John"

AND...

 

[Ultimate Silver Dream interconnects and speaker cables]

"Hi Alister. The cables arrived in Canberra last Tuesday. I picked them up on Wednesday and have been running them in continuously since then (around 92 hrs at present).

 

In summary, I love them! Openness, transparency and micro-detail which has had me hearing subtleties in the mix and nuances in recordings I have been listening to for 30 years. Vocals really soar, the soundstage is enlarged vertically in particular. My previous PNF speaker cables and interconnect were very good for the money but the USDs take the music to another level again. It is interesting how the USDs emphasise different elements of the music...

 

BTW, I have a MARANTZ KI Signature Pearl CD player, modded Atoll power amp, modded Shanling pre-amp and Merlin Audio TSM monitor speakers. It is a very revealing and neutral combo but tends towards being slightly light on 'punch'.

 

Overall, the word 'stunning' has come to mind repeatedly in the past 4 days.

 

Thanks for everthing from start to finish... 

Cheers mate, 

Matt"

 

 

October 2011

 

"Alister,

The (Ultimate Silver w/ Cardas plug) interconnects are first class and your customer service ranks with the best based on my experiences of over thirty years around quality audio gear. I would wholeheartedly recommend your Ultimate Silver interconnects to any audiophile seeking a high value, high performance product.

Best Regards,  Geoff Trout"

 

September 2011

[Silver Dream XLR interconnects] "Your cables are the only analogue interconnect in the system....from the Uther to the Nuforce. So far, I am loving them. At 20% of what I paid for my KCAG's years ago.....you rock.
Well done, sir! Will probably be ordering another pair of your top line 8 strand soon. Will use these on my bedroom system. At your prices I can afford both!... Bill"


AND...
 

A nice review of the Artisan Silver Phono Stage [Discontinued product] at "Soundstage! Network":

"Right from the get-go, the Artisan belied its size by laying down bass that was strong, rhythmic, tuneful, and tight...I often found my foot and head bobbing in time. When I played music that highlights complex time signatures or is built on a strong rhythmic pulse, the Silver kept time beautifully, delivering the full flow of the music right on time for dinner.... With the Silver MC’s good extension at both ends of the audioband and its clear, robust midrange, well-recorded acoustic jazz, chamber music, and acoustic folk and pop all came off rather well. This was perhaps the Silver’s greatest strength: a tonal consistency and overall coherence that sang right along with the music. The Silver’s sound was very natural and unforced -- there were no obvious tonal aberrations or frequency-response bumps that spotlit instruments in a certain way or highlighted specific frequency ranges. This is a good thing in any phono stage, and somewhat unexpected in one so reasonably priced... 

As I write this, I’m listening to Tears for Fears’ The Seeds of Love (Fontana 838730), one of my all-time favorite pop records. The CD is rather steely, but the vinyl sounds fantastic through the Artisan, as have many more LPs from my collection. Without comparison to phono stages costing many times the MC’s price, the Artisan’s enticing blend of tonal and frequency coherence, good extension at both ends of the audioband, and a bubbling, snappy rhythmic capability might get me thinking I’m pretty satisfied. If something like the crisp and brisk, direct and forthright sound of older Naim products speaks to you, then you’ll really like the Artisan Silver MC. 

I think the Artisan would pair nicely with something like a Rega P3 or Pro-Ject turntable, and an MC cartridge such as a Dynavector 20X2, an Ortofon Blue, or a myriad of others. It would be a killer upgrade for those who have good-quality integrated amplifiers and who use the afterthought built-in phono setting. My point here is that those who play LPs but don’t want to sink a lot of money into associated equipment now have a great starting/stopping point. If the Artisan Silver MC doesn’t pull the carpet out from under truly high-end phono stages, it’s still a solid, robust performer, and I’ve heard more expensive phono stages that can’t better it. 

All this for 305 bucks? Fuhgettaboudit. I don’t think I’ve heard the Silver MC’s equal for anywhere close to that amount. To better it, you’d need to move higher up the price ladder." 

Full review here.

 

AND...

 

 

 

Now you needn't just take my word for it: The Centrance DACmini [Discontinued product] is a killer component!

Great review from Hi-fi World magazine - click here to read.

 

 

 

 

 

 

August 2011

 

 

 

[Silver Dream Mark 2 Headphone Upgrade Cable]

"Hi Alister,

The Silver Dream Mark 2 headphone cable you send me at August,8th arrived to Portugal at August,10th by 10 o'clock. Terrific service.

The Cable construction is suberb.

At the very first beginning I felt immediately the potential of the cable in comparation with the stock cable. All the spectrum of the music much more there.

After about 100 hours of burn-in the cable gives me all the plaiser that I'm looking for...music with transparence,information and balance. Beautiful product. Congratulations.

I'm using it with the following system:

-Primaluna Prologue Eight Tube CD Player

-Graham Slee Solo SRPG II headphone amplifier

-HD 650 headphones

-Giant Killer interconnect.

I'm very happy and always open to ear something from you concerning improvement in this area.

All the best.

José Frangolho"

AND...

 

[Ultimate Silver Dream interconnects] "Hi Alister.

Thank you for my second pair of ultimate silver dream cables. I've used this set to connect up my quad pre-power amps and what a differance they have made yet again. They do exactly what you say on the web site. I was using good quality cables before which cost more than your cables but all i can say is that the ultimate silver dream cables have blown my other cables out of the water. The improvement is unbelievable. The sound from my rogers studio 1's has so much improved. Cheers Ady."

AND...

[Ultimate Silver Dream RCA interconnects] "Hi Alister
Cables have had approx. 50 hours and clearly they display all the characteristics of a quality product; openness , transparency, detail, timing, and precise imaging in a deep, wide sound stage. All these virtues can be found in plenty of exotic cables but only a few prove to be musical as well. The Ultimate Silver Dream is one of those few, and that's after only 50 hours on the clock! Value for money is not normally a prime consideration for me but at £300, well ................it's pretty obvious.
A friend of mine on hearing the cables in place in my system said that the improvement was sufficient to have believed the 300B S.E.T. integrated had returned from a complete rebuild. I'm still smiling.
Many thanks
Marshall"

AND...

 

 

["Ultimate Silver Dream SE" interconnects] "Alister, After a couple of months' listening, I am very pleased with the results with your interconnects.  I use them to connect a Da Vinci turntable/Thales tonearm/Soundsmith strain gauge cartridge to connect to the Soundsmith pre-amp.   They have corrected an over-brightness with the former cables and basically disappeared into the system....

Best Regards, Simon"

 



July 2011

[Ultimate Silver Dream speaker cables]

"Hi Alister,

I've had the cables in my system for 200 hours now (I know exactly as my preamp has an hours counter) and I am very pleased. They are excellent, giving me more of the same as the interconnects. I'm particularly impressed with a new level of transparency and clarity. As with the interconnects, I love the musicality and tonal balance produced. Out of interest I found the circa 100 hours mark to be the point at which things really started to get good...

Many thanks and Best Regards, Howard"

 

June 2011

Tony Bolton has given the Artisan Silver MC Phono Stage [Discontinued product] a very nice review in July 2011's edition of Hi-fi World magazine. Click here for the full review.

AND...

[Silver Dream 5-pin DIN to 2 RCAs interconnect] "Hi Alister, Hope you are well.

Right I've had the silver DIN interconnect in my system for a while now so they should be more or less burned in. My impressions are that the difference I immediately encountered on the balanced interconnects was not as apparent. In no way did I feel that the sound had worsened just that there wasn't so much difference. I therefore just ABd with my previous DIN Anticable interconnect, something I didn't even bother with the XLRs, I knew immediately the sound was better...

Overall, I'd say the silver interconnects pretty much do everything the website says. I like the description "shimmering". The sound is livelier, more musical and sweeter.  The tonal balance is spot on for me. I also agree that ropey recordings aren't as bad with these interconnects in place.
 

I am now seriously tempted by  the summer sale and just wanted to confirm that this would apply to the speaker cables I inquired about...

Kind regards,

Howard"

AND...

"Dear Alister,  I should have emailed you earlier in how much I have enjoyed the first interconnects you made for me. They are just wonderful, in all of the most musical areas. When I got your email today with the 20% sale I just could not resist. Please apply the SUM 20 to the order I just placed. I'll bet I order another pair before the end of August.   All the best, and thanks for such a superior product at a really wonderful price.  Sincerely David Worth."

AND...

[Ultimate Silver Dream interconnects] "Hello  Alister,

  firstly  thankyou  for  your prompt service  in  supplying  my U S D cables.It's been  a few  weeks  since  delivery and I've  now  accumulated  some  48  hours of  use. I  must say  at  this  point how  important  it  was  reading  about  'burning in' the  cables, on  hearing  them  initially  the  sound  was  very bright with  a  definite lack  of  real  base. So  much  so  that the  beat  to  the  music  seemed  to  be provided  by  symbols  more  than  bass, and  after  two  days  of intensive  use  I  was  seriously  thinking  they  might  be  returned. Detail  and  clarity  were  obviously  present  but  the  tonal  balance  was  positively  lacking. Now  for  the  good  news, after  approximately  one  week  of  use  the  bass  started  to  come  through, and  the  treble lost  its  harshness  and  prominence  to  become  sweet  and  much  more  relaxed. At  this point  the  attention  was  rightfully  drawn  to  the  wonderful  clarity  of  voices,  and  lyrics  I  could  now  understand  for  the  first  time  on  more  involved  tracks. As  of  present  I  am  now  'seeing'  a  very  precise  soundstage  that  was  not  there  at  the  beginning, which  after  some  48hours  of  use  is  still  improving. Very  fine  cables  in  my  bi-amped and  bi-wired  system, and  NO they  will  not  be  sent  back.

   Many  thanks, Pete S."

 

May 2011

[Ultimate Silver Dream Speaker Cables] "Hello alister
Received speaker cable on Friday,sounds very good the mid range is much more clean sounding with more detail.Hearing back ground sounds which are more defined and audible now.Some discs which were bad recordings with harshness are now more enjoyable to listen to,and the cables are not fully broken in I am expecting more detail to improve as the cables get used more...Thank you petro"

AND...

"Thank you Alistair for a wonderful product,
I took delivery of my "Ultimate Silver Dream" XLR interconnects earlier this week.
I installed one cable on the left channel only while the right channel remained connected via an Audioquest Diamondback.
The left channel delivered a surprising improvement in clarity  and detail over the right channel and no time was wasted discarding the other Diamondback for the Ultimate Silver Dream.
I shall save hard for a pair of your Ultimate Silver Dream speaker cables which I shall treat myself to on my next birthday.
Yours Sincerely
Daniel Brereton"
 

April 2011

"Due to excellent results in my big hifi-rig at home, I have just ordered another cable from you...I'm looking forward to a complete connection from source to amp with your cables! They're really good...
All the best!
Mattes"
 

March 2011

"Hello Alister,

Your two pairs of xlr ultimate silver dream interconnects have convinced me to no end. I use them from my cd player to my pre amp and from there to my poweramp (all Primare). I consider myself extremely lucky to have come across reviews on the internet. I prefer your cables to the very expensive MIT cables. I noticed cleaner bass response. I can now sit closer to the back wall in my listening room and the sound remains uncongested. I can 'see' further into the music. Sounds previously not quite distinguishable become true to life/live instruments. This is all very nice of course but now the downside: I fear my present speakercables will have to go. I would like to order a pair of ultimate silver dream cables (2x2metres) to feed my audio physic tempos. No more copper for me; artisan silver rules! 

kind regards, peter fennis"

AND...

[Ultimate Silver Dream speaker cables] "Hi Alister

I just wanted to let you know that I'm very pleased with the speaker cable I purchased. Your products and service are terrific, keep up the good work!

Thanks

Geoff"

AND...

 

[Ultimate Silver Dream XLR interconnects and Ultimate Silver Dream speaker cables] "Hi Alister, The cables have made a huge difference in the system; the sound is exactly how it should sound I am very happy with my purchase. Kind Regards Vanny Sherry"

February 2011

 [Silver Dream USB cable added to a system already containing all silver interconnects] "Hi Alister, Last night I had my first listen with the USB cable. From the first note it was so obvious that my skepticism that there could be any truly audible differences between USB cables was entirely unfounded. I was blown away actually. I thought "I'm not even going to bother A/B'ing this with my old cable as the difference is so major that there's no point A/B'ing to confirm what I already know." Absolutely everything has improved very noticeably. Was I ever missing out on much unrealized potential of my system. My system already sounded great, but this cable has really lifted everything to a whole new level and I am shocked quite frankly. I really wasn't expecting this.

Thank you!
Ted"

January 2011

"Hello Alister, 

Thanks for giving me the privilege of buying your cable.

It is now fully 'run in'.   Well how shall I describe it? Easy! Although not cheap its one of the greatest hi-fi bargains out there. An audio equivalent of the Nissan Skyline. All the performance for a quarter of the cost of anything near it.

The cable brings with it an ease of sound, tangible weight and extended clarity. No harshness just a beautiful sweet righteousness.  

I have been a hi-fi nut for more than 30 years and in that time I have used many many cables. Your cables are right up there with the Valhallas and AN Silvers of this world.  Thank you once again.

Best Regards,   Andy Dziegiel (Artisan Silver Cables 'No Brainer' Fan)  

P.s When funds allow I will look to purchase some speaker cable..."

AND...

"I've now listened to these fairly extensively and will be keeping them. At first listen they seemed "soft". After a short listen that impression was gone. They allow a lot more of the "texture" of the music through. CD's are much more listenable with new nuances presenting themselves. SACD's have added warmth compared to my previous cables with no loss of detail. The cables are a bargain in my opinion."

AND...

"Alister,

Having let the cables settle, I can say I am extremely pleased that I went ahead with the Ultimate Silver Dream balanced XLR interconnects.

Sometimes when you compare components the differences are subtle and you have to swap many times and do very extended listening to hear the difference.  That was not the case this time, there is a very noticeable difference between your cables and the Kimber KCAG balanced cables they replace.
 

Very initially it seems the KCAGs are more detailed but then you quickly realize they are just forward in the mid and upper range. You can say they are a bit brittle or harsh. Your cables are in fact more detailed but beautifully sweet and pure.  They have lots of attack but are not "in your face".
 

The bass again is different.  The KCAGs superficially sound to have more bass but what they do is smear the base notes together. The Ultimate Silver Dreams go as deep but are more detailed so you hear the individual notes. This detail extends across the whole range so you hear a lot more micro dynamics which makes the music sound more real.
 

I also found while the sound stage of the KCAGs is broad and instruments placed across it, they blend one into the next. The Ultimates create an inky black silence on to which the instruments are then placed so there is space around them.  It's like going from 2D to 3D, the room just got larger.
 

So once again the Ultimates have really delivered the goods.  Great product at a great price.

Regards, Peter"

AND...

"Hi Alister,

Thanks for the info on the cable! And sorry for the late reply... but I was bloody busy in the last days, as I had to bring my ship (a 35-years-old research vessel) through the suez canal and into the red sea, actually heading to Jeddah in Saudi-Arabia... not the best place to be, and as I don´t trust the saudiarabian royal mail too much, I won´t be able to appreciate the cable´s qualities until springtime.

Thanks also again for the RCA cable you sent me - meanwhile, I checked it on your website and found out that you did not only sent any basic cable, but the top-of-the-line interconnects!!! Such commitment to customers was absolutely unexperienced during the last 30 years of interest in hifi...

And as promised, I was blown away by the cable´s performance. I indeed used pure silver cables before (Mudra Silvercom, which are not cheap either...), but the gain in quality is obvious and much higher then expected. In the moment, I use the cable in my mobile hifi rig (.flac files with up to 24/192 resolution, played with Foobar, through a M2Tech HiFace, a pure silver digital cable, MF V-DAC and MF V-CAN into my HD 800) between the DAC and the headphone amp.
The cable is a musical one - that´s for sure. It delivers better insight, less artificial quality and overall a much more involving experience.
The resolution is better than before, but without any additional brightness or glare, and that´s a very welcome combination.
Tonality is neutral, the gain in resolution is equal from bottom to top, and no harsh sibilants or silvery coloration is experienced - indeed a very rare and most sophisticated performance.
I´m absolutely looking forward to hear this cable in my rig at home. I´m also planning to purchase further cables, as I know well about synergy effects in a hifi chain.
The Ultimate Silver Dream RCA by Artisan Cables is not really cheap - but worth every penny.

You might quote the above on your site - hope it helps!
I will add up more once I have the cable back at home in April, but I´m sorry that I´m no professional writer...

Looking forward to hear more music with your fine cables, I remain
with best regards to the Isle of Wight

Mattes"
 

 

 

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