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Feedback 2023

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Quick links to some reviews:

Hi-fi Choice Review 2023 here

Hi-fi Choice Review 2014 here      Six Moons Review here     

Ultimate Audio Review here      Head-fi Review here     

Hi-fi News Review 2012 here

 

............

January 2023 

Massively chuffed to receive a 5-Star review for our flagship pure silver analogue interconnect cables The Nth Degree - NCF Edition:

https://www.artisansilvercables.com/ncf-review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

............
Customer feedback 2023 (most recent first). 
 

November 2023 

 

[Headphone upgrade cable to fit HifiMan HE1000 Stealth] 

We think Colin quite likes what the cable does for his fabulous new high-end headphones! 

 

"Oh my goodness! This is remarkable: With the HiFiMAN HE1000 Stealth, this Artisan Silver Cables upgrade cable made as much of an improvement -if not more!- as it did with my HE560. And that had been the most profound improvement I’d ever heard a cable make - and these new headphones already sounded excellent with the standard cable! Now they sound perfect. For those outside the audiophile community, it’s impossible to understand what that means when I say “perfect”, but I’ve never been able to say it about anything else, no matter how good the setup was. This little system sounds perfect - its accuracy and sonic attributes are literally faultless. And all it took to go from a great sounding setup to a perfect one, was this cable. I can’t get my head around it, it’s that good. No! I keep saying “good” when I mean “perfect”! We’re just not used to experiencing perfection.... 

...The amount of acoustic information coming out of these headphones is now overwhelming.

 

I just posted this on my Facebook page and will post a more detailed version on the group in due course, once my brain has figured out how to process so much information. For example, listening to the Dido album Still On My Mind, alternating vocal lines with different processing have their own unique soundstage within, and part of, the overall soundstage. I’ve never heard that before. This cable and this little system (Astell&Kern AK240SS) has totally blown my mind!

 

Thank you so much.

Colin"

And...

 

 

 

[Two pairs of Silver Dream analogue interconnects

K is both a long-standing classical musician and an audiophile

He recently sent us this fascinating account:

 

"Alister, I have had your silver cables in my system for a little time now. I have also made several other upgrades to the system, and the sound is absolutely sublime. 

 

I listen mostly to classical music, in all styles and periods, but especially chamber music, piano music, and orchestral music. 

 

I also have a separate music room, with a good, large German grand piano (a Steingraeber B192) which I play. 

I can definitely hear differences between different brands of piano on well-recorded commercial recordings, and in the rare cases when a commercial recording uses a Steingraeber grand, I can immediately hear the specific family sound timbre that all the larger Steingraeber grands have. 

Not praising my ears - praising the quality of sound reproduction from my domestic audio system that can let me distinguish such minute variations of sound.

 

My wife often thinks that I am playing when I play piano recordings through the system, and I have to say that although I am not as good as a professional concert pianist, I can imagine that there is a grand piano physically present in our living room, being played to me, when I play a commercial recording. 

 

When I play back recordings I have made on our grand piano, the sound is completely realistic and most importantly of all to me, very musical playback. It's difficult to be absolutely confident as to which components have made the most difference, or whether it is the continuous improvement from relatively small incremental gains. 

Whatever the reason, it is difficult to imagine a more realistic, mellifluous and musical sound from a domestic audio system. 

 

The highest praise I can offer is that all the equipment and technology just fades away, and I seem to be listening directly to the music, not to audio components. For clarity, my system consists of:

 

Sugden CD player, used purely as a transport. Connected by a decent but not stupidly expensive co-axial cable from Ecosse to:

 

S.M.S.L M500 v3 DAC connected by some silver cables from you I bought several years ago to:

 

Exposure 3010S2 D integrated amplifier (with their MM phono card fitted), used solely as a pre-amplifier, connected by the silver cables I recently bought from you to:

 

Exposure 5010 monoblocks. These are connected by some high-end speaker cables I bought from AliExpress (They are clearly not the very high-end American brand they purport to be, but possibly come from the same factory. Whatever, they are clearly more than cheap nasty cables branded with a top-end cable manufacturer's logo. They are substantially better (more lively, more pzazz) than the CableTalk cables I used to use) to:

 

Castle Acoustic Howard S2 transmission line floor-standing speakers.

 

I also stream music from Idagio via an old laptop, using a Supra USB cable: I've never been convinced that anything more than a well-constructed cable brings additional benefits in transmitting digital signals.

 

I also use an AR EB101 turntable, with an Ortofon 2MM bronze cartridge. The cables used to connect this to the amplifier are pretty thin, but they are hard-wired in and it would be a fairly complex job to rewire it.

 

Recently, I replaced all the mains cables to the components with Tertullus audiophile mains cables, feeding through a Tacima 6-way mains conditioner connected to a power outlet on the wall. The house was completely rewired 5 years ago, and it is a fairly well-behaved mains supply, although it typically does sound better in the evening, presumably demand on the electricity supply up and down the road has eased off by then. I'm not absolutely convinced the mains cables and power conditioner have made a noticeable difference, but at the very least they haven't worsened the sound, and in the scheme of things they weren't that expensive.

 

I've been making music and listening to music, live and recorded, for over 60 years. My first degree was Bachelor of Music, and I would say my listening is probably more focussed than most people's. 

I still attend orchestral, chamber music, and vocal recitals and concerts in Liverpool, well over 20 times each season; as an undergraduate in the University of London I used to go up to concerts two or three times a week in term-time, so I have a pretty extensive musical background and experience.

 

The very finest sound from the system comes from high-quality recordings streamed from Idagio at the top rate they offer, in the evening when our neighbours are out and I can replay music at a realistic volume level. 

I am convinced that your silver cables used to transmit analogue signals to the pre-amp and then from that to the monoblocks, are a large part of the reason for the wonderful sound my system makes.

 

Best wishes,

K..."

October 2023 

Ultimate Silver Dream speaker cables & The Nth Degree DIGITAL interconnect

"Hi Alister,

         Sorry it’s been a while but I have had to endure another holiday (I know life’s tough sometimes). 

Another reason for the delay was the fact that I felt the cables were at a point where they were as good as they would get and then they just go another leap forward anyway they are on 150hrs now.

          My speakers are One Thing Audio modified Quad 57s, they are not known for their bass but with your cables I now have amazing bass that is so realistic.

One of the virtues of the Quads is their midrange I didn’t expect it could be improved , but vocals are so lifelike and lead guitars are so lively they leap out right in front of you.The top end just sparkles it is so refined and cultured never harsh.

But for me it’s the clarity which creates space for the individual instruments to be firmly in their own space, coupled with dynamic speed creating an amazing three dimensional soundstage.

           I guess I should give credit to The Nth Degree Digital cable for laying the foundations for all this amazing music. This all reminds me of a tv ad from years ago when I think it was Nigel Haversack said one instinctively knows when something is right.

           Anyway thank you for your amazing cables, you do a great job,

                   Yours sincerely,

                              David Williams"

 

 

 

September 2023 

The Nth Degree - NCF Edition flagship analogue RCA cables

"Morning Alister

Cables have arrived,!! WOW they have no right to sound that good out of the box,and those gorgeous rca terminations. I will keep you updated.   

             Cheers David"

And...

 

 

Repair to a 5-year-old Ultimate Silver Stream 2 USB cable 

 

"Hi Alister,

Thank you very much indeed, I greatly appreciate that and have just made the £85 payment.

You’re a good man, a fact that has become increasingly obvious to me over the years, and a very significant part of why I keep coming back to you.

The fact that your cables sound amazing, especially considering their price relative to your competitors, and look amazing with attention to detail, completes the picture.

And everyone I’ve come across on Internet forums and groups who also has experience of dealing with you, has said the same thing, just in their own words.

 

In the cut-throat world of business, which tends to attract ruthless characters seeking maximum profit, finding a company led by someone who clearly cares about his customers personally, and lets their conscience dictate the price of products, rather than what you could get away with charging (considerably more!), is very special nowadays.

I admire you and your ethics every bit as much as your cables.

 

Thanks again,

Colin"

 

June 2023 

[Ultimate Silver Dream analogue interconnects with Cardas SLVR SS RCAs

"Hi Alistair,

I got them thanks. Out of the box, the difference is amazing.
The amount of discernible detail and instrument separation and just plain vocal is stupefying.

(I run Martin Logan Montis from a Valve-Hybrid (250w) integrated, made in this country (South Africa). Valve-Audio).

I.e. Money extremely well spent.

Thanks

Rgds"

May 2023

[The N'th Degree Digital, with WBT 0110AG RCAs] 

Short, but sweet :-)

 

"It's Daniel - just a small bit of feedback - the "Nth degree" digital coax is amazing!" 

April 2023

[The N'th Degree XLR flagship analogue interconnects]

 

"Hi Alister, wow, WOW!

After half a cd track yesterday evening I knew that something had happened…

 

The presentation is very relaxed with sounds arriving in the room with no forced detail & seemingly without effort. Some reviews suggest that the SFMA are a bit short of bass. That’s not my view & The N'th Degrees keep it tight & rhythmical & the top end is crystal clear & sweet. (Bass heads wouldn’t have bought the Sonus Fabers in the first place).

Rhythm, drive & control are fabulous & everything emerges from an utterly silent background. Previously slightly recessed sounds now seem to have assumed a proper place in the soundscape rather than being a bit of a distraction. It’s early days but I think a treble “overhang” I sometimes hear has gone or perhaps it has transformed into a sweeter decay…..??

So, those are my quick impressions but the Sonus Fabers are still short of hours which bodes well!

I think my infrastructure is probably now complete unless, unless… bring on the NCFs.

(I had been considering getting a Cyrus PSU-XR but in the light of recent expenditures & the fact that they’ve just whacked up the price by 20% that is now off the agenda).

I was really surprised by the weight of the parcel yesterday, the plugs are things of beauty, heavyweight gems.

 

Many thanks & Best Regards, John

PS. Perhaps a bit of a cliche, but these cables might equate to an electronics upgrade."

 

And...

[The N'th Degree- NCF Edition flagship analogue interconnects, with Furutech XLRs 

and The N'th Degree DIGITAL with WBT-0110AG RCAs]

 

"Hi Alister

Having received the Nth Degree ic's about a month ago...i wanted to share my impressions. My system, as listed below, is capable of revealing differences between cables(if any are present).

                 1 M    Nth Degree XLR's between AMR PH77 Phono Pre and Pre

             0.75M    Nth Degree Coax w WBT between SimAudio Mind 2 Streamer and Accuphase DP75V

                  Turntable Brinkman Spyder with 10.5 arm and Hana Umami Red

                  Speakers Sonus Faber Cremona M via Yter speaker cables

                  Puritan PSM156 Power conditioner and assorted quality pc's

 

Most of us in this obsession, I mean hobby....are always looking for an improvement after a while. It's in our biology...looking for the next high in our audio journey(legally!)....so one day while searching........

 

I was at one of my favorite audio stores(this year) where I was sat down at a modestly priced amp and speakers..Speakers and amp came in at 7.5K CAD. In the salesman's words, the system was however, "cabled to the hilt!"...with 40,000 +CAD worth of cables. The room was well treated...and it really was phenomenal sound....much better than I was expecting. It was a lesson for me....how important quality cables are. Since then I have been demoing cables in my system. When people say a certain cable produces a component level change, I now understand why. I am able to add warmth and impact by switching an interconnect....or increase the air..sounstage. The not so easy part is to decide where to start....much of it is luck as we all do not have access to 20 brands of cables to demo. 

 

I got lucky....found a local second hand pair of 1m Artisan Silver Nth degree xlrs non NCF for sale...they added air, sounstage and an even response across the frequency range...no loss of bass and incredibly smooth....and priced right.... I pondered a while and, after 6 months ordered the rest of the Nth Degree NCF cables as listed above. After 40 hrs of listening(not straight) i was thrillled with having made this investment. I believe the Nth degree cables have made a substantial improvent in air and seperation around vocals and instruments, detail and soundstage. Bass is still strong into the subsonics and very tight. There is not one of my audiophile associates who can tell me I can improve on my interconnects(unless they are trying to sell me some:). I have recently demoed $22k AQ Dragon XLRS and for the extra 20.5k over the price of the Nth degree, you may get a little more warmth and bragging rights. The highs are equally detailed and smooth from both interconnects. I will be saving the 20k for several vacations!

 

Forgot to mention the xlr's between the phono pre and preamp....I was listening to side 4 of Roger Waters' Amused to Death....and the entire side was captivating....and holy C!....talk about dynamics...when the drums kicked in halfway through I had to jump up for the remote to turn the volume down....which also brings me to the point that low level listening is also improved with the Artisan Silver in my system!! 

 

Thanks Alister for sending me The Nth Degree cables, component level 5 star and staying in my system for a long time. They have breathed new life into my Cremona M's.

 

Best Regards,

Chris"

And...

[Ultimate WBT analogue interconnects]

 

"Hi Alister

Sorry it has taken me so long to send feedback on my Ultimate WBT interconnects, but I have been enjoying my music so much, it slipped my mind.

It was your email about cable wishes that reminded me.

Everything that you and previous customers have said about your cables has been borne out by my listening experience.

The realism is amazing. I appreciate that in the limited space of my living room I cannot reproduce the full scale of an orchestra or rock concert, but that doesn’t stop me visualising it in my mind, as everything is so clear and in proportion. Obviously smaller scale music can feel like it is in the room with me.

Thank you for such a superb product...

Many thanks

Nicholas Keat"

March 2023 

[Ultimate Silver Dream interconnects, with black Furutech XLRs + shielding option] 

"Hi Alister

 

First impressions were very positive.

 

Straight out of the box the ultimate silver dreams were more or less a match for the Audioquest waters. Considering the Dreams cost considerably less that’s impressive.

 

Two days later (& about 10 hours burn in) and its no longer a contest.

 

The ultimate silver dreams have quickly blossomed into something rather lovely.

 

The frequency response on my Audeze headphones now sounds much better to me, The ‘mid range forwardness’ that occasionally made the AQ waters presentation a bit shouty is absent with your cables. The dreams are also quite a bit more transparent, more realistic & engaging.

 

I can honestly say that my headphone rig has now reached a level of high fidelity that i didn’t think it was capable of.

 

What a great product!

 

Ergo, I shall definitely not be returning these items ;)

 

Kind regards

 

Neil"

 
 
 
February 2023

[Ultimate Silver Dream loudspeaker cables with WBT bananas/spades]
"Ali,
Just want to say, when I last listened to my MIT SL 12 speaker cables, I enjoyed having pinpoint imaging, a full beautiful sound stage, and I was totally satisfied; so, I thought.
 
I initially purchased Artisan Silver cables for the beauty the Ultimate Silver cables brought to the table, but I made the mistake of purchasing a Nth Degree and then I needed to replace all my cables ~ again.  I was in love with this cable and had to replace them all; well except for one between the Pre-Amp and Amp, I’m using the Ultimate WBT and currently do not have any desire to change it out due to the sweet, clear, beautiful sound the Ultimate WBT interconnects bring to the table; otherwise I’m all Nth Degree cabling; which I consider a very beautiful black flexible cable with a high degree of resolution.  I do have one power plug in the Ayon Triton Amplifier, which I immediately noticed a difference in the bass definition, sound stage refinement and clarity of the music.
 
Right after plugging in the Artisan Silver Ultimate Loudspeaker cables with WBT banana/spade connectors, I heard better defined bass, very impressive BASS notes!
 
Within the first hour the instrumental images started to become more defined.  I was hearing darker background.  Less distortion.
 
At the 5-hour point, I could clearly hear what had been causing my stereo image to be slightly off; it was my ceiling (my stereo room is in the basement); the left speaker is half under an 8.4-foot ceiling, the other half under a 9-foot ceiling.  Luckily, I was in the process of finalizing room treatment, and placed some diffusers along the 8ft to 9ft side/ceilings and now I have a solid and layered center image.
 
24 hours into listening and need to stop and write about these loudspeaker cables because they are opening.  A wide and deep sound stage, it is completely clean, every detail, sound, tone, layer stage with depth and width beyond the speakers.  sounds coming at me from both sides of the room, not the speakers and it starting to build great depth in the sound stage. I’m now hearing all the micro details.
-I wish I had not taken so long to purchase these cables.  With everything being layered out (depth and width) as clearly as the sound stage is I cannot imagine what the next 25 hours of break ‘in are going to bring, but here I go. 
 
30-hour point:  These loudspeaker cables appear to eat distortion; as they break in; more and more clear the sound is.
-Note:  I’ve purchased power conditioners and DC removal devices in my system; all greatly lowered the noise floor, but these loudspeaker cables seem to eat distortion and keep giving me a clearer picture into the sound; much better than any other power equipment/conditioner/adjustment has ever made to my system. 
-Streaming, I now have full 3-dimensional images, whereas before streaming provided a flat thin image; now they are as pronounced as record/album images.  Radio over the air is excellent; I used to use my McIntosh MR77 for background sound, but now music is so beautiful, I now have a deep wide layered soundstage, with 3D imaging.
45th hour:  DYNAMICS; Difference in soft and loud passages is huge now.
47th hour:  The DYNAMICS are amazing!!!!!!!!!6pm 1/12/2023
50 to 80 hours in:  DYNAMICS!!! Found myself getting startled.
I’m convinced these cables somehow grounded my system and I have the lowest noise floor I've ever had! 
 
1/23/2023: I came back here to write more, but the music is forcing me back to my listening seat….
 
1 February 2023. I’ve finally made it back to this review.  The sound of my system is so addictive that when I turn it on, I find it difficult to do anything; it’s like I’m strapped to my chair.  Everything I’ve stated above has all been greatly enhanced to the point of me NOT wanting for more.
 
The sound stage is so defined that I can go up and take over air playing the musician’s instrument.
Everything is still improving and I’m at about 120 hours in; the sound stage is getting more solid, defined, dynamic/musical with more details, darker, deeper soundstage, instruments sounding more real~! 
 
Once again Ali, thank you for being the Artisan you are and sharing your talent with the world. 
Best,
Steve"


[Wow! Thanks Steve :-)]


And...
 

[The N'th Degree - NCF Edition flagship analogue interconnects]

Dear Alister

The new cables are amazingly transparent.  Of course, careful what you wish for.  I'm hearing tape noise and groove noise where I've never heard them before, but also much more of the music.  Let's face it:  The cables look gorgeous too!  The Furutechs are very sexy! ...

Another happy customer

Eerik
 

And...

Steve is back with further impressions...
[Ultimate Silver Dream loudspeaker cables with WBT bananas/spades] 

Ali,

Ref: Artisan Ultimate Silver Dream Speaker cables with WBT connectors.

Hope you and family are doing well.  I appreciate you fast mailing these cables, they got here so fast I wasn’t expecting them. It was a nice surprise for New Years.

It’s day 47 and 200+ hours in; the sound is so clear and present. Dynamics galore; highest of resolution and always getting startled/surprised.  It’s like I’ve upgraded my whole system. 

 

I’m so impressed with these,  I had to do a follow-up.  Here’s what I’m hearing on a couple of my music choices:

- Quavo, Take Off, Only Built for Infinity Links:  14th song, Integration, at 2:57 in, there are 2 girls talking and on my old speaker cables I could barely make out what they are saying; but are now clearly having a conversation.

--15th song, Big Stunna, at .14 into this song there is a deliberate out take of breath from the right speaker eerily displaying itself right by my ear; this keeps occurring throughout the song.

 

- Red Hot Chili Peppers, Return of the Dream Canteen: Last Song track 17; The Snow, has the stage clearly layered, and I can see/hear where each musician is playing their instrument and how the recording engineer has put a guitar player up front, behind it is a drum going from one speaker to the other; singer is third layer @center stage; the synthesizer 4th layer, moving around; and in the farthest back left corner a wood block is being hit; it’s incredible.

-Ozric Tentacles, Curious Corn:  This is an Electronic cd I used to think was one of my best sounding, until I reached 200+ hours on the new speaker cables; now I can hear it’s compressed somewhat.  It still sounds great; lots better than on my old speaker cables, more details, sound staging, punchy, but these cables let me hear right through to the recording and the compression they applied.

 

For me, these are the most vividly detailed, accurate tonality (dynamics, expression, texture, and tonal color), holographic 3D imaging, lifelike sounding speaker cables I have ever owned or heard. As stated before, I am no longer in want.  The Ultimate Silver Dream Speaker cables with WBT connectors are the best audio purchase I ever made in my pursuit of audio Nirvana.  Let alone the cost to performance ratio is incredible.

 

I’d like to take a moment to thank you for all the service you have provided me in the past.  Especially when you repaired the Nth Degree interconnect, I let my local audio dealer try to fix…. ouch, I bet that was a mess when you got it. Thanks again for fixing it.

You’re appreciated Ali, please keep doing the great work and service you provide.

Cheers,

 

Steve in Cheyenne Wyoming

Here's an update on my current system:

Amplifier: Ayon Triton III  

Preamplifier:  Ayon Auris II   

Speakers: Custom Emerald Physics 4.8 

Cables:  Nth Degree on all sources and WBT Ultimate Silver Dream between Amp and Preamp; and now finally Ultimate Silver Dream speaker cables.

Sources:  Sota Nova w/vacuum turntable, using Sumiko Blackbird cartridge; McIntosh MR77 tuner; Sony XA5400ES cd play; iFi ZenStream; MyTek Liberty One Dac.

Subwoofers:  Seaton Submersive HP  with HP Slave; another Seaton HP Submersive without slave; 2 home built sealed 18" subwoofers with dsp (that's 6each 15" and 2each 18" subwoofers, for a total of 8 subwoofers.) Bass is expensive, but if there is a deeeeep bass note in a recording I will feel it, even at low volume!

Dedicated Room:  16 x 27 with room treatment

Power: Dedicated 20Amp line; using Core Power Technologies Equi=Core 1800 and Core=Equi 1800

 

 

[Thanks again Steve - you're very good for the ego! :-)] 

 

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