Power cords

General HiFi discussion, using the Tune Method to evaluate performance

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Follow Up

Post by Ceilidh » 2007-10-31 17:35

Hello again,

Just a follow-up on the stock Linn cord and the Volex alternative:

I've just ordered a second set of Volex 17757 power cords, and they have different markings from the set I received back in August 2007. The previous (August 07) set was identical (save for length) with the stock Linn cord that ThomasOK kindly described. This new set has the same plugs as before, but the cable itself is different:
Previous Volex-17757 / Official Linn Cable Markings wrote: (UL) SVT E159216 VW-1 3X18AWG BAOHING CSA SVT LL112007-1 VW-1 3X18AWG LF
New Volex-17757 Cable Markings (Oct.2007) wrote: (UL) SVT E84516 VW-1 18AWG/3C TA HSING CSA SVT LL110850 FT2 105C LF
(I've rearranged the marking order on the new cable (it actually reads in a different order) so that it's easier to compare with the old one.)

Basically, it's still an SVT, 3-strand 18-gauge, 105C-degree rated, VW-1, CSA, LF detachable power cord with V1625 and PS204 plugs -- but ..

A. The cable supplier is different (Ta Hsing instead of Bao Hing)
B. It's E84516 instead of E159216
C. LL110850 instead of LL112007
D. There's a new FT2 marking.

These two different Volex-17757 cords have the same part number and were ordered from the same distributor (Mouser Electronics), but were ordered 3 months apart. It appears that Volex has changed its cable supplier.

Now, the interesting thing (for me) will be if the cords that Linn supplies in the U.S. will also change over to these new markings sometime in the next year or so (or however long it takes them to draw down their current cord inventory). If they do, then Linn will be using essentially stock Volex 17757 cords, but at a custom 6-foot length.

(As for sound quality -- I'll try to compare the two 17757 cords, but it'd be better if someone with more experienced ears (e.g., ThomasOK!) did so too!)

All best,

-C



P.S. -- This past weekend I went home and installed the (original) Volex 17757 cord on my parents' Chakra 5100, replacing the random braided/shielded power cord that the Chakra came with (dealer demo). The voodoo continues: the improvement in treble and overall musicality was noticeable, significant, and substantial.

For years I've heard audiophiles go on about the audio qualities of different power cords, and I always thought they were crazy. :D It was only because I trust the voices on this forum -- and because the Linn / Volex cord is so inexpensive, and because the used / demo Linn equipment my family owns has so often come with mystery cords -- that I thought to experiment a bit. Now I'm a full believer!

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Post by lejonklou » 2007-10-31 23:12

Thanks for the reports, Ceilidh.

Just for your information, Linn have always supplied the best sounding standard cord they've been able to find each time they need to buy a new batch. No custom varieties.

When the Power One was made, I started the initial search by doing what you do now and after a while I had a whole box full of different cords. I think I have 2 or 3 Volex versions in there that weren't any good, so I didn't pursue that track.

After a while I picked the best cord I had found, contacted the factory that made it and convinced them to make it in all possible variations. Then I picked the best one of those, which made it a custom order. The advantage was that the custom version was better, the drawback that it became more expensive than a stock version.

My initial thought was to compare plug, cable and connectors independently, but it turned out that the way one joins them together (crimping/soldering/welding) adds such a strong character that it becomes very difficult to judge anything but a complete cord made by a specific manufacturer.

All in all, it was exhausting but rewarding. If I would find anything that is significantly better than Power One (or Volex/Baohing which I think is good too), I would probably take a deep breath and do it all again.

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Post by Moomintroll » 2007-11-01 12:53

I've found this very interesting reading so far. What's the forum's opinion on the stock cables supplied in the UK?

'Troll

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Post by bbyte » 2007-11-01 18:04

I've tried many power cables, and none of them was better than suplied with Majik. But it was also some sort of fun, when the higher the price for the cable gets, the worst the sound was. Too much of "cablelogy"?
It sounded like something had carried away all the musicality, pitch & rythm...

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Re: Follow Up

Post by ThomasOK » 2007-11-01 19:16

Ceilidh wrote:Hello again,

Just a follow-up on the stock Linn cord and the Volex alternative:

I've just ordered a second set of Volex 17757 power cords, and they have different markings from the set I received back in August 2007. The previous (August 07) set was identical (save for length) with the stock Linn cord that ThomasOK kindly described. This new set has the same plugs as before, but the cable itself is different:
Previous Volex-17757 / Official Linn Cable Markings wrote: (UL) SVT E159216 VW-1 3X18AWG BAOHING CSA SVT LL112007-1 VW-1 3X18AWG LF
New Volex-17757 Cable Markings (Oct.2007) wrote: (UL) SVT E84516 VW-1 18AWG/3C TA HSING CSA SVT LL110850 FT2 105C LF
(I've rearranged the marking order on the new cable (it actually reads in a different order) so that it's easier to compare with the old one.)

Basically, it's still an SVT, 3-strand 18-gauge, 105C-degree rated, VW-1, CSA, LF detachable power cord with V1625 and PS204 plugs -- but ..

A. The cable supplier is different (Ta Hsing instead of Bao Hing)
B. It's E84516 instead of E159216
C. LL110850 instead of LL112007
D. There's a new FT2 marking.
Oh, great! Just what I wanted - yet another variation in the power cord. For the record there was also a Volex cord using the same plugs and part number that had Tongyuan wire instead of Baohing and it is also quite good. Obviously Volex uses different wire vendors at different times - likely based on cost and availability considerations.

I honestly didn't really want to have to try out yet another cable variation but it looks like I will in time. Linn has shipped us several products over the last couple of weeks including the Majik Integrated and they still include the Baohing cable. We will have to see what they come up with in the future.

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Post by Ceilidh » 2007-11-02 04:14

Hello Thomas!

Would you like to try out this new 17757 variant? It's sitting on my desk at the moment, and I wouldn't be able to compare it with anything for a while anyway (the "correct" Linn cords are all back at my parents'). If you give me an address, I can post it over to you -- I trust your ears more than my own in any case, and it'd be interesting to hear if this "Ta Hsing" cord is as good as the "Baohing". :D

Let me know if you'd like me to send it (and thank you to you and the others for comments!).

Cheers - C

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Post by Lego » 2007-11-04 21:17

Can anyone in the uk recommend a distribution block that works well with linn gear and would connecting it with Volex cable be a good idea,also does anyone have an opinion on silver plating or silver cable?

Thanks for your time

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Post by lejonklou » 2007-11-04 23:44

I really have no clue when it comes to British parts, so I'd like to know too what power cords and distribution blocks people think are good.

I have lots of experience with silver, though, and it has never worked for me. Not in cables, not as plating, well - nowhere near the hifi. Great for cutlery and jewellery!

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Re: Follow Up

Post by lejonklou » 2007-11-12 18:39

ThomasOK wrote:Obviously Volex uses different wire vendors at different times - likely based on cost and availability considerations
I can now confirm that the above is true. I have gone through some UK cords for the Kinki and have found that some Volex cords are specified in connector and plug end, but the cable itself is specified as one of several in a list.

I'm quite sure you can specify the exact cable if placing a large order. Otherwise it is likely to depend on luck.

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Post by danny » 2008-02-12 09:01

I have a hydra from the Naim system, nothing fancy. When I reorganised this as one is want to do every 6 mths with Naim I experimented plugging the Hydra into the classik and sub and found a much more tuneful performance. I presume its because the classik uses the old power supply and just likes the grounding and extra quality in the hydra. I did try a RA classic powerchord but it actually made the treble totallly brittle!

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Post by Lego » 2008-02-14 12:14

I asked Grahams hi-fi about the Hydra but wouldnt sell me one because I had Linn which wouldnt suit the star earth approach apparently.Got an old RS cables block for a fiver on Ebay which sounds way better than my 500GBP russ andrews distribution block :oops:
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Post by ThomasOK » 2008-02-24 00:19

Be prepared for a long post. I have just finished a lengthy comparison of US style power cables from Linn along with a few Volex power cables that are similar to, but not the same as, Linn cables. In addition, I compared a UK spec Linn power cable with a Lejonklou Power one and a couple of US Linn cables all terminated with a Hubbell AC plug.

First, the parameters of the testing. All power cables were compared using the tune method comparing two at a time. Each cable was compared to those closest to it and to the cables I feel are the best. Testing was done using a Linn Classik Music with either AVI Neutron IVs or Linn Katans and K20 cable. Most of the tests were done, and all the cables were tested, using this setup. This has the simplicity of only having one power cable and is a simple but very good system. Additional tests of almost all the cables were conducted on my home system swapping the cables on my Ikemi running through a Klimax Kontrol and into ATC SCM100ASLs. This system is run at 240 Volts and all wired with Linn Silver interconnects. A handful of the cables that were near the top and close in performance were also compared by swapping them out with my Lingo cable driving a full LP12SE into 2 Lintos. All the power cables (and all my interconnects as well) were burned in for the recommended 96 hours on a Nordost Vidar machine. I have found that burning in cables on the Vidar gives a musical improvement even on cables that have been burned in on my system for a year or two. By treating them on the Vidar I am confident that any sonic differences from the amount of burn in have been eliminated.

On to the cables. All the cables in the first list are made by Volex and all except one have the same PS204 AC plug and V1625 IEC plug. The naming is based on the name printed on the wire itself and whether it came from Linn or is generic. The following list of cables are in the order of my judgment of their performance:

Linn –TONGYUAN–
Linn Ta Hsing
Generic Baohing
Linn Baohing
Generic Ta Hsing w/105°C sheath
Generic Ta Hsing w/366A IEC plug and standard (85°C) sheath

The Linn Tongyuan are no longer available and have the most musical combination of flow and detail. You can hear more of the way instruments are played and the music boogies quite nicely. There were actually two slightly different Tongyuan wires. The one with the marking –TONGYUAN– is slightly less musical then those marked Tongyuan but the difference is slight. The Ta Hsing are the latest cable Linn has started shipping with components. It is quite good and close to the Tongyuan but still doesn’t have quite as good a musical flow. The Baohing cables are also good and here the interesting thing is that the generic cable is actually a bit better than the Linn. The only difference between these two cables is the length – the generic cable is about 12” longer that the Linn version. Otherwise they are identical with the same plugs, the same markings and the same standard sheath material. For some reason the longer version sounds a little better. What makes this more interesting is that the generic Ta Hsings both sound worse than the Linn one and even are less musical than the Baohings. Both of the generic Ta Hsings are the same 12” longer size as the generic Baohing but there are other differences which are obviously more important. One has the same plugs on both ends but uses a higher temperature 105°C sheath material which apparently hurts performance. The other uses the standard 85°C sheath material but has a different IEC plug, the 366A, which performs even more poorly than the 105°C sheath version. Unfortunately, Volex does not currently make a cable with the 85°C sheath and the proper plugs so I can’t completely isolate the effects of each variation. But based on what I found with the Baohings it appears that the extra length actually helps the performance while the 105°C sheath and the 366A plug both exact a performance penalty.

So to sum up this part the Tongyuans are the most musical closely followed by the Ta Hsings with the generic and Linn Baohings following those. To give this a bit more context I will point out that all these power cables are good sounding. As an example a Linn Baohing will make a fairly remarkable improvement over a Rega power cable even when used on a Rega component (I had a customer buy a Linn Baohing for his Rega Appolo after hearing just this demonstration). The same is true compared to an Arcam cable or for that matter to any other power cables I have tried. The Linn Baohing is better than the power cables that came with my ATCs, better than the 14 gauge version of the same cable that Ayre supplies with their components and to my ear better than the Nordost Valhalla power cable that runs $3000 for 2 meters. It has also outperformed all the earlier Linn power cables I have tried including Chin Chengs and a couple of different Pencons. So all of the tested cables are really good and would be an improvement over most generic cables you might find around.

The second part of the testing was to see how a couple of non-US cables fared compared to the US cables. I compared a UK spec Linn power cable made by Volex with Baohing wire and the V1625 IEC connector. It has the writing running from the component toward the wall which is the opposite of all the other cables I tested but is the direction which Fredrik told me he preferred. Also compared were the Lejonklou Power One cable and two US Linn cables – a Baohing and a –TONGYUAN–. In order to use the Power One and the UK Linn cable I had to reterminate the ends with US style power plugs. For this I used a high quality Hubbell plug part #HBL5965VBLK. This plug was also installed on the two US spec Linn cables so that the comparison would just evaluate the wires. In using this plug I found it to be musically superior to the molded-on plug and have since reterminated all of the power cables in my system with them. What I find particularly interesting about this is that I have also tried replacement IEC plugs with no luck whatsoever. Here I have tried two Schurter plugs, a K+B plug and the vaunted Wattgate 350i plug as used on the Nordost Valhalla and numerous other “audiophile” cables. All of them were worse than the molded-on V1625, the B+K being the worst and one of the Schurters being the best – not bad sounding but mot as musical as the V1625. The B+K and Wattgate I found to be a bit harsh and disjointed. Not particularly tuneful or flowing.

Following is the list of cables in the order of their performance:

Linn –TONGYUAN–
Linn US Baohing
Lejonklou Power One
Linn UK Baohing

The Tongyuan cable was again the best of the group and with the Hubbell plug was even more tuneful. The US Baohing was also better with the Hubbell plug but not enough better to beat the Tongyuan – with or without the Hubbell plug. The Lejonklou was also quite good and very close to the US Baohing. I found it to be a very musical cable with a really nice flow to it and a tuneful, powerful bass. It sounds really good with Rega components as well. The Linn UK Baohing was disappointing. It was a big step down in performance from the Lejonklou and just had a more disjointed sound. I was surprised by the amount of the difference between the UK and US spec Baohing cables but I was not surprised that there was a difference. Although they both have wire by Baohing they use different wire. The US is specified as 18 gauge and uses standard US color coding of Black, White and Green for Live, Neutral and Ground. The UK wire is .75mm2 (which is equivalent to 18 gauge) with the European color coding of Blue, Brown and Green with Yellow stripe. I don’t know why these would make a difference but they do. I believe that the Euro (Schuko?) cables use the same wire as the UK cables. Based on what I’ve heard I would have to say that if I was in Europe I would be using the Lejonklou Power One cables as they are substantially more tuneful than the UK Linn cable. They seem to me to be the best option. It will be interesting to see if the UK and Euro cables start switching over to Ta Hsing wire as the US cables have done and what effect that has on the performance of the stock Linn cables.

As it stands now my preference of readily available cables is Linn Ta Hsing in the US and Lejonklou Power One in Europe. I hope this helps those wondering how to get the best out of their systems. Since Linn sells their US power cords for $35, once they are regularly shipping the Ta Hsings it is a very cost effective matter to upgrade Linn systems with older or non-Linn cables. And since Power Ones are also quite reasonable priced, upgrading your kit in Europe is also very cost effective. Don’t forget that the cables I tested showed their superiority with other brands of equipment as well.

That’s all for now (and I hope for a while on this topic). I will be interested to see if others have had some of the same experiences I have with the cables.

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Post by Charlie1 » 2008-02-24 19:51

Hi Thomas. I'm sure I speak for everyone in thanking you for reporting back all your efforts with this!
All my cables are UK Baohing, so depending on price, I may invest in something a bit better.
Just out of curiosity, have you ever tried the Naim-style Hydra connector as per danny's setup? I've seen the basic components on eBay for very little money. Cheers, Charlie.

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Post by Ceilidh » 2008-02-25 02:45

ThomasOK wrote:The following list of cables are in the order of my judgment of their performance:

Linn –TONGYUAN–
Linn Ta Hsing
Generic Baohing
Linn Baohing
Generic Ta Hsing w/105°C sheath
Generic Ta Hsing w/366A IEC plug and standard (85°C) sheath

.....To give this a bit more context I will point out that all these power cables are good sounding.....all of the tested cables are really good and would be an improvement over most generic cables you might find around.
Thomas, thank you very much for performing this exhaustive comparison test! I can only imagine how much work it must have been, and we are all indebted to you. :D

For those who've been following this thread since inception, the "Generic Ta Hsing w/105C sheath" and (I believe) the "Generic Baohing" are what you get if you order a $5.63 "Volex 17757" power cord from Mouser or other distributors. The precise wire used in this cord changes over time, and it now appears this cord comes only with a "high temperature" 105C casing -- which Thomas reports as acoustically suboptimal. Those with access to the $35 stock Linn cord should probably skip over the Volex 17757; for those of us without such access, the 17757 is not bad at all(!.
....I had to reterminate the ends with US style power plugs. For this I used a high quality Hubbell plug part #HBL5965VBLK......I found it to be musically superior to the molded-on plug and have since reterminated all of the power cables in my system with them.

.....The Tongyuan cable was again the best of the group and with the Hubbell plug was even more tuneful. ....
The Hubbell plug referred to above is described here:

http://www.hubbellcatalog.com/wiring/se ... BL5965VBLK

...and can be purchased through Newark for about $10 US:

http://www.newark.com/66F5607/connector ... tid=113116

(Quick question: Thomas, did you solder the plug, or is it a screw-connection?)

Once again, many thanks to ThomasOK for testing everything and putting all this together for us!!

-C

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Post by paolo » 2008-02-25 15:38

Fantastic post Thomas, these are really very useful informations!

What you've reported also clarifies to me why there has been some inconsistent reports from different trusty sources about the performance of the Linn Bahoing cable. I've always found this cable sincerely quite bad, being surprised to read sometimes rave opinions from trusty people on it. You've made clear now that American and European Bahoings (possibly also the UK one, see next points) are different cables, with very different performance. I'd like to add also a couple of things:

- The Linn Bahoing European cable is made from 3x1mmq wires. I understand that the US cable is 3x18 AWG, and the UK cable is 3x0.75mmq, so it seems that they are all different and thus there are three different standard Linn Bahoing cables around.

- From my experience MOST (all?) European Linn Bahoing cables have the same direction: writing running from the wall toward the component. I have only one Bahoing Mains cable with the opposite direction and it doesn't come from a Linn component (I've found it somewhere else and took it to compare with the standard Linn cable:it's perfectly identical apart from the direction). I can confirm also for European Bahoing that the best direction is with writing running from the component toward the wall. Anyway also considered with this best direction I don't think the "European" Bahoing is good at all: it lacks cohesiveness and sounds slow - quite boring overall (from what you've reported the UK cable seems quite similar sounding). The "wrong oriented" European Linn standard Bahoing cables are still worse: a real shame because they've been supplied here with Linn components for several years now.

Anyway it seems that Linn has lastly changed the supplied mains cables also in Europe. The DS machines I'v seen all had a 3x1mmq Tongyuan cable. I've briefly tested one of these and I can say it's surely much better than the Bahoing type - don't know how it compares with Fredrik's Power One anyway (which are the cables I use in my system and the most tuneful I know until now), I'll do some tests soon.

At this point I don't know if Linn will stay with the Tongyuan cables or they'll swap to Ta Hsings also here in Europe. Either way they've moved away from Bahoing and this represents a good step forward IMO.
Since before the introduction of the Tongyuan I'd put the list of European available cables in this order:

- Lejonklou Power One
- Old Linn Chin Chengs
- Linn EU Bahoing (much behind)

The option of using Tongyuan or Ta Hsings US cables swapping the standard US plug with an european Shuko one could be interesting too. Anyway I wonder if a screwed plug - as good as it could be when freshly installed - could deteriorate its performance with time more than a molded one (which is crimped and should be nearly air-tight).

Thanks again to Thomas and to this forum which is by far the richest of precious informations around.

Paolo

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Post by Music Lover » 2008-02-25 22:41

Charlie1 wrote:Hi Thomas. I'm sure I speak for everyone in thanking you for reporting back all your efforts with this!
Thanks Thomas, well done :!:
It's all about musical understanding!

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Post by Music Lover » 2008-02-25 22:49

paolo wrote: Since before the introduction of the Tongyuan I'd put the list of European available cables in this order:

- Lejonklou Power One
- Old Linn Chin Chengs
- Linn EU Bahoing (much behind)
NOTE, Power One is available in a "short" and "long" version.
Personally I prefer the short one, but it seems to be system dependent.
So ultimately you should test both on ALL components individually. (step by step, starting with the source)
It's on my to-do list... :D
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Post by lejonklou » 2008-02-25 23:48

Many thanks, Thomas, for sharing your findings with us!

Paolo, please note that before Linn started supplying the Baohing cable here in Europe, they supplied the Tongyuan version. One of these two is what you get when ordering this cord from Volex. Most likely, Ta Hsing is a third cable on the very same list. What I am saying is that this is likely not a conscious decision by Linn, they simply get one of those three (or a mix of several) when placing the order at Volex.

I do find it strange, Paolo, that you place Ching Cheng a lot higher than Baohing. That has not been my finding. :? Could it somehow depend on the quality of the mains electricity?

Regarding Power One, it is true that the best sounding length varies. Unfortunately it's not consistent, but rather varies from system to system. I tried for a long time to find any pattern in this... without success. In my system, Lingo sounds best with a short P1 (1m), while Akurate Kontrol and Unidisk 1.1 sounds best with a long P1 (2m).

The only thing I have concluded is that a good cable always sounds rather good and a bad one always sounds rather bad. But when you have several cables that are different but close in quality (such as different lengths of two otherwise identical power cords), it can be difficult to say which is the best, as it can vary between components and systems. I find it easiest to first compare on the source, then on the preamp etc. When every cable is decided, it can be necessary to re-check the source etc.

Thomas, did you find that the same power cord always won, regardless of what it was connected to? That's how I'd really like things to be (simple and logical), but unfortunately don't.

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Post by Music Lover » 2008-02-26 00:40

lejonklou wrote: In my system, Lingo sounds best with a short P1 (1m), while Akurate Kontrol and Unidisk 1.1 sounds best with a long P1 (2m).
I can add, my sub was best using the short.
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Post by ThomasOK » 2008-02-26 19:53

Just a few clarifications, corrections and comments.

Charlie, I have not tried a Hydra type of cabling. I am in the US and I don't believe they make such a cable loom for this market. If they do, I haven't seen it.

This does bring up a point I forgot to mention in my cable ranking post. When using the Classik K for testing I was plugging directly into the wall at 120 Volts. When testing in my system I was plugging inot an outlet strip from CablePro at 240 Volts. The CablePro unit I use is the Revelation II and it is the best power strip I have so far found. I have also tested the CablePro NANA power strip and did not like it nearly as well. And I have used a Wiremold strip that the Naim people use which is good for the money as well as a couple of strips I customized neither of which were as good as the Wiremold, much less the Revelation II. The Wiremold sells for about $50 or $60 and you see them sold on eBay by a couple of Naim dealers - it is one of their recommended strips. The CablePro Revelation II and NANA strips both run $350 and are both 8 outlet units in a metal case with no switch, no circuit breaker and no filtering or surge suppression - they are just strips. They both also use the same electrical sockets but there the similarity ends. The NANA unit was designed in conjunction with Naim Audio North America. It uses a permanently attached shielded power cable and a daisy chain wiring of the sockets except for the ground which is wired as a star. Overall I did not find it very impressive. The Revelation II has a detachable IEC power cable that is unshielded and uses a star wiring setup for hot, neutral and ground. The unshielded cable that comes with it is OK but the Linn cables (Baohing, Ta Hsing, Tongyuna) are significantly better. I use my preferred Tongyuan with Hubbell plug to connect from the wall to the Revelation II. For those in the US interested in the Revelation II I am authorized to sell them and will throw in shipping.

Ceilidh, a correction and an answer. First the answer: the Hubbell plug is a screw on unit and you want to get it pretty tight. The links you posted are correct - the plug is the more squarish one shown in yellow in the Hubbell catalog but the newark page is for the black plugs I have been using. As to the correction: the "Generic Baohing" is what you used to get from Mouser if you ordered a "Volex 17250" power cord - not the 17757. This appears to be the same as the 17757 except that it is not 105°C rated which makes identical to the Linn Baohing except for length. Unfortunately, now when you order the 17250 you get the Ta Hsing with the 366A IEC connector which came out at the bottom of the ratings. With the 17757 you now get the Ta Hsing rated at 105°C. At this point it does not appear that you can get the Ta Hsing with the better connectors and the 85°C sheath except from Linn. I don't know why Volex changed the connector but they did. For those without a sympathetic Linn dealer I would be glad to supply the Linn power cords for $35.00 plus shipping. Right now Linn seems to be transitioning to the Ta Hsings so I don't know if I can get them in bulk yet but that should be resolved soon.

The above brings up a point Fredrik made about the Linn cables which I agree with. From what I have seen, Linn specifies the connectors, wire gauge and grade of the sheathing and Volex supplies cables with wire from whatever supplier they are using at the time. My guess is that Volex buys huge volumes of wire from different manufacturers depending on who has the best price at the time they order. Linn then gets whatever wire Volex supplies. It would likely be much more complex and complicated for Linn to try and spec the exact wire used if Volex would even do that. And they may feel that the Volex connecters are as or more important than the wire as long as it meets specs.

This brings me to some more clarifications and thoughts brought up by Paolo's very informative post. I don't believe I mentioned this, although I meant to, but ALL the US cables in the comparison are 3 x 18 gauge which is roughly equivalent to .75mm2. It appears that the European market has a wider range of cable thicknesses than we have in the US. For instance, 1mm2 is equivalent to 17 gauge but in my 30 years of working in the electronics industry I have never seen a 17 gauge cable. And as far as power cables go, although I have seen 16 gauge cables (1.5mm2) I have never seen any hi-fi company use them. All the power cables I see supplied with audio equipment are either 18 gauge or 14 gauge (2.5mm2) they don't seem to use anything in between.

Although I found the Tongyuans to be the best, Linn has not supplied them in the US for some time and they are 18 gauge. Considering the difference between the US Baohing and the UK Baohing I don't think my positive comments on the Tongyuans necessarily mean that the Euro ones are as good. It would be interesting to know what a high-quality US cable would do with a Shuko plug attached but then you have to find a good sounding Shuko! Not a trivial task considering that I have so far been unable to find a screw on IEC plug as good as the molded V1625 despite trying four plugs from three manufacturers. I understand the concern about the screwed plug compared to the crimped and sealed but the performance improvement is such that it would take a fair bit of deterioration to make it perform worse. And I can always get out my torque screwdriver and refresh the plugs from time to time. But it does bring up the thought that I may need to do that every six monthe or so to keep everything sounding its best - a perfectionists work is never done :(

As Music Lover notes, I also forgot to note that I have the long version of the Power One cable. I had asked for that version as it is closest to the length of the Linn power cords. And to answer a question from Fredrik, I have so far found the results to be consistent whether using the Classik K the Lingo or the Ikemi. I had also done a series of earlier tests using the Linn Tongyuan and Baohing as well as some earlier non-Volex Linn cables and some others and had the same results switching cables on the Klimax Kontrol, the one going to the Revelation II and even on the cables going to the ATCs. So my results have been consistent in this regard. But then I don't (thankfully) have different lengths of the Tongyuans to worry about. (And I really don't want to get into snipping 10mm at a time off the cables to find the ideal length - especially as I'm sure the day after I find the exact best length for my two Lintos Linn will announce the Klimax Linto which will , of course, sound better with a longer cable!)

I may try a little more comparing using the long and short Baohings as those are the only two that I have which are otherwise identical just to see if the preference ever changes with other components. But, as you can imagine, I am not in a hurry to conduct more power cable A/Bs - and Debbie is in MUCH less of a hurry for me to do so at home! :oops:

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Post by Charlie1 » 2008-07-02 13:39

ThomasOK wrote:The following list of cables are in the order of my judgment of their performance:

Linn –TONGYUAN–
Linn Ta Hsing
Generic Baohing
Linn Baohing
Generic Ta Hsing w/105°C sheath
Generic Ta Hsing w/366A IEC plug and standard (85°C) sheath

The Linn Tongyuan are no longer available and have the most musical combination of flow and detail. You can hear more of the way instruments are played and the music boogies quite nicely.
A few weeks ago I decided to try and obtain the Linn TONGYAN mains cables as reported by Thomas to have the best Tune Dem performance.

I emailed about half a dozen Linn dealers and didn't get a single response, so I decided to email the rest in one go (about 80-90 in total). This took a while!

As responses flowed back that day, it became apparent that almost every dealer was contacting Linn directly to find out if they still supplied the cable, despite me saying that it was an old cable. Opps! My appologies to Linn staff for the much higher than average work load that Friday! :oops: They must have just been picking up the phone and saying "NO! we don't have any Tongyuan mains cables before you even ask!"

Unfortunately, not a single dealer had even one TONGYUAN cable, so it was a fruitless exercise after all. I was surprised that only two dealers enquired as to why I wanted this cable in particular. Perhaps they all read this forum - or perhaps they've got better things to do than delve too deeping into strange emails.

I mentioned the TONGYUAN to a friend who's had Linn gear for years. He looked around and actually had one spare knocking around his house and tried it on his Klimax DS. The results were positive as even his wife noticed the improvement. So I'm afraid the TONGYUAN will remain a scarce, but worthwhile upgrade, at least here in the UK.

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Post by Music Lover » 2008-07-02 18:11

Are you only looking for TONGYUAN cables with UK plugs?
I may have some but these have EU plugs...
It's all about musical understanding!

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Post by Charlie1 » 2008-07-02 18:51

Music Lover wrote:Are you only looking for TONGYUAN cables with UK plugs? I may have some but these have EU plugs...
I don't know if fitting a UK mains plug would negate the benefits of the better cable? Do you or anyone else know?

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Post by lejonklou » 2008-07-02 19:35

Fitting a different plug will change the sound of the cable completely. Don't go there unless you intend to try a whole bunch of plugs!

In addition, I am unsure of whether the UK Tonguyan cable you are looking for will be the same as the one Thomas is referring to. The cables Linn supply can vary in thickness, direction and length between different countries.

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Post by Charlie1 » 2008-07-02 19:45

OK, Thanks Fredrik and thanks also ML.

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