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Gordon's IEC Mains Cable: My thoughts

Discussion in 'Cables & Switches' started by groundy, Apr 12, 2003.

  1. groundy

    groundy
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    The Umbilical

    One of Gordon's custom designed IEC Mains Cable's arrived with me exactly one week ago. The Umbilical is a thick and weighty beast, sleeved in black nylon and quite intimidating when sat beside the Russ Andrews PowerCord it was replacing.

    Hooking it up to my Arcam DV88, The Umbilical assured with a higher level of authority and realism - it very quickly became apparent that this was the finest mains cable I had ever tested. My favourite test disc for subtle highs, dialogue range and picture depth is "The Thin Red Line" R1 DTS. It's not everyone's cup of tea as a movie but it excels in the art of film.

    The first scene I went to was near the beginning when Private Witt is narrating the death of his mother in flashback. The camera focuses in on a little girl in the room and the sound of her heartbeat comes to the fore. The heartbeat is very subtle and with other mains cables, it can be lost in the beackground ambience to varying degrees. With The Umbilical, the sound of the heartbeat is still subtle (as it should be) but it is also stronger and more forceful - the improvement being immediatly evident.

    Scene 17 "The Mop Up" was next on test. This is a powerful scene which starts slow but gradually builds to a wonderful crescendo. The forground is filled with gunfire and shouting, the visuals are in your face, but it's the background music alone that conveys the meaning and brutality of the scene. The crescendo creeps up on the viewer, moving from the background to the forground and constantly changing tone. With Gordon's cable, the tonal balance and reproduction is nothing short of perfection.

    I had put The Thin Red Line on after midnight with the intention of testing key scenes. It's a 3 hour film but after listening to the above, I felt compelled to watch it through from start to finish...which I did. Detail and clarity were extraodinary and every instrument was placed with precision. Dialogue was backed by more air and you could almost make out the individual layers of the soundtrack mastering. Indeed, the Umbilical imbued the soundtrack with a weight, impact and body that other cables can only dream off.

    Visually speaking, the mains cable gave a slight but welcome improvement in colour depth, vibrancy and contrast.

    I tested a variety of other discs (CD's included as the Arcam is very competant in this area) over the next seven days and was suitably impressed by the performance gain on all. However, there are only so many words you can use to describe the merits of a particular cable so I won't bother repeating myself.

    Gordon's cable may not have all the fancy bells and whistles of similary priced competitors but he has clearly come up with something very special. If you are looking for a tagline Gordon then how about:

    The Umbilical: Acoustic Superiority
     
  2. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Nice!

    Charlie Whitehouse, who it appears has left this forum now, said pretty much the same things to me when he placed an order to replace his Transparent Audio mains leads.......

    Thanks for nice comments again,

    Gordon
     
  3. dunkyboy

    dunkyboy
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    How much are you selling them for..?
     
  4. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Standard 80cm ones are £100.
    If you need longer then the cost goes up due to the time it takes to build the damn thing. IE a 2m one would be £200.

    Gordon
     
  5. juboy

    juboy
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    Excellent post Groundy, nice work :smashin:

    Only thing is, it's made me even more expectant of what The Umbilical will do for my DVD player... as Gordon knows, I'm having a bit of a length issue (no change there then...) and am having to re-jig the location of my kit in order to be able to use the cable.

    When will new homes builders follow the sensible lead of office fitters and put mains sockets in the floor? :D
     
  6. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  7. X3ELS

    X3ELS
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    I can also vouch for the ability of these cables.

    Truly incredible in a word, i have been using one for a couple of weeks now in my cinema and the differences really are obvious. I have compared it many times to the standard cable, and there is no comparison.

    Even my girlfriend can tell the difference.

    So there you go, buy one :)

    P.S. Almost as good as my new car, but not quite :rotfl:
     
  8. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    I can also vouch for the high quality from these cables. I have been meaning to brief Gordon personally but have been just too busy to meet up. Probably the best I have heard to date.

    Where has Charlie W gone? I will miss him,a true gent.:(
     
  9. dunkyboy

    dunkyboy
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    Hmm, any chance you have a returns policy if I don't hear a difference.....? ('A la Russ Andrews.) I'm still very sceptical of expensive mains cables, but I may be willing to give it a try if I can get my money back should I remain unconvinced...

    Cheers,

    Dunc
     
  10. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Just for you Duncan....Just for you...

    Please contact me by email to continue discussions.

    Gordon
     
  11. sticker

    sticker
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    Gordon,
    I'm really rather interested in these, BUT could you answer a few questions for me please, if this is the right forum.

    1) Is there a benfit in putting these only on source and display devices or should they also be connected to processors and power amps?

    2) If the answer to 1 is that all will benefit, the cost would obvouisly be quite high, so is there a likelyhood that there will be a distribution block ? I'm sure I've seen this in another thread but for the life of me I can't find it, so sorry if you've already answered this.

    3) I'm actually leaving the country soon for climes anew, will this cable/block work overseas and can teh plug be changed?


    Regards
    John
     
  12. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Some products will no doubt benefit more than others. I've had great results on DVD players, CD players, amplifiers and HTPC's

    I investigated a mains block. Originally I thought of souping up a 6 way distribution block but all the ones I bought to dismantle were really poor internal construction. If I did it I would now do it in a similar fashion to how StooMonster did his except with some alterations.

    I have done leads with IEC one end and unterminated at other. so that plugs may be changed or they may be hard wired direct.

    Although a distribution block will make a difference (IMHO) I believe several seperate leads would be the most beneficial.

    I make these on a To Order basis as I am busy and they take ages to construct. Email me if you need more info.

    Ta,

    Gordon
     
  13. StooMonster

    StooMonster
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    Some alterations? :confused:
    Surely my design is flawless? :p
    Except for the expense? :rolleyes:

    Gordon, when I finally see you one day -- you'll have to bring one of your mains lead and we can compare again my customised ChrisVH and Mark Grant's (both with silver plated plugs and silver plated wattgates) and even the Russ Andrews range (if I can borrow some from RAMiAM).

    StooMonster
     
  14. StooMonster

    StooMonster
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    1) Russ Andrews, Ben Duncan, etc recon the order for upgrading mains cables is from source to target...

    e.g. Audio
    1. CD player / DVD player / Sky digitbox / etc
    2. AV processor / pre-amps
    3. amps
    4. distribution block

    e.g. Video
    1. DVD player / Sky digitbox / etc
    2. scaler / line doubler / etc
    3. display device (plasma, LCD, CRT, etc.)
    4. distribution block

    2) Distribution block last they recon, although this could be a wheeze to get you to buy lots of mains cables first.

    3) Cable should work overseas -- and in fact in some countries (like USA) will have an even more pronounced effect.

    StooMonster
     
  15. stranger

    stranger
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    have been using one of Gordons cables for a couple of months now-quality and value are exceptional as it gives better results than my RA high current power cord, no need for any qualms about buying one.
     
  16. CodeThief

    CodeThief
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    Anyone compared this to Mark's cable yet?? I'm intrigued :D

    Dave
     
  17. Smurfin

    Smurfin
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    I know this is resurrecting an old thread, but I'm curious about these.

    Initially I thought this was a big wind up, I mean £100 for a MAINS CABLE??? Come on!

    Does it REALLY make that much of a difference??? I think I'm beginning to go mad....will this "thinking of upgrading" lark ever go away?:D
     
  18. thxultra

    thxultra
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    Well i bought a 5ft refrence chord with a wattgate 350 from russ andrews and it cost £180 with discount.Even burnt it in using an old cd player on repeat playing for 3 weeks before using it on my system.

    Found a slight diffrence with my digibox which is one of the old philips itv digibox's but can't really tell anything with my dv27+.

    Saying that , it didn't stop me buying another one:suicide:
    They do look good and will probably replace all cables through time :eek:
     
  19. Smurfin

    Smurfin
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    Sounds like a case of the emperor's clothes to me. But then I really don't understand these things;)
     
  20. cameronl

    cameronl
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    Will a high quality power cable be reduced in its effectivness by going into a cheapish multi-block?

    thanks

    CaM
     
  21. rob@rar.org.uk

    rob@rar.org.uk
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    I was sceptical about fancy mains leads. Then I heard one of Gordon's Umbilicals demoed at Event 2. Now I'm not sceptical. It was an obvious and signifiant improvement to my (rather untutored) ears.

    Regards

    Rob
     
  22. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  23. cameronl

    cameronl
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    hi there :)

    If someone could just answer my question I would probably be convinced to start looking at that type of upgrade....

    CaM
     
  24. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    Depends on design and what it is trying to do. The first proto type of mine was demo'd to a X3ELS in PJ HIFI. We played it plugged in to a trailing 4 way block in to a 13 amp socket on wall against a hard wired in to mains IEC lead. My lead plugged in through crap cheap block sounded better.

    Gordon
     
  25. cameronl

    cameronl
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    all right then, I've twisted my own arm on this one. So how much does one of these cables cost and what is the eta for a delivery here in the uk? (pm me if you dont want to/not allowed to discuss this here) .

    Can anyone then recomend a goodish powerblock for me to use instead of the cheap ones I've been using for my hi fi and cinema?

    btw; the cable is for my DV88p+

    thanks

    CaM
     
  26. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    The sad news is I don't make them anymore. I might go back in to production depending on feedback from Event. They will be £120 if I do.

    Gordon
     
  27. TooManyHobbies

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    Hi Gordon, interested to read this thread. I've been playing around with mains leads for a while and must say had some excellent results of my own. Do you have a picture of yours?
     
  28. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  29. lowrider

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    I also didnt believe that fancy PCs would make any difference to the sound, until a friend brought a Van Den Hul Mainsstream, huge bass and dynamics improvement on my FMJ DV27 and TAG, then Krell, processors, but nothing on my Bryston powers... :eek:

    I tried Siltech very expensive PC, nothing, Eupen did almost the same as VDH, but less highs, I always wondered wich cable is right, maybe the extra highs are noise... :blush:
     
  30. lowrider

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    They say the last meter is the most important, has to do with the kit generating more noise then the mains...
     

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