I made up pairs of 2-meter interconnects with the new Duelund Coherent Audio DCA20GA tinned-copper tone-wire with my favorite affordable RCA’s, the Switchcraft 3502AAU RCA’s, soldered together with Kester ’44’ rosin core.
I made up two pairs of 2-meter interconnects with the DCA20GA, the first with pair single runs of Duelund DCA20GA pin-to-pin and ground-to-ground, and a second pair with single runs of Duelund DCA20GA wire pin-to-pin, and two runs of DCA20GA ground-to-ground, as I suggested in my previous post.
I took the pair of Duelund DCA16GA interconnects out of my system that I’d been using in the MX110Z preamp to MC30 monaural amplifiers position, and I put the first pair of DCA20GA interconnects I built into my main system for a listen while I was building the second set of ‘triplet’ DCA20GA interconnects.
I almost forgot to mention it, but I’ve found giving the Switchcraft 3502AAU RCA’s a wipe down with a very light coat of DeoxIT makes for a better connection with my vintage McIntosh electronics.
The Duelund wire doesn’t have directional marking on the casing like the Belden 8402 microphone cable does, so I use Peavey microphone tape to mark channels and direction. The green tape signifies the source end, the red is for the right channel, and white for the left channel, to keep me from getting mixed up when I’m changing interconnects.
When I finished the second ‘triplet’ set of Duelund DCA20GA interconnects I put them on my audiodharma Cable Cooker to condition them for a few days to hurry the run-in process along, and in the meantime I occupied myself with listening to the ‘normal’ DCA20GA interconnects to get some very preliminary first impressions.
I ran through a number of albums, like Harry Connick’s When Harry Met Sally soundtrack album …
… and Bill Henderson’s Live At The Times d “Send In The Clowns” …
… Miles Davis’ Ascenseur pour l’échafaud …
… and a bunch of other albums.
What did I hear?
The interconnects I made with the Duelund DCA20GA sound very different than the interconnects that I made with the Duelund DCA16GA.
Given they both were the same length, had the same RCA’s, the same solder, and the same oil-soaked and baked cotton dielectric, I wasn’t expecting the twenty-six strands of 0.25mm tinned-copper wire conductors in the DCA16GA to sound a lot different than the twenty-six strands of 0.15mm diameter tinned-copper conductors in the DCA20GA, but they did.
The well run-in pair of DCA16GA interconnects in my main system have in spades what I’ve come to think of as tinned-copper signature tonal properties: vivid tone color, superb dynamic response, melodic sophistication, harmonic complexity, live-like timbral complexity, a high level of emotional engagement, as well as some impressive hi-fi hooks like spooky imaging presence, natural live-like resolution, and a generous portrayal of soundstage & soundspace.
The ‘raw off the roll’ Duelund DCA20GA interconnects I made were smoother, silkier, less vivid, more relaxed, tonally mellower, but also more nuanced, more detailed, more even top-to-bottom from a frequency standpoint, and yet still had those recognizable tinned-copper conductor qualities I described above, just in a lesser amount than the DCA16GA, probably because there’s simply less metal in them.
The ‘raw off the roll’ Duelund DCA20GA interconnects have had a bit of fussiness & sibilance that I have come to expect from ‘raw’ tinned-copper conductors on vocals & brass, but to a much lesser extent than the Western Electric WE16GA, the Belden 8402, or even the Duelund DCA16GA did before they were fully run-in.
Now after just a couple of days of playing music they are starting to settle in and are losing the bite of their ‘baby teeth’ and the vocal sibilance & slight edginess on muted trumpets are diminishing, and if they remain true to form for the other tinned-conductor wires I have used, they will settle in to perfectly represent natural vocal sibilance and the natural sibilance of muted trumpets.
I like the DCA20GA tinned-copper tone-wire a lot, and from what I’m hearing so far I think it may be a more appropriate match for the smaller signals of interconnects than its bigger brother, the DCA16GA.
Also, in comparison to my Belden 8402 microphone cable interconnects, which I also like a lot, the DCA20GA does share an audible family resemblance that is no doubt due to them both sharing twenty-six strands of 0.15mm diameter tinned-copper conductors.
However, the Duelund DCA20GA sounds silkier, more organic, more transparent, and more nuanced than the Belden 8402, no doubt due to only having an oil-soaked & baked cotton dielectric instead of the heavy casing, filler, shielding, and plastic dielectric of the Belden 8402.
I can imagine the DCA20GA excelling as tonearm cables or SUT cables if shielded, and I hope to follow up on that adventure before too long.
Please consider these to be very preliminary fist impressions, and I’ll provide a more detailed description of the Duelund DCA20GA interconnects as they continue to run-in, and I get a better handle on how they’re performing, but so far so good!
I was impressed enough with the sophisticated high-frequency presentation I was hearing from the Duelund DCA20GA as interconnects that I decided I’d like to try adding some Duelund DCA20GA speaker cables for the high-frequency connections on my crossovers (with DCA16GA for the low-frequency connections).
I cut a couple of 2-meter sets of DCA20GA for high-frequency speaker cables and wired them up to my MC30’s and Duelund CAST crossovers.
Again, this is also very preliminary, and I don’t have any details to offer yet, but I like what I’m hearing from them as high-frequency speaker cables too!
Many thanks to Frederik for offering the Duelund tinned-copper tone-wire in both 20-gauge and 16-gauge, it opens up a world of exciting voicing possibilities for optimizing system performance!
Ok, it’s shaping up to be a busy day with a long ‘to-do’ list, so I’ve got to run, but check back for updates in the near future.
As always, thanks for stopping by, and may the tone be with you!