Aug 012017
 

I sure do appreciate everyone commenting on their experiences about their audio experiments and observations, it really helps us all learn and progress. Thank you!

FryBaby2 cable conditioner.

Take for example Bill’s recent observations that voltage-only conditioning with his Hagerman cable conditioning device really complemented the Duelund DCA tinned-copper cables by making them warmer, richer, and brought out texture and overtones in a really nice way.

Bill also observed that sometimes cooking DCA cables with current can cause them to get lean sounding, which I have experienced myself. In fact, I’ve pretty much quit using my Cable Cooker for DCA cables, instead getting better results with letting them run-in naturally.

This isn’t a dig at the CC, as it has worked great on regular copper & silver cables I have conditioned on it, but the DCA cables don’t respond the same as the silver & copper cables I’ve tried. The DCA cables appear to be a completely different animal when it comes to conditioning.

The downside of letting the Duelund DCA cables run-in naturally is that it takes 100+ hours to do, which is fine for home listeners, but for me trying to write about them, I’d never get anything written at that rate!

FryBaby2.

I couldn’t do the voltage-only conditioning with my trusty Cable Cooker, so I ordered a FryBaby2 from Hagerman Audio Labs so I could duplicate what Bill did with voltage-only conditioning.

A shielded Duelund DCA20GA interconnects!

I had previously built a pair of shielded DCA20GA interconnects to try with the Sumile phono cartridge. I ran them in for a while on my Cooker, and when I put them into the system they sounded so lean and amusical I immediately took them back out.

That was not the result I was expecting at all, given I had brilliant results with the unshielded (and un-cooked) DCA20GA that I use between my preamp and amps.

So I put my shielded DCA20GA interconnects onto the FryBaby2 and conditioned them for 24 hours in its voltage-only mode.

Tonight I took the shielded DCA20GA interconnects off the FB2, then put them into the system between the Arai MT-1 SUT and my MX110Z preamplifier, and the change wrought on the my shielded DCA20GA interconnects by the FryBaby2 in its voltage-only mode is astonishing.

It’s just like Bill said, in voltage-only mode the DCA cables get warmer & richer, and it brings out additional texture and overtones in a really nice way. Tone was off the charts!

The difference is not subtle, it’s a night and day sort of change, and the shielded DCA20GA interconnects now sound absolutely gorgeous.

In fact, it might be better start at 6-12 hours of voltage-only conditioning, and then ease into the exact amount of warmth you desire, as 24 hours of conditioning resulted in really warm and lush sounding interconnects.

If this result with my shielded DCA20GA interconnects is any indication, you can undo the leanness from conditioning with current by conditioning with voltage-only conditioning. (I’m thinking of you, Ian.)

DCA16GA interconnects on the FryBaby2.

However, you should consider these to be very preliminary impressions, as one data point does not predict a trend, as my statistician friends like to say.

I’ve got a pair of unshielded DCA16GA interconnects on the FryBaby2 now, so we’ll see how they respond to 12 hours of voltage-only conditioning.

I’m going to try the same thing with the DCA26GA headshell leads I made, and probably my extra pair of DCA12GA speaker cables that didn’t fare so well after being cooked with my Cooker.

If it turns out that voltage-only conditioning can allow DCA owners to dial in the exact amount of warmth and richness wanted, it could be huge!

I’ve got all kinds of DIY DCA project ideas if that’s the case!

FryBaby2.

More to come!

As always, thanks for stopping by, and may the tone be with you!

 Posted by at 6:59 pm

  13 Responses to “A little bit of voltage conditioning for my shielded Duelund DCA20GA interconnects!”

  1. Thanks Jeff.

    I think I will order one and see if I can undo some of the damage I have done.

    Regards,
    Ian

    • Hi Ian,

      You might want to hold off until I’ve made sure the voltage-only results with the DCA are consistent across a range of cables. I should know more by the end of the weekend.

      Best,

      Jeff

  2. Hi Jeff.

    Interesting article. Do you also have an article on how you build the Duelund DCA20GA shielded interconnect in the third picture and which materials you used?
    I am currently setting up a Western Electric 12A based system and I almost certainly will use the Duelund DCA series as a base for interconnects, speakercable and internal wiring for amplifiers. So any suggestions for homebrewn Duelund DCA based interconnects are very welcome.

    • Hi Maurice,

      Thanks for the kind words, appreciated. You can read about how I built the shielded DCA20GA interconnects here.

      A Western Electric 12A! Now that’s a recipe for a dream system! 🙂

      Let me know how it works out!

      Kind regards,

      Jeff

  3. Hello Jeff, would it be possible to make a phono cable with a right angle DIN connector using the 20 gauge Duelund cable?

    Thank you,

    Charlie Edgar

    • Hi Charles,

      I don’t see why not. If you give it a try let me know how it works out for you.

      Kind regards,

      Jeff

      • I will, but first I have to find instructions. Never attempted a DIN before.

        • I don’t use DIN connectors so I haven’t wired any up either. DIN connectors look fairly straight forward to wire up, and if you do a Google search on “wiring a DIN connector” you find all kinds of videos and diagrams for doing it.

          Is your DIN project for a Naim?

          Best,

          Jeff

          • Jeff, the cable would be for my Graham tonearm. It requires a 90 degree DIN connector.
            My Hi Fi system has been packed away for years, but will be up in running again in January when house renovation is complete. Doing a few projects in the meantime, just had my Aronov amp refreshed with new and upgraded caps and resistors. After a 3 month wait received a mirror matched quad of NOS Tung-Sol 6550’s. The engineer who did the amp work flipped over the sound of the Tung-Sols. I’m hoping to add cable improvements with Duelund cable, I have a few months to work on that part.

  4. These are very encouraging results. I have been following in your footsteps and have Dueleund wire from my DAC output all the way to the drivers in my speakers. It has only gotten better with each change including replacing the Belden wire which was my first upgrade.

    My only question which I suppose will be seen in time is whether the effect remains or whether going back to playing music for a while causes the wire to return to it’s previous state…

    Thanks again for sharing. Much appreciated.

    • Hi Paul,

      That’s my experience too, the more tinned-copper in the signal chain, the better my WRSE system has sounded.

      Right now I’ve got tinned-copper phono headshell leads, interconnects, speaker cables, crossover wiring, and internal loudspeaker wiring. The only thing that isn’t tinned copper is the tonearm wiring.

      I’ll keep reporting on my experiences with the Hagerman FryBaby2, and we’ll see what happens over the longer term.

      One thing about it, when doing voltage-only conditioning with the FB2 it’s a quick process, so even if an occasional tune-up is needed, it’s only a matter of hours on the FB2 instead of days.

      More to come!

      Best,

      Jeff

  5. Hi Jeff
    Try using dca20 for plus and dca16 for minus. Just an idea

    • Hi Claus,

      Oh man, I’ve got so may things to do already cable-wise, that variation probably will not make the to-do list. Just not enough to try every permutation.

      I do encourage you to give it a try, and to let me know how it works out.

      Kind regards,

      Jeff

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