Sep 172017

This morning I built a 1-meter shielded Duelund DCA26GA tinned-copper interconnect (shield connected at source end) to connect the 2-Ohm version of the Arai Lab MT-1 SUT that I am currently reviewing for Positive Feedback to my vintage MX110Z preamplifier’s phono stage.

Arai Lab MT-1 SUT.

I now have shielded versions of the DCA16GA, DCA20GA, and DCA26GA tinned-copper interconnects built up so that I can use them with different cartridges to get the best ‘voicing’ match possible for a particular phono cartridge.

Ortofon SPU Classic GM MkII

The Arai Lab MT-1 SUT was designed specifically for a cartridge with 2-Ohm impedance, like my Ortofon SPU Classic GM MkII, that I have mounted on the Woody SPU tonearm.

50 Guitars

I’ve been having a ball listening to Tommy Garrett’s 50 Guitars albums produced back in the 1960s. The concept of the various 50 Guitars albums is similar to that of the classic audiophile album, Music for Bang, Baaroom, Harp, on RCA Living Stereo, except the focus is on guitars.

50 Guitars Go South of the Border

All of the 50 Guitars albums I have heard so far are recorded superbly, in that audiophile “spectacular” fashion that was so popular in the 1960s, which the Liberty Premier label refers to as “visual sound”.

As a bonus, you can pick up 50 Guitars albums like the 50 Guitars Go South of the Border (above) out on Discogs inexpensively.

50 Guitars Go South of the Border

I listened to 50 Guitars Go South of the Border with the 2-Ohm Arai Lab MT-1 SUT and the shielded Duelund DCA16GA interconnects, first (which I have been using all along with my Ortofon SPU Classic GM MkII), and it was an excellent match, as I suspected it would be.

Then I listened to 50 Guitars Go South of the Border with the 2-Ohm Arai Lab MT-1 SUT again, with the shielded Duelund DCA26GA interconnects I just built replacing the DCA16GA interconnects.

Collings Waterloo WL-14L (left) Gibson Advanced Jumbo (right).

The sound with the shielded DCA26GA reminded me of what I heard when I first strung up my Collings (above, left) with a new set of Martin SP Custom Light strings, with it sounding a little lean, a little forward and aggressive, a little “bluesy”.

The Martin SP Custom Light strings are settling down now and mellowing a bit, and I suspect the Duelund DCA26GA will do the same, particularly after a little voltage conditioning on the FryBaby2.

DCA16GA (left), DCA26GA (right)

In contrast, the shielded DCA16GA IC’s were more analogous to what I hear from the Martin Medium SP strings I use on my Gibson Advanced Jumbo (above, right), being vibrant in the midrange, rich, nice and smooth treble response, dynamic, colorful, and a warmer overall presentation that makes everything sound great!

I also gave the shielded Duelund DCA20GA interconnects a listen with the 2-Ohm Arai Lab MT-1 SUT and the Ortofon SPU Classic GM MkII, and it was an excellent match to, just as it was with the Murasakino Musique Analogue Sumile phono cartridge.

Although, with the Ortofon SPU Classic GM MkII, I think the DCA16GA interconnect is a better match overall, with it’s dynamic, colorful, and dramatic presentation, which goes wonderfully well withOrtofon’s overall presentation.

The opposite is true of the Sumile, with its amazing resolution of nuance, dynamic gradations, and tone colors, it is better served by the Duelund DCA20GA.

It sure is nice to have some cable options to choose from though, as it really helps get the best voicing out of each phono cartridge possible.

Ok, well that’s it for now, I’ve got to get back to writing up the review of the Arai Lab MT-1 SUT for Positive Feedback.

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

 Posted by at 12:41 pm

  12 Responses to “A Shielded Duelund DCA26GA Interconnect for Sunday!”

  1. Dear Jeff

    Thank you for a always interesting site. I have a question. If cable-cooking make such huge difference, what then about SUT- cooking? Do you have any experience?
    Best regards

  2. Jeff,

    I got mc30’s now so it’s a new adventure for me although sort of similar ( still the Mac tube family). I noticed with the DCA16GA as speaker wire and the DCA20GA it was quite a bit presence compared to a regular non tinned IC ( way to much for me). The regular one was more relaxed up top but detailed and extremely musical, but lost some of that musician’s touch a bit. Now I have the DCA12GA on and using the DCA16GA as IC’s and it’s a pretty nice combo a little to forward at times but great tone and excitement. Doesn’t have the scale of the of the non tinned IC’s though. I’m wondering if the DCA20GA would be better, but I remember not liking it with the MC30 and DCA16GA as speaker wire. I have to re adjust things to test it I need to go through all the cables again. Also the Beldon I have a feeling they are about where I may want it. Larger scaled instruments with some of the emotion tin offers. Time will tell after hearing non tinned between the pre and amp not sure where I will settle there. I may consider trying the Duelund copper wire. Mc30’s are mighty impressive on acoustic with non tinned wire in that position. I got tinned everywhere else which is still apparent in the sound. Nice combo still trying to make it hundred percent tin, but got to trust my ears on this one. the 225 can take anything tin, and sound good these are pickier. With a bit of tube rolling I know I can make a better balance that way, but from what I heard I’m thinking a different approach first. Get the wires right then tube it out. We’ll see I’m a tube roller thats gonna be hard to resist in time. 🙂

    Just out of curiosity you should try non tinned wire between your pre and amps. The scale is massive compared to tin you loose a little something we love from the tin, but gain something thats just as great if not better, because we still have tin through out are chain. I’m not saying you will switch but try it for something different like tube rolling thing to switch things up now and then. I think that’s what I may do. I still love the Tin in that position, but yearn for the scale of acoustic guitar like I heard it before.



    • Howdy Bill,

      Congrat’s on the MC30s, they’re really wonderful amplifiers, and have a satisfyingly unique presentation of the music that just keeps me coming back for more.

      I love my MC225 too, which is an incredible amp, particularly with m Altec A5 Voice of the Theatre loudspeakers.

      I’ve actually tried copper, silver, and tinned-copper wire, as interconnects, speaker cables, crossover wiring, and internal WRSE wiring.

      They all have their merits to be sure, but I still like how the tinned-copper wires perform better than the others.

      At the moment I’ve got the DCA20GA as interconnects, DCA12GA as speaker cables, DCA20GA & DCA16GA as internal crossover wiring, and Western Electric WE16GA as internal wiring for my WRSE’s.

      I’m still having fun using the FryBaby2 to condition this and that to dial in the voicing just the way I want it, when putting different equipment into the system for reviews.

      Keep me posted on your results!

      Kind regards,


      • Thanks Jeff will do. I’m still sticking with the DCA16GA while I roll tubes that didn’t last long. Been at it a bit since I posted. Getting gorgeous tone out of it. Always a little give and take. I got all Duelund through the entire chain right to the driver even the caps on the crossover board. Everything DCA16GA except speaker cable is DCA12GA.Right now i’m running Mullard 12ax7, 50’s RCA long black plate 12au7, 50’s RCA long black plate 12b7, 12ax7 ribbed tele. Power tubes are grey plate RCA’s not sure on the rectifier its got the more power full one giving more like 45 watts or something, I believe its the GZ34. Nice mixture for liquid clear colorful tone. I found quite a few combo’s I liked but checking this one out for a bit. My DCA20GA which are two sets are to short to hear how its set up now, but I may move one to hear it some night as well as the Beldon. I think I should before I buy anything still want to experiment with the copper between pre and amp someday as well. As well as some hybrids.

        • Hi Bill,

          I’m really liking the DCA12GA as speaker cables, but I’ve been going back and forth a bit with interconnects. In one particular setup I’ll like DCA20GA IC’s the best, then in another slightly different setup I’ll prefer the DCA16GA.

          I’m still considering rewiring the WRSE’s internally with DCA too, but it’s a big job, and I haven’t had the motivation to try it yet. I’m still using the WE16GA, and it sounds great, but I have to think a little fine tuning with DCA could be nice.

          I have a hunch I’ll be entertaining myself for quite a while with the possible DCA combinations!



          • Yeah take your time I had the Western Electric through out my crossover and to my drivers as well. I think the Duelund took everything up a notch, but it was a long process I didn’t have the fry baby II back then. Took a long time for things to fill out ( smooth out) then once they did it seemed like an obvious upgrade, but there is a nice balance to the Western Electric that is hard to beat.

  3. Hi Jeff,

    Great website!

    Have you tried the Duelund tinned copper CAST bypassed with the Duelund silver in wax bypass cap, I think this could be a great cocktail, as a Duelundista what are your thoughts?

    I hope all is well



    • Hi Jules,

      Thanks for the kind words, appreciated.

      I haven’t tried that combination, but if you get there before I do be sure to let me know your thoughts!

      Kind regards,


      • Hi Jeff,

        I have heard good things about the combo – midrange of tinned copper and all round boost of the silver bypass cap, I will keep you posted : ) it could be the super strong coffee, but I am almost wetting my pants with excitement!



  4. Hi Jeff,

    I have created the simplest set of Duelund 26 ga cables without metal plugs. I found out that 26 ga is the same gauge as 47 Lab Stratos cable, I swapped the Stratos for Duelund and used the 47 Lab nylon plugss, the result is a big improvement on the 20 ga. They are now running in, and improving every evening.


    • Hi Paul,

      Now that is very interesting! I think I have some of the 47 Labs Stratos RCA connectors around here somewhere, I’ll have to give that a try!

      Keep me posted on developments!

      Kind regards,


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