Here’s my shotgun assessment of the Hapa Audio demo cables compared to my Danacable Diamond Reference ICs which run from my DAC to preamp. I use XLRs from the preamp to my amps, so I only compared the differences with a single set of Hapa Audio cables installed. The Diamond Reference cables have been my favorite ICs for the past several years. I started my listening sessions at the “bottom” and moved on up.
Breathe Copper – ooohhhh… the cymbals that keep on shimmering – never heard that before. I’m intrigued…bass is thicker than what I’m accustomed to. In fact, the overall sound is slightly thick (i.e., slightly less revealing of microdetails). These cables remind me of a short, stocky dude who’s trying too hard to be the king of the yard. Almost…close enough to worry about my Danacables ‘cause we got three more to go. Keep in mind I’m comparing $399 cables to $1,500 IC’s and I’m talking about very subtle differences.
Breathe Silver – markedly different from its copper sister. Fast!!! Sounds like silver -- significantly livelier (i.e., brighter, but in a good way). Bass was on point. More precise, but not as warm as the copper. I think this cable would work well if you listen primarily to instrumental music and your system could use another dab of Brut by Faberge. Better sounding than the Breathe C and we’re still climbing…
Quiescence Copper – just as “fast” as Breathe S, but not as lively. Mildly temperamental – a good thing. Bass is a cross between Breathe C and Breathe S. Believe it or not, I connected a bit more emotionally with the Breathe C. Two things would make this a perfect cable – bass like the Breathe S and a tad more emotion. My top choice of the three so far. About 98% on par with my reference IC for nearly 1/3 the price.
Quiescence Silver— bingo! This cable represents the best of every aspect of the other three cables and more. I expected it to be livelier like the Breathe S, but it has the same smoothness as the Quiescence C. Tight bass - check. Emotionality -- check. Clarity – check. Musicality – check. Yeah, it’s all there. The Quiescence S also bested my reference IC because it peeled back another layer of detail which is the hallmark for justifying an upgrade.
Final thoughts -- great performance, fair pricing, high quality, pliable, aesthetically appealing, and personalized service – I dunno what else you would want. Go ahead -- spring for the top of the line. However, if your wallet is giving you the middle finger, choose one and you won’t stray far from where you want to be. Your system deserves to be treated with respectable cables and Hapa Audio is the real deal. Now hurry up with the XLRs, man!!