Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES

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Paul Speltz

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Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« on: 20 Oct 2018, 05:03 pm »
Even though my first product (the ZERO-Autoformers) was launched from an audio forum/message board website 17 years ago, because of their tendency of having a few non friendly participants, I have not been active on any of these types of sites for the past 15 years. Yet more recently, because of the good things I have heard about Audio Circle from my audio industry friends (Vinnie Rossi, Clayton Shaw, Jim Salk, Triode Pete, Frank Van Alstine), and my valued customers, I have decided to become active and help support the progress being made here.

As for my introduction, I think the best place for me to start is to simply answer the most popular question that I was asked at RMAF a few weeks ago...   "Why are you called the ANTICABLES ?"  I do recognize the name can be interpreted as being a bit contentious, so let me explain how it evolved.


ZERO-Autoformers:

As I mentioned, our first product was the ZERO-Autoformers, which when used with mono block amplifiers took the place of speaker cables. They were first introduced early 2001. The “ZEROs” were used to increase the impedance of any speaker, so it would be “easier” for an amplifier to drive.

The autoformer itself, from the beginning, was sonically very good. The weak link was the lead-out wires. The original PVC insulated tinned stranded copper lead-out wires were unresolving. The next attempt was teflon insulated silver plated copper stranded lead-out wires which were more resolving but had a "tissy" sonic signature. Determined to find a solution, I launched a serious wire investigation project and came up with a red coated solid copper lead-out wire that sounded neutral and transparent, with a very nice purity of tone. Problem solved. End of story...   so I thought.

Turns out, that third generation of lead-out wire was so good, it became its own product that I called "Anti-Cable Speaker Wires".  I named them this because the un-jacketed red coated wire didn't look like, cost like, or sound like typical speaker cables. Also, since "cable" is wire with thick jacketing, and since our wire didn't use thick jacketing, they are not cables, so the name "Anti-Cables" seemed appropriate.


ZERO-Boxes:

I should explain. The ZERO-Autoformers also come in a beautiful boxed version, the ZERO-Boxes, that required a set of jumpers. The jumpers were made from the same improved lead-out wire used on the autoformer. Customers started recognizing how good the red coated wire jumpers sounded and started asking me to make them 8 and 10 foot long sets to use in place of their speaker cables. After getting numerous reports back from these guys stating how much better the red coated solid wire sounded than their multi thousand dollar speaker cables, I decided to make cables with them. Well...

Every attempt at dressing up my good sounding wire with jacketing (so it would looked like speaker cable), made it sounded like a speaker cable. Jacketing causes dielectric effect distortion that time smears the music signal and makes cables sound like cables. I decided to give up jacketing, call them the "Anti-Cables", and sell them in their naked form. The product became so popular, and won so many Editors' Choice Awards, that ANTICABLES eventually became the brand name of the business.


The Cable Business:

I did not originally attempt to get into the cables business, I was only trying to solve a sonic weakness of my single autoformer product, and I ended up getting drawn into the cable business. (pun intended)

Even though the red coated wire has gone through close to a dozen sonic improvements over the years, it still looks very much like the original version. I find it fascinating how much sonic differences can be heard between two nearly identical looking pieces of wire because of variables such as purity, the drawing process, directionality, dielectric material, etc. and I look forward to discussing topics such as this on an ANTICABLES Audio Circle.

Thank you for the opportunity to post my introduction. Looking forward to becoming a Site Sponsor.

Paul Speltz

jtwrace

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #1 on: 20 Oct 2018, 05:35 pm »
Welcome!  Can you explain the levels of your offerings including the power cords?   

richidoo

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #2 on: 20 Oct 2018, 05:39 pm »
Welcome to AudioCircle, Paul!

I used your SC, IC and zeroformers when I first started in the hobby in 2006, and I enjoyed them very much.

Have your speaker cables changed much since the ones I bought in 2006?

Triode Pete

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #3 on: 20 Oct 2018, 05:41 pm »
Hey Paul,
Welcome to AC! Have fun & enjoy!

Cheers,
Pete

Phil A

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #4 on: 20 Oct 2018, 05:44 pm »
Welcome!

JerryM

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #5 on: 20 Oct 2018, 05:49 pm »
Welcome to AudioCircle, Paul.  :beer:

Chris Adams

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #6 on: 20 Oct 2018, 06:02 pm »
Welcome, Paul. Nice to have you aboard. :D

fredgarvin

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #7 on: 20 Oct 2018, 08:03 pm »
Good to have you aboard!

Paul Speltz

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #8 on: 20 Oct 2018, 09:48 pm »
Thank you all for welcoming me.

As for the "Levels" question, below is a quick snapshot of their build differences. As for sonic improvements, the sound remains quite neutral, but increases in resolution and/or musical body are achieved as you walk up the levels.


SPEAKER WIRES (and Jumpers):

Level 2.1 = One twisted pair #12 gauge copper wire

Level 2.1 Bi-Wire = Two pairs of the same wire to Bi-Wire

Level 3.1 = A "doubled-up" build (#9 gauge), of the same copper wire for single wiring.

Level 5 = Back to #12 gauge build but instead of copper, the metallurgy is our ACElectrum™ Silver/Gold alloy.

Level 6 = (coming soon)



ANALOG RCA INTERCONNECTS:

Level 1 = Copper wire with inexpensive RCA plugs

Level 2.2 = Adds better sounding KLEI Copper Harmony RCA plugs

Level 3.2 = Adds our ACElectrum™ Silver/Gold alloy signal wire

Level 4.2 = Adds better sounding KLEI Silver Harmony RCA plugs

Level 5.2 = Adds better sounding KLEI Pure Harmony RCA plugs

Level 6.2 = Adds better sounding KLEI Absolute Harmony RCA plugs, ACElectrum™ return wires, and improved shielding



ANALOG XLR INTERCONNECTS:

Level 2 = Copper wire with high quality XLR plugs

Level 3.1 = Adds our ACElectrum™ Silver/Gold alloy signal wire

Level 4.1 = Adds Xhadow XLR plugs and improved shielding



Power Cords:

Level 2 = Three #11 gauge copper wire build

Level 3 = Three #8 gauge copper wire build (twice as much as Level 2)



There is a lot more to it than that, but this will give you a good start.

Good to know...    We offer customers to walk up to higher levels for only the price difference, within 60 days and we have buy-back options for walking up the levels anytime after that.


Thanks!

: )

Paul




Mark Korda

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #9 on: 20 Oct 2018, 10:38 pm »
Hi Paul,
  I recently made a change in my speaker wires. I went to twisted copper Radio Shack solid 18 gauge 8 foot lengths to the same gauge copper with silver plating. I was happy with what I had but saw a deal on E-bay that was cheap enough to experiment with. I'm Jack Bennyish.
   After I saw read your intro I was fixated on what you said was a Hissy sound when you used the silver plated copper. Can you give me a little more if you got a sec on what you mean by that. Thanks Paul.


     I saw your second letter and those cables or wires looked real interesting. I forgot to say welcome and am looking forward to checking those out......Mark Korda
 

Vinnie R.

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #10 on: 21 Oct 2018, 12:07 am »

Welcome to Audiocircle, Paul!   :beer:


brj

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #11 on: 21 Oct 2018, 08:26 am »
Welcome to AC!

I notice that your IC levels reference 'improved shielding' at a certain point.  In environments with low EMI/RFI, have you found unshielded versions to sound better, especially for balanced ICs?

Thanks!

Paul Speltz

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #12 on: 21 Oct 2018, 01:31 pm »
Mark,

Maybe a better way to describe what I called a "tissy" sonic signature is as an "electronic sizzly" sound. I personally atribuit the sonic issue with that particular wire that I used 16 years ago, to be of two assignable causes. 

1) Silver plating on copper wire. Which I am of the understanding causes a diode like effect at the disimular metal boundary. I personally associate that as being the source of what I call the "electronic" sound. I don't know how else to describe it. I do believe that some cable manufactures intentionally use silver plated copper wire as a way to "voice out"  cable to their liking. The electronic sound that is created can be interpreted as "added detail", and may be a way of artificially restoring the true detail that is lost because of the time smearing effect of the dielectric effect distortion caused by a cables thick jacketing.

2) Stranded wire. The problem with stranded wire is the magnetic and conductive interaction between the individual strands of wire in the bundle. Each individual wire strand’s magnetic field interacts all the other wire strands’ magnetic fields physically modulating all the strands in the bundle. The more power that runs through the cable (turning the volume up), the greater the magnetic interaction, the more the wire strands physically modulate. With stranded wire, there is current jumping between strands. If the strands are slightly modulating, I visualize it as being as if there are thousands of micro relays that are chattering along the entire length of the cable run which cause a high frequency audible sizzle noise sound.


---


Vinnie,

Thanks for the warm welcome. Glad to be here.


: )

Paul



Dieterle Tool

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #13 on: 21 Oct 2018, 01:53 pm »
Welcome to the boards Paul.

I've been using Anticable for quite a few years now and have not heard any other speaker cable that would convince me to change.

-Dieter

Paul Speltz

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #14 on: 21 Oct 2018, 02:11 pm »
brj,

I don't think I have a good answer to this one. I really don't have access to a controlled environment in which I can dial up and dial down EMI/RFI to easily compare shielding differences.

Also worth mentioning is that we don't really have "unshielded" interconnects. Our ICs are shielded with an elongated spiral ground wire. The close and surrounding proximity of the ground wire spirling around the inner small signal wire has proven to be adequate shielding for tens of thousands of audiophile installs.

Yes, it is true that our top level XLR and RCA ICs have what we call "double shielding". This is achieved by simply having twice as many spiral loops per inch than our other ICs.  The double shielding is needed/helpful when the ICs are being used on a turntable (where the small signal is hundreds of times more susceptible to noise than with line level connections), and in known high noise environments.

All of our lower level ICs have the ability to be ordered with our "Double Shielded" option, so that any level can be use with a turntable or for line level connections in a known high EMI/RFI environment.


While on the subject, there are two main reasons why we use the elongated spiral shielding topology:

1) Since it physically protects the inner small signal wires, it is a way to eliminate the thick plastic cable jacketing that causes dielectric effect distortion...   It has that "naked" ANTICABLES look.

2) Since the ground wire spirals around the signal wire at close to a 90 angle from each other, their magnetic fields are on different planes keeping them from interacting with each other as much, thus keeping the ICs measured capacitance low (which I believe is a very important design priority for analog interconnects).

Hope that helps.

Busy day...   got to run.

: )

Paul

ric

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #15 on: 21 Oct 2018, 02:36 pm »
1) There are so many cable manufacturers out there today, from magnets to graphene, the choices (and prices) can be overwhelming.
2)I applaud your no nonsense approach for low cost quality, and am also relieved to see that you are using more expensive materials--because they sound superior to plain copper or silver.
3) Cables seem to be the least understood as there are so many nay-sayers who either do not accept or cannot hear differences and demand scientific measurements as some sort of way of predicting what will sound best. I can understand their cost rationale, but one's ears have to be the bottom line IMHO.
4) Welcome to the camp....

JakeJ

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #16 on: 21 Oct 2018, 03:30 pm »
Hello and welcome to AC, Paul!

If you find time, and if there is something to write about, could you share with us which products are recommended with solid state gear and which with vacuum tube?  Obviously the ZEROformers are for tube amps to better match modern speakers loads as well as give OTL amps what they need for a load.  I looked at your website but did not find any references.

Thanks,
Jake

Mark Korda

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #17 on: 21 Oct 2018, 07:05 pm »
Hi Paul,
  Thanks for taking the time to write out those answers. I really appreciate it....Mark.

brj

Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #18 on: 21 Oct 2018, 09:52 pm »
Thanks, Paul - I appreciate the response!

I was actually looking at the inverse situation, where one wants the otherwise maxed out cable, but doesn't need the double shielding and thus may be able to save a few dollars.  If that's a small contributor to the price, it may not matter, but for an analog line-level XLR connection in a fully differential system, the added shielding seems likely to add relatively little benefit for the cost.  (Though I appreciate that an analog phono connection is a different beast!)

Thanks!

ArthurDent

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Re: Introduction from Paul Speltz of ANTICABLES
« Reply #19 on: 21 Oct 2018, 11:21 pm »
Greetings & Welcome to AC Paul   :thumb:  Appreciate the info provided as well.  8)