I replaced the stock cable with the Cardas cable then available (and still available) for those phones. I also used the Cardas cable on the 650s I acquired more recently. It was immediately apparent that the Cardas was more musical than the stock cable, but it was somewhat warm with a slightly smoothed over top end. Under the wrong conditions one might criticize it as sounding a bit dull. When I connected the Lazuli cable to either set of phones, the colorations of the Cardas disappeared. I suspect it is as close to the ideal of no cable at all as can be achieved. The top end is much more open and reveals the phones to have a greater ability to portray detail than I might have thought. At the same time — and this is important — greater detail does not mean that they are bright sounding. In fact, the midrange bloom of the Cardas ultimately makes them, somewhat paradoxically, sound a bit brighter even though the high frequency resolution is reduced. The Lazuli is one heck of a cable!
The Lazuli cable works beautifully for my Dharma 1000. It enhances the both ends of the spectrum, increases the soundstage and overall body of the sound. It really takes a good headphone and allows it to perform at its potential.
I’m not sure if I will EVER fully believe that a cable should cost hundreds of $, but if ever there were a candidate, it would have to be the Lazuli. Really a wonderfully resolving cable. Impressive!
Just imagine a copper cable that has the transparency and air open feel like a silver cable but doesn’t take away the fullness of the music you listen to. IMO Utopia’s original cable is a big bottleneck of Utopia and if you were to replace it with a Danacable it can improves the sound so much better that you won’t believe how good utopia can sound! Utopia with it’s original cable I would say it is performing about half of what Utopia can give! Again Danacable on Utopia just sound so you that I really recommend every Utopia owner to give them a try because it will really shine and pushed to another level!
I compared it against the stock cable, Kimber Axios and Moon Silver Dragon, and the Lazuli Reference is far superior.
The Lazuli reference just sounds so good right out of the box! It doesn’t change the tonality at all compare to the stock cable, but improves on every single aspect. More transparent, more punchy, more authoritative, smoother, bass is incredible, even the often-criticized smallish-headstage improves by not a small margin. Well done Dana cable!
I have to say that my Ether C Dana cable is by far the best headphone cable I have ever heard, and I have heard and owned quite a few from many hi end manufacturers, including cardas, wire world, Norne, moon audio and others. The Dana cable makes everything in the music sound more holographic, with better placement in the soundstage as well as layering of all the instruments. Detail is the best I have heard because it is plentiful but at the same time they are all presented in a wonderfully musical manner. Don’t get me wrong this cable does not hide anything, it just does not add any colorations to the music whatsoever. In a few words this is to me simply put, the best headphone cable available today!
The HD800 cable sounds absolutely phenomenal! A nice sense of added warmth in the mids, more robust bass response and smoother treble for starters. More musicality for sure. What I can’t believe, though, is all the extra detail it uncovers! I mean my HD800 is doing things I’ve only heard from the Stax SR009 (but delivering them with even more musicality!). I really didn’t expect that! The other thing that has impressed me is how it unveils vocal harmonies. Every voice is so clearly articulated in the mix, but again it doesn’t feel analytical to me. The detail serves the music, making it richer and more complex in a good way. I’m loving this Danacable Onyx, it’s been a nice upgrade to my system and it sounds better every day.
No Hassle: I started my journey with Danacable, marketed by Gingko Audio, through the purchase of their entry level Onyx ICs. The Onyx ICs were shipped promptly, along with a open promise to provide additional support. I found the promise of additional support pleasant, but had no idea how beneficial it would be. First, Danacable products have a house sound of fidelity to dynamics, timbre, & PRAT. As you move up their model lineup, transparency increases… But more about that shortly. For me, the Danacable products became a truth serum. For years, I lost music with ICs & cables that filtered away true timbre, PRAT, & dynamics. Likely, I never accurate auditioned any of the many speakers, pre-amps, amps, & disc players that passed through my system. The coloration of earlier ICs & cables skewed the performance of my system and the various components. As a result of this new revelation, I embarked upon a whirlwind process to discover how much music was missing. I bought many other ICs & compared them to the Onyx. Eventually, after 3 to 4 times the cost, I found ICs that offered more apparent fidelity. Now the story becomes special…. Deciding to take advantage of Danacable’s earlier promise of service, I asked to return the Onyx. Promptly, Vinh of Gingko Audio accepted my return request, forwarded the return shipping address, & asked my reason the return. I promptly explained the performance shortfall versus a competitor’s offering, shipped out the ICs, and went on with my day. Promptly, Vinh offered to ship a higher model Danacable IC. The offer: audition, keep it and pay the incrementally higher cost or return them and receive a complete refund….no hassle, no risk. I went through this process with Vinh 6 or 7 times. I landed on the following purchases:
Each purchase and return decision received a prompt, supportive, insightful, and non-judgmental response from Vinh. Vinh accurately proffered items within his product line that addressed my performance needs. No snake oil. Truly, Vinh was a partner in my exploration process. Without Vinh’s insight and support, I would have stopped short of fully utilizing Danacable’s products to improve my system. Within the business world, many purchases are lost due to unpleasant and/or unsupportive interaction with the seller. That will never be the case with Danacable, Gingko Audio, or Vinh. If you aren’t sure how much music is lost in your ICs & cables, PLEASE contact Vinh and explore. His support will facilitate a genuinely enjoyable process. By the way, the Danacable products are top notch too.
I got the cable and let it run in (with music playing through it) for 4 days. I’m now using it and I think it is wonderful! But the big surprise was when I tried it on other headphones, like the Beyer T1 V2 and the Sony Z7. It made a huge difference! So I have a great utility cable for them. I am very happy.
Everything is up and running and sounds terrific. I was going to let things settle in a little bit more before writing you, but I had a nifty experience the other night that kind of sums everything up: I was lying on the couch listening to music the other night and found myself briefly in a kind of reverie thinking about something that the music had evoked in me, and then I suddenly had this kind of quick, sort of eerie (in a good way), sense that I was in a room with a delightful string quartet (which is what I was listening to) playing in real time; that is to say, that I had a kind of preconscious sense of a certain enhanced presence, articulation, and sound stage that produced in me an unbidden sense that the musicians were actually there. Anyway, once I became a little more attentive, I could more consciously appreciate the attributes of the music that produced the effect, but the actual experience of it was not something I’ve ever had happen on my system before. I do think that, overall, things have continued to open up as I’ve been using the cables more, but, as I hope I’m conveying, I’ve been very happy with everything. So thank you so much.
Much thanks for your expertise, now that I essentially have the Dana cable loom (top of the line speaker wires and interconnects and 2 power cords) my system has been taken to the next level. These cables replaced a more expensive competitor. They are more musical and open sounding, very satisfied!
Sapphire ICs punch way above their fighting weight. For their price, the results are far beyond what one might reasonably expect. Sampled similarly priced cables lack comparable dynamics or air. The cables also have a great look and feel to them. And, service is prompt, polite, and personal. A great all-around experience.
The cables are doing great soundwise. They are a beast, size and weight wise. But, the performance is stellar. Nice pacing and tone especially.
I just spent the last three hours trying to convince myself that I actually COULD live without the Sapphire References…no luck. SO much more detail, clarity, life… I honestly would not have thought it possible. I expected a modest, incremental improvement at best (frankly, wasn’t sure I’d hear a difference at all), NOT a sea change.
I have never heard such a profound difference in my system due to a change in wires – in this case, speaker cables… The difference was in no way subtle. The sound of my Auditorium-cabled system was unquestionably harsher in the highs and somewhat veiled in comparison to the Sapphires. This came as something of a surprise, since I have never considered my system to sound harsh or veiled, the Auditorium has received uniformly excellent reviews, and I was using it in a system in which it was designed for – high efficiency horns and tubes… Fast-forward half a year (after I bought a set of Sapphires) and you send the “Diamond Reference” speaker cables for me to try. Shit yeah! A noticeable improvement in bass response (definitely tighter and perhaps even a bit deeper) and something more important, although hard for me to define or characterize. I will simply say that music reproduced by my system using these cables is compelling to an extent I have not before experienced (in my system).