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Last Updated 16/March/2006
Campaign Audio Design
Ty-Mawr Road (int)
Cardiff CF3 3BS
United Kingdom
Telephone:
+44 (0)29 20 779 401
Fax:
+44 (0)29 20 797 850
E-mail:
cad.cables@virgin.net

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The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

THE FACTS

  • Silver has the highest conductivity and lowest resistivity of any substance. It also has the benefit of an oxidative product that has the same conductivity as the pure metal, which means it does not age badly unlike copper. It is therefore the best material to use as a conductor in a high performance audio or video system.
  • PTFE has the best combination of dielectric specifications of any material readily available and it will not catch fire or produce smoke. It is therefore the best material to use as an insulator in a high performance audio or video system.
  • Silver plating any Copper conductor enhances signal transference. All our Silver plated Copper cables are made of high purity Copper to very demanding military specifications, they are fully stable, and do not degrade over time.
  • It is not necessary to electro-plate mains plugs, as twice yearly cleaning with Cap18 chemically cleans the conductors and leaves a conductively enhanced surface. This maintains contact integrity just as well as a Gold or Silver layer.
  • Some interesting facts about some metals used in Hi-Fi systems. Rhodium (470mOhm/m) has a resistivity 117.4% greater than Gold (220mOhm/m) and 197.3% greater than Silver (163mOhm/m) at 200 Celsius.
  • The quality of local mains electricity is one of the biggest variables in your Hi-Fi and AV equation. Just listen to your system late at night when there is less National Grid activity, it will invariably sound more relaxed with less congestion and grain. Anything that can be done to improve mains purity and transference will pay sonic and video dividends.
  • Supporting Hi-Fi and Video equipment on three metal cones efficiently drains away mechanical energy. As many electronic components are microphonic (capacitors, transistors, valves etc.), this always results in a tighter, more detailed and dynamic presentation with enhanced picture clarity on video equipment.
  • Our Silver solder (Cap17) used in the construction of all our Hi-Fi and mains cables is Lead free and has 4% Silver contact. It is made in France and is the best solder we have come across being audibly and visibly superior to ordinary solder.
  • The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    THE STRATEGY

    You have to decide which is the most cost effective route to audio and video Nirvana, because every system is different. Our list of priorities looks like this;

    • Upgrade all your mains cables, and incorporate non-inductive RFI filtering and voltage dependent resistors (VDRs). This is the most incredible upgrade. Improvements are in the fundamentals- weight, power and scale.
  • Upgrade all your interconnect cables including the scart and rf cables of your TV/video system.
  • Upgrade your loudspeaker cables, bi-wiring if you have the facility.
  • Position all your equipment on cones using light-weight rigid stands and our AirSandwich.
  • Twice yearly clean all your plugs and sockets with Cap18 Tighten all mains connections. Clean your CD lens monthly with Cap26.
  • The ambitious bit

  • Rewire your loudspeakers, bi-wiring and removing the crossovers to aluminium boxes close to your amplifier. Upgrade the components in the crossovers, star earthing them at the same time.
  • Rewire the rest of your equipment replacing signal and mains cabling and the phono sockets with Cap3.
  • Arrange for a separate mains ring for your Hi-Fi and AV system and at the same time improve earth integrity by adding a Pure Earth.
  • Rewire your turntable tonearm with CZAR KCK200.
  • The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

    MAINS CABLES

    How can a small amount of mains cable possibly make a difference?
    Do I have to change all my mains cables to make a difference?
    Which mains cables should I change first?
    Can you terminate your mains cables with anything else?
    What can I do to minimise RF and EMI problems without buying new cables?
    Why do all the cables sound different once they have been "run in"?

    INTERCONNECTS

    Do you have a balanced cable?
    Do you supply an interconnect with DIN connectors?
    Do you supply an interconnect with BNC connectors?

    DIGITAL INTERCONNECTS

    Do you supply digital interconnects with BNC connectors?
    Do you supply a digital interconnect made to the 110ohm AES/EBU standard?

    LOUDSPEAKER CABLES

    Why do you have different sized loudspeaker cables?

    ACCESSORIES

    What can I do to improve the performance of my system without spending money?

    WIRES

    How do you solder?

    WEBSITE

    Why don't some features on this site work?

    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    MAINS CABLES

    How can a small amount of mains cable possibly make a difference?
    Your nearest power station is probably tens of miles away, between you and that station is a great deal of, possibly, Aluminium wire. Can one metre of cable really make a difference?
    The mains supply is the ultimate "source" for your Hi-Fi system, if it is not perfect it will impact upon the sound. Mains supply in your country is not perfect, it is both dirty and inconsistent. If you don't believe that, listen to you Hi-Fi system late at night- it will sound less grainny, more open and dynamic with better more solid stereo imaging and greater detail and realism. Phew, if only your Hi-Fi system sounded like that all the time.
    The main culprit spoiling your sound is noise. Remove this noise and a transformation occurs. Try one of our mains cables, you won't be disappointed.
    Do I have to change all my mains cables to make a difference?
    No, (although of course the more you upgrade, the greater the improvement), just changing the 4 way block supplying your hi-fi will bring about a dramatic improvement.
    Which mains cables should I change first?
    If your system is powered from a mains distribution block, then changing that will improve your entire system, after that change your amplifier cable for the same reason. As we supply Conqueror~mi unterminated it is a good idea to replace the cable from your consumer unit (fuse box) as well.
    Can you terminate your mains cables with anything else?
    You name it we'll do it. Although any deviation from the standard lengths and terminations are not subject to our 21 day money back guarantee.
    What can I do to minimise RF and EMI problems without buying new cables?
    There are a number of things you can do;
    1). Ensure that all the mains connections are clean and tight. It is a good idea to twice a year check all the mains connections, tightening and cleaning every single connection on the ring main used by your Hi-Fi system. Cleaning interconnects can have a similarly beneficial effect.
    2). Fit a dedicated earth connection for your system. If this is not possible, you should at least check the earth connections, tracing, cleaning and re-tightening the earth tags, so that the best possible earth is achieved.
    3). Fit a dedicated ring main for your system. A ring main is better than a spur as it can carry higher current, and for a given current rating it is a lower resistance path.
    4). Take a long hard look at the wall sockets you use, if they are not of the highest quality and unswitched, change them. In the UK, the MK Logic Plus sockets are superb and are available from us as Cap19 and Cap20.
    5). Fit Cap10 shorting plugs to all unused sockets.
    6). Minimise the amount of cabling used by your system. Do not have excess cabling connected.
    7). Wherever possible seperate mains from signal cables by 25cm (10 inches) and where cables cross one another try to do it at right angles. Use the inverse square law: Twice the distance produces one-quarter the effect. The farther apart they are the better. Never run mains and signal cables parallel to one another. Don't be tempted to use cable ties to keep your wiring tidy.
    8). If a telecom company wants to site a mobile phone tower near you, fight them tooth and nail. Some countries notably USA and New Zealand have banned the siting of such towers near schools- because of possible links with cancer. If you fail- move house.
    9). If you have a "radio ham" or taxi company near you and you experience "breakthrough", contact the authorities, as most countries have strict immission standards for these frequencies.
    10). In the UK mains plugs contain a fuse which some commentators have suggested can be by-passed to improve performance. If you do this, you are removing a level of protection neccessary to prevent electrical fire. Additionally, you may find that your home contents insurance is invalidated. We strongly recommend that, under no circumstances should this fuse be tampered with.
    If in any doubt whatsoever, always consult a qualified electrician-
    MAINS VOLTAGE CAN AND DOES KILL
    Why do all the cables sound different once they have been "run in"?
    All this means is we recommend that you use the cables for at least 48 hours before you critically assess them. This is because in the first 48 hours all the cables change, the sound generally becomes more open and organic. There are several theories on this; maybe the metallic crystal structure alters in some way; maybe pixies visit in the middle of the night and breath on them (my favourite theory); or maybe the subtle heating effects caused by the electro-magnetic fields (resultant from current flow), heat and thereby stabilise the critical insulation/conductor interface.

    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    INTERCONNECTS

    Do you have a balanced cable?
    Anacreon is the only interconnect which has two central conductors and a screen.
    Do you supply an interconnect with DIN connectors?
    Yes, Connoisseur~s can be terminated with DIN plugs. This is not subject to our 14 day money back guarantee
    Do you supply an interconnect with BNC connectors?
    Yes, Connoisseur~s can be terminated with BNC connectors. This is not subject to our 14 day money back guarantee

    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    DIGITAL INTERCONNECTS

    Do you supply digital interconnects with BNC connectors?
    Yes, Ordovician can be terminated with BNC connectors at no extra cost. This is not subject to our 14 day money back guarantee.
    Do you supply a digital interconnect made to the 110ohm AES/EBU standard?
    Yes, we finally do! The Demetian is a true 110ohm Copper AES/EBU cable, with a very low capacitance (50nF/km!), which sounds great.

    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    LOUDSPEAKER CABLES

    Why do you have different sized loudspeaker cables?
    Simply to avoid the "skin effect".
    If you are bi-wiring or bi-amping, it is important to use a thinner cable for the tweeter (high frequency unit), such as Czar~KCK600 or Conqueror~SCL500. Using a cable of this size (0.6mm) will avoid the smeared and agressive top end characteristic of the "skin effect"
    The thicker two cables we produce (Czar~KCK1000 and Conqueror~SCL1000) are for the bass/mid-range in the same setup or as full bandwidth cables. Using either of the two thinner cables on the bass/mid-range would produce a fast, detailed and dynamic sound but lacking weight and colour.

    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    ACCESSORIES

    What can I do to improve the performance of my system without spending money?
    There are a number of things you can do;
    1). See, How can I Improve RF and EMI performance.
    2). Support is critical. It should be both level (use a spirit level) and free from energy. Take a look at our isolation platform design.
    3). If you have any equipment which uses a Telefunken (figure 8) plug, try inserting the plug the other way. One orientation should sound more detailed in the mid-range with better bass control. The other orientation should sound less distinct in the mid-range and have more bass.
    4). Avoid any sharp "kinks" in your cables as these alter impedance and capacitance. Also a stressed conductor is less likely to transmit a signal cleanly.

    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    WIRES

    How do you solder?
    Soldering is a metallurgical technique using a low melting point alloy (solder) to join two metal surfaces. The alloy on its own cannot solder unless the two metal surfaces are completely clean of oxides and contaminants- an impossible condition in a normal working environment. An agent (flux) is used to remove any material between the bond, thus allowing the alloy to fuse the two surfaces together forming an intermetallic compound. It is never advisable to rely on the flux to completely clean the contact, the best joints are always made between perfectly clean surfaces. Isopropyl Alcohol is an efficient contact cleaner.
    The diagram below shows a magnified section of an ideal joint when two strips of Copper are soldered together forming fusion zones. A fusion zone being the point at which the Tin and Silver in the solder has amalgamated with some of the Copper, Silver or Gold to form a new alloy. This gives a permanent fusion not just a bonding of one surface to another, and therefore the joint has (1) A high mechanical strength and (2) Excellent electrical conductivity.
    No matter what type of soldering technique is used, unless permanent fusion is achieved and both these criteria are met the resultant solder joint will be sonically degraded and unreliable. The secret of good soldering is to solidly crimp the contacts prior to soldering and to heat the joint not the solder- when the area is hot enough the solder should be applied and allowed to flow over the joint. CAP17 does not contains Lead and has a 4% Silver content.
    [Soldering]


    The Facts The Strategy Frequently Asked Questions Your Questions Top

    WEBSITE

    Why don't some features on this site work?
    This site is written using, mostly, standard HTML 3.2 language and so all modern browsers should be able to access all functions. If you are having difficulty accessing the Site Map, Postage Rates and the Joke of the Week please ensure that JAVASCRIPT is enabled on your browser.
    On a related subject, there are two pages on this site which, due to their heavily graphic nature, may load slowly. They are;
    Links and About Cardiff.
    Although we have tried to ensure that the site looks good at all resolutions, it is best viewed at 800 X 600 or higher. If you are viewing this site on WebTV, we know it looks awful but then again, everyone elses does as well!
    If you feel your web access is too slow, go to The NAVAS Page for some very good advice on system configuration for web access.

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