Author Topic: Essence gZero  (Read 6525 times)

Offline onthebeach

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Essence gZero
« on: January 23, 2014, 03:39:08 PM »
I've recently introduced a set of speaker cables to my system. They are the new Essence gZero 50s from Keith Eichmann.

They are certainly not cheap and I could have had a decent holiday with the amount I laid out for them but the results have been absolutely stunning. I have not had such high end (price) cables previously to compare these with but any cables I have had (many others far cheaper) fall a long long way short of the mark that these cables have made. They have replaced my Van den hul skyline Hybrids.

They have opened up my system in a way I did not think was possible with any cables whether it be IC's, digital or SC's. I've had reasonable improvements and refinements over the years by experimenting with different cables bought and borrowed but no result like this. If you get a chance to audition a pair please do. Or then again if you don't want to part with the folding stuff then don't go anywhere near an audition.

I have a decent pair of IC's between pre and power amp as well as between Kdac and pre but I'm now very keen to road test some gZero ICs to hear how they compare. Its a slippery slope....but better value than a holiday to Bali ;D

Nathan


Offline stevenvalve

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2014, 03:57:18 PM »
I have heard they are very good, but expensive. You should send them to me, so you are not reminded about the price.

Offline onthebeach

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2014, 04:03:51 PM »
Yes they are expensive and convincing my better half that we could put them on the home loan took some weeks of me being the perfect man but to my delight I'm very happy with the result...of the cables.

I guess at that level the cables are components in themselves. Many expensive components sound like sh!te as do many expensive cables.

modified slightly so as not to offend
« Last Edit: February 16, 2014, 11:13:35 AM by onthebeach »

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #3 on: January 24, 2014, 02:23:58 PM »
Could you send us a link to the advertising blurb and some images please? ;D ;D
V ;)
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline hedalfa

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #4 on: January 24, 2014, 05:41:37 PM »
Could you send us a link to the advertising blurb and some images please? ;D ;D
V ;)

I second that, as the info will be interesting... ;D

Offline onthebeach

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #5 on: January 24, 2014, 09:49:35 PM »
I haven't seen any advertising or written info. No blurbs yet. I guess there will be down the track.
I spoke with Rawl99 a few times about these cables over the last couple of months. He has been road testing them and had nice things to say. I trust his ears so I took a punt.
I'll see if I can get a pic up when I get a chance.


As you can see they are nothing fancy to look at. They start looking much better once you hear them though.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2014, 02:40:07 PM by onthebeach »

Offline kajak12

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2014, 11:09:43 PM »
rawl99 will send me some later in the year
still discovering the link between electronics and audio reproduction.so much to learn and so little time

Offline onthebeach

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2014, 03:46:03 PM »
Nice one. I'm hoping to get a pair of the ICs to demo against my Revelation audio labs that I use atm later on in the year as well. Apparantly according to Rawl they are pretty special and if my SCs are any indication I'm assuming they are just that .

Offline rawl99

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2014, 07:46:17 PM »
Yes they are stupidly expensive and convincing my better half that we could put them on the home loan took some weeks of me being the perfect man but to my delight I'm very happy with the result...of the cables.

I guess at that level the cables are components in themselves. Many expensive components sound like sh!te as do many expensive cables.

Hey Nathan,

Glad I haven't caused a divorce.
Firstly, thank you for trusting my suggestion re trying these cables.  I have been really impressed with what they do and have compared them with a number of cables at varying price points.
You really do have me a little puzzled I have to admit in one respect.
I picked this quote of yours to type this on because I am trying to work out why you consider these cables to be "Stupid Expensive".
If I had considered them to be stupid expensive there is no way that I would have suggested them to you, let alone suggest them to anybody else, such as Mario and his band of 'cohorts' (Hi guys!!). :P

If I was looking at 'Stupid Expensive' I would have gone straight to Transparent Audio (excellent cables by the way.  Have had a reasonable amount of exposure to the higher-end range and matched correctly!! with the system they are very good...... but...)

Mid Spec:
Musicwave Ultra: FROM US$3045
Reference SC: FROM US$6625
Higher Spec:
Reference XL: FROM US$13160
Reference MM: FROM $US$20995
Opus MM SC: FROM US$34735

Yours $3000 for a 4m set
normally the FROM in the above is 3m std length plus pro-rata for additional length.

And given my choice between yours and the Reference SC or Reference XL, from previous listening experience I would take the ones you have got (Given that I had them in my system and ran them in for you I think I got a pretty good idea what they sound like)

So I have to ask the question:  Where else could you have spent $3000 and achieved the degree of improvement that the speaker cables gave you????
Because my experience is that significant expenditure in other areas gave me, as you described, incremental improvements but once I put these cables in the change was quite insane, particularly in terms of the stuff that really matters to me:
Flow and cohesiveness of the music,
Integration across the range,
Lack of hardness and etch,
Superb resolution and inner detail--- not that brittle etched hardness that some people view as detail
Timbral beauty and harmonic resolution
AND......................ENGAGEMENT!!!!!!!!!!

The last word is what these cables do for me like nothing I have yet heard... except perhaps for 1 system at approx $1.2Mill... but that was running a magic TT at the front end.
All I have is a 'Lowly' 'Home-made' Killer Dac

So I guess the best way I can describe my experience with these cables is that they sound like a Killer Dac rather than like a ESS Sabre.

My Lad and i did a little comparison last week between a highly regarded cable that was recommended to me by a certain bloke from Melbourne which as an IC cost approx A$1200 for a 1m pair.
We listened to Holst, The Planets and then changed to the KLEI 40 series interconnects that I have.
We changed and gave the 40s about 5 minutes of settling time and fired it up again.  Lad looked at me and said 'you set the volume much higher' to which I replied 'No, it is indeed the same'.

Which it was.  But the sense of Life and dynamics with the 40 ICs was SO MUCH greater than the other cables that it sounded like the volume had been turned up a couple of notches.  Not in a bad way louder, but in that I want to turn that up louder way, but it was so much more dynamic it was crazy.
Tuba, bass trombone had a nice bite and rasp like the real thing.

Are they coming out.  No chance.
Could I go back?  No chance.

So as Nathan said in an earlier post.  If you are looking to buy a set of cables then audition these.
If you are tyre-kicking with no intention of spending money; then for Pete's sake do not audition these because you will not want to give them back.

So, from my POV, the 3 most cost-effective improvements I have made in my system are (Not in order of importance)
1.  Getting a Killer DAC
2. A set of absolutely magificent rare-as-rocking-horse-doodoo ECC32 valves for my power amp (Thanks Steve)... and the black plate KT88s...
3. KLEI speaker cables and interconnects like yours Nathan

Cheers

Rawl

Oh, PS that just popped into my head:

We compared the interconnects KLEI Model: 40 @ $2500) with some interconnects circa 3 times that price on a very expensive system.
Interesting result.  Of 4 people present (me being one of them), 3 of the 4 preferred the KLEI 40 for the reasons I described in the 'stuff that matters to me' part above--- yes I was one of the 3!

But here was the interesting part.  The new Harmony connectors that KL uses on these cables take a solid hour to settle and improve more in microdetail and nuance as hours go by.
They sound absolutely terriffic to start but just continue to get better over a period of a few days.
So, if the 40s had had a longer settling period (ie more than 5 minutes) like the 3x cost cables already connected in the system, what may the outcome of the comparison been?  4 out of 4??



« Last Edit: February 12, 2014, 07:48:01 PM by rawl99 »

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2014, 10:55:29 AM »
Whoa,,,,, good post.

What people consider 'stupid money' is relative.
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline hedalfa

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2014, 11:45:14 AM »
I think Nathan is quite right to use the term 'Stupid Expensive' because whats expensive or not doesnít have a fixed frame of reference. For many people what they would see as so much money on cables is crazy. Yet there is a lot of different ways that things can be crazy. I find much more crazy the expense a life time of buying and selling and not really getting a great system in the end and having spent a considerable sum on the turn-over of gear.  Or the cost of always penny pinching and buying all kinds of things to help along what is basically C or worse grade gear in the first place. For me whats crazy expensive is something that costs a lot but delivers little or nothing.  Certainly I donít think Nathan wrote that.

I am looking forward to hearing these cable for my-self. From reports it seems these offer a great return on investment and are not a crazy purchase in that sense.

In Nathans case he could have got his axiom 80 running in new cabinets and maybe got Steve to come down and help tune them.  Theres no way the VAFs will get near the axiom 80. Though the times not right for Nathan and not everyone who has axiom 80 has really got them to sing. Though the new cables allow Nathan to really enjoy his system and there be waiting if he want to run axiom 80 one day.  I cant think of much else he can do for 3,000. He could try to get a sweet valve single ended amp, though that wont suit the vafs. 

Nathan has confirmed his great satisfaction with these cable, on the face of it you have really helped him out by recommending these cables, seems hes real happy. Thatís got to be a good outcome because as we know its far from a given thing that by changing something in a system that we make it better.

Offline zenelectro

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2014, 01:46:17 PM »
Nelson Pass has a pretty funny anecdote in his amplifier user manuals which goes something like:
"good cables are important but try not to spend more on your cables than you did on the amp!" 

I had a good chuckle on that one,  :)

Seriously though, I think Nathans comment of 'stupid expensive' is more an indication of his healthy sense of values WRT fitting the cost of hi fi into your life whilst maintaining
a sense of balance with family and other commitments.

It's not really the place to talk nuts and bolts $ comparisons, however the entire clock upgrade was a small fraction of that figure.

The whole spirit of this website originally encouraged exchange of ideas and information for hi end enthusiasts to get great sound without spending huge money.

I have clear memories of Steven and others coming from the world of stratospheric cable prices, Mpingo room tuning devices etc etc. and shifting to an entirely refreshing approach of
do-it-yourself, get better results for less money whilst being technically guided by a few of us propeller heads ! We all learned and and had a lot of fun along the way.

You can certainly grab those cables back and I'm sure he will miss them but this is the age old hi end theme - the same can be said for the clock and the .... fill in the dots.

Craig - why don't you see if you can come up with a speaker cable that has similar performance to these for reasonable cost.
IME all these esoteric cables are made from pretty readily available materials but the accumulated margins on them are not insignificant from the time they walk
out Eichmanns door and in to to the customers. I think this is entirely possible and I'm pretty confident you could do it. 

That is more in line with the spirit of this website and it's contributors!


Z

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2014, 02:50:41 PM »
Right on the money Zen  ;D and closely aligns with my view on the 'shirt salesman' pricing bling attracts.  This forum is not about how much disposable income you have but about getting quality results with the help of others knowledge and experiences.  SNA is the place for such bling.

I used to retail as a manufacturer interconnects and speaker cables and can confirm most are using off the shelf parts with a posh jacket around them.  Mark ups can be astonishing! VDH cables are an exception WRT parts.
V ;)
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline hedalfa

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2014, 07:04:02 PM »
Right on the money Zen  ;D and closely aligns with my view on the 'shirt salesman' pricing bling attracts.  This forum is not about how much disposable income you have but about getting quality results with the help of others knowledge and experiences.  SNA is the place for such bling.

I used to retail as a manufacturer interconnects and speaker cables and can confirm most are using off the shelf parts with a posh jacket around them.  Mark ups can be astonishing! VDH cables are an exception WRT parts.
V ;)

Certainly right there some cables that look real good but there made of junk, poor connectors, wire from who knows where. Same with connectors wbt look alikes aren't wbts doesn't matter how shinny they are.

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2014, 07:24:32 PM »
 ;D The other thing that comes to mind is the law of diminishing returns, once you have reached the ~ 600 $ per interconnect and slightly more for speaker cables your VFM goes South big time.

With really good kit the cables sometimes do not make a huge difference IMV and as already mentioned when the cost is higher than the kit its connecting then its time to shout wolf.  :(   :-X
V
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #15 on: February 13, 2014, 08:20:26 PM »
Rawl's post seems to differ greatly.

Given the massive wraps,  these $3k cables are challenging our preconceptions.

Seems a bit ignorant to be dismissing the 1st hand views being presented, without listening for ourselves.
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2014, 08:39:39 PM »
Fair enough but 3K AUD for a set of speaker cables..............certainly better than the others mentioned at thier astronomic prices. How would I spend the money to improve the system more, easy, get a R2R player with some decent tapes, they will urinate all over the incremental differences in expenditure on speaker cables past 500 dollars IMV.
V
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2014, 09:31:19 PM »
:)  now you're just pressing my buttons bringing r2r into it. :D

There is soo much goodness to be had from tape.

Cant wait until someone (local) develops a tube output stage with the eq that lets us tap direct of the heads.   We've got to go there,,,,,,,
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline rawl99

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2014, 10:11:17 PM »
Nelson Pass has a pretty funny anecdote in his amplifier user manuals which goes something like:
"good cables are important but try not to spend more on your cables than you did on the amp!" 

I had a good chuckle on that one,  :)

Seriously though, I think Nathans comment of 'stupid expensive' is more an indication of his healthy sense of values WRT fitting the cost of hi fi into your life whilst maintaining
a sense of balance with family and other commitments.

It's not really the place to talk nuts and bolts $ comparisons, however the entire clock upgrade was a small fraction of that figure.

The whole spirit of this website originally encouraged exchange of ideas and information for hi end enthusiasts to get great sound without spending huge money.

I have clear memories of Steven and others coming from the world of stratospheric cable prices, Mpingo room tuning devices etc etc. and shifting to an entirely refreshing approach of
do-it-yourself, get better results for less money whilst being technically guided by a few of us propeller heads ! We all learned and and had a lot of fun along the way.

You can certainly grab those cables back and I'm sure he will miss them but this is the age old hi end theme - the same can be said for the clock and the .... fill in the dots.

Craig - why don't you see if you can come up with a speaker cable that has similar performance to these for reasonable cost.
IME all these esoteric cables are made from pretty readily available materials but the accumulated margins on them are not insignificant from the time they walk
out Eichmanns door and in to to the customers. I think this is entirely possible and I'm pretty confident you could do it. 

That is more in line with the spirit of this website and it's contributors!


Z


Tez,

Ballpark of a third of that figure for the clock fitted plus the upgrades would not be my definition of a 'small fraction of that figure'. 
Given what a Marantz or Wadia player is worth, spending as much to upgrade it as the base unit is worth would be just as questionable.
HOWEVER, when the upgrades give the degree of improvement out of the player that they do then that makes the upgrade a no-brainer imo. 
So my view is that the cost is relative in terms of the improvement that is offered... and not only in relation to the cost of the other bits that it may be used in conjunction with.
As was said, small $ components do not necessarily perform poorly and neither do big $ components necessarily perform superbly.
But if you just look at it from a $ relativity to the cost of the base unit then the same price as the unit is worth to upgrade it is just as 'stupid expensive'.

I have spent a Sh---load of hours developing cables and compared these cables in their very early development approx a year ago and mine were better.
They now eat mine and spit them out so I have far more useful stuff to do than waste my time trying to create something as good or better.  For the cost of the amount of time I would have to dedicate to creating something as good I could buy 10 sets of these and still be ahead.
I have watched a year of development go into these cables by Keith.
Same reason you don't sell your Zen clocks for a $100 like a Trichord.  LOTS!! of development time.

Each to his own.

Unfortunately I do not have the time in my life like Steve for example has had to developing a superb system.
If you were to cost in his time to any degree into what he has achieved it would scare most people half-to-death.

If people consider the cables to be 'stupid expensive' so be it.

As I said, for me, for what they offered me, I considered them to be exceptionally good value.

If you disagree, so be it

Craig

Offline rawl99

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Re: Essence gZero
« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2014, 10:16:15 PM »
Fair enough but 3K AUD for a set of speaker cables..............certainly better than the others mentioned at thier astronomic prices. How would I spend the money to improve the system more, easy, get a R2R player with some decent tapes, they will urinate all over the incremental differences in expenditure on speaker cables past 500 dollars IMV.
V

V,

I agree wholeheartedly which is why I have an MTR12.

But a dozen or two tapes with limited choice of genre soes not my boat rock.
It has its place in my overall system approach but given the diversity of CD music I have gone to some effort to optimise my CD playback.
Why would one bother buying/building/tuning a KDac if we all adopted your viewpoint.

Should all get R2R and listen to 10 tapes for the rest of our lives ;D

Craig

Oh yeah, just as a small added bonus my R2R ALSO sounds a lot better with the new cables as well as CD and vinyl.