This review first appeared in February 2018 on HifiKnights.com. By request of the manufacturer and permission of the author, it is hereby syndicated to reach a broader audience. All images contained in this piece are the property of Dawid Grzyb. - Ed.

Reviewer: Dawid Grzyb
 Lampizator Golden Gate DAC (Psvane WE101D-L + KR Audio 5U4G Ltd. Ed.), Asus UX305LA laptop transport
Amplifiers: Trilogy 925
Speakers: Boenicke Audio W8, Gradient Evolution
USB cables: ordinary €1 printer throwaway, Forza AudioWorks Copper Series Twin USB
Speaker cables: Forza AudioWorks Noir Concept, Audiomica Laboratory Celes Excellence
Interconnects: Forza AudioWorks Noir, Audiomica Laboratory Erys Excellence
Power delivery: Gigawatt PF-2 + Gigawatt LC-2 MK2 + Forza AudioWorks Noir Concept/Audiomica Laboratory Ness Excellence
Equipment rack: Franc Audio Accessories Wood Block Rack
Music: NativeDSD
Retail price of reviewed component in EU: €835/1m ex VAT

Tellurium Q are a relative newcomer best known for three things:
high-quality audio cables; a quite unusual approach to signal transmission; and the almost fanatically safeguarding of their trade secrets. The word on the street calls this British manufacturer a phenomenon. Quite a number of prestigious awards gathered over a rather short time would lend credence to that reputation. Today we'll consider their Silver Diamond Waveform hf USB cable. Tellurium Q were established in England in 2009. Their website gives some insight into how it all started. Let's travel back in time to a certain afternoon. The place is a recording studio somewhere in Somerset, South Western UK. As their business advisor, Geoff Merrigan visits here regularly. That day he and the owner, a very tech-savvy man, discuss how certain pieces of the audio hardware puzzle influence the sound. This scientifically biased talk leads to cables. The eventual takeaway is that they're the weak link. It all starts quite innocently by considering how a wire is just a wire whose sole purpose is to pass a signal of sufficient amplitude. After an hour of discussing theoretical and transmission-related principles, our two gents are convinced that they have seen the full picture and can nail the fundamental issues of the process themselves. They've had their Paul to Damascus moment so to speak. Things clicked on an absolute or conceptual level. And that's how Tellurium Q was born: on a leap of faith or strong convictions.

What followed were heavy investments into in-house R&D, into unusual tools and a bit later into their very first product, the Tellurium Q Black cable. It far exceeded their own expectations and soon several regional shops expressed interest. Apparently Merrigan didn't have to look for them but was pursued instead – quite rare in this racket and particularly in the overcrowded cable sector. Usually a new audio maker must pound the dirt and canvas the shops to, please, have a listen. Since those early days, TQ's portfolio has expanded significantly. This includes cable-related accessories like Tellurium copper plugs. I suspect that there's more to those than just the one example but Geoff—usually open, chatty, easy-going and witty—turns instantly taciturn whenever it comes to their IP. It's hard to shake off the feeling that he has several aces up his sleeve. But it is a highly competitive market after all and a stony poker face may be the best response. Some shoppers might like more but if the performance matches the claims, all is well – and existing Tellurium Q press coverage suggests it is; which further suggests that Geoff and crew know a thing or two about cable manufacture since such widespread positive acclaim couldn't possible be a mere stroke of dumb luck.

The official Tellurium Q site is generally mysterious yet several interesting bits are to be found. A major talking point is the reduction of phase distortion to improve the sound quality. Here the signal itself is paramount. Geoff sees it as an analogue process even in digital cables where any material in the assembly acts as a filter which affects the conduction of the electromagnetic field/wave from point A to B. How Tellurium Q control this process is their secret. Geoff did confess that their trick is not that easy to actually deliver something which works as intended. During their R&D phase specifics like conductor type, thickness and plating even on the plugs, the distance and geometry between the wires and the wire source itself are all on the table. It's a process which still fascinates our man for each new project. The longer he's into it, the more joy he gets out of it.