The Expression Emerald USB is more particular still because it's a digital cable. The vast majority of people from the pro market plus a large group of audiophiles claim that with digital, it's all about 1 and 0 so cables don't matter. The cheapest ones are as good as superior executions. Yet pro specialist David Laboga developed a series of USB and Ethernet cables that already gained traction among professionals and recently audiophiles. 'Conquest' would obviously exaggerate when the company is still young. Just so, a new brand with roots in the pro market delivering their cheapest of three USB cables which in audiophile terms is relatively inexpensive for review testifies to a high level of confidence. But then user testimonies on both sides of the barricade are very positive already.

David emphasized that while he does offer the more upscale Sapphire and Ruby which deliver still more, it also means much higher prices. They are for the most demanding customers with the most expensive systems which will fully benefit from enhanced performance. Today's Expression Emerald USB is supposed to be a golden mean for those looking for high-class refined sound for a relatively friendly ask. He admitted that this model will constitute the bulk of sales for both markets. Probably only a relatively small group of audiophiles will choose the more expensive models. Such honesty earned my respect from the start.

"We have invested—and are continuing to— a lot of effort and money in development. It has been a development and testing journey of many years to build the Expression series cables. Before our cables go to customers, we test them in many different environments and systems, with many different customers who have different music tastes. We can proudly say that we have developed what we believe to be one of the best USB cables on the market. USB cables are one of the most important cables in our audio chain as they convey the original source signal to the rest of the system. If the quality of the initial source signal is the best it can possibly be, there will be fewer problems further along the signal chain that we may feel compelled to try and fix by changing speakers, amps, different interconnects, speaker cables etc. Of course every component in the system is important and has a positive or negative effect on the fidelity of the final output but ensuring the source signal is as pure and unadulterated as possible will be a significant factor in delivering the best sound possible, both in terms of mastering and music reproduction."

Among professional users of his cable who have already expressed appreciation is Hiro Furuya, a mastering engineer working with Eric Clapton, Toto, Billy Joe, Elton John and Rod Stewart. The cable is also used by Maor Appelbaum, another famous mastering engineer for Annihilator, Eric Gales, Faith No More and Sabaton. Mr. David sent me two Emeralds terminated with A/B type plugs, one 2m long, the other 1m. With them I was able to connect my custom server to the USB input of my LampizatOr Pacific DAC and other devices. The second cable could include Ideon Audio's 3R Master Time USB regenerator in the signal path. The cables arrived in a nicely padded wooden box with the manufacturer's logo engraved on the lid. Solid gold-plated plugs were protected by small black pouches of soft material. Some may consider these unimportant but we all prefer to receive our new audio goodies in perfect shape. The color of the cable's sleeve explains its name. It's green at least from a male perspective whose average representative distinguishes no more than ten basic colors. Those with a more sophisticated eye may recognize emerald. Besides the eye-catching color, it doesn't really stand out nor should it. After all, pro roots mean robust, durable and reliable, not a beauty pageant contestant.