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On the other hand, if we consider that 50 euros represent the cheapest entry for cables, you would not expect to hear any—big—differences against the type of cable stocked by your local electronics discount shop. It is generally difficult to make a clear assessment of budget cables. But from my experience thus far, real differences exist even between budget cables, particularly among the latest crop. And though  it is difficult to assess the true nature of any cable—which by itself it makes no sound to always reflect associated components—it it is almost always possible to compare it against your costly reference pair which you know to perform in specific ways with each piece of equipment you have at hand.

Many high-quality expensive interconnects I had opportunity to try in my system imparted slightly different flavoring to the sound. To my ears, some interconnects and brands are quite a disaster because they succeed at altering the sound. That's not my idea of what an interconnect should do. Quite the opposite, it ought to preserve signal integrity. It took me a long time to find a pair of interconnects that did that without denaturing the sound. Budget cables generally offer better neutrality than many expensive efforts. But entry-level wires generally don’t produce the liquidity, attack definition, three-dimensional full-body sustain and elongated decay trails which render the sound more realistic. How would the Lintek cables perform and what were they made of?

: Lintek provided two pairs of RCA interconnects for assessment. The RCA-CT runs bistranded 99.999% OFC copper with pewter plating for its conductor and outer shield inside a white PVC sleeve. Connectors are good but average, not exceptional for the price but with gold-plated contacts and good mechanical support. The RCA-CS applies silver plating to the same recipe, the same connectors but sleeves it all in transparent PVC instead. These two represent the top range of interconnects sold by the French company for 50 euros each in 1-meter lengths. The overall quality is fine while the design and appearance are very common. As is generally the case with professional audio cables, Lintek stays as clear as possible from esoteric audiophile contraptions.

: Both interconnects exhibited limited frequency response compared to my usual Naturelle Audio interconnects which demand more than twenty times the money Lintek charges and use XLR connectors (but the difference between the balanced or unbalanced inputs on my system are quite insignificant when using the same cable with RCA connectors). The lack of extension at both ends was particularly obvious on fine piano recordings. Yet the Lintek cables wound up having a relatively full and surprisingly neutral tonal balance though the relatively rough treble was a small factor if one looked or listened for it. They would fit best where a lean bass range or more forward treble response are not desired.