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Reviewer: Srajan Ebaen
Source: Zanden Audio Model 2000P/5000S; Ancient Audio Lektor Prime; Raysonic CD-128 and CD-168 [on extended loan]; AMR CD-77 [on loan]
Preamp/Integrated: ModWright SWL 9.0SE; ModWright LS-36.5; Music First Audio Passive Magnetic; Bel Canto Design PRe3; Wyetech Labs Jade; Supratek Cabernet Dual; Melody HiFi I2A3; Eastern Electric M520; Yamamoto HA-02
EQ: Rane PEQ55 active merely below 40Hz
Amp: 2 x Audiosector Patek SE; Yamamoto A-08S; 2 x FirstWatt F4; Bel Canto e.One S300; Fi 2A3 monos
Speakers: Zu Cable Definition Pro in custom lacquer; Mark & Daniel Ruby w. Omni Harmonizer; Mark & Daniel Maximus Monitor; DeVore Fidelity Nines; Rethm Saadhana; WLM Grand Viola Signature MkII Monitor with Sys V and Duo 12
Cables: Ocellia Silver Signature interconnects & speaker cables [on review]; Crystal Cable Ultra loom; Zanden Audio proprietary I²S cable, Zu Cable Varial, Gede, Libtech and Ibis; Stealth Audio Cable Indra, MetaCarbon & NanoFiber [on loan]; SilverFi interconnects; Crystal Cable Reference power cords; double cryo'd Acrolink with Furutech UK plug between wall and transformer
Stands: 2 x Grand Prix Audio Monaco Modular five-tier
Powerline conditioning: 2 x Walker Audio Velocitor S fed from custom AudioSector 1.5KV Plitron step-down transformer with balanced power output option
Sundry accessories: GPA Formula Carbon/Kevlar shelf for transport; GPA Apex footers underneath stand, DAC and amp; Walker Audio Extreme SST on all connections; Walker Audio Vivid CD cleaner; Walker Audio Reference HDLs; Furutech RD-2 CD demagnetizer; Acoustic System resonators
Room size: 16' w x 21' d x 9' h in short-wall setup, with openly adjoining 15' x 35' living room
Review Component Retail:
Interconnects $198 - $498/m/pr; speaker cables $345 - $1,395/1m/pr

As it happened, SilverFi changed the design of both their interconnects and speaker cables during the review period: "I should inform you of very recent substantial changes in my products. Now I use Switchcraft RCA (USA origin) plugs in my whole interconnect line excluding the Turquoise Series (Eichmanns will be continued for that series). This plug change and a new assembly technique have brought incredible improvement to all interconnect models. With my speaker cables I am now using 2 different sheaths (1 old +1 new) which brings substantial improvement in transparency and resolution. So I can say that the samples you have do not represent the current state of affairs. Under these circumstances, you may decide not to continue the review." So did. But because SilverFi cables are indeed priced very attractively, I've left the following as a quasi introduction to help audiophiles at least discover the existence of this brand.

A haven for fume-inhaling tinkerers in garages. That's what I sometimes think certain manufacturers think of us. We do after all accord room to very small operators who still might fit that bill. In the case of Sezai Saktanber of Turkish cable boutique SilverFi, we might in fact have written his first formal review. This has prompted an unusual generosity on Sezai's part -- or persistence and pushing his luck as another take might have it -- to land additional reviews in our pages. Jeff, Paul and Ken have all received review samples and I'm not certain whether formal acceptance wasn't at times more faît accompli. In part this is due to SilverFi's view that cables are tuning devices. It has Sezai continually experiment with his metallurgical formulae and subtle new twists in his cotton-sleeved, braided, air dielectric interconnects. In short, he's the kind of fella who, if you were to criticize his product, would come right back with a "no problem, I can address that". In short order, he'd then send you three new samples, all of them slightly different to pick the one that does the magic for you.

This presents a number of obvious issues. One, it's all a moving target. That's swell for customers keen on the close rapport with a designer to determine what a given system needs and how to implement those qualities with cables. It's an utter nightmare for a reviewer trying to nail an approximation of a cable's signature that might travel more or less recognizably from system to system. Two -- and directly spawned from one -- it can be confusing as hell and very subtle. What exactly distinguishes one interconnect from another? A reviewer cannot be expected to take the same kind of fiendish interest in obscure voicing permutations which to an obsessed cable crafter like Sezai are major revelations.

Finding myself in possession of an armful of SilverFi leads and links which had somehow accrued as reminder tokens to wield my pen once more on their behalf, I'm not going to lavish any time trying to lock in what each of them sounds like. I can pretty much guarantee that those small differences would differ from system to system and thus be entirely meaningless. Rather, my focus will be to get a fix on the SilverFi house sound, then convey an impression of how much variability within that sound may be achieved and which particular qualities can be shifted. Given appearance, overall design philosophy and pricing, the interested reader can then know whether to investigate SilverFi further while taking advantage of the fact that their leads are built to order; shipped from Ankara direct to anywhere in the world; and that any personal voicing wishes will be like divine commandments which an earnest Sezai Saktanber will do his best to realize.

How he approaches that I have no clue. How he translates a "I have this and that gear and I'd like for the sound to be more so and so" into specific recommendations for a cable model or even a custom adaptation is the stuff of apparent magic to outsiders. To someone who lives, thinks, breathes and dreams this stuff, it's either experience, intuition or a secret combination of the two. What's no secret is that Sezai designs by ear. Forget fancy graphs or proof of anything that would impress the test bench fanatics. This stuff is designed by listening, tweaking, listening, tweaking ad infinitum, all the while incorporating feedback from customers and - ahem, reviewers.

SilverFi cables are not shielded but the braided interconnects accomplish their own noise cancellation à la Kimber's PBJ. Visually, the interconnects are distinguished only by whether they use 3, 4 or five conductor braids; and whether the plugs are Eichmann Bullets or anonymous. These are ideal DIY construction methods. They require no outsourcing of complex dielectric/shielding geometries done up on specialty equipment by large wire fabricators. Sezai explains however that his silver conductors are special because of how they're not processed during the normal extrusion or casting process. His website gives the pertinent details. And, "what we are about is tone, musicality, harmonics, texture, dynamics and transparency. Tone is the key element in music. SilverFi Cables display a harmonically complete tonal neutrality and accurate timbre that you have rarely experienced in other cables. The music will be coherent and demonstrate an unpredictable yet ceaseless flow with ease and spontaneity... we draw our own unique silver and silver-alloy wire. Thus, it can be said that SilverFi is one of the rare cable manufacturers who produce their own metal and alloy, drawn into conductors for original designs."
SilverFi's interconnect pairs are color-coded into left/right leads by the connectors, into source/load directionality with red shrink wrap signifying 'from', blue 'to'. A small plastic plaque then tells you the model name. It's the speaker cables that are visual oddballs by being shrouded in 1" diameter black Velvet sleeves that terminate in 6-inch long Walnut cigars which sprout a long solid-core gold-plated silver wire said to not be directly soldered to the main loom and thus fragile. A minimal 30-day warranty after delivery makes its own comment. From the dust magnet appeal of the black velvet to the shorting opportunities unless the long leads were first clipped to the stiff woodies taking up space behind the amp, many will think that Sezai's speaker cable concept needs revision. That's prior to listening. Where eyeing and handling might shrug a shoulder or shake a head, sheer sonics could forgive all. Still, any selling proposition should anticipate and overcome objections before they are ever raised. In my book, SilverFi has some anticipating and overcoming to do before these speaker cables approach the cosmetic appeal or user friendliness of the Crystal range (to cite just one well-known example). If a cable is too fragile to be stepped on, its appeal is limited to audiophile-neurotic caves. Real households are filled with kids, animals, cleaning personnel and visitors who tend to not treat hifi altars like the plague - by staying well clear.

Where Sezai will be greeted with fanfare is for his reduced pricing. Since our Realsization Award for his first submitted cables, SilverFi had dabbled in more upscale options including gold alloy conductors. Whether cyclical season or a return to core values, our Turkish cable crafter recently recommitted to the ultra-value notion as evidenced by the following: "I have checked on what could be done with the speaker cable prices to support music lovers. So I have recalibrated my prices for them excluding the Blackbyrd. The prices of three other models have decreased by an overall cut of 20%. The Master Series speaker cables now are the Blackbyrd ($349 for 1m/pr), the Sufi ($489), the Andalusian ($598) and the Rumi ($698). All our speaker cables speak with the same voice, differing only in levels of refinement, resolution and relative dynamics as one climbs up the price scale."

Special air dielectric silver or silver alloy conductors; simple geometries; low pricing. How it would all add up in the listening seat will be revealed shortly...

SilverFi website