"I need to add some comments on our cables. They are decidedly thicker, more rigid and less flexible than others on the market today. Our plugs (USB/Ethernet) are standard but their wooden housings are not. Before connecting our cables, check dimensions, available space and the location of the ports. I have two types of 1-metre USB (Eunoia and Apricity) and two types of 1m Ethernet (Eloquence and Lagoon). My Ethernet installation at home (and tested in other listening rooms) is a regular cable (10m, 4 twisted pairs, shielded), then socket and finally one metre before the router of my Ethernet Eloquence or Ethernet Lagoon. Between router and PC again 1 meter of Ethernet Eloquence or Lagoon. I do not plan to build longer cables than one metre.


"For the USB Eunoia/Ethernet Eloquence, sonic feedback from my colleagues is 'smooth, climactic, no signs of digitization, dark, huge advances in articulation and a detailed musical picture. Wide deep stage, well-rounded bass, natural vocals, warm detailed background sounds, total instrumental sustains. Settles aggressive systems.' For USB Apricity/Ethernet Lagoon, it is 'dynamic, high speed, analytical, resolving yet musical, good control, smooth transmission, no signs of digitization. Wide deep stage, selective, low-reaching bass. Consistent bandwidth and tone, tangible vocals, total instrumental sustains. Revitalizes passive systems. Brings out air and lightness.'"

With our router 7 metres from the DAC, I couldn't make a 1-metre Ethernet link work without an inline coupler. To my way of thinking, splicing short 'audiophile' ends to a long generic CAT5/6/7 wire whilst adding four more cheap connections in the process made no sense whatsoever. I'd only test a solid length. Yet Karol was committed to not exceeding one metre; perhaps due to the manual braiding? For USB in either flavour, I was a go though I still thought that Karol's length restriction equalled a sales-prevention scheme when plenty of prospective buyers might need something longer. Kimber's Axios USB cable for example is said to be good for up to 6 metres!


Given sundry residential hardware options, I had no voicing preference for either Eunoia or Apricity. Our system options can go from dark/dense to light/lucid and various stops between. If his two cables indeed followed such flavour polarities, they'd be useful tuning options even if the bits-are-bits brigade would be fumigating. They'd call claims to that effect a hoax or expressions of a feeble mind ignorant of how digital works. Actually, 1s and 0s transmit as analog voltages. Those look like square waves. They represent two different states and rely on high propagation speed aka broad bandwidth and steep rise times. That's where cable builds can make a difference.


Amused by the pervasive misunderstanding of 1s and 0s hustling their binary butts down a digital cable, Berlin correspondent John Darko of DigitalAudioReview ran an editorial with a poll to learn how many of his readers use generic versus 'audiophile' USB cables. When I checked, twice the number of pollsters had indicated the latter. Clearly then, the vast majority of listeners are guilty of mass hypnosis, being taken for fools and incapable of separating fact from fiction when it comes to the difference between Computer Avenue USB cables and their costly rip-off brethren. I'd done enough comparisons on the subject to know that I belonged to their sorry tribe. My question wasn't about if Karol's two cables sounded different—if they didn't, in any demonstrable way, he'd be a fancy idiot for making them—but by how much. Naturally, I also was curious whether they'd break new ground versus my stalwart red KingRex double header, the appropriately named Curious leash and Chris Sommovigo's Red Label.

As these drawings show, the alligator clips on the cables are meant to attach to the receiving enclosure by means of a chassis screw. With the USB models, that's obviously predetermined by the connectors to require no attention. With the Ethernet models which feature identical connectors on both ends, make sure that the one with the ground drain plugs into your PC/Mac/laptop, not the router or wall socket. Asking Karol about his length limit and R&D approach, "for a very long time I looked at different constructions of commercial cables. I cut them open, mixed them up, changed dielectrics or braiding. They all passed signal but music had no life. That's when I started to combine my own conductors and insulation, experimented with twist ratios, braiding, heat treatments and cryogenics. Once I had the proper sound, I saw how it differed with different lengths of USB cables. 1 metre turned out to be perfect. I did 1.25m, 1.35m. 1.5m and so forth and they all worked well but to me and my sound-assessment colleagues at LampizatOr (Lukasz), DestinationAudio (Wlodek) and others I know with critical hearing, 1 metre had the magic. Taking into consideration certain transmission features—theory, reflections, wavelength impedance, quantum tunneling—I believe there will be other lengths but not today. While I could obviously build something to order and believe my customers would be perfectly satisfied, I wouldn't be. My goal is to only sell product which I'd buy for myself. I love my cables. Making them I don't do for the money. I simply want to show how current standards can be broken. Maybe I'm on to something revolutionary. It's exactly how my colleagues started their businesses too - due to a need to reset existing standards.


"And the second topic is that my wife manually braids the cables. That takes a lot of time. But in practice, 2-3 metres wouldn't be a problem. She enjoys the crafting and it's just a matter of time. Still, I don't feel that the sonics are as good so I won't make it. About 'splicing' a long generic Ethernet cable with mine at the ends, you would be surprised how well it works despite the couplers and four extra connections. From wavelength theory, it works like a filter or muffler/silencer on a car exhaust. I do not treat digital signal as digital. For me it's very fast analog impulses with vertical slopes. If we take quantum tunneling effects and the barrier which cables create for the signal, we can open up a new dimension of transmission with a more regular order. Today I'm not able to prove and confirm this but as you know, our aural perception is higher and we listen to music with our whole body, with all the energy around it. We listen to the micro vibrations surrounding us. It's not easy to explain. But perhaps the most important thing is to ground to earth my cables with their crocodile clips so all the bad bits go to mother nature." Meanwhile Marja & Henk in Holland had signed up for the Ethernet cables, to feature in part II of this review on digital cables. We were signed up for the lot. Mine arrived first.