August 1, 2009

The Emotion Gets to You

This is an old post of ours in the blog we previously contribute to.

I have had the Kubala-Sosna Emotion interconnects in my system for the last 3 weeks, and am halfway through writing up a review for the next issue of AVXpress. But hey, there is still some way to go until the next issue, so maggielurva asked me to share some of my impressions of them on this blog first. So here we go.

I put on the K-S between my Copland CD player and my Pass Labs X2.5 pre-amp. The first impression was that they were not the kind of cables that grabbed your attention outright. Music just came forth from the system with a very even-handed manner, there was no one sonic area that screamed for my attention.

If I had given up on the K-S at this point, that would prove to be a big mistake indeed, because after 3, 4 days of listening, I started to realize and appreciate my system’s performance with the K-S in it. The K-S slowly got through to you rather than knock you off on first listen!

The biggest effect the K-S had on me was that I felt more relaxed listening to my system. The way the K-S handled musical flow reminded me very much of my impression of the Meridian G08 CD player (I do not mean to say that the K-S made my system sounded like the G08 though, but just the rhythm/flow/ timing part). What I blogged about the Meridian G08 (under ‘A Tale of Two CD Players’ a couple months ago) could be borrowed here, so pardon me for my laziness while I steal from there to describe the K-S – the K-S lingered a bit over the music to allow you to savour the full development of the musical notes, sort of like letting you ‘smell the roses’ on the way. I find this to be quite charming, as it gave me a new perspective on the music. You might get slightly less adrenalin rush but gain insights into the music. In this sense, the K-S comes across as composed and mature in my system - and also ‘sophisticated’, if I may add. It is also important to note that this obvious sense of relaxation did not seem to diminish the musical message or details.

With the K-S in it, my system’s bass performance went up a notch, it went much deeper and I felt that my EgglestonsWorks The Nine loudspeakers' bass capability was fully utilized. The bass was focused and impactful, the Native American drum tracks on Bill Miller’s The Red Road were the best I have ever heard on my system. The K-S mid was another area they excelled in, it had body and richness. The highs were smooth and quite detailed, they were also nicely integrated well with the rest of the sonic spectrum. I thought they were also nicely a little self-effacing, and because of this behaviour, they made many of my CDs quite listenable (bad recordings still bad, but more listenable). Like maggielurva mentioned in his previous post, the K-S may match better with modern amps, if you think your modern amps are a bit shrill or thin, try the K-S,I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

There are a few more areas that the K-S did quite well, like the coherence that they always imbued all kinds of music I threw at them. I’d elaborate more of these in the full review write-up. I’d end this sneak preview of the K-S with a passage I have written for the review article – “The listening experience with the K-S was analogous to sitting in a chauffer driven Mercedes sedan - it was luxurious, smooth, secured and comfortable. The sound, like the ride of a Mercedes, had a high level of maturity and sophistication that was very appealing. It was hard to forget once experienced”.

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