Dynamic Design Constellation AC Power Cords by Mike Wright

 

Mikewright2.jpgI have been a consistent fan and admirer of Dynamic Design cables since the early 2000s. My system has changed many times, but the one thing that has been consistent during my 21 years here at StereoTimes has been Dynamic Design cables. Periodically, I’ll speak with Olu Sonuga, Chief Designer for Dynamic Design, about the state of the audio industry, trade shows, and audio cables. Knowing Olu would be tantamount to you, knowing a world-class cable or equipment designer who lives in your town or city. No, we don’t hang out or pal around, but his audio experience and system-building advice have been invaluable. In the fall, I shared with Olu that I was using his AnnaLyric power cords with my Bully Sound Company mono amps using 15-amp to 20-amp IEC adapters. Olu sent me a pair of his 20-amp Titania power cords to work specifically with the Bullys so that, as he put it, “I could really hear what the Bullys really sound like.” I, and several visitors to my home, thought I had the Bullys sounding fantastic, but once I put the Titania power cords on them, OMG, that was magical. The level of improvement in speed, impact, and presence was startling. I didn’t know the Bullys had that type of performance hidden within them. My only regret was that my good friend, the late Bret D’Agostino, who designed and built the Bullys, couldn’t hear the level of musicality his amplifiers had achieved.

During a phone call with Olu, he informed me of a new cable series, the Constellation Series, replacing the venerable Lotus Series that had been around in various versions for about 23 years! The Constellation Series is designed as an upmarket alternative to the Lotus Series, using new and improved materials and technologies that firmly place it in the reference quality domain! It’s a little pricier than the departing Lotus Series but offers substantially better performance, making it a great value!

 

Technically Speaking

Tweekgeek2017.gifThe decision was made to break up the review of the new Constellation Series cables into two parts: power cords first and then interconnect, digital cables, and speaker cables, to give each group the attention they deserve. The power cords that I evaluated were the Constellation VE 15-amp power cord and the Voyager Digital Power Cord. The Constellation VE 15-amp power cord resembles the earlier generation Lotus power cords but is much more substantial, thicker, and heavier. The jacket is black on shimmering silver, and the connectors are high-quality 3D-printed designs. The Voyager Digital Power Cord is an attractive-looking cable. The jacket has a light silver/natural-colored braid and polished gold-plated connectors. They are tastefully done. Regarding technical information regarding these power cords, Olu invites prospective customers to visit the Dynamic Design website. They can also use the “contact me” link to have their questions answered.

How They Sound

I had four power cords in total. There were two Constellation VE 15-amp power cords on my VAC 200 IQ amps configured as mono-amps and a third Constellation power cord on my VAC Renaissance preamp. The fourth power cord was a Voyager digital power cord that went on my Holo May Kitsune III DAC, where Dynamic Design recommends placing it if you have just one Voyager digital power cord available for the best sound. Ideally, using the Voyager digital power cords on all digital sources in a system is recommended. The Voyager power cord coming from the DAC and the Constellation power cord coming from the VAC preamp were plugged into my Inakustik 3500p, and the Constellation power cords coming off the amps were plugged into my Essential Sound Products Essence Power Distributor. The Constellation power cords replaced a couple of AnnaLyric power cords, which left me wanting for nothing. Still, the level of improvement was quite noteworthy. There were notable increases in the music’s clarity and intricate detail retrieval, such as provided by violas, pianos, and female vocals. I also noticed improvements in instrumental separation within the soundstage.

The Constellation power cords also offered increases in dynamic range, with the softer passages (e.g., such as those within some classical music) continuing to sound delicate and the loud sections being louder but remaining pristine and under control. Soft passages remain delicate, while loud sections retain their impact without any distortion or loss of control. The Constellation’s bass performance provided better control and articulation with more definition and impact. Spatially, the Constellation power cords portrayed and enhanced stereo image with precisely placed instruments and vocals. By this time, I felt I had captured what the Constellations power cords brought to the system. All of these sonic improvements were subtle at first. Still, the improvements were evident and palpable when I replaced the AnnaLyric/Essential Sound power cords on the VAC Renaissance preamp. Now, it was time to insert the Voyager Digital Power Cord. This change was a treat, both sonically and optically. The Voyager was excellent to handle and look at, but that’s a special digital power cord sonically.

FuseAudio Banner (1).jpgMy initial thought when listening began with the Voyager power cord on my Holo May DAC was, “Wow!! Is this MY system sounding like that?!” The sonic purity and uncolored transparency made me run through hours of favorites and reference material. The Voyager in my system enhanced the soundstage with a more comprehensive, deeper listening environment, and the music became more balanced. It projected a deep, well-layered soundscape with ultra-fine gradations of individual placement of information in the soundstage! Voices were well projected into the room but naturally without interfering with the other instruments, revealing an impressive soundstage depth, and the bass appeared to be much more controlled, tight, powerful, and dynamic. The Voyager also gave the system more texture and detail in the midrange. Overall, Voyager’s most significant improvement to the system was a sense of musicality and involvement that made me want to go well into the night and early morning.

When I get into part two of the Constellation cables review, I’ll include the recording references I used to ensure everything is consistent.

A Few More Thoughts:
The Dynamic Design Constellation and Voyager power cords are first-rate, well-constructed, and use some of the finest parts. I have found that cable manufacturers do a good job talking about materials, construction processes, parts, cryo-treatments as opposed to double-cryo treatments, and even whether there are sonic benefits to cables being cryo’d. I have found Olu to be just as thorough, just as meticulous in his parts selection and testing, and caring about the products he makes available to the music-listening public, probably even more so than the more prominent, popular cable manufacturers. Most readers’ questions about Dynamic Design cables can be answered by visiting the website. I have always come away impressed with the thoroughness with which he takes to answer questions. Again, I would invite you, readers, to take Olu up on his insistence not to try to fill your expectations about his cables in a paragraph or two in a review, but instead, go to the website and read what’s there or email him. He welcomes the queries and will be sure to get back to you. As mentioned above, I have been a fan of and have had experience with Dynamic Design cables in my system for 21 years. Sometimes, it may only be a power cord, speaker, or signal cable; sometimes, it may be a loom of cables. During those times, being a reviewer, I have had countless encounters and evaluation periods with a lot of different, wonderful-sounding cables. When I first got my VAC gear, I was into everything Shunyata. After about a year, it was back to Dynamic Design. The same could be said about my experience with Nordost, and I go way back to the Quattro Fil, SPM, and Valhalla days. I still wound up coming back to Dynamic Design. The same could be said of M&G Audio, Snake River Audio, Siltech, NBS, Stealth, Morrow, and countless excellent-sounding cables; I have always returned to Dynamic Design.

Germane to this review, it was not until I had one of those “constructive criticism” phone calls with Olu that he convinced me to try having Dynamic Design and AnaLyric power cords throughout my system. That was a huge turning point in my system development. I got system setup tips from my good buddy Daniel Barnum and system configuration tips from Olu. I had a consistently good system once I had Dynamic Design power cords throughout my system. Still, it also made doing reviews easier, allowing me to hear accurately what had changed sonically and why. Dynamic Designs power cords give you a consistent performance across the board and let you hear what’s happening in your system. That’s precisely what the Constellation VE Power Cords and Voyager Digital Power Cords do. With their level of excellence performing in my system, build and parts quality, and level of sonic consistency, I highly recommend these cables for anyone seeking to push their systems to their design limits! 

MikeWright.jpg

 

Specifications: Dynamic Design Power Cords:
Constellation VE Power Cord  1.5M – $2,500
Voyager Digital Power Cord   1.5M – $2,500Manufacturer: Dynamic Design

Website: www.dynamicdesignav.com
Contact:  mail@dynamicdesignav.com

 

Mike’s Associated Equipment:

Speakers
Tekton Design Moabs
Amplifier
VAC Signature 200 iQ Amplifiers (used as stereo and mono-amps)
BSC Audio BSC100m 100-Watt Mono-amps
Preamplifier
VAC Renaissance Mk V with Phono
Analog
Merrill Heirloom Turntable
Rowland Research Consonance Tonearm
Transfiguration Phoenix Cartridge
Digital
Asus Laptop w/Fidelizer Pro, Roon, and JRiver v.26 for Hi-Res Files
Holo May Kitsune III DAC
Bricasti M5
Marantz SA-7S1 CD Player
Cables
Dynamic Design TBK Interconnects
Dynamic Design TBK Speaker Cables
Dynamic Design Heritage Balanced Interconnect
Dynamic Design Heritage Power Cord
Dynamic Design PAAPI
Dynamic Design THB – XLR Digital Cable
Silversmith Fidelium Speaker Cable
Pink Faun – USB Digital Cable
Pink Faun – RCA DigitalCable
AnnaLyric Silver Power Cords
AnnaLyric Pathway Digital Power Cord
Essential Sound Product Essence II Power Cords
Power Line Conditioner
Inakustik 3500P (Distributor loan)
Essential Sound Products Essence Power Distributor
Accessories
Star Sound Apprentice & Rhythm Platforms – for amps
Star Sound Sistrum Rhythm Two Platform Stand
Symposium Acoustics Ultra Platform
Symposium Acoustics HDSE Rollerblocks
Symposium Acoustics +2 Rollerblocks
Adona GX4 Equipment Stand
Epiphany Stand Systems – Celeste Reference Stand

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