Analysis Plus Golden Oval Cable

Analysis Plus Golden Oval Cable


May 2004

Key Kim

I’ve spent a lot of time researching and choosing my audio reference components. The foundation of my system’s set up is very similar to that of Clement Perry’s: It incorporates digital amplification technology and Ascendo loudspeakers. However, I was curious about one thing: Would my system sound even better if I were to use Analysis Plus Golden Oval Cables? Several months ago, thanks to Analysis Plus’ Mark Markel, I was allowed to do a follow up review of the Golden Oval speaker cables and interconnects that Clement Perry is using as his reference cables (read CP’s review here).

The Golden Oval Cables are the no-holds-barred, cost-no-object, elite line of the Analysis Plus family of cables. They feature A-P’s patented oval braiding, using pure gold over oxygen-free copper.

I used two runs of 8’ between my Tact Audio M2150 and Ascendo System Z loudspeakers in a bi-wire configuration and a 1 meter XLR between the Tact RCS 2.2x room correction preamp and the Kora Hermes II. I ran the Golden Ovals around the clock for about 2 weeks, using an SCD-777ES as a transport, before doing any serious listening, and my main references were Nordost’s Quatro-Fil and SPM Reference cables.

As good as my reference cables are in their own right, overall I preferred the natural sound of the Golden Ovals. It was immediately obvious that these cables were of reference caliber; something special. They possessed a more natural and open, airy sound thatbrought me closer to the live musical event.

With the Golden Ovals in my system, there was unquestionably aspecial sonic synergy happening. It was a match made in audiophileheaven that transcended my previous listening experiences. The AP Gold captured the immediacy and presence of music playback in a highly emotional way. Living with the Golden Oval cables I noticed the system became even more natural and life-like over time though I would agree wholeheartedly with CP’s assessment that they sound incredible right out of their shipping box.

Listening to Van Cliburn’s Tschaikovsky Piano Concerto N0.1 [JM-XR 24004], the overall musicality of this disc was vastly improved upon. Everything became more natural and warm but not euphonicallyspeaking. When Van Cliburn struck notes the sound was physical, passionate and powerful without being neither over-etched nor harsh. The  soundstage appeared wider and deeper than with the Nordost cables. I gained a certain degree of openness I couldn’t imagine my system could reproduce from CD’s – given my rooms acoustic properties – and via the AP Gold my room’s now noticeably more open. The AP Gold opened up spaces between the orchestral sections as well; spaces between individual instruments within the sections were more expansive, more real, thus lifelike.

The tonality of the strings of the Ensemble Explorations in Rossini’sSonate a Quattro [Harmonia Mundi HMC 901776] were equally impressive. The AP Gold added neither honey nor astringency making each individual instrument sound ultimately more natural and smoother. This level of sonic synergy put me in a trance-like statemaking it easier to escape my Manhattan condo and imagine myselfat a concert hall listening to a live performance.

Story Time

I took the Golden Ovals with me and visited an audiophile friend of mine who just happens to also own the increasingly popular Ascendoloudspeakers (his being the more affordable System E). These magnificent transducers were setup driving my previous reference amplifier, the Classe Omicron amp and an Omega Pre-amp. The system was utilizing very touted speaker cables and interconnects.Once I inserted the Golden Ovals, my buddy (who chooses to remain anonymous) and I looked at each other and said “Oh my god!” All of my previous findings were resoundingly unanimously confirmed. The sound was remarkably good. The Golden Ovals brought out the best in his system. This may seem like a synergistic match with the Ascendo loudspeakers only since that’s what CP as well as my system are composed of but I have let senior editor Marshall Nack also have a go at the AP Gold and the results were just as repeatable and illuminating with his Kharma Ceramique 3.2 loudspeakers.  

It is true that Analysis Plus Golden Oval interconnects and speaker cables are very expensive, but they are worth every penny in my very humble estimationI’ve taken my show on the road and have seen them work in the setups I mentioned above in addition to first hearing them in CP’s setup which is certainly one of the best systems I have ever heard. Needless to say, I bought the AP Gold and they too now serve as my new reference



Golden Oval Speaker Cables:
Pure gold over Oxygen Free copper 
Price: $6,320 for an 8 ft pair.
Price: $1,495.00

Golden Oval Interconnects:
Pure gold over Oxygen Free copper
Price: $1,999 for 1 meter w/Locking RCA or Balanced XLR.

Analysis Plus, Inc.
106 ½ East Main St.
Flushing, MI 48433
Phone: (888) 579-0386
Fax: (810) 659-3303


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