Unless you are a regular audio show attendee, High Fidelity Cables based out of the Lonestar State in McKinney, Texas might land as a new name to many readers. The High Fidelity Cable company is making a big splash with some fundamentally fresh ideas exhibited in their lineup of power and cabling products. High Fidelity Cables’ unique designs revolve around the understanding of what your stereo chain really is at its essence: a large and complex electromagnet. Starting at your wall outlet, running though your source components, and completed at your beloved loudspeakers, HFC products endeavour to focus and sharpen the effectiveness of the magnetic potential in your system. To appreciate the groundbreaking nature of his products, inventor and CEO Rick Schultz will point you to his company’s seven U.S. patents and ask you to buckle up for a lesson rooted in quantum physics.
Mr. Schultz patiently explained to me that the coordinated loom of High Fidelity Cables cabling and power products I was to receive and review are essentially all magnets manipulating electricity (Rick would point out here that electricity is properly referred to as electromagnetism). Rick continued with a reminder that quantum physics shows us that electric particles can not be created or destroyed. High Fidelity Cables’ products utilise magnetic conduction to transfer these ‘always have been’ electrons in the audio signal by the process of inductance via magnetic fields sent through the cables. In order to create electromagnetism in the way we are accustomed to dealing with it in the audio sphere, HFC products create a dipole moment around the charge of the electrons in order to force them to align in a more efficient manner. The resulting ultra-focused audio signal will create more dynamic measurements and will carry significantly less distortion, two worthy prizes that are no doubt are in high demand for music lovers.
If you need to take a breath here, please do. I know personally at this point in my discussion with Rick Schultz that my sole college physics course had taken me about as far as I was going to be able to go on this ride. In the interest of not getting too far over my skis when it comes to the complex physics involved, those inclined can read more on HFC’s website and watch a number of well-prepared videos and experiments that help make his points. The good news for those who are not inclined is that Rick Schultz is an affable, down to earth fellow… and as ambassador of his brand he made it a point to end our scientific discussion with the critical point that High Fidelity Cable products will not be judged by anything that can be drawn up on a chalkboard. HFC products will be judged based on are the observations of audiophiles who will use their own ears as the final test of merit.
High Fidelity Cables are shipped individually in their own tank-like, locking hard plastic cases that quickly turned my foyer into something resembling a bombproof bunker after receiving close to 10 shipments of cables and power products to start installing. The HFC review loom was comprised of several runs of orchestral helix power cables ($8,050/meter), orchestral helix speaker cables ($9,660/meter, no bi-wire option is available), orchestral helix interconnects and phono interconnects ($6,440/meter), and to cap it off a gorgeous gold finished Orchestra helix power conditioner currently listed at $25,000. Easy for anyone to see that HFC carries top tier pricing intended for top tier systems. Given this reality I won’t run away from the fact that my quite modest review rig (Rega RP-10, Luxman LX-380, PS Audio Stellar Phono, Totem Element Fire V2,etc..) is very likely on the lower end of the HFC loom’s utmost capabilities. While not the six-figure system you might typically outfit with this level of cabling, I stand by my choices in upward looking gear and stand fast it can still shed a bright light on the performance of the HFC cabling loom and power conditioning as a complete unit.
The Orchestral Helix interconnects and speaker cables are not exactly ‘cables’ in the traditional sense as they do not follow the electrical model you would expect for traditional cabling. HFC employs the use of high-quality Teflon dielectric which passes through the unmistakable waveguide magnetic device on center of every cable run. The cables’ conductors will vary depending on the application’s expected current (power cable, interconnect, speaker, etc.) and are notable that they use a preset magnetic direction through the wave guide device that optimises signal transfer. Orchestral Helix cabling products are forged in a two-step baking process that alternates a high current sweep with an extremely high voltage signal sweep that has been fine tuned over several months of trial and error. All cables are tested individually by a team leader before shipping to confirm signal strength, physical stress test, and audible playback on one of HFC’s system to make sure everything is sounding just so for the future customer. Rick is adamant that a 400+ hour break in period is required to achieve long-term stability of the cabling products. Some significant fluctuations are to be expected within this 400 hour period as the cables settle into their duties. I heard a few of these fluctuations during my review period, but none were so abrasive that it significantly detracted from my playback enjoyment. I would describe these short periods as having a flat and duller sound for a few hours that would quickly correct itself and be gone.
The Orchestral Helix power conditioner is a 45lb aluminium and brass construction with a heat-cured ceramic finish designed to control vibration and eliminate mechanical distortions. Nearly a year in their design process, HFC early on started working towards a compact design with ample active wave guide power capabilities that would hit the $25,000 performance price point. A blue backlit LED screen (note that the screen is not dimmable) keeps tabs of basic metrics a user might want to track: voltage readings, current, power, and the Watt-hours. A user will be able to use these displays to confirm sufficient A/C power, show any and all fluctuations, and monitor real time electrical data ensure the rest of your chain is property fed and dead quiet. Through the previously mentioned principles of magnetic conduction the Orchestral Helix power conditioner electric signal transmission is claimed to be virtually unparalleled when it comes to eliminating noise while maintaining its efficiency.
Afforded the luxury of an extended review period, my experience adding High Fidelity Cables power conditioning and cabling to my system was overwhelmingly positive. Even at the high price of entry, I have absolutely no hesitation highly recommending them to the most discriminating high performance system owner. The loom’s sound signature I found to be a firmly forward presentation that pleasingly enhanced urgency and realism without ever losing its even-keel neutrality or adding any harshness what-so-ever that I could deduce. Listening to HFC had the repeatable and demonstrable effect of attaining previously unknown levels of intimacy with my music. When listening to my system with the HFC loom It was as if my concept of reproduced soundstage would vanish completely. HFC’s effect of eliminating any artificial boundary and it having a forward facing conversation with the art was an indelible experience at nearly every listen. Supervirtuoso’s Abbey Simon’s Baldwin piano can finish my thought here. Hearing Simon elicit the beautiful nanodynamics in Chopin’s Noctures (Vox Cum Laude) Opus 55, No. 1 in F-minor represents my lasting impression of HFC well. Near Op. 55’s coda, for example, where the fluttering of ivories simultaneously decay into an ethereal whisper at the drop of a hat was a simply arm hair raising gift that I feel fortunate to have received. The decay of the notes, the black background, and the added timing sophistication by HFC’s deft touch was simply marvelous.
One great thing about a cable loom review is how easy it is to substitute in another player to help form one’s observations. Adding HFC was a true night vs. day difference even when compared against some very nice big name Transparent and Cardas cabling! HFC is a one of a kind experience veering many times towards the closest thing I have ever heard in my home to three dimensional imaging that can live, breath, and move. HFC’s added dimensions and cues always enhanced the bigger picture and reminded me constantly this music we love is born by humans. A nice thought to have reinforced after a year such as this. Truthfully my experience with High Fidelity Cables was actually a bit frustrating for a modest system owner like myself because yes it was so much clearly that much better and unfortunately out of this reviewer’s price range for the foreseeable future. Ultimately you, not I, are the final judge on if the price tag is worth the performance upgrade in your system. Parting with upwards of $40,000 for power and cabling components is end game material if there ever was. However, if the product pricing is in line with your budget let me assure you again that High Fidelity Cable is no-brainer to the nth degree.
Price and contact details
Orchestral Helix Interconnects: 1m pair $6,440
Orchestral Helix Speaker Cables: 1m pair $9,660
Orchestral Helix Power Cables: $8,050/meter
Orchestral Helix Power Conditioner: 1 Unit $25,000
Manufacturer: High Fidelity Cables
901 N. McDonald Street, Suite 502, McKinney, Texas 75069
Tel: +1 (844) 348-6292
homepage – https://www.highfidelitycables.com
Orchestral Helix Power – https://www.highfidelitycables.com/power/orchestral-helix/
Orchestral Helix Speaker Cables – https://www.highfidelitycables.com/speaker-cables/orchestral-helix/
Orchestral Helix XLR Interconnects – https://www.highfidelitycables.com/xlr/orchestral-helix/
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