C3 – Charleston Cable Company: The Universal Cable

Disclaimer : Charleston supplied us the cable for review free of charge. But that gave me an idea you will read about in a bit*.

 

box HFN Lieven round kader

 

Charleston Cable Company has been a site advertiser for as long as I can remember, there’s no secret there. I have no idea however how Mike, years ago already, got in touch with Christopher and so I sent him an email. I like using different types and brands of cables and so we ended up with him sending me a new kind of cable.

I wasn’t really planning on doing a review on it in the beginning but after a few months of using the cable with so many of my headphones, I just felt I had to say something about it. I don’t get seduced to writing extended cable reviews very often and you won’t see me writing thousand words on how just one cable exactly sounds this time either. But there’s something special about this one.

Charleston

One thing I especially like about the US based Charleston, is that they operate under the assumption that world class sound doesn’t have to be out of this world expensive.  A lot of cable companies (and there are a lot!) are asking incredible amounts of hard earned money for a simple cable and that’s just wrong. I myself don’t mind paying a reasonable amount for a nice looking cable and I have ordered cables from all over the world and even had foreign DIY’ers make me some. Heck, if I didn’t have two left hands I’d even make them myself. But back to Charleston.

Charleston has three price categories for all of their cables.  Each category exists for a different type of customer, and in each category they guarantee you will find a product that stands head and shoulders above everything else in its price class.  They even offer a 14 day trial period and if you are not satisfied in any way you can send your purchase back for a full refund.

The Cable

When Christopher, Charleston’s owner, sent me the cable, he on purpose didn’t tell me what he was sending. I had no idea how much it was worth and what it was made of. I just started listening and well, I liked it.

The nice thing about this cable is that it exists out of 3 pieces: Input – Middle – Output. The middle part is about 5’ long (1,5 meter) and is terminated with a 4 pin mini XLR on both sides. Yes, those are the tiny connectors the Audeze LCD series headphones use. Most people may not see the need for this and opt for the cheaper TRS or 4 pin XLR but using mini XLRs makes the cable even more flexible. It means you can switch both the input and output part based on your headphones and amplifiers. You could also use it as an interconnect or even a speaker cable if you’d want that.

Personally I only use it as a headphone cable myself. The input adapters I use are the standard 6.3mm TRS and the 4 pin XLR for balanced amplifiers. The output adapters I use are the SMC one for use with my Hifiman headphones and (again) the mini XLRs for my Audeze LCD2/XC. These adapters measure 2 to 3 feet making your cable a total length of about 10 feet.

As you can see in the pictures, the cable is nicely sleeved and beautifully made. (but aren’t they all?)

More after the click!

C3 – Charleston Cable Company: The Universal Cable
3.7 (74.12%) 17 votes

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Lieven is living in Europe and he's the leader of the gang. He's running Headfonia as a side project next to his full time day job in Digital Marketing & Consultancy. He's a big fan of tube amps and custom inear monitors and has published hundreds of product reviews over the years.

11 Comments

  • Reply March 10, 2015

    nullified

    I’m still looking for a IEM cable for C6iem and I cant decide on any specific tunings yet, except a slighter bright treble sometimes

    • Reply March 10, 2015

      Headfonia_L.

      I would suggest a silver cable then, Effect Audio has some great silver cables and I’m sure Charleston would be able to make you one too

      • Reply March 14, 2015

        nullified

        seen their site but the cable are almost the same price as the IEM, which isnt exactly ideal, so which one among them should i pick up?

        • Reply March 14, 2015

          Headfonia_L.

          I guess that depends on your budget and your IEM. I would never spend the same amount on a cable.

          My best advise is to email Charleston

  • Reply March 10, 2015

    dalethorn

    They’re about one mile from me, but I never met them. If they could recable my T51p that would be awesome.

  • Reply November 18, 2015

    Kevin P

    You mentioned that some cables lift the bass a bit. That is what I am looking for. Any suggestions?

    • Reply November 18, 2015

      Headfonia_L.

      Anything with Copper! Just shoot them an email, tell them I sent you and they’ll help you personally to find a cable

      • Reply November 19, 2015

        Kevin P

        Thank you for confirming that copper is the best way to go for what I am trying to get. I have been looking at Moon Audio’s Black Dragon as an option. Any thoughts or do you have other recommendations?

        • Reply November 19, 2015

          Dave Ulrich

          Well, Charleston Cable company is a good place to look http://www.c3audio.com. Any questions, just shoot them an email.

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