It is unlikely you’d be coming to Headfonia today to read this review if you weren’t a cable believer yourself, unless you want to start a discussion about it… Who knows. For testing out cables I always fall back to my trusted Katana, a reference monitor that picks up all changes in the audio chain. My test conditions are pretty straight forward, two identical monitors, one using the stock cable and the other the Amethyst. The mighty Chord Mojo gives me the option to have both Katana’s at the same time at the same sound pressure level.
To me the Amethyst loaded Katana sounds especially tighter and faster in bass. It reaches a tad deeper and creates a wider and deeper sound stage. What Amethyst also does very well is enhance imaging and resolution. Treble shimmers a little brighter and comes across as crisper. The level of details did step up a good bit, especially micro detailing is achieved with higher precision and accuracy. There are not a lot of changes in mids. Voices are slightly airier and more emotional. The sound stage is airier and more open in my opinion.
Labkable says it themselves, there is no perfect cable, and I fully agree. Rather than one cable to rule them all, it is a matter of mix and match. Finding your preferences and getting there with trial and error. All comparisons are done to the stock cable.
64 Audio – N8 (M15)
The N8 is faster, more dynamic and reaches lower into sub-bass regions. It has higher resolution across all frequencies. The created sound stage is noticeably wider and slightly deeper. What impresses me about this pairing is the great imaging capabilities, no matter at what location a tone can be heard, it’s easily spotted and well distinguished from all other instruments. Stage is airier and instruments are better separated overall. The treble becomes more energetic and crisper, while not becoming too forward or sibilant. This is a very nice pairing with harmonic and smooth mids and a close to holographic sound.
64 Audio – A12t (M20)
The A12t has a mighty sub-bass punch on its own using the stock cable already, but hook it up to the Amethyst and that can result in even bigger impact. The bass is more focussed and slightly tighter. Sound stage again becomes wider, yet not as noticeable as with the N8. I’m uncertain if there are changes in depth. The A12t becomes more transparent and open with the Amethyst. Treble is sparklier and crisper, for some it might become a touch too bright though.
Lime Ears – Model X
The Model X is filled with emotions and dense vocals, it reaches mighty deep into low ends and has a full and dynamic signature on its own. The Amethyst changes gives its signature a tighter bass, more open and wider stage and higher resolution. The treble becomes elevated and brighter. What is especially noticable is theimmense micro details, they get portrayed with higher precision and more in front of you.
Labkable makes great products, and I share their philosophy, find something that suits you well and enjoy it to bits. The Amethyst is a wonderful cable with its specialties in precision, sound stage dimensions and detailing. It looks at the sound through a microscope and shows you all hidden informations with ease.
My only wish for labkable is that they step up their game in regards to build quality, then I don’t see why they shouldn’t become a very competitive and hard to beat brand.