Disclaimer: PlusSound provided the Exo T-Metal free of charge for this review, I bought the X-Series gold plated copper cable for full retail price directly from PlusSound.
PlusSound is an American company seated in Los Angeles that specialized in aftermarket cables but has also dipped their toes into the portable amplifier market. Recently PlusSound has also launched their new universal IEM lineup. We have covered the Prism already, as far as I know more reviews are also in the works. PlusSound‘s latest product-introduction was of a series of Bluetooth IEM and headphone cables.
PlusSound has made its debut in early 2012 and has gained a lot of respect and interest for their outstanding products by the community.
Ordering from PlusSound is pretty neat and easy. You can go to their website, select the type of cable you want and customize the materials, terminations and even the Y-splitter and chin-slider. As like most other cable-manufacturers PlusSound also provides you the opportunity to color-code your left and right side connectors on top you can also decide what color the logo on the termination should be.
X-Series Gold Plated Copper
Months back, I was looking for an ultra-portable and flexible cable to pair my C/IEMs with when I‘m on the go. Effect Audio‘s Leonidas has been my top-choice for a long time, but I always found it too stiff, especially on the 2-pin side of it, and too microphonic. It is an unbelievably natural and organic cable with an insane amount of details and micro-detail clarity.
After a lot of research I finally settled on the gold plated copper X-series cable from PlusSound. I have reached out to Christian with two requests, one for this cable and the second one to get him to become an interview partner. I gave him my wish-list for the cable and four weeks later it arrived at my doorstep. It came in a sturdy black cardboard box that holds together with magnets. The cable was packed into a plastic bag and was lying on top of some dark foam, included were also an amplifier strap and a short instructions manual for the cable.
My X-series of choice was the gold plated copper. It consists of two wires, both of which are 26AWG of size. All connectors, 2-pin and 2.5mm, are covered by a black heatshrink with PlusSound‘s logo on it. The Y-splitter I went with is of black aluminium, it is lightweight and looks durable and good. Since the cable is very thin with its two wires, the chin-slider also is pretty thin, but not too tight. It is made of clear plastic and is a good choice for the price. I have seen it in use with much higher priced cables as well.
One thing I value my cable a lot for is that PlusSound doesn‘t use memory wires or preformed heatshrink to bend the wires for each side. Rather than going the standard route, PlusSound only used very little of the heatshrink from the 2-pin connectors to give each respective side a guideline of what way to bend. This made it possible to get to the best possible wear-comfort, and they have very well succeeded! The GPC X is the most comfortable IEM cable I know. It disappears once I have placed the cable over my ears. Luckily the Y-split also doesn‘t pull it down too much, so I don‘t even feal any weight.
The cable itself is made of ultra pure OCC Type 6 Litz and features multiple proprietary damping cores for vibration reduction, consistent conductivity and a better overall feel and ergonomics.
When you select your own X-series IEM cable, you have the choice of multiple materials to be used, such as copper, silver plated copper, gold plated copper, pure silver, gold plated silver and many more. There is one cable for everyone in this series, but of course they all come at different prices, which vary between 149$ and 549$.
We have learned from the Q ‘n A Saturday episode featuring Eric Chong of Effect Audio, that gold is often used for cables because it brings a certain value to the sound signature. A warmer and smoother sound, while still keeping the resolution up. He has explained it very well in his interview and I highly recommend to read it.
Sonically the X-series cable brings two key-strengths to the audio-chain. A lifted low end response and punch and a slightly warmer and softer treble. What I have found pretty early on is that this cable still keeps the same amount of clarity and precision of the IEMs. Neither did layering, staging or imaging take a hit with it. Rather than coloring the sound too much, X concentrates on creating a smoother overall tune but leaves other critical aspects of the spectrum untouched. It slightly adds on to transparency and instrumental separation, making both go a level up.
PlusSound‘s X-series is a very lightweight, good looking and affordable aftermarket solution for anyone who‘s in the need for an ultra-portable cable that adds a little smoothness to their audio-life.
More on the Exo cable and Conclusion on the next page!