History of the Cable Comparator Disc

10 Years old and still as relevant
as when it was created.

In 2002, Wireworld Cable Technology released the ground breaking Cable Comparator™ Disc, containing 17 versions of the same track that demonstrate how well cable bypass testing reveals the sonic effects of cables. The Cable Comparator Disc was Wireworld's follow-up to the invention of the Interconnect Comparator in 1995 and the Cable Comparator System in 1997, which were the first succesful double blind testing devices for cables. And what's truly amazing is that even after all this time, the Cable Comparator demo is still relevant, and still unchallenged.

Wireworld cables are still, and always will be, designed and engineered to perform as close as possible to the true reference standard for sound quality, a direct connection.

"The Comparator is extremely revealing of an interconnect's sound and is an invaluable tool for judging interconnects."
— Robert Harley, STEREOPHILE, Vol. 18, #11, 11/95

Then and Now
disc 10 Years Ago we burned the Cable Comparator Demo to a CD (now we're online) ECI-now
ECI-then 10 Years Ago Wireworld was producing Series 5 cables (now we're on 7 and even better) ECI-now
David Then

10 Years Ago David had a mustache (no further explanation needed)

david Now

comparator"Every reviewer who writes about wire should have a Wireworld Interconnect Comparator, so should every retailer who sells cables... I've never experienced an easier, less stressful way to audition cables. And the findings are terrifying... My worst fears were confirmed about certain over-hyped wires... Wireworld has just fashioned the ultimate hot air filter..."
— Ken Kessler, HI-FI NEWS & RECORD REVIEW, U.K. 10/95

The Cable Comparator Disc - 2002

The Introduction

Wireworld invites you to experience a dramatic step forward in the evolution of audio cable technology. For over 25 years, manufacturers of specialty audio cables have attempted to produce cables capable of preserving all of the delicacy and beauty of recorded music. The Wireworld Cable Comparator Disc provides an objective demonstration of the breakthrough performance of Wireworld Series 5 cables, which come closer to fulfilling the goal of perfect fidelity than any other cables available at the time this disc was made.

The benchmark of perfection for a cable is a direct connection. To enable you to hear the difference between such a benchmark audio feed and actual audio cables, track 2 of this disc was made with a direct connection. Each of the other 15 comparison tracks were made with a selection of 1 meter long interconnects made by Wireworld and seven leading competitors. The superior musical fidelity of Wireworld cables is revealed by how much closer they sound to the sonic purity of the direct connection.

Listen for the clarity and resolution of Jackie Ryan's magnificent voice. Cables tend to mute voices and add distortion to 'S' sounds. Listen for the quietest sounds you can hear with each cable. No cable preserves as much low-level information as a direct connection, but Wireworld Series 5 cables preserve more than other cables. Try to pick out all of the notes. Most cables blur individual notes and compress dynamic expression. Wireworld cables simply allow you to hear more of the music.

The Test Setup

This disc was created from a signal chain that originated with a 24 bit/48KHz digital tape feed from a Tascam 45HR DAT deck.The music is a live recording of Jackie Ryan and The Mike Wofford Trio performing "I Concentrate On You". This digital audio signal was converted to an analog audio signal by a Birdland Audio Odeon AG 24-bit/192KHz upsampling d/a converter. Track 2 of this disc, which serves as an objective reference, was produced by connecting the unbalanced analog outputs of the d/a converter to the unbalanced analog inputs of the Marantz CDR620 CD recorder with reference jumpers only 4 cm (1.6 inches) long.

pennyThe reference jumpers are made of concentric OFC copper tubes insulated with Teflon. The sonic transparency of these reference jumpers was confirmed in the reviews of the Interconnect Comparator. Tracks 3 through 15, including the announcers voice, were produced by replacing these 'direct connections' with designated pairs of 1 meter (3.3 foot) long interconnect cables. Track 16 was made with a 10 meter pair of Belden 1505A, the same type of cable as on track 15, included to demonstrate the losses caused by increased length. Track 17 is the same cable as on track 4, Wireworld Atlantis 5, connected in the reverse direction to demonstrate the audibility of directional effects in cables.

cookerAll of the cables were examined and tested for defects and burned-in for over 50 hours on The Cable Cooker (www.audioexcellenceaz.com); all of the connectors were cleaned with Progold contact conditioner (www.caig.com).

The Tracks

The audio tracks below are high res .wav files and will take some time to fully load/download. If you wish to download the tracks, click on the name of the track to download a zip file to your computer.

NOTE: Listening results my vary depending on the quality of device used for playback.

Track 1: Introduction

Track 2: The Direct Connection

Track 3: Wireworld Oasis 5

Track 4: Wireworld Atlantis 5

Track 5: Wireworld Equinox 5

Track 6: Wireworld Polaris 5

Track 7: Wireworld Eclipse 5

Track 8: Wireworld Super Eclipse 5

Track 9: Monster Sigma Retro Gold
(TM Monster Cable USA)

Track 10: Audioquest Anaconda
(TM Audioquest)

Track 11: Transparent MisicLink Super
(TM Transparent Audio, Inc.)

Track 12: Kimber Select KS1020
(TM Kimber Kable)

Track 13: Tara Labs RCS Air One
(TM Tara Labs)

Track 14: Nordost Valhalla
(TM Nordost Corp.)

Track 15: Belden 1505A
(TM Belden Wire and Cable Company)

Track 16: Belden 1505A, 10 meter
(33 foot)

Track 17: Wireworld Atlantis 5,
reversed direction

Credits: Jazz Vocalist - Jackie Ryan
The track "I Concentrate On You" was recorded on July 10th, 1999 in La Jolla, California - "live" direct to two track 24-bit tape in performance with The Mike Wofford Trio (Rob Thorsen, bass and Duncan Moore, drums). Track 1 was narrated by K. O. deRamirez.