Rerurn to Romy the Cat's Site

Didital Things
Topic: The Belkin Platinum Series S/PDIF cable.

Page 1 of 2 (39 items) 1 2 »


Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-17-2007

I reticently picked a new DAC and ADC processors. Not that I needed but they were the brand that I for years was trying to test but never had a chance, now I do. The processors use AES/EBU connectors. So, not I need to find reasonably sounding AES/EBU cables….

This subject kind of put me back to few years when I was trying and trying all of this. The great debates of AES/EBU vs. S/PDIF, the levels of AES/EBU and S/PDIF implementations and which cable is “better” were played years back. I use to own 7-8 of “better sounding” digital cables and tried perhaps a two dozens more, not to mention 5-6 different optical brands. Unfortunately the beloved by me Dominos did not sound well at all; in fact Purist never had good digital cables. During that time the insanely expansive new Kharma’s top of the line digital cable (I do not remember how they call it) among all that I tried was the very best sounding – a reasonably elastic sonically, with very proper harmonically (if is it applicable to say about a digital cable) and without any typical for most of the d-cables glitz,  After the try I was considering getting the Kharma. Then the Synopse cables come to my attention. It was S/PDIF cable, ugly looking and dirt cheap ($24 or something like that) that was so insultingly good that closed since then my interest for any digital cables. The Synopse has the effect of 6db filter vs. 48db filter – it was so reacher then any other cables that some of friends of mine who got Synopse those years (now the cable is absolutely no available) were lounging when we mention the Synopse Sound. The Synopse however was just  75R S/PDIF but I need a new cable of 110R…

I was looking recently what the cable companies do, those who do the 110R cables: Siltech, Nordost, Transperent, Aural Symphonics, Jena Labs, Tara Labs, Synergistic, MIT, Harmonic Tech, LAT, HMS, Cardas, XLO… In some cases what they say makes me scare: “we promise the extended bandwidth”   …brrrrrr!!!!

I really did not paid attention for a few years what is going on in the cable world. So if any interestingly sounding AES/EBU cables out there then let me know. I would prefer them to be cupper-made and made by a large company where the cable will be soldered my machine but not a human. Companies like Apogee, Belkin, Tektronix, Hewlett Packard are preferable.  I hope their production line still do cables and do not outsource everything outsourcabvle…

From another perspective something like Belden 1874A has a high purity copper, Teflon insulation and low capacitance. If I have it 110R then is anything else that would be necessary?

Rgs, Romy the Cat

Posted by Paul S on 09-17-2007
Romy, I also just integrated a new DAC and transport.  I tried an Acoustic Revive OCC single signal wire co-ax, and it is OK, providing about what I would expect in the way of "harmonics" from digital, but very good pitch, etc.   I wanted to try a cable without strands, twists, etc., and it is fairly coherent, minimal filtering and little to nothing added.  I may as an intellectual exercise swap the stock connectors with some NextGens, although at this point I am in no hurry to do so.  This cable is not dirt cheap, but not expensive, either, if you can find it.  I understand it is +/- popular with the "qualiity" Asian studios, which is not so much a selling point as a source guide.  In any case, the digital now bears some resemblance to the analog, and I will be posting on that, anon, but not talking about the cable.

The Belden satellite cable is nice, but I think you are more limited with 110 Ohms.  How about 75 + a resistor?

Best,
Paul S

Posted by Paul S on 09-17-2007
Why are cables generally so absurd?

I looked again myself and had a hard time finding it, so:

http://www.thecableco.com/product.php?id=4047

More $ but less work than DIY.

Keep us posted.

Best,
Paul

Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-18-2007

Thanks, Paul, I defiantly not going to do DIY cables. I went to

  http://www.redco.com/shopexd.asp?id=653

… and “designed” my own cable. It cost penny, it might not be good but it will be with AES/EBU specifications and it will make me start doing, at least will make me to see if it is worth to peruse with that DAC. Perhaps if the DAC tune out to be OK then I will convert it to S/PDIF to use my Synopses cable. Also the RedCo does custom interface to for my Lynx16 card - there are not a lot of people do it…

 Defiantly it is an idiocy to think about digital cables in term of “harmonics” and if other would do it I would the very first who would come with “adjectives” labeling the people. All metal digitals cables that I tried had to various degree different HF extension, different level of HF “cleanliness”, different HF zippiness and slightly different mix between the upper mid and HF.  With the Synopses cable is changed my virginity and it is set the game in completely different level.  It actually does something that mergers all frequencies together and makes digital to sound like way more swallowable then it usually is (even in context of TLO transport that is notoriously ferocious with details)

 So, if the DAC that I got turn out to be “interesting” then I will look for AES/EBU connector that does the “Synopses effect” (the DAC is AES/EBU only). The problem is that I have no idea why the S/PDIF Synopses sound as it is and therefore I I did not know what to look for in the new digital cable contestant.

The caT

Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-19-2007

In response of me mentioned the Synopsis cable above and over the years, since at “My Playback” page I mentioned the Synopsis I got a number of emails asking what the hell this mysterious cable is and why if it is so good it never made the inflames AudioNecrophile recommended component list?

Well, here is some information about the Cable.

Belkin in 90s produced a line of audio cables: Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum. Yes, it was Belkin – the company that does cheap computer stuff. Among all this cables there was Platinum Synopsis (cost $24) - an ugly blue 75Ohn digital cable. This cable sonically is much more interesting then any other S/PDIF cables, at least that I have tried, and it was quite a large number of cables tried for a person who claims to be a “normal”.

In 2002 Belkin introduced a new revision of the Platinum Synopsis Digital – it was black cable with molded terminator – that Platinum Synopsis was bad sounding cable. In end of the 2002 I spoke with Belkin and they informed me that the old Blue cable is not longer in production and there were only 200 of them left in their inventory. Soon those cables were gone and nowadays it is impossible to found a record of the Blue Platinum Synopsis Digital (#F8C310-03-PLT) when you talk with Belkin support people.

The sonic magnificence of the cable was discovered by a NY friend of mine why purely accidentally used his computer cable in his DAC and was surprised by the result. When I tried it I sold immodestly my digital cables and never even tried anything else since then (I had Dominus Digital at that time). BTW, at that time I bought other Belkin Platinum Series cables - they turned out to be nothing special…

So, the Platinum Synopsis is gone… but there is a “special” for the readers of this site. There is a company that do eBay business: Paramount Liquidation Center ("paramount13914") and they pulled form somewhere probably the last existing liquidation stock of the older version of Platinum Synopsis Digital. The eBay actions 330134917988 and 330167304617.  It is live now and it is $5 per cable.  I used only 3 feet cable, the Paramount sell 6 feet but I do not think it should be any difference, particularly since they are digital cable.

Well, not you know as much as I do… Good luck. If you get the Platinum Synopsis cable and find that it serves you well then, please, send some money to your local shelter for homeless Cats... Is someone will find out that the Platinum Synopsis Digital was available also as 110 Ohm in accordance with AES/EBU standard then please let me know.

Rgs, Romy the Cat

Posted by Paul S on 09-22-2007
I have been adding and reconfiguring gear recently and I will be needing a 6' digital cable very soon, when I add batteriy power, so I just went ahead and bought one of the "Synopsis" remainders Romy mentioned.

This $5 discontinued Belkin blue cable may be as good a piece of gear as I own, I kid you not.  Among other things it does a great job of limiting noise without screwing everything else up.  And when I say it makes digital more coherent, that is from me a BIG compliment.  IMO, normally, the more you get from digital, the less you get, if you know what I mean.

While I was at it I also took out some shielded ICs between the DAC and pre-amp and between the phono stage and pre-amp and I put in my well-made DIY OCC Litz stuff.  I knew all along that the Litz is "better" but I could not use it due to hum in my last place.

Well, no hum  at all  here now, and nice benefits from better cable, across the board.

Now to find something nice for the run between the phono transformer and the phono stage.  It has to be shielded, about 1/2 meter or so, RCA ends.  I need these shielded ICs because I have the short (unshielded) tone arm cables plugged directly into the tranny, up near the TT.

Best regards,
Paul S

Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-22-2007
 Paul S wrote:
This $5 discontinued Belkin blue cable may be as good a piece of gear as I own, I kid you not. Among other things it does a great job of limiting noise without screwing everything else up.
Exactly, it acts in a way as a low-pass filter but it has some amassing ability to filer the HF nose but do not touches the HF sound. People juts do not know how smart and advantageous this cable is. His cable is so ahead of any other S/PIDIF cables that it must cost as mush as all other D-cables combines. I juts wish it was available AES/EBU….

Posted by Antonio J. on 09-23-2007
I think I can afford one of those cables to learn some things. Moreover it would allow me to tell Romy if my AES/EBU cable could be any good for him. Have checked the auction and they still have some more available, but I've noticed that the reference number that Romy provided in his post F8C310-03-PLT doesn't match auction's declared reference: F8C310-06-PLT. Is it the same cable you're speaking about?
This is the current item reference at Ebay: 330106940236. The one that posted Romy already expired, but I've checked the ended one, and Belkin's reference for the cable was also F8C310-06-PLT and not the one Romy posted. I wish the one for sale is not the revised version.

Regards

Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-23-2007
 Antonio J. wrote:
I think I can afford one of those cables to learn some things. Moreover it would allow me to tell Romy if my AES/EBU cable could be any good for him. Have checked the auction and they still have some more available, but I've noticed that the reference number that Romy provided in his post F8C310-03-PLT doesn't match auction's declared reference: F8C310-06-PLT. Is it the same cable you're speaking about?
This is the current item reference at Ebay: 330106940236. The one that posted Romy already expired, but I've checked the ended one, and Belkin's reference for the cable was also F8C310-06-PLT and not the one Romy posted. I wish the one for sale is not the revised version.
The F8C310-03-PLT and F8C310-06-PLT are deferent in length: 6 feet vs. 3 feet

Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-26-2007

I sound as moronic as it could be but I found myself straggling with new thing. I am experimenting now with a new AD/DA processor in my system and to my big surprise my addiction to the Synopsis digital cables is nailing me down.

As now I have 4 AES/EBU cables, When I connect those AES/EBU cables between transport and Bidat then Synopsis cables make the AES/EBU to sound less interesting.  I initially thought that it has to do with specific of Bidat I/O implementations but the same story play with Lavry Gold DAC, which has both AES/EBU and S/PDIF interfaces (dispute that Lavry has one else gain stage for S/PDIF)

Now, the Pacific Microsonics DAC has no S/PDIF of course and I use my AES/EBU connectors with it.  So, I ask myself do those connectors sound like the AES/EBU cables when I use those cable with Bidat? The Pacific Microsonics does have some interesting things in its sound and I really would like to try to let it play its best. However, my twisted mind apparently needs the effect of Synopsisisation to call digital “acceptable”….

So, I decided to drive the Pacific DAC from my transport (in 16.44-in mode) with my S/PDIF Synopsis cables but trying to find a RCA-XLR adapter. I know it is kind of bogus as I will have the unnecessary double transformation but I would like to experiment to see what happens. Here is where the fun starts: I do not see any company who makes AES/EBU to S/PDIF adapters.

Advark, use to make them but they are gone nowadays. All the rest manufacturers who do the digital adapters (with built-in in 75R to 110R impedances matching transformers) do not make them XLR to RCA but only XLR to BNC. It means that I would need ANOTHER BNC to RAC adapter….

What the hell!!! Does anyone make a direct AES/EBU to S/PDIF adapters? Perhaps I need to call Devid Berning and ask him to put a switching amplifier between the AES/EBU to S/PDIF pins….  Sorry, Meriln could not resist… :-)

Rgs, the caT

Posted by George on 09-27-2007
Here are my notes on adapters. I am not an engineer so I do not have further explanations readily available but could probably dig them out.

1) It is physically impossible to make an RCA male or female with an impedance of 75 Ohms, so all digital RCA terminated cables will never conform to the 75 Ohm S/PDIF spec. This can only be done with BNC. This I believe is why you cannot find the XLR to RCA transformer adapters.

2) Lavry says (you can find it on his website) that for short runs it does not matter whether you use AES or S/PDIF cables. He says just use the appropriate standard (non-transformer) adapters. Longer runs are a different story I believe.

You might just take your Synopsis cable, cut off the RCAs and stick XLRs on it. You might have to experiment with Pin 3 but thanks to your link the cables are cheap enough.

Here is a useful link from Rane:
http://www.rane.com/note149.html

George

Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-27-2007

There is another very good article with the simple resistors conversion network.

http://www.epanorama.net/documents/audio/spdif.html

Still, I would like to make it “kosher” and have ordered the double adaptor with a transformer from RedCo:

http://www.redco.com/shopexd.asp?id=337

There are also some obnoxious “brutal force” cables, pay attrition the are 18” long…

http://www.lynxstudio.com/cables.html

I am familiar with what Lavry thinks on the subject and am defiantly will try it. Still in his unit his put a separate transformer isolated SPIDIF input with a separate gain stage specifically to EQ the voltage of SPIDIF and AES/EUB… Well, I think I am becoming overlay anal retentive….

Anyhow, I remember there was suggesting fromCharles Hansen of Ayre Acoustics:

On paper, the S/PDIF standard is 75 ohms and the AES/EBU is 110 ohms. On paper this represents a 32% mismatch. This sounds like it might be a problem, but it really isn't. When there is an impedance mismatch, the signal is not transferred 100%. Instead some of the energy is reflected back the way it came.
Now, if you put an adapter at the output of an Ayre and use a 75 ohm cable and the receiver is properly terminated at 75 ohms, there won't be any problem. There is no reflection from the adapter because the physical dimensions are so small relative to the wavelengths involved that there isn't even a "characteristic impedance" at that point. Then, at the far end, the wave traveling through the cable is absorbed by the receiver.

If there were an impedance mismatch at the receiver, then there would be a partial reflection that would travel back upstream to the Ayre. Now the impedance mismatch at the Ayre would cause another partial reflection of the partial reflection that would travel back down to the receiver. This partial reflection of the partial reflection could add some "noise" to the edges of the signal that could cause some small amount of jitter in theory, but this happens only if there is a mismatch at the receiver end as well.

In practice, this is the least of your problems. In practice, you will find all kinds of things that matter that shouldn't from a theoretical standpoint.


Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-29-2007
Got the AES/EBU to S/PDIF adaptor and it turned out to work very nice. I do not have “audiophile-approved” better AES/EBU cables but among those cables that I have the S/PDIF Synapses + the adaptor sound more interesting then the native AES/EBU + non-Synapses cables.

The caT

Posted by Antonio J. on 10-09-2007
Yesterday arrived the Belkin Synapse cable. I have been listening this afternoon some music, and I'm surprised how this 6ft piece of wire has been able to remove the high frequency crap. Clean, coherent, no false detail anymore... I believe it affects the rest of the audible spectrum, not by changing the tonal balance, but by removing what shouldn't be there, hence making everything simply righter. Thanks Romy. Forget about the AES/EBU I was using. It was better than any other cable coaxial or balanced I had used between the CEC and the Bidat, but the Synapse is simply better. It narrowed the gap between my digital and the analogue sources. Probably the Synapse with the adaptors you're using is better than anything AES/EBU we can find out there.

Rgrds,

A

Posted by Romy the Cat on 10-09-2007
I know Antonio, pay attention that since the Synopses get rig of HF nose then the upperbass and the lower mid harmonics opened up with totally different presentation.

If I were some kind of industry dealer and make my living by shepherding the Morons in their audio corral then I would buy off the entire remanding inventory, put the cable in a fancy jacket, write it up some “literature” that the cable utilizes the “doctrine of skin-centrifuge where light HF electrons are dropping off the edge of the cable exposed to the circumference force of proprietary cable insulation” and then sell those “Synopses with face lift” for $3.000. Considering that Synopses is likely more interesting then any other digital high-end cable out there I do not see why it should not be marketed appropriately. I am sure some sleazy industry jerk could buy couple BMWs in this venture…

The Cat

Posted by Romy the Cat on 12-28-2007

I looked today at Site Statistic Page and paid attention that the site has 628 unique visitors from Poland that all came to this thread. It looks like someone “Peter Daniel” turned the Polls attention to Synopsis cable.

http://www.audiostereo.pl/forum_wpisy.html?temat=36758&p=1#k

There was one guy “Peter Daniel” who in DIYAudio posted a long saga modifying Bidat. It was so long that I do not even remember what he ended up with, nor I pay a lot of attention to the mostly foolishness that  is being posted at DIYAudio site.  I do not know if it was the same Peter Daniel, anyhow…

I do not know if those Polish guys like the cable or not - I do not read Polish to understand what they are taking about. Still it looks like some of them bought it and I hope it works out for them. I am a little concerned as by divulging the “secret “of the Synopsis cable implied a very specific retribution from any future Synopsis users:

 Romy the Cat wrote:
If you get the Platinum Synopsis cable and find that it serves you well then, please, send some money to your local shelter for homeless Cats...

Unfortunately the Peter Daniel edited my quote living the Cat’s demands out of it - such an asshole! I do not know if the Polish guys understood that the cable was reviled not in order to make their playback to sound better (like I care about it) but in order to help the homeless Cats during the winter. If somebody speaks Polish then can you inform them that anyone who has bought the Synopsis because of my lead should feed homeless Cats this winter, at least once….

Meanwhile I am reposting a few images from the Polish website:

Sinopsis_2.jpg

Sinopsis_1.jpg


Posted by Wojtek on 12-28-2007

Trough the entire 4 pages of Synopsis thread there is only a few (mostly positive )remarks of how it sounds.
The rest of it is just where?/how?/and how much?- idiotism. AA is a fountain of wisdom compared to Polish Hi-Fi forums.
The general attitude of Poles toward foreign Hi-End (especialy US) is a kneeling admiration .
Feeding homeles cats???? You must be different kind of Slav -Sire , to demand  such a nonsense from Eastern  Europeans
Regards, Wojtek

Posted by Romy the Cat on 12-28-2007
 Wojtek wrote:
Trough the entire 4 pages of Synopsis thread there is only a few (mostly positive )remarks of how it sounds.The rest of it is just where?/how?/and how much?- idiotism. AA is a fountain of wisdom compared to Polish Hi-Fi forums.The general attitude of Poles toward foreign Hi-End (especialy US) is a kneeling admiration .
Feeding homeles cats???? You must be different kind of Slav -Sire , to demand  such a nonsense from Eastern  Europeans
Still Polls gave to the word a number of pianists who had no needs to demonstrate a “kneeling admiration” to anybody: Chopin, Friedman, Paderewski, Godowsky, Rubinstein, Hofmann… Only those few names would be enough for any country with any size of ego. Although, it not related to the subject of Digital Interfaces but I would not express any audio racism, partially in the case of Eastern Europeans. If you speak polish then please let them know that each person who got the Synopsis should buy a box of Cat food and to feed stray Cats.

Posted by Wojtek on 12-29-2007
No need to bring audio racism into play . I'm Polish and proud of all Polish pianists , artists , sausage and vodka. I sustain my opinion of Polish audio world .
Cats part was out of place -all my alley cats (many in Detroit ghetto) , smelly cat families living in my crawl space and two bastards who lay down every day on my porch armchairs  and  pretend that they don't notice me when I open the door smelling their ugly fumes will get something extra-It's a Holiday time after all and proper catholics should show a little heart for our little brothers Wink
Happy New Year

Posted by dmitre on 02-17-2009
Hello,

If anyone have spare Platinum Synopsis cable please drop me a line.
I would like to grab one.

dmitre@gmail.com

Posted by miab on 02-24-2009
I have a few available if your interested. Still sealed in factory plastic.

Posted by dmitre on 02-24-2009
Please drop me suggested price to dmitre@gmail.com.
Thanks!

Posted by miab on 10-01-2009
I have some left that I would sell you at $65 each + shipping. They are in original factory sealed bags.

Romy if mentioning this here is inappropriate, feel free to delete.

Posted by Romy the Cat on 10-01-2009
Miab, are you juts selling them of you use then as well? The reason I ask is because if you have too many of them then you might try to make one Balanced Synapses cable from two single ended.  I know people tried - I do not know how successful they were… If not my hate of soldering then I would try myself….

The Cat

Posted by miab on 10-02-2009
Yes I do use them for both my Bidat and battery power Idat/M both reworked by John (BTW Idat/M has some performing benefits over the Bidat in my experience). The Synapse cable does have the special qualities mentioned in this thread.

I had considered and actually needed running balanced at a few times in the past. I was going to try the Neutrik NADITBNC-MX that you posted earlier. Did it work well while preserving the qualities of the Synapse?

I assume making the balanced cable with two Synapse cables would involve taking each core, creating the line and return of the balanced cable? Then soldering both shields together to create ground or shield? Do I have it right?


Page 1 of 2 (39 items) 1 2 »