A pair of silver core interconnects from this UK outfit, reviewed by Paul Rigby
I must admit that Dynamique is pretty new to me. I first heard about it in August 2019 when I ran a news item on its new cable range. I’ve now managed to grab a pair of analogue interconnect cables for test.
In appearance, the interconnects are pretty unassuming. Apart from the centrally placed resonance filter module fitted in line with the cable (and that filter is not exactly bulky in nature once you see it in real life), the actual cable is rather svelte, thin and flexible. It will produce minimum drag on your hi-fi sockets.
In terns of construction, the cable is made from 6 x 24 AWG solid-core pure silver (4N, a measurement of purity – 99.99% in this case) cable.
Some of you might groan about silver, inferring that silver is bright and aggressive. Really, though, if you’re hearing that from silver cables, it’s not the cable’s fault. It’s yours. It’s a sure sign of excess high frequency noise plus other variants in your hi-fi chain. Silver is a superb method of transferring a signal but its doesn’t discern between the good stuff and the rubbish. It’s not intelligent. It’s only a cable, after all. Thus, it will shift the lot. Anything it sees. Including sonic rubbish. And it will do it very efficiently. So make sure you address the noise issues in your system before you plump for silver cables. Once you have lowered the noise in your system, silver cables can and should sound sublime.
These particular examples are covered in PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene) with Teflon air-spaced insulation.
The cables have also been created with a Helical Array geometry in triple-balanced configuration and low-metal mass 24k gold over tellurium copper RCA connectors plus Neutrik gold XLR connectors.
In use, I did notice a slight cable resistance in operation which warranted a slight increase in gain to achieve my default volume. Nothing to be worried about, though.
So how do they sound?
I played both Nat ‘King’ Cole’s Autumn Leaves from Best Of…Vol.2 and Early Morning from Barclay James Harvest’s Early Morning Onwards.
I began with Cole and noted that the cable did produce a smooth and relatively confident suite of upper midrange frequencies. What I heard was a deliberate, solid, slightly slower responding cable but one that exuded confidence and authority. So bass was big and bold with heft while detail remained but as part of a slightly warmer upper midrange. A warming side of balanced and not extreme by any means but, nevertheless…
For this Cole track, the Shadow 2 cables did nothing wrong in terms of basic foundational work. That is, there was no pinching treble, no bloated bass, no edgy or soft midrange frequencies. So, on a basic level, the cables passed the test with flying colours.
From that point onwards, the Shadow 2s took their own sonic pathway.
So, on this Cole track, despite a slightly restricted dynamic reach, the orchestra sounded full, lush, big, powerful and full of detail. Cole’s vocal, although lacking a touch of insight, offered a full and almost romantic presentation.
Switching to more energetic fare and Barclay James Harvest offered an arguably more suitable sonic approach which the Shadow 2 cables seemed to appreciate. The larger scale percussion, the throbbing electric guitar, aggressive bass, influential analogue organ and synths plus forceful vocals provided these cables with more meat. More to bite into. More information to grip and shift. Yet, the amount of available detail was there in abundance. The Shadow 2s seemed a mite more relaxed within this genre. Not to say that the jazz-tinged ballad was an issue but the rocking direction seemed more simpatico. The Shadow 2s seemed to enjoy tackling a rock track and took the musical energy easily in its stride.
I liked the Shadow 2 interconnects. They offered a sense of composure and calm when tackling any music genre. The cables always seemed to be in command of the music under review, especially in a rock sense. Try and grab a demo – the company may consider a home demo of some sort if you can’t reach a participating dealer – it’s well worth it, you will be pleasantly surprised.
Dynamique Shadow 2 Interconnect Cables
Price: £575 (1m pair RCA or XLR)
Good: commanding soundstage, smooth midrange, bold bass, physical design
Bad: slightly sluggish mids
[Don’t forget to check out my Facebook Group, The Audiophile Man: Hi-Fi & Music here: www.facebook.com/groups/theaudiophileman for exclusive postings, exclusive editorial and more!]
Icon PS3 phono amplifier
Aesthetix Calypso pre-amp
Icon Audio MB845 Mk.II monoblock amplifiers
Quad ESL-57 speakers with One Thing upgrade