Kimber Kable 8TC Exotic Speaker Cables that Look/Measure Great

Discussion in 'A/V Interconnects, Cables & Power Conditioning' started by admin, Jun 3, 2013.

  1. admin Audioholics Robot Staff Member

    admin
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    We love poking fun at exotic speaker cable manufacturer claims. But, when an exotic cable manufacturer actually produces a product that measures, looks and sounds great, while making virtually no questionable product claims, we aren't laughing. The Kimber 8TC is such a product. This is a great speaker cable product that an audiophile and audioholic can be proud to own.

    [​IMG]

    Kimber 8TC Speaker Cable Review

    Please share your experiences with Kimber products and let us know if your system runs a set of 8TC's.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 3, 2013
  2. agarwalro Audioholic Ninja

    agarwalro
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    What is a "TCSS" conductor? I cannot find anything about it even on the Kimber website.
  3. avliner Audioholic Chief

    avliner
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    ...Just like a Rolex watch doesn’t necessarily keep time better than a Swatch watch, there is something to be said for build quality, cosmetic and brand appeal...

    Sure indeed, but a standard MP/BJC/WHATEVER traditional (cheap) speaker cable manufacturer does comply with the basics without spending and arm and a leg, but if you got the coin and want something fancier, don't think twice and go for it, just like the Rolex/Swatch comparison, IMHO :)
  4. highsounder Audiophyte

    highsounder
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    You can "get what you pay for"

    No doubt the third most important system in our sound equipment display is the "Connection". So many of us started with lamp wire. As we upgraded drivers and speakers we stayed with the wire because it was easy and quick. One day new, better wire on one line blew us away. Kimber Kable is the one that shows the difference.
  5. Marshall_Guthrie Audioholics Videographer Extraordinaire

    Marshall_Guthrie
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    Well, unless you're talking about S-Video to HDMI, I can't think of a time that I was ever "blown away" by a cable. Switching one properly functioning HDMI, USB, or any other digital cable from one to another makes no difference. The difference in speaker cables of sufficient gauge is minuscule to the point of being indistinguishable save for the placebo effect. But they do look nice...
  6. Adam Audioholic Jedi

    Adam
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    Gene, maybe you've talked about this before...but in case not - you should get the Dire Straits SACD! The multi-channel is really well done, IMO.

    Also, and this isn't intended to be snarky, do you think that you'd have felt that they dressed up your system as much if they cost $0.50/ft? Well, or you weren't using Blue Jeans cables. Nothing against BJC, but they look pretty bland/ugly in the pictures on their site. I recently made some myself that I like, and I also like the 12-gauge wires that I bought from Radio Shack back in 1998 that have clear sheaths that show off the copper (similar to one side of those Kimbers).
    Adam,
  7. Irvrobinson Audioholic Ninja

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    $21 per foot. If I were writing the review I wouldn't have awarded the 8TC two and half value segments. I would have done just the one half. Also, as soon as I saw that low inductance in the measurements section I knew what was coming, high capacitance.

    I get the whole high-end materials and workmanship thing, I'm really into it for a lot of stuff. Not jewelry or wrist watches, but I could embarrass myself with a list of other things that probably have a worse price-performance ratio than is really necessary. I even have a set of WBT bananas I used on a previous set of speakers. But for some reason $21/ft speaker cable just doesn't do it for me.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2013
  8. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

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    They're just as bland/ugly in person too. However, with a little effort, you can turn the Canare star quad into this:
    [​IMG]
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  9. slipperybidness Audioholic Ninja

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    They may not turn any heads, but when you inspect them you see the quality.
  10. its phillip Audioholic Ninja

    its phillip
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    I agree with Irv's value rating.

    I understand paying for looks and all, but I think those kimbers are super ugly. The above sleeved cables that Steve posted look good to me :)
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  11. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

    Steve81
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    Actually IME, some of their wire has qualities that make them a PITA, namely stiffness. The Canare is pretty flexible, but I'm not fond of the standard gray jacketed 12 gauge that I've got.
  12. slipperybidness Audioholic Ninja

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    True enough, that can be a bit of a hassle, in particular on the RCAs. I do prefer the more flexible variety of BJC even though it may not be the best from a purely technical viewpoint.

    I do find that using 90degree adapters helps quite a bit with those stiffer cables.
  13. Adam Audioholic Jedi

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    Well, you can dress up zip cord, too. :D Btw, I'm NOT calling BJC zip cord!

    I chose different sleeving and end treatments, but I made these (but my photo isn't as nice). To be honest, the original cable looked really nice to me without the sleeves, too.

    [​IMG]
    Adam,
  14. agarwalro Audioholic Ninja

    agarwalro
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    Gene... Gene... Gene... (a la FBDO :D).
  15. mtrycrafts Audioholic Slumlord

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    This is an interesting comment:
    at the same time using generous amounts of copper to keep the most important metric in speaker cables at a minimum – resistance.

    I wonder how they could get less resitance from a 9 ga or 11 ga cable than what BJ or other cable maker get with their 9 ga or 11 ga wire? ;) Is quantum physics at play?

    Or, is that their funny way of saying that their 9 ga wire has the same resistance as other 9 ga wire? Wonder what the max resistance would be for their 9 ga wire then?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2014
  16. avliner Audioholic Chief

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    You know what, this sounds like Monster Cable, as they just don't follow the AWG standards, though. If you ask them what gauge the XYZ cable has, they'll tell you their XYZ cable is equivalent to XX gauge... A lot funny, isn't it??:p;)
  17. Steve81 Audioholics 5-O

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    There's no claim that they are; the quote taken as a whole IMO simply reads that Kimber is using tried and true methods to produce cables with low inductance and resistance.

    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2014
  18. Speedskater Audioholic

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    Using high-purity"oxygen-free" copper can make a very slight difference. The difference in resistance between 'three-nines' and 'six-nines' copper is about 1.5 %. That's the same as going from a 10 foot cable to a 10.15 foot cable.

    When braiding cables, the individual wires paths will be longer than the cable's overall length. So a braided cable wit the same overall copper cross-section area as a zip-cord will have a higher end-to-end DC resistance than the zip-cord. Bur at high frequencies the opposite may be true.
  19. mtrycrafts Audioholic Slumlord

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    You are right, they didn't claim anything and i didn't imply that they did. The statement also didn't mention inductance or impedance, just resistance and perhaps that is what is curious to me.
    Generous amount may mean different things to different people as could minimum resistance. Why not an 8 ga wire? Is that too minimum or the point of increase in some parameters. I found it curious, hence my post.
  20. avengineer Banned

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    Gene, I wonder if you might elaborate on this statement, "They measure considerably superior to standard 10AWG zip cord..."

    What is "standard 10AWG zip cord"?

    In looking at the DIY Cable Faceoff measurements, the Sound King V1 seems pretty "standard". Yet, it measured lower Rs ( 2.17 average vs 2.9 for the 8PR and 5.6 for the 4PR) lower C (20.81 pF/Ft vs 87 for the 8PR and 39 for the 4PR). In fact, though we don't have DCR in the Faceoff to compare to (odd?) the only metric where the Kimber actually measured "superior" was inductance: the V1 was higher at 0.213 uH/ft vs about .041 uH/ft for 8PR and .074 uH/ft for the 4PR. As for "considerably", yes in that parameter only, the Kimber does measure considerably better, but cable inductance at any of these levels is probably insignificant in therms of performance.

    Perhaps I'm not looking at the same "standard 10AWG zip cord" you are, though. But it does seem there is a bit of a price differential...in the opposite direction with superior measurements except for inductance, even with some other cables in the Faceoff.

    If you were referencing other "standard 10AWG", please post those measurements.

    I also submit these hopefully constructive criticisms of the review structure: It would be helpful when providing test data to also provide a reference point where a given metric would become influential in a typical installation. How much Rs is a problem for a typical 25' run? How much C per foot would be an issue with a typical power amp and speaker? And so on, to scale the relative merits of each measurement for those unfamiliar with the effects. Otherwise, statements like the one quoted above may lead readers to assume that one particular cable is vastly superior to another in performance, when clearly that is not the case. It would also help graph readability to provide a better vertical scale that would make reading between the lines easier to estimate. Major divisions are easier to read if assigned to .1, .2 or .5 rather than .4.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 19, 2014
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