MIT vs Monster Cable - Review

Discussion in 'Accessories, Cables, and Remotes' started by Doro, May 29, 2003.

  1. Doro

    Doro Agent

    May 28, 2003
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    Hello, I am the noob today. I originally posted this in the Polk Audio forum, I am a member, and thought you fine people would find some interest in this.

    Demo: MIT MI-330 Series Two (Medium 47-100k) 1 Meter
    Monster Cable Interlink 400 1.5 Meter

    Receiver/Amplifier: Sony STR-DA2ES HT Receiver(2003)

    Source: Sony CDP-745, 5 Disc Changer(1993)

    Selections: Patty Rothberg(1 and 9)/ Soul Coughing(Ruby Vroom), Mark Lanegan(Whiskey for the Ghost)

    Speakers: Polk Audio RTi38, wall mounted on BT-77 BTech brackets(Dynamatted). 5 deg downtilt, 2 deg toe-in, 7 ft separation

    Enviroment: 13' x 18', basic room

    Listeners: dorokusai and F1Nut

    Jesse came over to demo my start-up HT, mainly the RTi38's. After some good food and an even better cigar, we got our ears on and got to work. Jesse had mentioned these interconnects that he had, MIT, and wondered if I would like to demo them. What better time than at the demo in the first place.

    We played some various CD's, other than the aformentioned just to let J get a listen at the RTi38's. This was with and w/o subwoofer. Monster Cable, Interlink 400, 1.5 Meter. CD input on receiver, basic setup, no EQ. I will let him comment on the particulars of the RTi38's, so I don't mistate anything.

    MC demo(doro):

    Treble - It exists, just not very detailed. Average performance in this section.
    Mid - Warm, pleasant to the ear, not out of character with the rest of the speaker. It can handle any midrange easily.
    Bass - Weak, but speaker mount tweaking brought it back to life. Strong bass for their placement. One can never have too much bass, so this is certainly objective.
    Stage - Not bad, they would benefit from more toe-in, but a wall anomoly prevents this from being possible. Front stage is more fluid in HT. 2CH is almost to the point of being separated too much. Some music blends the middle better than others.

    Patti Rothberg/ Mark Lanegan CD's are recorded well, so music was very nice. Soul Coughing runs some analog in their recordings, so small hiss was on certain tracks.

    This is a nice speaker, above average performance, they outshine the competition in this price range(IMO) They develop more as a HT speaker.

    MIT demo(doro):

    Let me start with the difference in these cable was instantaneous. 3 seconds of a selected Rothberg track, 1st song demo'd after change, and it was obvious the cables were helping greatly. : - ) BAsically, Holy Shite!

    Treble - Brightened the treble up considerably. Certainly not LSi, still not super accurate, but treble had more "presence". It removed the "dull" feeling of these speakers.
    Mid - Small improvement, tightened up the vocals.
    Lows - Small improvement, made the bass clearer.
    Stage - Huge improvement. Center fill, was full and rich. The separation anxiety the speakers were feeling, was now gone. They would probably still benefit from more toe-in, but that has been covered.

    Conclusion: I was a believer in cable benefits, but have never had another reference point to set a standard. MC was my standard. Herein lies the main difference in comparing these two cables, cost. MC = $45(New), MIT($300). The resulting soundstage was SO much improved and enjoyable that the benifits far outweigh the cost of these cables. I would recommend them, or at least suggest that they be a demo choice at the very least. Personally, I am looking for used ones right now. Thanks for reading.
  2. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

    Sep 26, 1999
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    I'm sure someone will come in and try to invalidate your test and tell you that what you heard was not possible.

    I hope they don't [​IMG]

    Enjoy your cables.
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    May 22, 1999
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    Hi Doro. Welcome to HTF!

    Could you clarify something? I dont have the cables memorized so I really dont know what devices you hooked up. Was the two cables a digital-interconnect, analog interconnect from CD to receiver, speaker wires, subwoofer cable?

    Assuming this was an analog connection, did you make any sort of check that the volume remained the same when you switched cables?

    Even professional reviewers have done A/B comparisons for amps and waxed poetic how one unit was superior. Later, they recanted when they discovered that the 'superior' unit was a few db louder than the other. And louder is almost always considered 'better' to the human ear. When the comparison was repeated, with the volume adjusted, the reviewer heard detail/nuance in the 'inferior' amp that the louder amp did not have.

    Coaxial cable comes in a variety of impedences and center-conductor diameters. Two identical looking cables can be 50 ohm, 22 ga and the other 75 ohm, 18 ga which gives them different resistance & impedencece.

    The thinner center conductor has increased resistance which changes the overall amplitude of the signal (which changes the volume).

    The higher impedence cable tends to reduce/rolloff the higher frequencies more than the lower impedence cable. 50 vs 75 vs 110 ohms impedence is a large change.

    The other, more subtle electrical issue is grounding. The shield on a cable joins the signal ground of the 2 devices so they have a common 0.000 volt reference. Did one of the cables have little arrows showing the signal direction flow? This usually means the shield is NOT connected to the RCA plug on the destination side. Now the amp and CD player have to turn to the household AC power lines for the 0.0 volt reference. This could either reduce or increase the amplitude of the signal (which changes the volume).

    There ARE reasons different cables sound different. And it may not be because the coax involved is somehow 'special' enough to justify the $100/ft price. I think it's worth making sure you have an apples-to-apples comparison before you go out and drop $300 on the 'better' sounding MIT cables. (Of course, all this tech talk has nothing to do with the enjoyment you may get from your new cables. It's sometimes better to just enjoy your food and not see what goes on in the kitchen.)
  4. Doro

    Doro Agent

    May 28, 2003
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    Shane - Thanks [​IMG]

    Bob - No problem. It was a analog interconnect from CD to receiver. The cable is impedence specific, 47-100kohms, which fits in with my CD transport output.

    We took steps to ensure that the settings and volume were the same. I listened to multiple volume settings both of which were the same in each session.

    Both cables are directional, so to speak, and have a "flow" arrow associated with them.

    I know that the two cables are probably in specifics very different. Thats a given. The demo purpose was to see if I could hear a change in sound quality with a different, "high end" cable. This was certainly the case. I appreciate the techno babble, [​IMG], its all relative. This would be just a step in the upgrading of my HT room/equipment, I am in no hurry.

    Their will be other colorations I am sure, the transport I am using is most certainly, old as hell. My receiver is the only piece that is not getting upgraded over time, equipment wise. Next down the pipe is the DVD/SACD, once this "Chroma Bug" rolls away.

    I wouldn't spend $300.00 either, I am a used cable purchaser [​IMG] I needed a benchmark for performance of cabling to get it in my ear, for other cable demo's.
  5. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Screenwriter

    Apr 26, 1999
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    The MIT cables have these funky filter network things built into them, so even the "cables sound the same" crowd won't dispute differences here. Whether it sounds better is of course subjective and up to the user. By all means test level matched with a sound meter, and at least single-blind, to determine what you like.
  6. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

    Jun 29, 2001
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    fascinating [​IMG]

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