The construction of the gray eminence
This time “cheap” is supposed to also mean “unique” by design, that is – cheap like pricy. Or even – like expensive. This is where we’ve started and this is where we are now, according to the promise of the distributor and what he’d swear blind. Hence the term “eminence” and such panoply introduction. And now we will take a look: what – what of – and how.
The cable looks unobtrusive, and its price for one meter is a modest PLN 1,2 k. In accordance with the ecologic spirit of the manufacturer, it comes in a cloth bag with a printed moth motif. The bag is closed with a very unecological plastic zipper, so an ecology bigot might get offended, but who knows? Maybe the plastic is special and ecological too? Anyway, the cable has gray cotton sleeve and simple stiffener bands at the plugs. The bands are red on the right cable and black on the left one – so there is no need to play the game “strain your eyes and try to figure out how the manufacturer’s marked the sides and directionality. The sides are easily visible with the use of traditional colors, whereas directionality is marked with LUNA inscriptions on the stiffeners. On the outside, you can also see silvery RCA plugs made by the leading American manufacturer, Switchcraft Inc. What distinguishes them is the possibility to disassemble them and see how they connect with the cables on the inside – and the connection is solid, otherwise the sound would be poor.
You can see in the pictures that the cables are rather thin, and feel flattish to the touch. They bend easily, but are also somewhat elastic and have some rigidity. They are not fluid nor particularly stiff, not too light and not too heavy. Based on organoleptic evaluation, you’d say the cable is not too expensive and not for those who care about sound quality too much, or perhaps for those with a tight budget. Just a simple cable for simple people or just any cable for non-audiophiles. Or perhaps for some audiophiles, but inhibited to the utmost, whose motto is: “anything but the cheapest or free.”
About the conductor, there’s no secrecy, we get a handful of information. The key piece of information is that we’re dealing with Luna Cables Neo-Vintage (LCNV) tinned copper, therefore not artificially aged with current, but authentically old tinned copper. Not brass or gunmetal, but copper with a small proportion (below 1%) of tin – a conductor that’s been used for ages and is still used in high-tech products, such as ultrafast trains, for example. Luna specifies braid thickness and number of cores in the Gris line only for the power cable, in this case, there are 16 wires, 26 strands each. Surely, the IC has less, but how many exactly, I won’t guess. Each core has a waxed silk coat and the whole is put in this overwhelmingly gray cotton, whereas the secret of its quality stems from unwavering, longtime auditioning by Danny, and from his rich, comparative experience with other cables. It should sound better than even very good cables – otherwise there’d be no point. In my opinion, the actual underlying cause of the search is that Danny once compared vintage cables with some fancy, expensive ones and could notice that the old ones are better.