"Cables selection" thoughts : turntable-phono-XS2

Hi everyone,

For a while I’m trying to achieve an (approximately) tight marriage between some of my components, and I guess I’d need your help for that.

I have Technics SL1210GR for my precious records collections which I’m supposed to plug into Lehmann Black Cube SEII and then to XS2. I’m basically stuck at the cable selection, as I want this combination to sound as fidèle as possible, while retaining a canonical “Naim sound”.

I have Chord Cobra VEE3 (both RCA-RCA and RCA-DIN), that I’m intending to put between phono and XS2. But I have no idea what to put between SL1200 and Black Cube… By plugging Cobra I get an unavoidable hum, so I was looking towards Nordost White Lightning but maybe it’s a bad decision. I’ve been told that specially designed phono cables with low impendance are the best choice (like Ortofon 6NX-TSW-1010).

Any thoughts on which brands should I be looking into and what models ?

You’ll probably want something low capacitance, suitable for tonearm leads. Putting aside the basic stuff, many of the people offering upgrade tonearm interconnects use microphone cable, usually Van Damme, Canare, Cardas, VdH or similar. And don’t forget the ground lead, which should usually be run close alongside the interconnects.

I’ve successfully used Mogami W3106 to make the external cable for a Thorens turntable. The cable was wired in the pseudo-balanced configuration using MS Audio ‘Star Line’ RCA plugs at the amp end. The result was a very considerable improvement on the stock cable.

Note that this isn’t a suitable cable for wiring the inside of a tone arm, but it’s very suitable for the external cable from a TT to a phono amp; it also makes very good RCA to DIN interconnects.

Since the Technics SL1210GR uses RCA Phono sockets for output rather than a hardwired cable and the Lehmann Black Cube SEII uses RCA Phono sockets for intput an option that will give an absolutely excellent cable is to use Mogami W2497 and use MS Audio ‘Star Line’ RCA plugs at both ends. This is more than a match for the quality of the Technics TT and whatever (appropriate) cartridge you want to use without being expensive (about £50 for the RCA pair).

As with any phono cable, keep the cables from the TT to the Phono amp short and you won’t then have problems with capacitative load on the cartridge.

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