I am now burning in some Witch Hat cables. We cannot use this forum to discuss some (as RD says, there are clear rules). We can discuss the signal-only interconnects, and I will post elsewhere on what may or may not be our results from the other cables.
So far, I have compared standard grey/ lavender leads with my existing Hi-line and Morganas. Assuming that what I hear now is representative of the final version, there are specific audible improvements from switching grey to Morgana - but so there should be for the cost difference.
Comparison with a Hi-line is harder - I can hear that there is a bit of a difference - if pushed, I’d claim that the music seems to flow a bit better and that the bass on Flight of the Cosmic Hippos, Lazy (on Made in Japan), Aja or Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter is more precise, but I am not 100% sure that I am not imagining it.
Some blind testing by ambushing friends will help pin things down, but that (and less tentative conclusions from me) will have to wait for a couple of weeks, given the above comments about burn-in time. I may yet end up preferring Hi-line to Morgana from NDX2 and CDS2 (though that’s not my guess as I type).
As for why I hear what I do, I don’t know of course, but I suspect that the screening issue may be key.
The back of my rack is a mess and that is really not surprising - 6 boxes need mains power, the 52 preamp has 6 cables in the back, I have 4 sources (inc tape) and the stack is only 2 boxes wide. I have moved boxes to keep (for example) 52 and Supercap a good way apart, and there is only so much one can do about the resultant pickle.
The ridiculous but apparently necessary ‘dressing’ of cables generally and Burndies in particular is a particular complication, and one that one could not have imagined in the days when a great hi-fi had 1 source and 2-3 other boxes (all of which just wanted to be a little distance apart).
Witch Hat cables are stiffer than many, and I am sure that they are not immune to really bad organising over what touches what. However, I strongly suspect that some of what I don’t like as much about the all-Naim-cable sound is my fault, and would be improved if only I could really make every cable hang free, untouched by any other or the floor or the wall. Sadly I can’t.
With Witch Hat, the last few hours of swapping cables and positions of boxes and all that seems to suggest that they are considerably less sensitive to mush (and worse) from cable-on-cable action. This may explain in part why some hear so much more difference in SQ than others.
Does this square with what other people hear?