NICEHCK 16 cores Silver Plated cable REVIEW:
SOUND IMPROVMENT: 8.5/10
For some cable upgrade is a polemical question. It’s a myth. It’s fake news.
But vast majority just want a good quality cable with good durability.
And other, wish crazy sound improvment, black magic stuffs.
I’m neither a believer in crazy sound improvment, neither a non-believer of potential sound pairing improvment.
There some ultimately cheap cable out there, including lot that do not have stable conductivity. When we buy chi-fi iem for very cheap, we can’t imagine to have top quality cable, they need to cut the price somewhere! So, this is where good budget cable can be usefull, to upgrade acwards cable. As well, balanced cable at more than honnest price is always good deal.
What’s fun with MMCX earphones is the fact we can swap cable easily on the go, and use different one depending of situation or pairing, i will not use same cable for my analytical sounding Ibasso DX90 than with my smooth sounding Xduoo X3ii, power output of those 2 DAP being different, proper pairing isn’t illusion here.
So, yeah, I have numerous cable, 75% being crappy stock cable include with the iem. I buy alot of cheap one too, including 5$ silver plated twisted cable wich I like.
But today i’m here to talk about more bad ass cable, the price jump is not that big but quality take big step, at 25$ this is the type of cable that make you look like an audiophile rich ass geek.
It’s from NiceHCK, a 16 cores SPC black beauty, twisted one, heavy duty fancy one.
The NICEHCK 16 CORES SILVER PLATED CABLE is a really beautifull piece of industrial art, this tighly braided cable aren’t looking cheap at all, even if the price is.
CONSTRUCTION is of awesone quality here for the price, when we see the high price audiophile cable can go, this 16 cores HCK is sure crazy good value in term of sturdy construction. MMCX connection are made of metal and offer a higher quality than we can expect. The jack too, again, is big thick quality metal one, with golden plated 2.5mm connector and the cable is solidly solder and have a rubber tension release withoutany space that make the cable loose and prompt to broke when we pull it. Sure, visible construction is not that important, here its all about conductivity, and even if I can’t measure it with tool, I will share some subjective sound impressions, if there any, well, it proof again that most cable are different in conductivity behavior. One thing sure, we can count the 16 cores to reassure ourself about proper seller description, because sometime tricky seller try to sell us false 8, 12 or 16 cores cable, we must be very dumb to think a 4 cores is a 8 cores, still, some seller think consumer are THAT dumb.
If you can’t count up to ten, please ask for help to be sure your cable have 16 cores.
NOW, its time for COMPARAISON. This is between a 6 cores full copper braided cable and 16 cores silver plated one. Wires of the YinYoo 6 cores are thicker, wich suggest it have more strands in each cores. Tough silver plated copper cores should permit better conductivity, the numbers of strands of each cores can improve it too.
To be the most objective I can, I search in my iem collection to see if I have 2 pair of very same MMCX earphones and finally find the UE customs, a great budget dynamic drivers. If I can’t do proper scientific blind test, at least I can pass from one earphones to the next fastly for comparaisons.
As well, I use the balanced output of Xduoo X20 and Radsone ES100. I take this quite seriously and pass hours using same songs for differenciation.
And let’s say that yeah, after 15 minutes of comparaison, I already hear evident difference in sound behavior.
SOUNDSTAGE is the first thing that differ, with the NiceHCK it sound deeper but strangely little less wide than the Yinyoo, wich have a more ‘’panoramical tapestry’’ like presentation.
BASS of HCK is faster and tigher and slightly brighter than with YOO warmer thicker presentation. Definition is clearer with HCK, but have a slightly cold approach to it as well, if the soundsignature of your mmcx earphones is bass light and bright, perhaps the YOO would be better pairing, if its too boomy, warm or W shape, I would certainly use the HCK. Its hard to tell because YOO tend to tame mid bass punch, so, it will not give more proper slam to earphone. HCK help mid punch authority by giving better grip and clearer impact.
MID RANGE is where the biggest difference occur between those 2 cables, the copper YOO have thicker, warmer, fuller mid range, it benifit especially for vocal presence, but at the same time stole the show of rest of instrumental. The HCK offer more clarity and instrument separation, giving a slightly brighter and more detailed mid range, wich open soundstage and give more controled decay to attack. Still, it perhaps make vocal feel more recessed, especially with V shape. What is strange here its that vocal are clearer, brighter, but less present than with the YOO.
TREBLE is more extended with the HCK, it can even make blossom micro details that wasn’t there with the YOO. Imaging of the 6 coppers YOO cable is less accurate and lack separation, it feel that there upper treble roll off as well. Highs of HCK are more crisp and sparkly, no harsher, but sharper with more brilliance compared to the warmer YOO where the mid range take all the place and feel quite opaque.
In conclusion :
NICEHCK 16cores SPC cable= Extra clarity, better control in bass, sharp and neutral, extra treble.
YINYOO 6cores coppers= Extra warm, Extra mid range presence, Extra thickness and body, roll off treble.
PAIRING WITH :
FINAL AUDIO E4000 :
This is a PERFECT pairing, as the E4000 have thick timbre, warm but rich mid range and extra lower end presence its like if it was mean to be paired with this very cable. Sometime in a recipe with mix the right spices and this sure is a delicious dishe we have here.
SOUNDSTAGE gain in deepness, and feel a little more around your head because of clearer layering.
BASS that wasn’t ultra controled with stock cable gain in separation and tighness without loosing his thick timbre, but gaining a little more transparence in fact.
MID RANGE is were magic happen, because the warm E4000 have not an overly mid centric soundsignature like its E2000 sibling and I was afraid it make it more recessed, but in fact it help it to be better centered and clearer, as it gain separation and clarity due to better controled mid bass impact. TREBLE was quite smooth with the E4000, and again, the HCK give just a little push in extension, and even if it do not transform E4000 into analytical earphones, it give more sparkle and decay to highs and now the acoustic guitar gain in realism and brilliance.
In few words : more control, more clarity, better imaging, slight treble push.
NICEHCK EBX :
Here, the difference is more about extra power of balanced output, but that’s not all.
SOUNDSTAGE became deeper but perhaps loose some widness making it sounding more like a proper stereo system.
BASS loose some sub presence and thickness, and became more punchy with brighter mid bass, as the bass lack impact and roundness already, the HCK do not help to make lower end weightier.
MID RANGE gain especially in separation and details, but as the EBX sound already airy and delicate, this do not help giving extra body to vocal, wich sound perfectly fine with stock cable.
TREBLE extend further and it’s crazy how good is the clarity and spot on the instrument placement, as well, attack and decay gain in speed and grip. Yep, with this extra micro details and highs clarity, HCK cable transform the EBX into analytical earbuds. Incredibly impressive!
In few words : extra treble, extra clarity, better imaging, deeper soundstage, more recessed mid range.
TINAUDIO T2 :
Here, difference are quite subtle, and as the balanced output already give clearer presentation it’s hard to tell how much improvment is due to HCK.
SOUNDSTAGE sound more airy and around your head, deepnest is extended too.
BASS sound more controled, especially mid bass that gain extra clarity and punch, wich offer faster transient response.
MID RANGE is less opaque and have a less grainy brightness, it still is very present but the imaging gain clarity and sound more accurate and balanced.
TREBLE sound little more extended and balanced, as well, highs are less harsh and cymbals less shrilling even if its still a little trebly.
In few words : More accuracy and control, tigher mid bass, more transparent mid range, extra clarity.
Reviewing a cable is very subjective, but the comparaison with a full copper balanced cable help me to conclude the sound modification is no snake oil, what is snake oil is the uncertainity about IMPROVMENT, wich is even more subjective because some people will enjoy higher subtly level of distortion or unbalance, should it be for extra thickness in sound, more bass or mid range, more treble, this is all due to complexity of properly drive specifics drivers with different sensitivity and impendance.
Polemic about cable upgrade is the same than with DAC or AMP upgraded, but as with anything, the implementation of audio material, should it be quality and number of wires or circuits or transistor, will must likely affect final sound experience. The audio chain is sure long, and even if cable came to the end of it, I suggest you invest in a trustable cable.
For less than 30$, the NiceHCK 16 cores silver plated cable offer tremendous value and reference sound quality with clear conductivity. Most of all, it have a sturdy, trustable and high end construction that will make pround the owner of such a beautifully braided cable.
This cable is sell in 6 version, wich is 2pin and MMCX version of 2.5mm and 4.4mm balanced as well as 3.5mm single ended. You can find it HERE