Wireworld Platinum Starlight 7 USB 2.0 Cable

Wireworld Cable Technology is a Florida, USA company that makes audio cables (digital, analog, power, speaker, headphone) and at various levels and prices.

President David Salz has been passionately designing cables for decades.

For about three years now, I have been using their original Wireworld Platinum Starlight USB (A/B) cable as my reference for connecting my music server to my DAC. The Platinum Series of cabling is their top of the line. I have tried many different high-end USB cables, and although there are several outstanding ones that I find worthy of consideration, the Wireworld Platinum Starlight was always my favourite. 1 It offered up a rich full-bodied, sweet and clear presentation with lots of detail that is just my cup of tea. Some of the others I tried perhaps offered a dash more detail at the higher end of the frequency spectrum, but the other qualities of the Wireworld (fullness, sweetness) consistently won me over.

When I found out recently that Wireworld had upgraded their Platinum Starlight to the second generation Starlight 7, I did not hesitate to acquire it. It retails for $700 for 1 meter. Visually, the newer cable looks the same as the old: uniquely flat instead of circular, and silver in color with black ends and gold plated plugs. But they spent several years trying to perfect it.

The flat style in construction (like a flat ribbon) allows for the power line within (noise-absorbing and shielded) to be isolated way to the side of the signal conductors to avoid interference. ‘DNA Helix’ refers to their recently patented conductor design, which for this cable uses 6 signal conductors (Conventional USB cables have only 3 conductors). ‘Composilex 2’ refers to their second generation of composite insulation (a very important upgrade from what they say).

As a general observation, I do not find high-end USB cables to be as overtly sensitive to affecting sound quality/characteristics as either analog interconnects or speaker cables, but they do make a noticeable difference when used on a high-end system with a serious DAC (I use, for example, the PS Audio DirectStream DAC). Some offer a tighter leaner neutral sound, while others offer a fuller bodied sound. Which cable one ultimately chooses also depends on what system they have in place, and possibly the genre of music that one usually listens to. As a common sense rule, I would add: don’t waste money on expensive USB cables on a lower-end system that can’t possibly detect sonic differences. High-end USB cables can cost $300 up to $2000 for 1 meter! Among others, I keep an AudioQuest Forest USB cable ($35) on hand for lower-end use.

Fundamental to Wireworld’s philosophy is in how they test their products for sound quality: As stated on the website: ‘With the invention of the CES Innovations Award winning Cable ComparatorT M (US Patent # 5,740,255), we created a tool that allowed us to instantly compare cables to the only scientific reference standard for cable fidelity, a direct connection between components.’

In other words, they compare the sound achieved by their cables with that of a direct connection (which they view as the ultimate bar) as opposed to against other cables.

I had the pleasure of meeting with Wireworld President David Salz and his National Sales Manager Larry Smith at the recent (October 2015) RMAF show in Denver, and I was greatly impressed by their modesty, openess and transparency. They had right up front for anyone to listen to, a comparison of their top-of-the-line Nano Platinum Eclipse headphone cable ($900 for a 2 meter cable customized for the Sennheiser HD800 headphones) with the HD800 stock cord. The two pairs of headphones were both connected to a Sennheiser HDVD 800 amp, and a Brysten BDP-1 digital player so you could just swap back and forth to compare, and do so from a huge list of music that you could choose from on your own.

As I pointed out in my show report, I played Norah Jones, ‘Don’t Know Why’ for comparison and was greatly impressed by the higher 3-dimensional quality and air revealed by the Wireworld cable. Salz and Smith were also pointing out that for many people, this top-of-the-line at $900 might not be necessary, that their less expensive cables might do the job for the system they might have. They were not pushing people to buy the most expensive cables. I was impressed. In the middle of my testing, Salz was notified by Smith that the superb cellist Vincent Belanger was about to perform live in the Audio Note room upstairs. He was visibly anxious to go and listen. I assured him he should go, that I had met and heard Belanger and he is a must see/hear; ‘go’ I said, leave me with Larry; I was in good hands, and I was impressed (yet again) that Wireworld pays attention to live acoustic sound.

Summary

With this new Platinum Starlight 7 version of USB cable, they appear to have achieved perfection. All the slight criticisms I had about the original cable were no longer valid, and improvements in other areas were now apparent, too. I could hear more detail and instrumental textures at all frequency levels; drums, cymbal work, acoustic guitar and cello on live recordings for example. To me, this cable offers an expansive full-bodied natural sound and it is quick and quiet without any noticeable distortion. It is now my new reference cable and receives my highest recommendation.

If you are not ready to go for the full monty, their less expensive cabling is superb for the money. All prices for one metre — the Wireworld Silver Starlight 7, for example, is $300.00, the Wireworld Starlight 7 USB is $100.00, the Ultraviolet 7 USB is $50.00, and the Chroma USB is $30.00. They offer something for any budget.

1. [Different ones I have tried include: AudioQuest Diamond, Silnote Audio Poseidon, and (what a bargain) the new AntiCables Level 3.1 Reference Series, as well as the very impressive Audience Au24 SE (Many thanks to Wes Bender, of Wes Bender Studio, NYC for introducing me to the Audience cable, and letting me hear it on his very fine GamuT Audio based system. 1]

Further information: Wireworld Cable Technology