The CAD Audio USB Cables
CAD now offers two USB cables: CAD USB I and CAD USB II
The CAD Audio USB Cables are optimised specifically for audio use in conjunction with a USB Digital to Analogue Converter.
Compared to purely analogue devices (e.g. turntables), digital audio source components produce more high frequency “noise” (EMI/RFI). This is generated within CPUs, chipsets, switch mode power supplies and regulators and so on. Also the basic USB carrier frequency can be in the 200 MHz to 400MHz frequency range. Digital audio interconnects have a range of issues that are significantly different from analogue audio interconnects. During listening tests we found that when we reduced the amount of this “noise” from reaching the Digital to Analogue Converter (DAC), sound quality dramatically improved in our opinion.
Secondly, it is now widely accepted that the materials and construction of analogue cables can influence the quality of sound that a system produces, and our thesis (which again, is now more widely accepted) is that digital cabling has at least the same impact.
CAD Cables feature our patented USB filter, which filters noise from the music source (whether a computer or audio server or streamer).
The USB consists of 4 connections:
1) +5V : Only used for powering devices – many DACs use this power source, but not all.
2) DATA+ : Differential signal, very high speed
3) DATA- : Differential signal, very high speed
4) Ground : Reference
Unwanted noise is present on all 4 connections. Our patented filter reduces the noise on the differential signal. +5V and Ground without damaging the signal or power itself.
The +5V line contains exceptionally large amounts of high frequency noise. To minimize the amount of this noise from entering the DATA and Ground connections, the CAD Cable uses a separate highly shielded cable for the +5V line.
Wire materials and construction
CAD sees “Digital Signals” as very high speed analogue square waves. Conductors used for high speed signals use different materials and construction techniques compared to conductors that only operate at lower frequencies. As explained above there are 4 conductors in a USB cable. The requirements for the DATA+ and DATA- conductors are completely different from those for the Ground and +5V conductors.
When we compared conductors made with different materials and/or construction techniques we also noted sound quality differences. We have meticulously researched the best materials and construction techniques for the conductors inside our CAD cable. Our main measurement tool is subjective listening tests, but over time we learned what parameters are technically important.
“The CAD USB conveys such a ‘satisfying’ sound. The data retrieval abilities during complex passages is totally engrossing and never etched, exploring every part of the music without any brightness or analytical portrayal.”HIFiPig
“To describe its sound, I would say: effortlessly natural with monumental authority. The CAD USB cable served a sonic presentation that seemed utterly natural, relaxed and even analog in comparison to the other USB cables.”Mono & Stereo Magazine
“In my view exceptional audio components are those that inspire us to explore the unknown musical worlds and direct us away from the sound dissecting behavior. The CAD USB cable is absolutely one of them and carries my highest recommendation.”Mono & Stereo Magazine