Over the past 6 months there seems to have been a noticeable uplift in customers upgrading to Entreq speaker cables, it’s not a surprise in one way as we have a lot of very happy Entreq users who have been focusing on ground boxes, power cables and signal interconnects, the speaker cable often fell by the wayside due to its perceived high cost, but after several home demonstrations customers are starting to see the benefit of this genuinely brilliant speaker cable, to say the range is quite extensive is a bit of an understatement, but for the purposes of this blog post I am concentrating on just 2 cables within the range, the Primer Pro and Konstantin Infinity.
The Primer Pro is from Entreq’s entry level range of cables, although the term entry level is a bit of misnomer to fair. Per-Olof has used his considerable experience and significant trickle down technology from the bigger cables to create this range and it performs way beyond what any ‘entry level’ cable should in reality.
The Primer Pro Speaker Cable is priced at £1000 for a 2.5m pair and this includes ground cables and a Primer Ground Box, so you get everything you need in one box to get up and running, if you need longer lengths additional stereo increments at 0.60m are £80.00.
A 3.7m pair for example costs £1160.00, which is just around £230/metre
The ground cables in the Primer Pro are hard wired into the amplifier end of the cable, when you connect these 2 ground cables to the Primer Ground Box you ensure that the shield is not connected to the negative conductor of the cable, but instead to an external point, i.e. the ground box itself. This way all of the noise gets dumped to ground away from the signal path instead of the usual method of simply mixing it together with the signal wire.
Also, within their cable design Entreq pay great attention to the antenna effect, all cables in any hi-fi system work as transmitting/receiving antennas. Entreq have always argued that the length of the cables, their conductors and their make up are much more important than other factors such as inductance and capacitance.
All Entreq speaker cables use silver conductors on the positive channel and copper on the negative channel and their lengths are marginally uneven to help counter the antenna effect. All cables are constructed with the absolute bare minimum of plastic and conductive/magnetic material, this is why you see so much wood! No alloy is present in the signal path and the coverings for the cables are all cotton and not synthetic.
Primer Pro Performance
As with any Entreq cable once it is all connected up and running it takes a little while for the ground box connection to do its thing, most people can usually detect a sonic change within just a few songs, but it generally takes a good day of being connected/playing before it reaches peak performance.
If you are looking to give your system refinement, liquidity, texture, plenty of resolution without any artificial leading edges and excessive detail the Primer Pro is brilliant choice. To be fair, if you are looking for ultimate detail retrieval and explosive fireworks it probably isn’t for you, but if want your system to deliver a natural presentation without fatigue that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand on end it’s a great choice.
I installed some Primer Pro recently on a Naim Supernait 2 & ND5XS and it was another example of an initially sceptical customer being completely bowled over by what the Entreq did in his system. The ground box sounds like a load of snake oil and I’ll be amazed if I can hear any difference were the sort of comments the customer made but once the Primer Pro had been connected up for a couple of hours it was pretty obvious his Naim NACA5 speaker cable was severely holding back what his electronics were capable of delivering to his speakers, after a week on loan the customer didn’t want to be without it in his system, which is becoming a fairly common theme.
Konstantin Infinity Speaker Cables
When you step up from the Primer Pro you enter the classic Entreq range, now in the Infinity guise; this range starts with Discover Infinity and goes up as follows, Konstantin Infinity, Challenger 3V Infinity, Apollo Infinity and Atlantis Infinity. The shortest lengths Entreq make are a 2.5m pair on all of their speaker cables.
After running with the Primer Pro on demonstration for a couple of months Entreq kindly lent me some Konstantin Infinity to play with, prices start at £3200 for a 2.5m pair (£640.00 per metre at this length) so it’s quite a jump up in terms of cost.
Historically with the classic Entreq speaker cables they did not come supplied with any ground cables or a ground box and the available options are vast and can be confusing and even a little off-putting (7 different ground cables and 11 different ground boxes!).
However, at the start of this year Entreq made a number of changes to some of their Infinity speaker cables & interconnects and the entry level Discover Infinity and Konstantin Infinity now come with ground cables hardwired into the amplifier end of the speaker cables (just like the Primer Pro) and they also come included with a Ground Box, namely the compact Diskon Box, this is a new box and is smaller than Silver Minimus Infinity, but larger than the Primer Box and the other good news was they made the brilliant decision to not change the pricing either!
This was a really good move by Entreq as it keeps things nice and simple, everything you need comes in one box, but if a customer wants to upgrade his speaker cable performance in the future you simply connect the cables to a bigger/better ground box.
The Konstantin and Primer Pro visually look very similar (same cotton outer jacket), but the Konstantin use much larger, heavier conductors. Connected up between a Vitus RI-101 and a pair of Avalon Ideas the presentation took a major leap forward, it had all of the same tonal characteristics I had outlined above but there was just so much more of everything, the sound was richer, there was more resolution, scale and weight and size of the sound stage had become huge, greater width, depth and height.
That old cliche of hearing new subtle detail and nuances in well known recordings was ever so true here, the opening track of Diamond Mine (King Creosote & John Hopkins) had become even more ethereal and atmospheric than I had ever heard it, it’s a field recording made in a cafe in Anstruther, Fife and there is more going on I’d never picked up on before. I’d spent a fair bit of time going through my go to artists/albums such as Leonard Cohen, Sharon Robinson, GoGo Penguin, Air, The War on Drugs, Matthew Halsall, Laura Marling, plus a lot more and everything is incredibly engaging and emotive.
I also tested out what would happen when you replaced the Diskon box with a larger ground box. I tried a Silver Minimus Infinity, an Olympus Ten and even a Silver Tellus Infinity and the performance improved with every step, so there are plenty of upgrade options for the future as well.
I also used this cable on the Serhan & Swift Mu2 speakers, the Alluxity Int One and of course the Vitus SIA-030 and the Vimberg Minos as well and every time the results were the same, whatever the cable was connected to simply become more musical and enjoyable to listen to. I have subsequently done a handful of home demonstrations using the Konstantin Infinity as well, everyone was blown away by what it could offer, in a variety of very different systems as well.
Controlling overblown bass response in one particular system and sorting out some rather lively top end in another for example. You may have noticed a couple of sets of used speaker cable on our pre-owned page, all have come from Konstantin Infinity upgrades.
We have both Primer Pro and Konstantin Infinity on permanent demonstration, both sets at their price points work incredibly well and they both punch well beyond their price points, I speak to so many people who have systems that they find a too lively to listen to for long periods or systems that are not engaging enough and don’t convey the emotion in the music – Entreq speaker cable could well be the answer!
Please get in touch if you would like to organise a listen to some cable in your own system.