INDRA Audio Interconnects
I have had the beta version of the Indra
interconnect in my system now for a little over six months.
Both my listening environment and my system components
changed too much for me to write down my impressions earlier.
So, belatedly, here are my comments on the best cable I
have ever heard!
I had discussed beta-testing and the
Indra interconnect with Serguei for a little while before I
decided to participate in the testing.
The Indra arrived at my house very well packed.
Build quality and terminations are high and compare to the
best cables I had used. The Indra looks very elegant in all white, but also quite
understated. Not as
eye-catching as the high-end interconnects from Nordost, HMS, or
Transparent. I put it
in my system at the front of the signal chain (between DAC and
preamp) and it has remained there ever since.
The Indra replaced a Cardas Golden Cross which I had
enjoyed in the system for a while (in combination with Golden
Reference interconnects to the amp and GR speaker cables).
My initial reaction was that the Indra
provided a very detailed, neutral, musical, and non-fatiguing
sound. It appeared slightly more neutral than the Cardas GC, which
has a tendency to add a bit of body and warmth to the sound, but
there was not much gain in terms of soundstage or blackness in the
backgrounds. I also
compared the Indra to its older brother, the Stealth PGS Gold and
I could tell right away that both cables share a sonic family
resemblance. The PGS
sounded a bit warmer but as detailed as the Indra.
I did not think the slight difference in sound that I
noticed would merit such a considerable difference in price ($850
for the Cardas GC, $2,000 for the PGS if paid full retail).
So I called Serguei fully intending to send the Indra back.
Serguei was not surprised at my observation, since I had
just received the cables about ten days earlier.
“They’re not fully burned in yet,” he said and
convinced me to keep them as long as I needed to in order to feel
comfortable with my ability to assess the sound (that’s great
customer service! Serguei
cares about the music and the satisfaction of his customers, and
not about making a quick buck).
I agreed. And
boy, am I happy I did!
Now that I have had the Indra in the
system for a few months, there is no way I would want to part with
them. In my
experience, the greatest components don’t sound like anything.
They let you hear and feel the music, but not the cable,
amp, or CD player. You
may not realize how good a component is until you take it out of
the system and replace it with something else.
Every time I take the Indra out, I hear differences.
The GC and PGS sound warmer and slightly compressed, the
Cardas GR sounds a bit bright, MITs sound dark … Swap the Indra
back in – the music is back!!
This cable delivers the biggest soundstage I have heard
from any cable to date. It
also has more punch in the bass and more air up top.
There is just more of everything there!
With the Indra, Eva Cassidy, Ben Harper, John Coltrane,
Norah Jones are right with you in the room.
The Indra bring me closer to the music than any other cable
I have had in the system. They
are pricey, but then again so are the best cables out there and I
truly believe the Indra can hold its own when compared to the very
best and might even better some of them.
Since I have not heard all of them, I can’t say for sure,
but given the level of enjoyment and musicality that the Indra
have brought to my system, I have no intention of trying any other
cables in their place.
In sum, the Indra is a very special
cable that will retain a very special place in my system for a
long time. Two more comments about Stealth cables in general:
Be patient, Stealth cables need more time to fully burn in
and settle into your system than most other cables I have tried.
But they are well worth the wait.
I have noticed that there is a unique synergy when
combining Stealth cables. Add
one pair and you hear a difference, change all cables to Stealth
and the improvement is magnified.
While I cannot afford to buy two more Indras, I have bought
two pairs of the PGS and run them from the preamp to the Merlin
Bam, to the amps. The
whole system now sounds more musical, open, and natural than it
did with all my Cardas wiring.
I hope I will be able to get my hands and ears on a pair of
Serguei’s new Dream speaker cables soon to see if the synergy
can be improved even more.
Joule Electra Stargate SET monoblocs
Joule Electra LA 100 MK-III
Apl-Hifi modified Sony X-707 ES transport
Merlin VSM with BAM
Cardas Golden Cross and Golden Reference, Stealth PGS
Equi=Tech 1.5Q power conditioner, Elrod, Stealth M-21,
and Signal Power cords
Granite and marble slabs under components, Black
Diamond Racing Cones, Walker Audio discs