This article was born in my head a long time ago, mainly due to repeated questions from time to time, whether I had contact with filtering devices like iSilencer, Jitterbug etc. But since I run my humble blog, I’ve probably got used to most people to a few maxims, which I am guided in total not only in the field of audio equipment, but generally in life…
Ride the sound wave.
Music at its best has you riding the crest of a wave, but thanks to generic USB cables, most music is drowned in an ocean of electronic noise.
The Mercury3.0 cancels this out, restores natural flow and gets your audio back on board.
Wiring in generic USB cables is compacted, which causes distortion.
The Mercury3.0 separates the audio signal from the power with quadruple shielding to eliminate interference and jitter.
The tech spec.
The Mercury3.0 has:
- USB3.0 For supersonic audio speed
- RF3 Custom Noise Silencers For effective silencing
These add texture to music and create a faster, smoother audio experience.
Super speed. The USB3.0's ultra-speed bandwidth of 5.0Gbps offers an incredibly wide bandwidth, ten times that of USB2.0's 480Mbps.
With generic mass-produced USB cables, the data and power cables are normally packed together. This means that they do not conduct as well as they should and they are not sufficiently shielded from each other. This has a negative impact on USB signal integrity and degrades sound quality.
Our quadruple shielding fully separates and protects the delicate USB data signal from the power. This protects the cable from RFI and EMI noise to provide the cleanest transfer medium possible.
Most USB cables use moulded plastic covered connections that do not shield the high frequencies present in the USB data link. Noise radiates out. Durability is compromised as few manufacturers make their own final connectors.
Our FINAL USB connectors provide impeccable end-to-end RF shielding, being machined entirely from solid, aircraft-grade aluminium.
Plus gold-plated connections make for years of steadfast service.
Most standard USB cables do not address RF issues and are fitted with filters that work over too narrow a range and are only fitted at the ends of the cables, leaving the length of the cable to act as an antennae.
iFi's three custom-made metal oxide ceramic filters have a different effective range to broaden the range over which RF noise is silenced. The middle silencer is adjustable and can be moved along the whole length of the cable. This then “detunes” the antennae formed by the cable. The other two silencers should be kept as close to each respective end as possible.
|Construction:||Minimu inductance parallel construction|
|Conductors:||24 and 28AWG|
|Conductor material:||Heavy OFHC continuous cast copper silver matrix|
|Impedance:||90 Ohms (1% tolerance)|
|AC spark insulation :||1500V|
|Connectors:||iFi ‘FINAL’ USB connectors|
|Lengths/Weights:||0.5m/98g (0.22 lbs)|
|1.0m/115g (0.25 lbs)|
|Warranty period:||12 months|
Overview of iFi Audio accessories and filters – does filtering matter?
SIMPLY THE BEST USB3.0 ON THE PLANET!
EQUIPMENT USED TO TEST:
As you can see from my photos I have the KEF LS50W speakers sitting on the new deluxe version ISO ACCOUSTIC 150 stands. I have both the iFi iGalvanic and iUSB3.0 sitting on iFi stand (using spikes without the couplers). I have 2 ifi Mercury USB3.0 cables, one between the PC and iGalvanic and 1 between iGalvanic and iUSB3.0. What more I calibrate the system flat using Dirac Live software utilizing Earthworks M30 Mic mounted on a Tri-Orbit heavy duty Mic stand. I connect the Mic to the RME Babyface Pro recorder using the best balanced special edition hand terminated Mogami Mic cable. The speakers were aligned using Bosch laser tools.
CALIBRATION FOR A TRUE TEST:
Many will disagree on what cable works in their system. Unfortunately, those that do not have a well calibrated system really do not know what a given cable does in regards to a flat response. Since the Calibration is the single biggest difference in sound quality and clarity most are hearing the distorted reflections of their speakers as much as the speakers themselves. Hence most speakers and reflections sound mid bass heavy and bloated as reflected sound creates many frequencies at different phase sort of like an unfocused camera Lens smears the picture. Once you calibrate you can actually hear the true effect of the cable.
I have tried at least a dozen USB3.0 cables including Wireworld USB3.0 and all the way down to generic like Amazon Basics.
Believe it or not in USB3.0 the 3 foot Amazon basic outperformed other cables. It had the quietest background. The Wireworld is bright and has a lot of high frequency hash noise that may sound good in an uncalibrated bloated system. In a calibrated system for me it was really noisy.
When I first installed the new ifi Mercury USB3.0 cables I listened in awe as I never heard such dead silence removal of hash coming from the audio signal. Suddenly piano had body and texture. Everything came alive. Putting other cables back in its place took seconds before you ripped them out of the system. Every other cable sounded noisy compared to these new Mercury. I let a non-Audiophile friend listen and compare. He was amazed how the other cables sounded like they had “static” compared to the new Mercury cable. You could see that with the Mercury he listened patiently and could not have enough. With the others he lost interest and was ready to go home.
There is no doubt that iFi have come up with a winner. This is certainly the best USB3.0 cable I have heard on the planet!!!!