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Gear Review: Dynamic Arc Ultra by Solid Cable PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 20 August 2008 01:55

By Ken Volpe - GJD
In today’s boutique guitar market, there are many great accessories to help you achieve better tone. As a matter of fact, the amount of choices can be completely overwhelming for the average player. I must admit that I am a self-professed “tweaker.” I have tried dozen of guitars, amps, speakers, effects, and accessories in my never-ending search for that elusive tonal perfection. Every now and then, a product comes out that stands above the rest. So, let me introduce the Dynamic Arc Ultra cable made by Solid Cable.  

I have demoed all types of cables throughout my 30+ years of playing guitar and there is one rule that I stand by. In testing a piece of gear, such as a new cable, I have found it best to limit your variables. Let me explain a bit further…. You should have everything in your set-up be a familiar constant. In other words, use a guitar, amp and a speaker that you have been fond of for quite some time. This way you ears will not get confused and any and all comparisons are on a level playing field.

So, let’s talk tone. My test guitar was a James Tyler Strat and a Divided by 13 FTR37 amplifier. First I used a standard $12 cable. Then I plugged in the Dynamic Arc Ultra cable. Right off the bat I could hear a more natural and balanced tone when using the Solid Cable. It actually sounded more three dimensional and less aggressive at the same time. It was warmer and fuller and not overly colored. I believe that what my ears were hearing in the $12 cable, was an overabundance of harshness in the top end and a lack of clarity. The Solid Cable severely exposed the $12 cable for what it is…Let’s face it; you get what you pay for. But before I completely trash the competition, let me be fair. For certain rigs and certain types of sounds the “cheap-o” cable does serve a purpose. It is another flavor, albeit not the flavor I would often prefer.  

Next I tested my Dynamic Arc Ultra using my Flammang Steel-String Acoustic Guitar plugged into a PA system.  I was amazed.  Once again, buttery top-end that was very pleasing to my ears. This allowed me to achieve greater dynamics with my right hand. In other words, because the high-end was not harsh I could dig without the amplified notes really “barking” at me. That alone is worth the price of the cable.  

So some folks might balk at a $135 cable. Their reactions will be things like, “Does it really make a difference or are you going to really notice?” Allow me to be a snob here for a second. If you have really low-end gear and/or non-discriminating ears, then I guess it really doesn’t matter. But if you want to increase your level of tonefulness and have greater freedom on your instrument then this cable is the way to go. If you think about how much money you spend on the rest of your high-end gear then the price tag is really minimal. I need to add one last thing; the build quality of this cable is so far beyond how the $12 cable is made that it is almost a joke. To me, quality is always paramount. The Dynamic Arc Ultra cable deserves serious consideration if you are trying to take it to the next level.

Features of the Ultra Arc are:
-lifetime warranty
-woven braid outer shielding
-triple strain relief
-all metal satin nickel die cast shell
-Amphenol connectors
-6000 PSI tear resistant protective outer armor
-triple carbon/braid internal shielding
-all contact surfaces atmospheric oxidation/contaminant cleaned and lubricated with audiophile grade metal preservation
-hand soldered using premium grade silver alloy solder
-aerospace quality oxygen free copper conductor
-prices start at $135.95 USD
-available is assorted lengths


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