Lamerol A. Gatewood
Living in Brooklyn and often visiting the clubs in NYC, I was never satisfied with the sound of my system. It sounded good, but something was missing. My friends kept telling me it was the cables. NBS wasn't sold in many stores but had a cult reputation. I met several people who swore by them. After listening to their system, I heard that missing magic. After examining the NBS catalog, I decided the King Serpent would fit my budget. My friends had Monitor-III's and Professional-III's. I decided I would borrow their cables for comparison. Over the last several months I swapped cables and made the following observations.
When I first installed the King/Serpents into the system the noise floor dropped 50%. I knew immediately that the King/Serpents tonal palette was focused and detailed. The treble, mid-range and bass created a holographic sound with pinpoint imaging. My electrostatics had never sounded this good. I listen to music all night and into the early morning. The King/Serpents brought out the best in the sound, the top end was extended, the mid-range was focused and the bass was clean, extended and tight-sounding.
A few weeks later, a friend brought over a pair of NBS Monitor-III cables and interconnects. I had never dreamed I would be making a second cable upgrade. When I compared the King/Serpents to the Monitor-III's, the sound was cleaner, more focused, more detailed and more air around the individual instruments. The Monitor-III's have a better sound stage from left to right and top to bottom. With my system the resolution is almost unbelievable. I replaced the King/Serpents and upgraded to the Monitor-III's, speaker cables, interconnecct amp to pre-amp and digital cable D/A converter to transport.
Soon after, I made my third NBS cable upgrade. I traded for a Professional-II interconnect. I called NBS to get one of the cables repaired and spoke to Walter Fields directly. He explained to me that the cables have a lifetime guarantee. I mailed the cables on a Thursday and got them back five days later, plus the cables were upgraded to the Professional-III. Thank you, Walter Fields.
To make a long story short, the Professional-III interconnect was installed between my amp and pre-amp. Is there a difference between the Monitor-III and the Professional-III? Yes. The Professional-III is all of the above mentioned; the noise floor is even lower than the Monitor-III's so you hear more background information. For example, a musician friend came by to listen and she yelled out, "Did you guys hear that?!". We all looked at each other and said, "No. What?". "Play the CD track back." So I did a search of the CD segment and hit replay. She yelled out a second time, "I know you all hear that.". So I finally said, "What are you listening to?". She said, "The tape splice of the violins. They're screwed up bad.". My point is that if you can tune yourself to listen, you can hear all the details including information you may not want to hear on a CD.
I am now on my third upgrade in the NBS cable line and they are worth every cent from top to bottom and left to right.
System One, C.A.T. Mk.3 Pre-Amp, Audio Research 120 Mono Amps, VPI table w. ET-2 tone arm,
Clear Audio Beta Cartridge, Esoteric P-10 Transport and D-10 Converter, Magnum Dynalab FT-101A
Tuner and Martin Logan Quest-Z Speakers, NBS Professional and Monitor-III interconnects,
speaker cables and AC power cords.
Lamerol A. Gatewood
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