Interconnect RCA terminations...

Discussion in 'Morrow Interconnects' started by Kevin D, Sep 5, 2018.

  1. Kevin D

    Kevin D New Member

    For transparency, I have also started an email conversation with MA about this subject but would be interested in hearing from anyone with MA interconnects with experience(s) of different types of RCA terminations.

    I currently have MA1s (standard RCAs) and MA4s (silver Eichman - Pure Harmony RCAs) but am considering moving to the re-designed cables and want to make the best possible informed decision on terminations before deciding.

    In short, MA offers three different types of RCA termination: standard, copper Eichmann (Harmony) and silver Eichmann (Harmony). Any thoughts / observations about differences (if any) in sound characteristics would be appreciated.

    Edit: I'm leaning towards getting one set with silvers and another with copper.

    PS: If I purchase, that might mean yet another blog / thread about the listening journey. On the other hand, if ya really don't want that, it's ok, just let me know... :)
  2. Ernie Adams

    Ernie Adams Well-Known Member

    IMHO, going up on the RCA’s does improve things, but marginally. I have all 3types of connectors. You really need a top notch system once you start going this way. Again IMHO.
  3. Kevin D

    Kevin D New Member

    Thanks for the response Ernie. I note the references to RCAs improving things and that, IYO, they are likely to be more useful in top end system. With that in mind and noted...

    I'd be interested to know what you mean by "improve". Does it mean brighter? Smoother? Detail? Unfortunately, I have a system that is just one or two rungs above entry level so it certainly isn't high end but there is an element of "future proofing" on the off chance I'm ever lucky enough to access a super duper system. On the other hand, if the differences really are as tiny as your post seems to imply, it may well be a case of just going for the standard RCA terminations.

    On the subject of standard RCA terminations, do you (or anyone else / Morrow Audio) know who makes them and how they compare to the Eichmann copper / silver plugs in terms of build quality?
  4. Ernie Adams

    Ernie Adams Well-Known Member

    If you have a midfield system, then IMHO the standard RCA’s will be just fine. Going better may be difficult to hear in a midfield system. What I have heard is just a bit more detail, or clarity if you wish. Not gobs, but a bit. As to who makes RCA’s, many companies do. Good luck with your cables. I just ordered the new design level 7 speaker cables with the trade up program.
  5. Kevin D

    Kevin D New Member


    Once again, thanks for taking the time to reply Ernie. As it happens and after a great deal of thought, I have opted for an alternative to the re-designed MA cables and will find out in due course whether a large helping of humble pie will be needed :) (see post in "...cables, other" forum). If the non-MA cables work out, great. If not, a lesson will have been learnt.
  6. Ernie Adams

    Ernie Adams Well-Known Member

    For the overwhelming majority of the time, I have found nothing to beat the Morrow cables. However, I did find in one application that the Phono Cable I have did not work as well with a vintage AR XA turntable that I had restored. Not sure why, but another high end turntable companies cable made the XA shine. I am now tempted to try that cable on my reference table.(Music Hall 9.1 with SoundSmith Aida cartridge). I know this table is perfect since I recently had it tuned up by a true Audiophile Geek. The problem I have is on some albums there is a lack of bass and some harshness in the treble. Other albums it is breathtaking. It may just be that the Music Hall table with its cartridge is good enough now, that it really shows quality, as well as crappy recordings. I wish you well.
  7. Church

    Church New Member

    My system is mid-fi at best (I guess) and I only have 1 set of Morrow interconnects, the MA3 with the copper Eichmann connectors. I'll be replacing it with MA4's and will probably go to silver Eichmann because otherwise I'll be thinking about whether I should have. I have the SP4 speaker cables and they are fantastic. I have a touch of OCD so I just try to get the best I can afford and leave it.
  8. Kevin D

    Kevin D New Member

    Just some thoughts; no more, no less.

    If your system is mid-fi as stated, I wonder if the silver Eichmanns are the way to go. Last year, I got the (old) MA4 interconnects with those same silver terminations but, since then, I've re-evaluated the likely benefit (alluded to in another post). If you stay with standard terminations, the "saving" might put you within reach of the MA5s, thereby getting two steps up the ladder instead of one.

    I wouldn't pretend to have the depth of knowledge some other posters have but it seems you're much more likely to hear a difference with the extra CABLE step (with standard terminations) than with only one cable step (with silver Eichmanns). Part of the logic to me (the bit paraphrased from another post) is that MA isn't going to use standard termination if they potentially compromise the performance of the cable(s). In turn, it's logical to conclude the standard terminations will be more than up to the job with Ma4s or MA5s.

    If you had a high-end system, maybe, just maybe there'd be a case for the upgraded terminations but I think it's worth at least considering if 2 cable steps with standard terminations is going to give you more "bang-for-buck" than one step with silver Eichmanns. Hopefully, others can chip in with their thoughts.

    Edited to add: If you go for the MA5s, the jump after that in terms of VFM seems to the the MA7s (note the uplift in cable runs of MA5 to MA7 compared with MA5 to MA6 (new design)).

    Happy listening :) .
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
    Church likes this.
  9. Ernie Adams

    Ernie Adams Well-Known Member

    I can tell you from experience, a 2 level upgrade is where you will definitely hear things. IMHO, I would forgo the silver Eichmanns in order to jump up 2 levels.
    Church likes this.
  10. Church

    Church New Member

    Well it looks like I could go MA5 for less than I would pay for MA4;s with Silver RCA. Not MA6 though.

    According to the site:

    The RCA version comes with high quality standard RCA's that should please the most discriminating listener. For those who desire the absolute best, Eichmann KLE Copper Harmony and Eichmann KLE Silver Pure Harmony upgrades are available, with the Eichmann KLE Silver Pure Harmony being the best that we offer for this model.

    The Eichmann KLE Copper Harmony incorporates silver coated copper pins, denoted by the yellow colored label. The Eichmann KLE Silver Pure Harmony incorporates pure silver pins, denoted by the pink colored label.

    The Eichmann connectors incorporate a plastic housing so that the signal does not pass through the bulky metal mass of the common connector design. Instead, the signal passes through two small pins for the positive and ground. This design reduces eddy currents and skin distortions. You can expect about a 5% to 10% improvement in the sound when using the Eichmann connectors.

    Copper or Silver Eichmann? The choice can be partially decided based on the "tone" of your system. If it trends toward a bright sound, using the Copper Harmony Eichmanns will tone that down. If your system personality trends toward a warm sound and you desire it brighter, choose the Silver Pure Harmony Eichmanns.
  11. Kevin D

    Kevin D New Member

    Yes, the tonal balance is a factor and will obviously depend on a) your personal preference for sound and b) whether your system is neutral or tends to warm or bright. It's a trickier conundrum because MA's move away from silver coated copper cables runs to all copper *should* result in a slightly warmer feel to the tonal range. For some who prefer less warmth, the silver Eichmanns will be seen as one way to balance that effect.

    With all that in mind, MA would say this is where 60-day return policy is potentially very useful. Make a decision, do lots of listening to different types of music with both the old and new cables and see what you think. If the new cables are too warm / bright, send them back and adjust the next order accordingly.

    Happy listening. :)
    Church likes this.
  12. Weber

    Weber Active Member

    I have the silver bullets on a ma6 set. I also have a set of ma6 with the copper bullets. There is no contest between them. The silver bullets win hands down.
    Church likes this.
  13. Church

    Church New Member

    I've reread this thread a hundred times and have decided on skipping the MA4's and going MA5 with the silver. At the end of the day, I know my mental illness will dog me over not getting the silver connectors. I have no doubt they improve the sound, but for my sanity, I'm going to go 5's with silver. I feel like the 6's would be overkill given the relatively inexpensive nature of my system. The 6 is where Reference goes to grand Reference so I think that's where I'll stop.

    Mental illness is a pain...
    Ernie Adams likes this.
  14. Weber

    Weber Active Member

    The ma5 with the silver bullets are very nice. I had a pair with the sp5 speaker cables bare wire ends. A sweet smooth sound. After 2 yrs I jumped to the ma6 silver bullets and sp7 bare wire.
    Church likes this.
  15. Ernie Adams

    Ernie Adams Well-Known Member

    Speaking of terminations on the speaker wires: The one major issue I have with the Morrow connections is the banana clips. My speaker cables are all banana on the speaker side. They ALWAYS will eventually compress where they will fall out of the connections. I know to spread them open again, but that does not stay. Within a few weeks, I have to re-do them again. It's the weakest link in the Morrow line IMHO. I wish they had a better banana clip. I'm at the point now to where I will probably send them to a guy in California that does re-terminations for me from time to time. A bit expensive, but he and his Dad have been around for years and have a very good reputation on their electronics and wiring. Mike has answered me on this before and only suggested I expand the connectors to make them good again. It doesn't last, and it really isn't a good fix for an issue that really could be cured with a better connector. Again: IMHO.
  16. GregC

    GregC New Member

    Weber. I just ordered MA-7 rca ICs with the Copper Eichmann connects. You say between the copper and silver ones you own that the silver “wins”.
    Can you describe the difference between the two, please?

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