That Old Black Magic.
PROS: Improved sound stage, transparency and clarity, smooth, durable build quality, Awesome Plug, option of either copper or silver wires.
CONS: Very springy cable.
These were sent over to me by a friend, no incentive was given for a favorable review.
The Truth Replacement Cable
- Van Den Hul patented 3T technology carbon based cable technology
- Cable viewer highlights the intricate twist and braid used
- Copper or Silver wires
- 5mm TRS and 2.5mm TRRS connectors
- 4mm Pentaconn and 3.5mm TRRS connectors available as an option
- Price: US$ 499
How about that! After drooling over Dita Audio’s IEMs for a long time, I did not just get a chance to review the Fealty, now both Dita’s Truth cables (one copper, the other silver) have come around as well. I have been very curious about these because the funny thing is, I think that by now I know several people who have owned the Truth cables multiple times. They seem to buy them for the sound, sell them because the cable is too springy, then buy them back again because of that sound. What is this black magic?!
Perhaps it has something to do with the company Dita Audio collaborated with during the development of the Truth cables, the renowned Dutch company Van Den Hul. Yes. Yes. I know the stereotypes, but we Dutch do not clog dance through the tulips while smoking funny looking cigarettes all day long. That’s just on our lunch break. Outside of lunch we are a very talented bunch. So when Dita asked Van Den Hul to make the very best cable possible for the Answer IEMs, they came up with something rather special. The downside was that in an effort to optimize durability, Dita decided that the Answer (Truth Edition) would not get removable cables. So in order to cater to those of us in the head-fi community who like to tinker with cables, Dita decided to do the honorable thing and make the Truth available as a separate replacement cable with either 2-pin or mmcx connectors and the Awesome Plug and a choice between silver or copper wires. That is a lot of choice, so let’s see how the Truth turned out.
Presentation-wise I have to hand it to Dita for doing a really nice job without introducing a lot of unnecessary fluff. The Truth cables come in a simple, but stylish looking black box that opens up to reveal a user’s manual and underneath, wrapped in white paper an elegant looking black pouch that holds the Truth cable and the 3.5mm and 2.5mm plugs. I really like the pouch because I have multiple cables and it always turns into a horribly tangled mess when I put several together. Some have a leather strap to help organize the cable, but how nice would it be if I could just have every cable in its own pouch… Oh yes, daydreams of a cablephile with a touch of OCD.
The cable comes with the innovative and extremely useful Awesome Plug that I think should feature on more cables. With so many different source options, the Awesome Plug makes it easy to switch between them without the need to swap the cable itself. Simply unscrew the locking ring and replace the plug with the desired type. With these cables came the standard 3.5mm single ended and 2.5mm balanced plug, as well as the optional 4.4mm Pentaconn plug. There is also a 3.5mm TRRS balanced plug available.
Build quality and ergonomics.
This is probably going to be the most schizophrenic part of my review because the Truth cables are extremely well built, very rugged and have the awesome Awesome Plug, and at the same time many of their problems stem from this excellent build quality.
Both cables are the same in terms of built quality and suppleness (or lack thereof) of the cable. The cables are built up of 4 wires made of some (I don’t know the details) type of copper and silver-based materials. The wires are braided quite tightly and a very sturdy sleeve material covers the whole cable in a stealthy black. At one end are 45 degree angled 2-pin connectors that look simple, but again feel really nice and sturdy and are also quite small so they don’t add a lot of bulk the your IEMs. At the other is the wonderful Awesome Plug discussed earlier. In between is the classy round Dita y-split I saw with the Fealty, this time in black to complete the stealthy look. Also on the cable is a unique little viewer that shows off the bare cable and helps to quickly distinguish between the otherwise identical looking cables.
The whole cable feels incredibly sturdy and indeed it is a little too sturdy. It is very springy and keeps coiling up no matter how much I try to persuade it to just relax and hang around (or pose in artistic fashion for photographs to accompany my review). My way of dealing with it in normal use is to run the cable under my shirt or vest, which helps a little. Beyond the springiness I have to admit that it is actually a really nice cable to use and if it were more supple, it could easily be one of the best cables I know of for regular use.
Since these cables have been around for a little while, the criticism of the ergonomics has clearly reached Dita and they have addressed it incredibly well in the Fat cable that comes with the Twins Fealty and Fidelity. Reading between the lines on Dita’s website, I suspect it was a substantial challenge to achieve the suppleness and ergonomic excellence of the Fat cable while maintaining outstanding durability. I really appreciate it when a company takes criticism to heart in such a way and clearly commits to not just resolving the issue, but going beyond expectations.
Comparing the Fat cable to the Truth cables is a world of difference in terms of ergonomics and the Fat cable is indeed a joy to use. I couldn’t use it other than with the Fealty, but since I adore the Fealty anyway, that was not much of a problem. It just meant more ear time with the Fealty, which I of course did entirely selflessly in the line of reviewing duty, to compare most thoroughly. Moreover, Dita have now come up with a new cable that will be sold separately: the OSLO cable, which was developed together with their new Project 71 IEMs. The OSLO cable will also be available in regular 2-pin (as well as connectors for all of Dita’s own IEMs). Call me very interested!
All listening was done with the Empire Ears Phantom, using the Cowon Plenue 2 (neutral) and AK70 (warm-natural) from the balanced out.