The Season’s Special.
PROS: Build quality, thin and supple for a 26AWG 8-wire, improved transparency and imaging, visceral bass response, fairly versatile in pairings.
CONS: Does not pair universally well.
I would like to thank Eric Chong of Eletech for providing me with the Project 8 ‘Prudence’ cable in exchange for my honest opinion. No incentive was given for a favourable review.
- 26 AWG, 8 wires
- Flawless OCC Silver Plated Copper
- Extreme high strand counts
- Hybrid Type-4 Litz Geometry; Kevlar Resilient Core
- Cryogenically Treated
- Eletech Customised connectors and Y-split
- Individually Enamelled strands
- FlexiMax Insulation™ (patent pending)
- Price: US$449
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As I was looking back through my review history, I was quite surprised to realise that it has been well over a year since my last cable review. High time to do a few more of those and I am starting back up where I left off, with Eletech.
By now Eletech needs no introduction. Eletech has quickly put their mark on the head-fi landscape and earned a reputation for the high quality of their cables and the excellence of their service. Eletech launched with four cables, adding their fifth cable along the way, the bespoke copper ‘Socrates’, as well as accessories with a limited-edition Companion Case and ProAdapt series interconnects and pigtails. On top of that Eletech has produced a number of Special Projects such as the DITA x Eletech ‘Phantasm’ IEMs -which sold out in the blink of an eye and so you are forgiven for missing they even existed- and the seasonal Project 8 cables of which I have the Prudence here for review (there is also an 8-wire version of the pure copper Fortitude). If you have missed those, then no worries with these because they will return annually.
I have actually spent quite some time analysing the standard 4-wire Prudence while working on my review of the MMR Gáe Bolg, which is offered either with a regular stock cable or with an upgrade to Prudence. Prudence surprised me a little, as it was not what I expected from a silver-plated copper (SPC) cable. Just a little, mind, because I know Eric and I know he likes to produce cables that ignore any sort of stereotype characteristics. Prudence did not feel like it emphasised mostly the bass and the treble, instead it gave the Gáe Bolg a larger and more airy stage with a blacker background and improved imaging. Prudence did tighten the bass and added impact from it to give them a more dynamic character, but certainly did not add a lot of brightness to the treble, as everything balanced out really well. A very clean and enjoyable presentation was the result. The question then became, what happens when you double up with Project 8 – Prudence?
The unboxing experience for Project 8 is less elaborate than with the School of Athens series ‘Plato’ I reviewed earlier. Project 8 comes in a relatively small black box that is covered by a black cardboard sleeve. Removing the sleeve allows you to open up the box like a drawer, which I quite like. I actually find the size of the box practical enough that I like to use it for storage and so while understated, there is something practical about it too. Larger boxes I generally tend to never look at again after the unboxing, while these smaller boxes I tend to collect because of how well they work in my storage cupboard.
Inside the box you find just a few things; a cloth pouch, a leather strap and a card with information, alongside of course the cable itself.
Prudence 8 is without doubt a premium cable, but most noticeable is that it is not very thick for a 26 AWG, 8-wire cable. I have used a few and Prudence 8 feels like the thinnest and most supple of those. In fact, some of the thicker 26 AWG, 4-wire cables I have, such as those from PlusSound, don’t feel much thinner. Those are more supple and I find them more comfortable, but considering Prudence 8 has double the wires, the difference is surprisingly small.
The parts on the cable are typical for Eletech: very solid, high-quality parts that leave you wanting very little more. The y-split and 2.5mm balanced plug have lovely detailing and combined with the white-silver of the wires makes for a gorgeous looking cable with a bit of ‘bling’-factor. Most importantly, the cable feels like it is very durable and should last a long time.