The task of a signal cable, whatever it is, is incredibly simple: transport a signal from ‘a’ to ‘b’. Without loss. How hard can it be? Well, we’ve been producing audio equipment for over a hundred years now. And time and time again, cables – digital and analog – have an impact. So it must be damn hard. Driade reports on his website to have gone back to basics in the development of the Driade Flow speaker cable. We are going to see how that worked out
Let’s start with a quote from Driade:
Year in, year out, high tech materials have been used as unique selling points for high-end music reproduction. For example Beryllium, Silver, Gold, Teflon, Mica, Mylar, Kevlar, etc., etc., etc. are used in cable technology. The musical results are not maximized because the basics are forgotten. The main result of all this research and the use of expensive materials are State of the Art sales prices.
Minimize eddy currents and reflections are the key!
We’ve done quite a few multitest reviews with cables. Both interlinks and speaker cables. And also the necessary mains cabling has passed. And believe us: cable reviews are no sinecure. They are difficult, because the effect differs per set. However, it should not: a cable may and should not be audible. However, very few manufacturers succeed in making an ‘inaudible’ cable. Perhaps because of the above reason; we are not technicians. So saying something about this is rather pointless.
The Driade Flow has a different geometry than most cables. First of all, each side consists of two seperate cables: positive and negative. So, for a stereo pair you get four cables. Each separate cable consists of 405 thin copper wires. These are twisted and divided into three bundles. In this way, all wires are the same length, which should prevent phase issues. This sounds logical, but it is not: not all manufacturers take this into account.
To round it off: the bundles are packed in natural silk. Between the outer jacket – which has a damping and insulating effect – and the silk sheathing is of course air, which also has an insulating effect. Fortunately, otherwise we wouldn’t be able to be near a power pylon.
The connectors are also a story of their own. These are ultra-light. Arnold Heres – owner and developer of the Flow Cable – has an aversion to Eddy Currents. And since mass influences these annoying currents, the plugs should be as light as possible. And they have succeeded. The plug consists of an insulating outer shaft and a hollow plug in which the cable is soldered. This hollow plug is then pressed into the outer shell. Different than we normally see.
Now we can tell all kinds of beautiful stories about cable lifters, ultra conductivity, cryo-techniques and resonance machining… But unfortunately: there isn’t much else to tell about this cable. Except that we are very charmed by the simplicity, the flexibility (which works incredibly well with reviews!) and that the plugs are beautiful. But fragile.
Let’s get on with it.