It may be a tough sharing a reputation with another person, to not point out complicated for others. Think about the travails of attempting to be taken critically whereas going about your every day life as Alan Partridge or David Brent, for instance.
The largest drawback dealing with the Chord Clearway Analogue RCA, in reality, is stepping out of the lengthy shadow solid by the superb speaker cable with which it shares its title.
It’s not that we expect it is going to have an excessive amount of bother in doing so, somewhat that it, as a 2021 Award-winner, deserves its personal share of the limelight.
Construct and compatibility
The Clearway truly takes the idea of its design from one other Chord product – the Award-winning C-Line stereo interconnect.
On this revised model (launched in 2018), the Clearway makes use of an improved model of its Tuned ARAY conductor geometry expertise.
Initially developed for digital cables, it’s most well-liked for its elevated transparency and has beforehand solely been included in merchandise aimed on the extra high-end hi-fi buyer.
Every of the Clearway’s materials components has been upgraded over the earlier C-Line.
Insulation has been upgraded to FEP (fluorinated ethylene propylene – upgraded from the C-Line), the shielding is a dual-layer counter-wound heavy gauge foil design, and the cable is fitted with Chord’s silver-plated VEE three RCA plugs.
For this model, the Clearway not solely has a special shade of blue for its outer jacket, its conductors are actually a bespoke tri-core design that has a further high-frequency protect inside the primary foil wrap. It claims to scale back noise interference.
That may imply little to those that aren’t savvy in hi-fi engineering, however relaxation assured any confusion over its expertise is totally at odds with the Clearway’s affect in your system’s musical efficiency.
At roughly double the value of the C-Line, it could maybe be smart to imagine the enhancements would solely be discernible after a relative improve to the remainder of your elements. However fortunately that isn’t the case.
We start our check utilizing the Marantz CD6006 UK Edition, the present model of the identical reasonably priced mannequin we used when launched to the C-Line over two years in the past.
We play a 2009 remaster of Kraftwerk’s The Man-Machine, and the improved transparency and precision of the sound coming from our system with the Clearway plugged in is critical.
The synthesizer sample that opens the primary observe, The Robots, stabs by means of the audio system, timing immaculately and opening the curtain wider to disclose house we could by no means have identified was there in any other case.
The efficiency is richer intimately as effectively, revealing earthy textures to synth motifs and vocoder-treated vocal strains – even the distinction higher dry alerts and people dosed with a modicum of reverb is extra pronounced.
Chord Clearway Analogue RCA Tech Specs
Balanced choice sure
If Chord discovered it tough to provide you with an authentic title for its new stereo interconnect, it’s straightforward to see why the corporate selected to reuse Clearway.
The C-Line’s true forte is the way in which it permits us to listen to the true musicality in a chunk, permitting the system to knit all of it collectively. This new interconnect goes additional: efficiency is more true when utilizing the Clearway – it’s a bit of like all the pieces has been cleaned.
The additional analytical perception you are after whenever you spend actually vital cash on a system is there, but additionally much more by way of dynamics and organisation.
Take The Model, for instance, the observe on this album that in all probability sounds least prefer it was devised and carried out by a gaggle of automatons.
The best way the Marantz emits Ralf Hütter’s vocal when it is pouring by means of the Clearway continues to be pristine, however tinged with the blithe nonchalance that elevates the efficiency from chilly appreciation of stated mannequin to extra understated aching.
If there’s a option to be made between transparency and expression additional down the hi-fi meals chain, Chord has proven that for this sort of cash you’re greater than welcome to each.
Having frolicked utilizing the Clearway, it’s actually fairly unsatisfying to take heed to the identical songs with the rest of the same worth.
The worth tag may weigh heavy on many listeners’ wallets – and the cheaper C-Line stays a category chief we are able to nonetheless get behind.
However for individuals who can justify the outlay, and who’ve a system to justify it too, the Clearway is brilliantly able to letting you hear the place your cash has gone.
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