Cuttin-Edge, On-the-Spot Reporting

Have You Seen?


I popped in to the Crystal Cable headquarters here at High End 2024 to let founder Gabi Rynveld know how much I enjoyed reviewing the company’s Art Series Monet speaker cables a while back on SoundStage! Ultra.

Jason and GabiJason Thorpe and Gabi Rynveld

We chatted for a while—Rynveld is charming in person; she can draw you into conversation with the ability to be really interested in what you have to say. We discussed Crystal Cable’s new limited-edition Infinity power cord, and I got the chance to lay my hands on this impressive chunk of silver and gold, which is limited to 200 pieces, of which many, we were told, have already been sold.

There’s a lot of metal in the Infinity. There are nine solid-core conductors, each encapsulated by two braided layers made from a mix of the company’s top-level silver and silver-gold alloy wire. The presentation box in which the Infinity cord is packaged is suitably deluxe. The Infinity power cord retails for €18,000 for 1m. For longer lengths, the price goes up.


We also talked about the difficulty in focusing the attention of showgoers on the cables in a system. In a show setting, it’s the speakers that front the entire system. Cables are often considered the poor stepchildren in these environments.

As Rynveld and I discussed this topic, I noted that Crystal Cable’s products were prominently featured in three distinct systems at High End 2024. “How about I visit each of those rooms and see what ties them together in terms of what Crystal Cable is contributing?” I asked Rynveld. It was a plan.

Since the focus of my quest was the cables themselves, I’m going to consider this an overview, a survey, and dispense with quoting prices of the varying components. So let’s get to it.

Vitus, Monitor Audio, and SME

Crystal Cable demonstrated its Art Series cables, the Da Vinci and Van Gogh models, in a system fronted by Monitor Audio Hyphn speakers and fed by Vitus SM-103 mono amplifiers. The sound here was utterly relaxed, with a rock-solid center image and delicacy I could almost taste. In this system, I relaxed into the music in a way that wasn’t always possible in systems that could tip over into “detail for its own sake.”

Monitor Audio, Vitus Audio, SME

During the time I spent in this room, I didn’t interact with the exhibitors. They seemed comfortable to simply let the music play. I don’t know what it was—some sort of relaxing pop—but it was beautiful in its simplicity. I recalled something of this nature from my home system. The Art Series Monet speaker cables gave me some of this sense of ease while leaving intact the details and the impact of the music.

Stenheim, Thales, and Nagra

Proceedings were a bit more controlled over in this room. They do presentations and stuff, and I walked in at the tail end of a Q&A session, so I had to sit tight until they noticed me sitting there patiently. After clocking the lonely Canadian, they threw a record on the Thales TTT-Compact II turntable (which I currently have in for review) and let it rip.

The system here consisted of Stenheim Alumine Five LE speakers powered by chunky nuggets of Swiss sophistication—two Nagra Classic stereo amplifiers, one running each speaker via its bi-amplified terminals.


Again, through the Crystal Cable Future Dream 22 and Diamond Series 2 cables, I heard a feeling of quiet and peace. A touch more top-end prominence here, likely a result of the low-rez Sonny Boy Williamson LP playing on the Thales ’table.

Getting to listen to the Thales running the X-quisite Voro cartridge, the same vinyl rig I have right now at home, was fascinating. I heard the same quickness, the snap that comes from that ceramic cantilever, and the lack of blurring conveyed by the whip-fast TTT-Compact turntable. But through it all, the system conveyed the body of the music with a clarity, an openness, that moved right through me. I was acutely aware that the Crystal Cables were holding it all together, keeping a tight grip on sibilance while letting the highs flow through unimpeded.


I’ve already reported on the Estelon room and the company’s otherworldly X Diamond Signature Edition speaker, so I won’t go into detail about the sound or the components. That said, the room featured Crystal Cable’s end-game Art Series Van Gogh cables, and here there was serious system synergy. It felt to me like there was an overall purity to the sound, a wiped-clean window through to the intent of the music.

Monitor Audio, Vitus Audio, SME

This feeling of harmonic purity was consistent through all three of these rooms, and based on these experiences and anchored by my extensive listening to the Art Series Monet speaker cables, I couldn’t help thinking that the cables were binding these systems together in a way that went beyond their physical links.

Jason Thorpe
Senior Editor, SoundStage!