Review: Synergistic Research Atmosphere Speaker Cables

Posted on 9th October, 2015

Review: Synergistic Research Atmosphere

The second feature is the use of ‘UEF Shield Grounding’, also said to improve the performance of Atmosphere series cables by connecting their shields, and any noise directly to earth and not your components power-supplies or speaker crossovers. This is achieved by connecting small grounding wires that are attached to the amplifier end of the cables, to the supplied wall plug which uses only the Earth terminal.

With the cable shielding attached to your homes earth, any noise that the shield picks up is theoretically drained away, resulting in a super quiet cable. Synergistic Research do not recommend connecting this plug to power regenerators, filters or conditioners.

Setup

Review: Synergistic Research Atmosphere Speaker  Cables

All of the speaker cables are available with either banana or silver spade connectors as well the choice of single wire speaker connection or bi-wire ends. My review samples of the Atmosphere 1 and 4 came with bi-wire spade connections which proved useful for loudspeakers like the Audiovector SR1 Signature, with its 4 binding posts. There is the standard 2 wire connection at the amplifier end for each channel.

The cables have already had an initial 5 day burn in process from the factory. Nevertheless the Quick Start Guild outlines the requirement for no less than 100 hours of uninterrupted use in the system before the cables begin to open up and sound their best, and often double that. For the level 4 cables there is the additional requirement to have had at least 100-200 hours connected, to allow the earthed shields enough time to fully bias and stabilise before sounding at their best.

Listening Impressions

Atmosphere Level 1

Review: Synergistic Research Level 1 and Level 4 Speaker Cables

I started with the level 1 cable connected. Changing out my normal Audio Unique Metis cable was a definite step in the right direction. Immediately I noticed additional bass speed laying a solid foundation to the music. There wasn’t any additional extension of the bass or the treble for that matter, but a tuneful vibrancy to the overall feel of the music. Tonally it was very smooth from top to bottom, neutral without any apparent glitches. There was a noticeable lack of compression, allowing music to comfortably flow. This seems to be a highlight of all Synergistic Research cables. The midrange is especially worthy of mention as it very open and natural, allowing voices and instruments to sound clean, pure and vibrant and free of grain or etch.

No matter what was played, I could detect no preferences for particular genres, along with a freedom from aberrations with all manner of naturally recorded instruments, including piano. The timing and pace of the cable is also very good. It gives a relaxed feeling, yet is capable of large dynamic contrasts when called upon. 

There is no darkness or artificial haze that I could detect with the Atmosphere 1 that is apparent with some cables in this price range, allowing me to come to the conclusion that it is easily the best sounding cable in its price bracket that I’ve heard. Its overall performance makes it capable of outperforming some cables at double the price, so it’s extremely good value and I have no hesitation in highly recommending it.

Mark Gusew's avatar

Mark Gusew

Starting his first audio consultancy business in the early 80’s whilst also working professionally in the electronics industry, Mark now manages a boutique audio manufacturer.

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Tags: synergistic research  atmosphere  speaker cables  level 1  level 4 

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